Make Marketing History

The views of a marketing deviant.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes.

A recent review of the scientific literature has controversially suggested that breastfeeding does not bestow the benefits that have been claimed for it in recent times.

..it is very hard to separate the benefits of the mother’s milk from the benefits of the kind of mother who chooses to breastfeed.....In other words, breastfeeding studies could simply be showing what it’s like to grow up in a family that makes an effort to be healthy and responsible, as opposed to anything positive in breast milk.


I'm not qualified to question that view and the logic does seem valid, but by chance I recently heard Sarah Blaffer Hrdy mention (in an aside about infant abandonment) that primates who breastfeed experience increased prolactin and oxytocin levels which helps them bond with their offspring.

The marketing lessons: replication isn't enough and the most significant impact of your product/service isn't always the obvious one.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Angus said...

Yeah, I'm gonna need a few more steps between the breastfeeding debate and your resulting marketing lesson.

5:31 PM, July 22, 2009  
Blogger john dodds said...

I thought you might. I just saw the debate as focussed on one element of the use trail, i.e. if formula can replicate the same health-giving effects on the baby as breast-feeding then they are equally good.

But that sort of replication is superficial. It's not making something better (albeit, perhaps falsely, more "convenient") and it's not looking at the whole interaction.

I admit it's a bit of a shoe-horn exercise (the post, not the breast-feeding) but I think there's somethign in it.

2:09 AM, July 23, 2009  

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