Case | HBS Case Collection | August 2004 (Revised July 2006)

PROPECIA TM: Helping Make Hair Loss History

by Marta Wosinska and Youngme E. Moon


In late 1997, Tom Casola, brand manager for Propecia, debates the best approach to market this breakthrough one-a-day pill for hair loss. This launch would be atypical for a prescription drug because of the key position of the consumer. As a result, the team's experience of past launches has little bearing on how its two available instruments, physician detailing and direct-to-consumer advertising, might play out in this case. Three issues present themselves as new: the form of advertising, the consumer message, and the balance between consumer and physician marketing efforts. The ensuing discussion allows participants to explore the goals of and interdependence between various marketing instruments.

Keywords: Advertising; Communication Strategy; Customers; Marketing Communications; Marketing Strategy; Product Launch; Product; Performance Effectiveness; Problems and Challenges; Quality; Pharmaceutical Industry;


Wosinska, Marta, and Youngme E. Moon. "PROPECIA TM: Helping Make Hair Loss History." Harvard Business School Case 505-035, August 2004. (Revised July 2006.)