Lamisil

Situation

25 million Americans had nail fungus but were treating it as a cosmetic, surface problem, with creams and clippers. If prescription Lamisil could educate them that they had a live infection growing under the nail — not on top — then, as a pill, not a cream, Lamisil would be the intuitive solution. But first it had to get their attention.

Approach

Enter the anti-mascot, Digger, a talking fungus that drove home the fact that nail fungus is literally “alive” and educated millions about why they needed Lamisil. With his snide personality and reptilian presence, he was virtually impossible to ignore. Finally, there was a compelling reason to ask a doctor for a more serious solution.

Results

The creative admittedly left people horrified and disgusted, but more importantly, highly motivated. Unaided awareness soared from 8% to 20%; total awareness grew 39%.

Share increased 7.2%, exceeding company goals, and the core-season sales increase was 80% higher than at the same time the year before. Eventually, both the repulsive antimascot and the formerly-languishing Lamisil brand became “billion dollar” babies for Novartis.