Phelps Launches Natrol Cognium Multimedia Campaign With Light Touch

Playful ads for memory enhancer keep it real and stress “stay you” for the 55+ set

PLAYA VISTA, Calif.  (June 27, 2017) – The launch ad campaign for Natrol Cognium plays up little everyday lapses that make a memory enhancer useful while mentioning extensive human clinical trials behind product development. Created by Phelps, AOR for Natrol, the campaign strikes a lighthearted contrast in the emerging category, to date dominated by academic ads emphasizing product formulation.

Phelps found that Cognium’s intended consumers don’t want to turn back the clock; they just want to keep feeling like themselves. Hence the campaign line, “Stay sharp. Stay you.”

The 30-second spot, “Sharp Susan,” features Eighties TV star Erin Gray (Buck Rogers in the 25th Century and Silver Spoons) moving through her house and putting away what her husband misplaced, including the tablet left in the fridge which becomes the screen for essential product information. She’s got everything under control as the voice of the consumer as well as the voice of the brand.

Meanwhile, print and banner ads beckon readers to “Remember the groceries on your list – without the list” and “call your grandkids by their right names – the first time.”

“We took the opportunity to stand out in this category, and prompt women over 55 to approach their brain health the same way they do their bodies,” said Tony Stern, Phelps chief creative officer. “By depicting everyday moments people can relate to while letting them know they can still do everything they love to do, we felt it gave us permission to offer up a lot of product information in a believable but not patronizing way.”

An aggressive ad run this summer covers national cable programs, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, a variety of digital tactics including geo-targeted banners and gamified rich media and a diverse range of lifestyle, health, and trade magazines.

“Our consumers don’t want to be young again, they just want to stay sharp,” said Thomas Hart, marketing director at Natrol. “Our advertising shows we understand this, and lets people know we can help them stay themselves as they age.”

All of the ads note that Cognium is “the only brain health supplement proven effective and safe in nine human clinical trials.”

“Sharp Susan” credits

Client:  Natrol
Brand:  Cognium
Spot name:  Sharp Susan
Chief creative officer:  Tony Stern
Art director:  Armand Kerechuk
Copywriter:  Chloe Cotoulas
Executive agency producer:  Karena Dacker
Production company:  Raucous Content
Director:  Daniel Strange
Director of photography:  Doug Chamberlain
Line producer:  Heather Heller
Executive producer:  Steve Wi
Editorial company:  Stitch Editorial
Editor:  Adam Svatek
Post exec producer:  Mila Davis
Head of production: Hunter Conner
Music: APM
Mix:  Nathan Dubin @ Margarita Mix SM
V/fx:  Mitch Gardiner @ bacon


About Phelps:
Phelps creates and delivers integrated messaging and media campaigns for category leaders such as Bosley, City of Hope, Dunn-Edwards Paints, Learn4Life schools, Natrol vitamins, Panasonic, Public Storage and SunPower Corp. Founded in 1981 and 100% employee-owned, Phelps ranks as one of the largest independent agencies on the West Coast, and is regularly listed among the Best Places to Work in Los Angeles. Phelps is a member of the ICOM global network of agencies. Visit us at