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Beavers, Bubbles, Bees, and Moths: An Examination of Animated Spokescharacters in DTC Prescription-Drug Advertisements and Websites

Several prescription drug brands use animated characters in direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising. This article draws on the literature on spokescharacters to address four research questions: 1) What different types of animated spokescharacters are used in DTC advertising? 2) How are prescription drug marketers using spokescharacters in DTC advertising? 3) To what extent are these characters integrated into the websites for these brands? 4) Is there any evidence that the use of animated spokescharacters enhances advertising effectiveness? Animated characters are used in various ways, such as the symbol of a disease, a victim, or as the mechanism of action.

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