Proprietary Nutritionals president Dean Mosca said the company employs a “push and pull” strategy to help whip up demand in the consumer marketplace for the supplements that contain the company’s ingredients. And lately, part of that strategy has included pushing back the perceived age barriers for competitive athletics.
One of the company’s key marketing efforts for its joint health ingredient Celadrin centers on sponsoring a women’s basketball team. But not just any team; this one, dubbed the Celadrin Tigerettes, is comprised of women in their 60s and 70s, and is perhaps the winningest team ever this side of the Harlem Globetrotters. Since its inception in 1993, the team has compiled a record of 198 wins against 5 losses on their way to seven gold medals in the Senior Olympics Games.
The market for anti aging ingredients is growing as the general population ages, and so too is the subset of that market made up of highly active consumers who want to maintain athletic performance long after it was deemed possible in past decades. With the growth of high school and college athletics programs from the 1960s on, and the growth of women’s programs as Title IX took effect after 1972, the alumni of those teams—both men and women—are pouring into the market in ever greater numbers as they reach age 50 and beyond. And these consumers have examples to look to such as the Tigerettes or Colorado professional cyclist Ned Overend, who at age 57 is routinely beating competitors 30 years and more his junior.
“That particular demographic, starting more at the age of 50 and up, at is a demographic that has a lot of discretionary income,” Mosca said. “They are interested maintaining as much as they can a healthy lifestyle.”
Validity of message
Mosca said having the Tigerettes puts the concept of testimonials onto a whole new plane. The company is of course constrained by DSHEA strictures in what it can say about the performance of the product, which is a blend of esterified fatty acids derived from beef tallow or from vegetarian sources. The Tigerettes, on the other hand, can say what they believe about the product in appearances on local TV stations and bigger venues such as the Today show no NBC.
“In this particular instance for quite some time we have sponsored this team with the primary purpose to utilize them for media opportunity,” Mosca said.
“When they’re being interviewed by the media they can speak freely about how they feel about the product. The other issue is the validity of that message when someone is watching it on the news or the Today show or whatever as opposed to seeing an ad,” he said.
The sponsoring of the basketball team is just the most visible part of the company’s combined strategy to help formulation partners make products that work both in the lab and in the marketplace, Mosca said.
“Our business model as a propriety ingredient company is to employ a ‘push and pull’ strategy,” Mosca said.
“Our push strategy is to work with our partners to make products to get our ingredients into distribution. The pull strategy is to invest in delivering consumers to our customers to take the products,” he said.
In addition to Celadrin, Proprietary Nutritionals offers a range of branded ingredients in heart health, weight management and other categories.