The company aired commercials, aimed at families with older relatives with possible heart problems, in Tampa, Detroit, San Diego and Phoenix this spring, according to the report.
Direct to consumer marketing through television ads is rare for medical device companies, though commonplace for pharmaceutical manufacturers. Boston Scientific said the commercials are part of its strategy to promote its new products and pursue sector leadership in cardiac, endoscopic, urological and other devices, according to the report.
With the strategy, the company hopes to position itself with the major players in the industry as the industry consolidates and shrinks, the Boston Globe reports.
“Hospitals want to drive great outcomes, and they also want to save money. So what they’re typically doing is reducing down the number of suppliers that they work with. What’s most important to us is to have very differentiated products so that when Mass. General or whoever picks partners, we’re part of the answer,” CEO Mike Mahoney told the paper.
The decision to air the ads came with “a lot of hand-wringing,” according to chief medical officer Ian Meredith. But the company determined the ads would have a positive effect in educating patients with atrial fibrillation who are commonly on anti-coagulant blood thinners, according to the report.
“This is a very socially impactful ad. It’s really identifying that there’s an alternative for people who can’t take anti-coagulation or who are struggling with anti-coagulation [medicines]. And a lot of primary care doctors don’t realize this option’s available,” Meredith told the Boston Globe.
Boston Scientific said it is waiting to gauge the effectiveness of the existing ads before considering rollouts in other regions.
Last month, Boston Scientific revealed its plan to improve operating margins over the next few years, setting its sights on earnings growth of at least 10%.