Pink Marketing 2.0

Below is an article I wrote last year for another publication. I think it still has a lot of meaning this time of year as October is breast cancer awareness month.

Twice as many women will die from lung cancer than breast cancer this year. Breast cancer advocates say breast cancer doesn’t kill as many because of education and their efforts. Bullshit.

The truth is, breast cancer has an average survival rate of 89% (regardless of detection or awareness), while lung cancer’s is only 16%. Donations for breast cancer awareness and research totaled $559,000,000 in 2009, compared to lung cancer only bringing in $246,000,000. There are almost an equal amount of new lung cancer and breast cancer cases each year.

So why does a cancer which kills half as many women get twice as much funding? Marketing. Who doesn’t want a pink Kitchenaid Stand Mixer? Maybe there are more survivors to lobby for money? The disproportionate funding costs lives of those suffering from lesser marketed cancers which struggle to get funding and could ultimately save more lives. (Cancer Stats)

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