The nation's two largest drug store chains — Walgreen Co. and CVS Caremark Corp. — are ramping up their efforts to drive private label sales.


Walgreens, CVS, CVS/pharmacy, CVS Caremark, private label, private label sales, Just the Basics, store brand, H&BAs, ad campaign, private brand, household essentials, Stacia Woodcock, Walgreens pharmacist, ParentsAsk.com, BlogHer, merchandising, Grant Pill, Geoff Walden, private label products




































































































































































































































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Top two drug chains push private label

March 14th, 2011

NEW YORK – The nation's two largest drug store chains — Walgreen Co. and CVS Caremark Corp. — are ramping up their efforts to drive private label sales.

Walgreens has launched its first national ad campaign for its store brand H&BAs, while CVS/pharmacy has debuted nearly 100 household essentials under the Just the Basics private brand.

Walgreens’ campaign, encompassing traditional and digital advertising, focuses on the affordability and quality of its store brand items. It includes a television commercial, print ads and an advice video from a Walgreens pharmacist on ­ParentsAsk.com.

“We’re all looking for ways to save money without sacrificing quality, and store brand medications allow us to do just that,” says pharmacist Stacia Woodcock in the video. Private label products “offer a safe and effective alternative to national brand products without the high price tag,” she says.

There are also banner ads on ABC.com and CBS.com comparing the chain’s private label products to national brands.

The retailer also has partnered with BlogHer to reach young and middle-age women — its core shopping group. Banner ads on BlogHer.com sites include excerpts of posts about the products and comments from users.

Lighthearted TV spots for the campaign feature Walgreens pharmacists recommending “bubble gum flavor and patience” for a mother with a young son, “antacid tablets and only one taco” for a man in a restaurant, and “cold tablets and hot soup” for a woman with a cold.

At CVS, Just the Basics comprises practical items from a variety of categories, including household, beauty, baby and personal care.

“We know our customers want the option to save where they can so they can spend where they want,” says vice president of merchandising Grant Pill. “Just the Basics offers smart simplicity with a full line of basic products that customers need to get them through the day with even lower prices and the added convenience of shopping at CVS/pharmacy.”

Items range from paper towels and sandwich bags to cleaners, laundry detergent and light bulbs, and they are priced “at a fraction of the cost of national brand alternatives,” says a company spokeswoman.

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