Great and daring beauty stands out, captures the imagination, and persuades others of its virtue. It does so despite underlying flaws and often in the face of an unwilling audience.
Take, for example, the 1965 Jaguar E-Type, architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater house, the Namib Desert, and even actor Jared Leto. They are all beautiful, iconic, and lauded, despite their flaws and even failings. (Jaguars are notoriously unreliable, Fallingwater isn’t structurally sound, the Namib Desert is one of the most inhospitable places in the world and attracts scores of tourists, and Jared Leto has an Oscar despite dubious acting talent.)
As pharma marketers, we should take note of visual beauty’s primal magnetism and do more to elevate the underlying craft and technique within our quiver of persuasion. Craft is not regulated, has never incited a warning letter from the FDA, has never made an idea less compelling, and, sadly, is under-represented in our corner of the industry.
The following campaigns stand out for their persuasiveness owing to exquisite craft that greatly augments a simple idea.
Elliot Langerman is chief creative commercial officer at Klick Health.
Campaign: Alzheimer’s Gallery: Grandson
Company: Alzheimer’s Association
Agency: Grupo Gallegos
It’s a campaign as art gallery. Each image in the series uses a different technique to invoke an Alzheimer’s patient’s inability to recognize loved ones and evoke empathy.
Campaign: French Horn
Brand: Dabur Gastrina
Agency: McCann Worldgroup
Gorgeous graphic design brings to life this fun and inventive idea for a flatulence treatment. A perpetual delight to behold.
Campaign: Slums (Housing Colonies) For Worms
Agency: Medulla Communications
It looks like illustration but isn’t. What you’re seeing is actually a photo of a 9×7-foot model crafted out of refuse found in the slums and featuring 3,500 hand-painted houses. The medium is the message.
Campaign: Surgeon Tryouts
Company: Kurashiki Central Hospital
Copy reads on the top left-hand corner: “Test 1: Fold a 5mm crane origami.” It’s a purposeful piece of art that invites close examination — and rewards it — while inducing the tension of, and appreciation for, this mind-bogglingly difficult challenge.
Campaign: Never Stop Improving
Agency: Area 23
Made with actual images from the BD archive, this campaign also features smart, succinct copy.
Campaign: Packed Couple
Agency: Ogilvy & Mather Japan
Made in collaboration with an artist, this campaign isn’t, precisely speaking, beautiful, but its raw visual power is unforgettable. It’s the kevorka of craft.