“It’s way too recognizable,” Adrian Adams, Sepracor’s ceo, told Ed Silverman, Pharmalot’s journalist blogger, about the Lunesta moth mascot.

Recall that I had previously predicted the moth would soon be mothballed (see “Lunesta Moth Being Mothballed as a Result of Negative Marketing ROI“).

“You’ll continue to see it for some time to come,” Adams told Ed (see here).

Yes, but as I said and what I stand by, you’ll be seeing a LOT less of the moth — 70% less to be precise! To prove this, you only need to compare an old Lunesta print ad with a new one (see image below).I did the measuring and the math and you can see the result!

There are other differences between the old and the new ad campaign, some of which I pointed out in my previous post. Here are a few more:

  1. Not only does the moth in the old ad occupy a larger percentage of the ad space, it also appears in the center of the image where it is impossible to miss it. In contrast, in the new ad, the moth is up in a corner far away from the main focus of interest: the face of the man who is awake and obviously happy. BTW, who the hell wakes up like that, good night’s sleep or bad?!
  2. The new ad is bright and colorful; the old is dark and foreboding!
  3. The new ad has a much larger and centrally located benefit message, whereas the old one de-emphasized the benefit message, which was printed in a small font size equivalent to the fair balance, side effect information.

Do you think the new Lunesta ads will sell more Lunesta?

If you do, then you would be thinking contrary to that of David Lapinski, Associate Director, Commercial Analytics at Sepracor who said “DTC does not sell the product. Awareness doesn’t generate sales.”

He also confirmed that we will see “less and less” of the luna moth. But he was not talking smaller. less prominently placed moths in print ads. He was saying that there will be less Lunesta DTC advertising overall! (See “Sepracor Not So Keen to Spend Big on DTC for Its Next Product!“)

Who are you going to believe? The CEO of Sepracor or your own eyes?