Q&A: FlavoRx’s Recipe for success

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Q&A: FlavoRx’s Recipe for success

Sometimes it takes a personal moment for a great idea to click into someone’s head. According to Stuart Amos, the CEO of FlavoRx, that is exactly what happened at his company. Drug Store News sat down with Amos to talk about FlavoRx, its start and where the company sees itself in the marketplace today and in the future.

Drug Store News: Tell us about Flavorx and its history.

Stuart Amos: Like many great ideas, FlavoRx was born of necessity. It’s no secret, getting kids to take medicine can be a monumental task. About 24 years ago, the inventor of FlavoRx, whose father happened to be a pharmacist, was struggling to get his daughter to take phenobarbital for her seizure disorder. She couldn’t, or wouldn’t, keep it down, and she was not getting better. After much testing and tweaking, they came up with a recipe that helped her swallow her medicine and reduce her seizures. That was the ‘aha’ moment. Since then, our company has expanded into 45,000 retail locations, both domestic and international. We also have a line of flavors for pets, which is utilized by both veterinary clinics and compounding pharmacies to help pets take their medicine as well. Also, we joined forces with Fillmaster Systems to help optimize pharmacy workflow.

DSN: What makes the company unique?

SA: We are the fun side of pharmacy. There aren’t many, if any, services available behind the counter that elicit an emotional response with customers like FlavoRx. Letting kids choose the taste of their medicine is empowering. It gives them a sense of ownership and excitement at a time when they feel little control or joy. Additionally, because we make medicine time easier, parents don’t stress as much when it’s time for that dose of amoxicillin or Tamiflu. Taking care of their children and reducing their stress levels is a surefire way to gain parents trust and affinity.

Our partnership with Fillmaster is another differentiator. By combining reconstitution and flavoring into one automated step via the new Fillmaster Auto, we’re able to eliminate several minutes from the dispensing process. No other company has a solution like the Fillmaster Auto — not even close.

DSN: How does this help retailers in terms of sales or marketing?

SA: FlavoRx drives customer loyalty and new business. Offering to customize the taste of a child’s medicine demonstrates to customers a level of care for their family’s health that is both relevant and unexpected. This creates a memorable pharmacy experience, which leads to brand devotion and great word-of-mouth marketing. As we’re now seeing on social media, the FlavoRx experience is highly shareable. Moms and dads (but mainly moms) don’t have many reasons to get on Facebook and talk with their friends and followers about the trip they just took to the pharmacy. Executing at a high level with the FlavoRx service is a proven way to start the conversation and build enthusiasm.

DSN: What does the retailer need to do?

SA: The simple answer is to get technicians to ask about flavoring whenever they see a prescription for a liquid antibiotic. Nothing is more effective than asking. This does require a certain level of commitment from the retailer. In a perfect world, every technician or pharmacist would ask, ‘How would your daughter like her medicine to taste?’ with every liquid prescription because it’s the right thing to do for the customer. But everyone has a ton on their plate. They get distracted. They forget. Sometimes they don’t want to flavor medications because it takes time. Pharmacy teams need motivation from their leaders to do well with the flavoring service. Setting goals, sharing best practices, communicating success stories, investing in automated dispensing equipment — these are all great ways pharmacies can maximize the programs potential and win more business.

DSN: Finally, what are your plans for the near future?

SA: We are highly motivated to help retailers maximize the potential of the flavoring service and optimize their pharmacy workflow. The new Fillmaster Auto helps accomplish that, so we are focused on getting as many of these machines into pharmacies as possible, plain and simple. We’re also working with strategic marketing partners to drive the flavoring conversation on social media and generate buzz for our customers.

Stuart Amos is the CEO of FlavoRx.