India is one of the top 5 countries with respect to sales contribution for Abbott. The pharmaceutical company has recently closed a Rs.1,400 crore deal to buy office space in Mumbai’s Bandra Kurla Complex. The maker of popular antacids like Digene and cough syrup Phensedyl, Abbott is showing the promise of good health in its first-ever marketing campaign in India - Dreams have no age limits.

The new India campaign is part of its global mission of getting people to live life to the fullest. ‘From keeping your heart healthy to nourishing your body at every stage of life; from helping you see clearly to giving you information and medicines to manage your health’, Abbott is seeking to highlight how its been helping us live fuller lives for more than 125 years.

The two-minute film features a playful, healthy dadi being beamed at us from YouTube. Dadi wants to ride the bicycle but somebody has punctured the tyres. She asks for help but ends up hand pumping the punctures herself, all the while her grandson Tipu is seen avoiding her.

Tipu doesn’t want his dadi to ride the bicycle, he fears she will fall and get hurt. He is seen making all kinds of creative excuses while dadi doesn’t buy any of them. Finally, she is seen taking off on the bicycle and enjoying the ride to the fullest. The voiceover at the end says, ‘Achchi sehat se, zindagi mein thodi aur zindagi bhar lo. Life. To the fullest.’


The healthcare brand is triggering a global conversation on ‘#Fullosophy – a unique way of living that helps you become your best possible life’. It’s asking people around the world what a full life means to them at the ‘Life to the fullest’ site.

The ‘Facts of life’ section displays the results of the global survey. 6% said family, 8% said success while 7% said giving on what living fully meant to them. Popular global answers on people who live fully pointed to attitude, priorities, energy, spirituality and money. One can also take the interactive quiz. India has a score of 70 for living fully.

The Abbott Twitter handle is engaging users around the new philosophy of #fullosophy, and driving them to the website.

A global image makeover, just in time for India

Abbott’s reputation is at stake in India. Last November the state laboratory in West Bengal had accused that a sample of its Phensedyl cough syrup contained excessive levels of codeine, an opium derivative. Phensedyl accounts for about a third of the Indian cough syrup market, and is often copied by counterfeiters. Hence, it isn’t clear whether the tested sample was a genuine product or counterfeit.Abbott has asked regulators to give it more information about the suspect sample, while denying the allegations of excessive codeine. None of the bottles from the batch have been recalled.

The last time a giant had to bow down to the orders of the high court and Indian regulators, it faced a massive loss from product recalls and consumer distrust. Maggi, the instant noodles brand from Nestle was found having excessive levels of MSG and lead. It could do little to save face, and is still trying to make a comeback as India’s most favourite brand of instant noodles. A thankful Maggi launched short videos to describe the sorry life of diehard Maggi fans in #WeMissYouToo series.

Abbott, however, isn’t facing a PR disaster at Maggi’s scale. But the pharmaceutical firm is sure set for a long innings in India, and the timing is just right for the India campaign.