A Steady Diet of Brand

The weight loss category is a crowded place. And not just because the customers are all large. It’s because most people fail several times but keep trying new diets. Celebrity endorsements still work in weight loss advertising because it’s social proof. Not because we trust celebrities to be smarter than us, but because we believe that their diet choices have to work. Their careers depend on it.



So, what do you do when you have a diet plan but no celebrity to endorse it? You really have only two choices: Make the science your proof, or manufacture a celebrity. We did a bit of both.

The Diet Free Life plan was largely unbranded and had only word-of-mouth support generated by seminar sales and satisfied customers. The plan already had a zealous following that included several doctors who had personal success on the plan in addition to a stable of patient recommendations.

With limited advertising dollars available, the client’s strategy was to go “all in” on a long-form DRTV program to get the word out. But they needed to establish a brand, create a fulfillment channel and generate sales immediately.


Since a transactional ecommerce site was required to fulfill the DRTV offer, the website became the de facto brand standard. The design of the site established the color palette, the brand and the voice. Moreover, it was decided that all other advertising media would point to this same site.

When identifying testimonials for the TV, a female doctor with a weight loss success story of her own became a hero story.

Using a PR effort to get editorial in Ebony magazine and then showcasing our doctor made her into a manufactured celebrity. This brought editorial credibility we could tout along with her medical credentials. Doctor Daphne became the face of our digital campaign.

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