Should Drew Brees Endorse Advocare?

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The question in the title really should have been, “should any professional Athlete endorse Advocare products”.  I am not just talking about the possibility of accidentally consuming tainted products and the risk of losing everything. Do you have any clue how many children watch sports? Do you have a clue how influential professional athletes can be?

I remember when I was a kid my friends and I would use professional players names depending on the sport we were playing. For instance, when I played basketball with my friend DJ, he always used the name Dr. J. (also known as Julius Erving) every time he would take a shot, or do one of his fancy layups. When I played football Tony Dorsett would come to mind. Although I never had his skill, I did my best to emulate his moves. Unfortunately, kids also mimic the athletes’ bad behavior as well.

Tracy Ziemer wrote an article for ABC News back in Oct of 2000 titled “Study Says Kids Emulate Athletes”. The research Tracy used indicated to the reader that young athletes were learning bad behaviors as well as the good. For instance, Roberto Alomar spit on an umpire during a game. Shortly after, there were three reports that indicated youths had begun spitting on umpires. Up to the Alomar incident, there were no spitting incidents reported in youth sports. 

What do you think kids are going to do if they see NFL athletes such as Drew Brees endorsing Advocare products? Well, I am not going to bore you with my analysis of all the research I have read. But I will give you an idea how supplement use has progressed over the years. Please refer to the following study (PDF). In the late 90’s to 2007 research started to show an increase in supplement use by young adults, especially those that participate in multiple sports. In the beginning the primary supplements were vitamin c and iron, and then by 2003 the use of sport drinks and energy drinks would start to take shape. Around 2004 protein supplements would start to make an appearance and by 2006 studies showed that meal replacement protein and creatine were being used by many young adults and teens. In 2012 there were reports showing 1.2million adolescents using supplements. I believe this quote from the previous link sums up my thoughts at this point:

“The main point is that the thinking is wrong. Supplements should not be the “Band-aid” for overscheduling and a misguided emphasis on early success. Parents, coaches and young athletes should be focusing on a long-term, natural development approach: plenty of rest, good diet, adequate hydration and having fun. This recipe will go a long way toward enhancing a young athlete’s performance and health,” added Dr Bergeron.”

The use of supplements as a means to enhance performance has slowly increased as the years pass. Even though there are no viable studies showing increased performance resulting from the use of supplements, companies such as Advocare International continue to make claims that they do. Then they use athletes like Drew Brees to advance their own personal agenda. But is there a connection between the increased use of supplements and endorsements?

 Do you think companies such as Advocare would give away products or pay millions to athletes if they did not believe the endorsement would lead to increased product sales? I probably could end it right there and say enough said. My intuitive answer to that is, no! If you take the time to research, there are websites such as getyouinshape utilizing Drew Brees to encourage others to start taking Advocare products. If you read my recent article, you will notice Advocare and distributors have begun targetingschools. Even though I have provided proof that young adults are using supplements, I have yet to provide evidence that links Advocare to the increased use. Well, not yet, I am getting there.

Sometimes you have to really look at the advertisement and think about whom is the intended audience. For example take a look at this PDF of Drew Brees. It is a simple poster with him and the words “use it the pros do”. Well, who do you think Advocare is targeting. This is just my opinion, but it sounds to me like they are targeting any athlete that is not a pro. Although others can fall into the target market as well, I believe that particular advertisement definitely targets young adults, especially those old enough to purchase the product. I know that was an intuitive conjecture, because we really do not know what Advocares intent was when they created that poster. I could keep going offering several posters and advertisements, but you are probably looking for something that really connects Advocare to the increase in supplement use by young adults. Well here is the answer you were looking for, “their parents”.

Advocare cannot put supplements into young children unless they get the permission of the parents. To get the parents’ permission they have to create a strategic marketing strategy, one that incorporates the inclusion of popular coaches and endorsers. They have already done that.

If you go to the Advocare website you will notice they have recruited coaches from several colleges. If you read my article “Advocare and distributors target schools” you will notice the company is now targeting youth coaches. Why are they targeting coaches?  Hmm, it would not have anything to do with convincing parents into purchasing Advocare products for their children would it? Sarcasm aside, I think we all know why Advocare incorporated pro athletes and a new market strategy focused on youth coaches. I could keep going but showing you more proof would just border on redundant. 

Let me be clear, I am not saying that people should stop using supplements. There are many reasons why people turn to using products such as Advocare, especially if they are vitamin deficient. But, to endorse a product you know, or should know, is being marketed to children, is unacceptable to me. Drew Brees and all the other athletes should be ashamed of themselves. Whatever happened to eating right, getting the right amount of sleep, and hard work? 

Unfortunately, many of the Advocare products super exceed the daily recommended dose allowed for an adult, and parents and coaches want 12-18 year old athletes to use Advocare? Your killing me!

I guess I will leave it there for now. Please leave me a comment below, or join the discussion at Advocare Review Facebook. I look forward to reading your thoughts, and as usual, thank you for reading!

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