Precision marketing agency Rapp wants more people to join the movement to support Black maternal health — and work to drop the biases that exist in the healthcare system.

Case in point is Rapp’s recent campaign: Drop the B. 

The name is a play on the word “bias” and spotlights Irth, an app that allows Black and brown mothers to rate and review hospitals and healthcare providers based on their respective care experiences. 

The platform also provides the data to the hospitals and providers, offering them information to support addressing the systemic biases that exist in their services.

The campaign stemmed from the glaring disparities that exist in black maternal health, according to Erica Kraus, U.S. strategy lead at Rapp, a 2024 MM+M Agency 100 honoree

Black women are three times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than white women in the U.S., and 80% of Black maternal deaths are preventable.

“Drop the B is about shining a light on this problem that absolutely needs to be eradicated,” Kraus noted. “It shines a light on Irth, which is a Yelp-like ratings and review platform that’s of the community and for the community — where women of color are likely to experience some bias in their pregnancy journey.”

It also happens to be the inaugural campaign for Rapp’s new Series R accelerator program.

The effort launched in March 2023 to provide bro mono marketing services to a femtech startup that seeks to address systemic inequities in healthcare. 

Rapp ultimately chose Irth as its first client because its platform aligned with the agency’s capabilities as well as its focus on customer experience and using data for good. In this case, that is to address a health problem by meeting individual needs in ways that the legacy system doesn’t currently address, Kraus said.

“Eighty percent of these deaths are preventable and they’re happening because of racism, because of institutional bias in our healthcare system,” she continued. “It struck a chord with us that this is the startup we want to support.”

Women interested in Irth can use the platform to read reviews about health systems and doctors in their area, giving mothers and birthing people access to credible and trustworthy information.

The growing dataset also allows Irth to report back to those same hospitals and health systems and point out whether they have a systemic problem with racial bias, Kraus pointed out. 

Irth’s team then offers support in terms of staff education, training and progress measurement over the course of 18 months to help these organizations become better providers for the community.

Ultimately, the Drop the B campaign seeks to motivate more people to use the app to tailor their own healthcare experiences as well as provide feedback that can help spur change.

“We believe that every single one of these people deserve a five-star birthing experience,” Kraus said. “We want to move people to join the movement, we want to get the word out about the app, we want to scale the ratings and reviews because the more data that [Irth has], the more power they will have to affect change.”