- Global Pharma News & Resources

Havas Tonic Blows Away Zicam with Its Cold-Shortening Campaign Ideas

Havas Tonic Blows Away Zicam with Its Cold-Shortening Campaign Ideas An Unconventional Pitch Secures Agency's Bid to Win Matrixx Initiatives' Zicam Business

PR Newswire

NEW YORK, Sept. 6, 2018

NEW YORK, Sept. 6, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Havas Tonic, a fully integrated health and wellness agency with a complete focus on building relationships between consumers and brands, announced today that Matrixx Initiatives, which manufactures and markets the Zicam® brand, has awarded the agency its Zicam business.

The win builds on Havas Tonic's incredible legacy in OTC, which includes long-term relationships with Schering-Plough (now Merck) and Bayer across a number of category-leading OTC brands like Claritin, Dr. Scholl's, Coppertone, Afrin, Tinactin and many others.

"OTC has been in Tonic's DNA from our very inception, nearly 30 years ago, so being able to work on a brand like Zicam was a tremendously exciting opportunity that we took head on," said Phil Silvestri, Havas Tonic's co-managing director and chief creative officer. "We put our years and years of experience in OTC behind our pitch; it showed, and we blew the client away. When we won, we couldn't believe the energy it released across our agency and the excitement our people felt."

Tonic earned the Zicam business through an unconventional pitching process, which included the agency's unveiling of a giant "Zicam Pre-Cold Ideas" tissue box during an informal tissue session it hosted for Matrixx Initiatives. Inside the box were 26 campaign ideas, with three executions each. The ideas were so well-received that the Matrixx CEO called a few days later to say he had called off the pitch and they were awarding the Zicam business to Tonic.  

"We started a pitch with three different agencies, but we were so impressed with the work that Havas Tonic had done, we ended the pitch and signed with them," said Marc Rovner, CEO of Matrixx Initiatives. "Havas Tonic really understood consumer healthcare marketing and demonstrated a real commitment to our brand and our strategy with exceptional creative work."

"Zicam offers a unique benefit to consumers, and in the highly competitive cough/cold category you better have a campaign idea that breaks through and fully leverages your brand proposition," said Steve LaMonte, Matrixx Initiatives' executive chairman. "When Marc showed me Tonic's work, I saw why he was so confident in his decision. Havas got our brand, got our target audience and they nailed the creative strategy."

Paul Klein, Tonic's co-managing director, summed up the win by saying, "We're tremendously excited to be back in the OTC business and cannot wait for our campaign to break at the start of this fall's cold season."

For more information about Havas Tonic, visit

About Havas Tonic
Havas Tonic is a fully integrated wellness agency with a complete focus on building meaningful connections between consumers and brands that use creativity, media and innovation to inspire healthier decisions for healthier lives. Unlike agencies that include healthcare marketing to professionals, Tonic knows consumers—what they think, what they want and how they behave. Whether the agency is connecting them to over-the-counter or prescription medicines, it relies on years of wide-ranging consumer marketing experience. Part of the Havas Health & You network, and headquartered in New York, Tonic provides advertising, marketing, design and digital, social and mobile solutions to leading healthcare clients. For more information, go to

About Matrixx Initiatives
Matrixx Initiatives has been engaged in the development and marketing of better ways to feel better through over-the-counter health care products that utilize innovative drug delivery systems for over 20 years. Matrixx Initiatives manufactures and markets Zicam®. For more information regarding Matrixx products, visit

Nikki Kria
Havas PR
Tel. 646-643-2948

View original content:

SOURCE Havas Tonic

Editor Details

Last Updated: 06-Sep-2018