• March 13, 2020
  • By Leonard Klie, Editor, CRM magazine and SmartCustomerService.com

Tackling the Counterfeit Drug Problem Is a Marketing Effort

As the coronavirus brings to light the fact that many of the medicines available in the United States are sourced from or rely on ingredients from China, new calls are being issued to bring more of the drug manufacturing processes back to American shores.

Even more alarming is the high number of fakes in the pharmaceuticals space, which is not only a huge problem for marketers but can be downright dangerous to people’s health.

According to reports, wholesale manufacturers in China were creating counterfeit versions of some drugs and natural supplements with dangerous ingredients, and even building materials like drywall powder.

This was a problem for Leading Edge Health, a global company with a suite of sexual health, anti-aging, and skin care supplements.  Batches of fakes are frequently seized at borders by customs officials, causing major issues with negative publicity, and can even lead to government health agencies posting misleading warnings about the brand's products, which has a huge negative impact.

Leading Edge Health has been working with Incopro to combat the counterfeit gray market. The clean-up has been so successful that Leading Edge has almost entirely eliminated counterfeit listings in the North American market and reduced the number of high-risk listings across all global markets by 74 percent.

Brand marketers have a major stake in the fight against counterfeit goods, and not just in terms of revenue loss: The fallout from the reputation damage can be severe. According to data collected by Incopro and Sapio Research on consumer perceptions of counterfeit goods, more than half of U.S. consumers (52 percent) have lost trust in a brand after unintentionally purchasing counterfeit products online. 

Efforts have been so successful that Leading Edge Health has officially launched its products in China for the first time. Since the launch, Leading Edge has grown sales in China from zero to almost $1 million in sales annually in less than two years.

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