6 Campaigns that Talk to, Not at, Patients

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In the age of the empowered patient, healthcare creative needs to evolve to welcome a two-way dialogue with patients. Rather than talking at them, we need to design with and for them. This invites their input into our creative and storytelling process, and reflects their contributions in product design and advocacy.

Ryan Jordan is creative director and SVP at Imre Health.

See also: Study: How brands should market to first-time parents


Campaign: Power of She
Company: Athleta
Agency: Yard

As one in eight women will develop breast cancer over the course of her lifetime, our support of this community needs to be authentic, consistent, and actionable. Athleta is a brand that reflects those principles in its product design, storytelling, and commitment to breast cancer research. The first word uttered in one of one of Athleta's Power of She campaign videos is “move!,” courtesy of a coach yelling at a team of breast cancer survivors as they row in perfect unison. It's the perfect word to launch this narrative of women digging deep as they face cancer together.



Campaign: Choices for Her
Company: Bayer

There is power in numbers, so Bayer's IUD brands joined forces to help empower patients. Given that less than half of family physicians talk to their patients about long-acting birth control, Choices for Her is a platform that aims to educate women about their contraceptive options.



Campaign: PrEP
Company: AIDS Foundation of Chicago

This campaign is so simple and effective, right down to the  provocative photos that portray partners vulnerable in each other's arms. The images convey that everyone deserves to love without fear and establish an emotional connection to an important call to action.


Campaign: Driven to Discover
Company: Pfizer

Pfizer's Driven to Discover campaign balances humanity with science by juxtaposing the dreams and imagination of children with real-life discovery and invention. Capturing the joy of discovery in the context of a childhood experience is nostalgic, aspirational, and relatable.



Campaign: Bee
Company: Bayer
Agency: J. Walter Thompson Brazil

This campaign for Bayer's diaper rash brand Bepanthen is centered around the insight that parents often have to change their baby's diapers in unexpected and sometimes unsanitary places. To ease parental fears and inspire their loyalty, the campaign features Instagram-able posters. They were made available in public spaces in the city of São Paulo, using anti-allergenic paper and ink.



Campaign: See Me
Company: Novartis

Cosentyx's use of real patients in its creative differentiates the brand in the crowded psoriasis market. Furthermore, its messages — “see me” and “watch me” — reflect the empowered attitudes of patients who feel in control.

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