SEOUL, Nov. 1 (Korea Bizwire) – Celebrities can take most of the credit for the sales jump in vitamins, including Go master Lee Se-dol whose advertised brand sales more than doubled over a year, industry officials said Tuesday.
Yuhan Corporation had launched “Megatrue,” a vitamin supplement, in 2012, but the product only gained market profile this year. The company hired Lee, who was internationally spotlighted in March as he played against Google’s artificial intelligence program in the ancient board game, as the product spokesmodel in May. The company said sales jumped 112 percent in the third quarter this year compared to the same quarter a year before.
Yuhan in November last year had divided the Megatrue product line into three to include “Megatrue Focus,” tailored for teenagers who need to study for college entrance. Industry officials said putting Lee’s face on the product apparently created synergy in increasing sales.
“Vitamin C 100mg,” another supplement from Yuhan, and Zyrtec, a treatment for allergies, have also gained, their sales up to third quarter this year having surpassed the entire sales for last year, according to the company.
“These are products that were aggressively marketed at company level,” a Yuhan official said. “We believe having Lee in our advertisements also had a positive effect.”
Actor Cha Seung-won had also given star power to vitamin product he advertised for Takeda Pharmaceuticals Korea. Nicknamed “Cha Seung-won vitamins” by consumers, the product hit 5 billion won (US$4.37 million) in sales in a year.
“Vitamins are sold over the counter, without a prescription. Because the consumers select and buy directly, getting the brand image across to them is very important,” an industry official said. “The strategy is to hire a celebrity figure with a healthy image, land firmly in the market and boost sales.”