Organizations in and around healthcare have had a shared mission in recent months: Namely, persuading consumers to return to their pre-pandemic healthcare habits, especially regular doctor visits and screenings.

The next iteration of EmblemHealth’s “We Mean Health” effort furthers that goal, tapping a host of New York City artists — including Jason Naylor, Sophia Yeshi, Perla Sanchez, KitKat Pecson and Craig & Karl — to convey the message. The campaign specifically encourages screenings for breast cancer, hypertension and diabetes.

EmblemHealth partnered with VMLY&R on the campaign. “I think we challenged them from the beginning that we didn’t want to be cookie-cutter,” said Beth Leonard, EmblemHealth’s chief corporate affairs officer. “That’s not who EmblemHealth is as a health plan. We think we’re unique in that we are not-for-profit, and the city of New York and its workers are the heartbeat of what we do.”

The campaign team sought to identify artists whose lives and work reflect the diversity of their home city. Leonard added that EmblemHealth was looking for people “who could really evoke, through their work, the campaign’s goals of education, empowerment and connections to people… There needed to be the human element, because healthcare is personal.”

The campaign’s outdoor ads, digital spots and audio component (via Pandora and Spotify) direct consumers to EmblemHealth pages focused on topics like heart health and diabetes. The non-paywalled pages include overviews of various conditions, FAQs, quizzes and links to additional resources.

“If we send them to a page and just say, ‘go find care,’ we’re not doing our job,” Leonard noted. “We need to overcome these barriers of getting care and answer questions like, ‘Will it hurt to get a mammogram?’ and ‘What do I need to do to prepare for one?’”

Leonard believes the campaign’s success will not be determined by clicks or by the visual appeal of its graphic elements.

“What is most important is that people go check their numbers or that they learn about how to live with diabetes – that they actually follow through with actions,” she said. “It’s always nice when someone says, ‘Oh, that’s pretty,’ but we want to be able to look within our own membership and then the community at large and see that we’ve actually impacted people to take action.”