Brands That Matter

When faced with the death of a loved one, you definitely get a perspective on life. You become reflective and introspective. You naturally assess your own life; question what you are doing with it and whether it is in anyway worthwhile.


Written by Alex Fone

Then reality tends to smack you on the back of the head and remind you that you still have to get on with all the other stuff. Like writing the first blog post on our new site. A task that seemed so important a week ago that now seems rather trivial.

But, after a while these two parallel strands came together and I realised that writing this introduction could be both cathartic and inspirational. Because what we do – the advertising and promotion of prescription medicines to healthcare professionals – is actually a life-affirming and rewarding vocation.

In short, we create brands that matter.

According to the GfK Trust Index 2011, only politicians are considered less trust-worthy than advertising professionals. This is the sort of statistic that makes you contemplate a change to a more ‘worthy’ profession. And is it surprising when you consider that these ‘advertising types’ are likely responsible for allowing McDonald’s to become one of the lead sponsors of the London 2012 Olympics. A more inappropriate sponsor of the world’s greatest sporting event is hard to imagine…

Luckily, I think that those of us that serve the healthcare industry are a little different to the average advertising executive. We don’t promote burgers to the kids who have a 25% chance of being obese before they reach adulthood; increasing their risk of type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart and liver disease.

Instead we have chosen to work in a branch of advertising that I believe makes a positive contribution to society. We produce work that turns highly-researched and costly drugs into brands that fix people.

We spend our working lives striving to find the key insight into the behavior of our audience that will allow us to create effective brand differentiation. Armed with this insight we create brands with meaningful emotive benefits and compelling reasons to believe. Brands that are prescribed by doctors. Brands that save lives. Brands that make a difference.

In short, we create brands that matter.

The majority of pharmaceutical products can only become brands that matter with our help. Most brands aren’t built solely on rational product benefits but additionally on all the intangible associations that a consumer makes with the product too. They become brands once doctors and patients have learned to trust them to work.

This trust is built through an on-going dialogue with healthcare professionals and, at best, a dialogue with the patients who use them. A dialogue that is driven by the advertising industry and our marketing partners.

And this dialogue can only get better. As the digital communications revolution gathers pace, we now have new tools that allow us to engage so much more effectively with our customers. Whether it’s feedback from tablet-based e-detailing or online engagement through websites and apps that promote social interaction, the dialogue will become more multi-faceted and meaningful than ever before. The best brand guardians are already building communities where doctors and patients with common interests can engage with their brands on a new, deeper level.

When we move to the point where our brands are engaged in an on-going dialogue with both doctors and patients; a dialogue that works to the mutual benefit of the brand and the customer, we will be able to say more than ever that we have a life-affirming and rewarding vocation. One where we build brands that matter.


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