CASSIES Bronze: Buckley’s gets mucous ‘up and out’

A campaign from Saatchi & Saatchi catapults the Novartis Consumer Health Canada brand’s new product into a leading position.

BRONZE: Events, Seasonal and Short-Term

Situation Analysis: Buckley’s has a long history of presenting something unpalatable in an endearingly successful way, and Buckley’s liquid (the mainstay of the business) was in second place behind Benylin.  Disturbingly, though, it had begun to lose share to new mucous entrants, and for the 2010/11 cold season it was time to launch Buckley’s Mucous and Phlegm.

Strategy & Insight: Buckley’s success has been based on “It tastes awful. And it works.” but while many Canadians still held true to this, many more were starting to look for easier options. They needed to be convinced that Buckley’s was the most effective mucous relief formula, and worth the unpleasant taste. Helping this idea was the fact that loyal Buckley’s users are a tough lot, and they see snuggling under the covers looking for sympathy as sloth. They believed that mucous needed to be up and out.

Execution: Creative kept the message simple – no borrowed interest, no hyperbole, no set-up. But mucous is gross, so the “up and out” message needed a lighter touch. Two 15-second spots used an animated cannon and catapult to show how Buckley’s does it. TV was the main medium, with radio and in-store effort in support.

Results:  Despite being the third brand into the mucous segment, Buckley’s Mucous and Phlegm delivered eight dollar share points, outperforming all other brands for the season.

Cause & Effect: Tracking results showed a direct, if not immediate, response to the advertising schedule. Spending levels, as in previous years, were well below competition. Pricing and distribution remained unchanged, and there was less product on deal.


Novartis Consumer Health Canada
director of marketing: Eric Bentz
senior brand managers: Ginny Homewood, Kelly Kretz
associate brand manager: Mark Chiarcossi
senior project manager: Sonia Munoz
director of regulatory and scientific affairs: Don Beatty
customer strategy manager: Patrick Jauvin

Saatchi & Saatchi
EVP, managing director: John McCarter
group account director: Kathy McLay
co-ECDs: Brian Sheppard, Helen Pak
AD: Tyler Serr
writer: Mike Tung
AD, writer: Marc Melanson
producer: Rob Tunnicliff

director, Stardust Production Co: Alan Bibby
VP managing partner, connection planning: Mike Dougherty

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