Top among those obstacles was that the campaign promoted a completely new brand aimed at a broad audience.
“The brand didn't exist yet, there was a lot of confusion about it and our target market was the whole state,” said Dan Consiglio, creative director at Downtown Partners Chicago, which worked on the campaign. That target audience was also highly diverse, especially in terms of ages and ethnic backgrounds.
Then there were the typical hurdles associated with using marketing to promote healthcare, which needs a different approach than traditional campaigns used to sell cat food or shoes. Healthcare is a very personal topic that many consumers simply want to avoid.
Some best practices to help make a promotional healthcare campaign successful include:
Don't hesitate to let the experts talk. When SPM Marketing & Communications worked on the “You Have Us” spot for Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center in Boston, a key part to building the campaign was talking to healthcare specialists from the hospital to understand what they do and how they do it. The agency found these oncologists so enthusiastic about their practice that SPM decided to let them talk in the spot. “We needed to convey that passion in our campaign,” said Patti Winegar, managing partner at SPM. “It makes it less scary.”
Be understandable and relatable. With healthcare, it's always important not to get lost in medical jargon but to make it easy to understand for the target audience. “We used analogies,” Winegar said, adding that the agency was careful to make sure that words weren't too technical. “You need to talk to the audience like you would talk to your neighbor, rather than focus on statistics and science.”