New Viagra Ad Geared Toward the Ladies
Pfizer hopes commercial will get women talking about erectile dysfunction
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 1, 2014 1:40 PM CDT

(Newser) – At first glance, the new Viagra ad—featuring a comely, middle-aged blonde lounging on a bed with the ocean in the background—might appear to be strictly geared toward men. But Pfizer, the drug's manufacturer, specifically designed the commercial to target women, hoping that by showing a woman talking directly to viewers, the ad might spur other women watching the promo to start a discussion with their partners about impotence issues, the AP reports. The new commercial is just one approach Pfizer is using to try to boost sales after losing ground to generic versions of Viagra in Europe when the drug's patent expired there last year and sales fell 8%, the AP notes.

"So guys, it's just you and your honey," the actress in the 60-second ad purrs. "The setting is perfect. But then erectile dysfunction happens again." Pfizer's marketing chief tells the AP that the company is trying to get away from past ads "built around very subtle innuendo" by taking a more direct approach. A San Diego doctor who specializes in sexual issues tells the AP that women are often even more bothered by impotence than their partners, meaning Pfizer's tactic might be right on the mark. Meanwhile, Kate Dries muses on Jezebel that, actually, the ad "is not very subtle," and Kathleen Lees sniffs in Science World Report, "As if the media couldn't cater to men more"—but Jessie Militare of Cosmopolitan says, "It's refreshing to see a change of pace from throaty cowboys trying to light a campfire."