DDR on DTC: Novartis/Deutsch-NYC's Exelon Patch

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Kudos to Novartis and their integrated advertising agency, Deutsch-NYC, for their illuminating and resource-packed DTC campaign in support of Exelon Patch! The latest innovation from the Novartis Neurological franchise, Exelon Patch, is a drug device designed to help slow the progression of Alzheimer's. The campaign that Deutsch and Novartis have crafted is both thoughtful and realistic in its approach to educating Alzheimer's caregivers about treatment.

The Deustch/Novartis team apparently conducted extensive research to understand the experience of Alzheimer's caregivers and determine how to effectively communicate with them. The result of this deep insight-mining is a campaign that truly speaks to the needs of caregivers, who, it seems, are mostly patients' daughters. The campaign uniquely empowers these caregivers to seek more information about Exelon Patch by offering more than just hope and empathy—real help and tools for coping. The brand uses a combination of GATV and DRTV along with print and online to drive these caregiver daughters to take action.

At the same time, by reflecting a "quiet place in the storm," the campaign offers the reassurance and support a caregiver seeks amidst the daily chaos of caring for an Alzheimer's patient. This calming tonality adds to the campaign's meaningfulness and allows it to break through much of the surrounding DTC noise. By using this approach, Novartis and Deutsch are demonstrating what great DTC advertising can and should do in the marketplace—show the sufferer that help is available, and that the first step is speaking with their HCP. Although this time, there's a twist—because as this campaign so gracefully illustrates: Caregivers are Alzheimer's sufferers, too.

Deborah Dick-Rath is SVP, healthcare practice leader, at FactorTG. She can be contacted at: deborah.dick-rath@factortg.com
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