The U.S. OTC market is characterized lately by slow, steady growth of anywhere from 1% to 3% annually. There are small, independent companies, however, that have recently recorded double-digit sales growth. These companies often outpace market growth by offering unique brands, uncommon and often natural ingredients, focused distribution, and a strong online presence, frequently combined with compelling digital marketing that resonates with today’s OTC consumers. Identifying these market disruptors and learning the factors that make them resonate with consumers and retailers is crucial.Continue reading
At the end of July 2018, Johnson & Johnson announced it has entered a definitive agreement to acquire Zarbee’s Naturals for an undisclosed sum. Zarbee’s is a privately-held company that was started by pediatrician Dr. Zak Zarbock in 2008 with the mission of creating naturally sourced cough, cold, and immunity products for children and adults. Zarbee’s first product was a honey-based kids’ cough syrup made with vitamin C and zinc and free of alcohol, drugs, and artificial flavors. Over the last decade, Zarbee’s Naturals has grown into a broad-based health and wellness brand. This brand and others like it have disrupted the cough and cold category, where traditional marketers are struggling to see real sales growth.
Rx-to-OTC switch brands continue to be major game changers within the OTC market, whether promoting strong gains or causing steep declines. Aided by the launch of Rx-to-OTC switch brand Allegra (Sanofi-Aventis) and strong growth of private labels, allergy relief products grew 16.3% in 2011 to become the fastest growing category on the U.S. OTC drug market, according to the Nonprescription Drugs USA 2011 report by international consulting and research firm Kline & Company. The U.S. OTC drug market posted a gain of 2.4% reaching $21.4 billion in 2011 at the manufacturers’ level.
From 2010 to 2011, the U.S. OTC drug market posted a gain of 2.4% from $20.9 billion in 2010 to $21.4 billion in 2011 at the manufacturers’ level. The fastest growing categories include allergy relief products, which grew 16.3% in 2011 aided by the market launch of Rx-to-OTC switch brand Allegra (Sanofi-Aventis) and the strong growth of private-label allergy relief products. Past Rx-to-OTC switch brands continue to perform well with Rogaine (Johnson & Johnson) and Plan B (Teva Pharmaceutical), both posting strong gains in the hair regrowth products and contraceptives markets, respectively.