Kimberly-Clark takes Depend brand in new direction

NEENAH, WI: Kimberly-Clark's Depend brand for adult incontinence recently launched its largest integrated marketing campaign to date to usher in the brand's new gender-specific product line. The new items will hit the market in March.

NEENAH, WI: Kimberly-Clark's Depend brand for adult incontinence recently launched its largest integrated marketing campaign to date to usher in the brand's new gender-specific product line. The new items will hit the market in March.

“The scope and different elements make it the largest, as well as the size of the budget,” said Joey Mooring, senior manager of corporate communications for Kimberly-Clark. Taylor is assisting with the PR support of the product roll out, though Mooring declined to provide budget figures.

At this point, much of the PR is reaching out to consumers via an “aggressive” media outreach effort and a microsite. It unveiled its ramp-up for consumer-facing promotions on December 15, through an article in Reuters, and is currently pitching retail trades and health publications, among others.

The company is also looking to cement the brand's connection with consumers and strengthen “our leadership position in the adult care categories,” said Mooring, and future initiatives will reflect those goals.

The company's transitional relaunch through 2009 includes an “overhaul” to the brand Web site, which is slated to include an online community for seniors, said Greg Fries, senior brand manager for Depend brand.

“We are looking at programs that would help people along who aren't familiar with discussion boards or maybe aren't as comfortable sharing information online,” said Fries. “We are looking at new ways to engage consumers and lessen their anxiety.”

During tight economic times, the company invested in this “key strategic initiative,” due to the “huge opportunity for growth within adult care,” and the expected 14% growth in the number of baby boomers entering the market by 2010, Fries said.* The Depend brand is banking on the purchasing power of the increasing 55 and over age demographic, which includes baby-boomer caregivers and their parents, he added.

“Because of the personal nature of the condition, the relationship [consumers] have with the brand tends to be strong,” said Fries, “Our ability to have that one-to-one personal connection is critically important. As [we] look forward to our integrated marketing campaign in 2009 that will be a central component.”

*CORRECTION: In a previous version of this article, PRWeek reported that “a 14% sales increase was projected from now to 2010” for Kimberly-Clark's Depend brand. That is incorrect. The 14% statistic, instead projects the growth of baby boomers coming into the category by 2010. We regret the error.

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