Visitors who walk into the lobby of Synapse’s New York City offices are greeted with a painted mural that depicts notable figures in the history of medicine. The piece of art serves a two-fold purpose, according to EVP, account services Stephanie Jenkins: It’s designed not only to remind current and future clients of the agency’s innovative culture, but also to act as inspiration for anyone and everyone who crosses its path.
Inspiration, Jenkins says, has been in strong supply in recent years. Synapse’s longtime analytics focus lined up nicely with market trends in 2018, resulting in a 12.9% spike in revenue, from $31 million in 2017 to $35 million in 2018. To accommodate the growth, the agency added personnel in both its NYC and Washington, DC, offices, increasing head count from 140 to 155 full-timers. New hires were divided among Synapse’s medical, digital, creative and analytics practices.
“We’re very proud to say that we haven’t had any client losses and we continue to grow. It’s a mix of both larger engagements with existing clients and new ones,” she says. Client mainstays include Novartis and AstraZeneca.
It’s the analytics group that has fueled much of the recent revenue surge, as Jenkins believes clients have come to rely upon Synapse for its data capabilities. As an example, she notes that, given how patient care and treatment shifts depend on age, sex and condition, Synapse can help clients better target patients by adding another demographic detail: location.
“We have analytics programs that find patients with difficult-to-diagnose diseases,” Jenkins explains. “The treatment of medicine varies on a regional level. We’ve been able to develop a regional marketing strategy that leverages analytics to identify those clinicians at a local level who are able to influence other clinicians in a manner that improves patient care.”
Jenkins is especially proud of a campaign utilizing analytics that it designed for AstraZeneca. The program, AZ Oncology ID, is an unbranded effort targeted at a range of healthcare professionals. It includes a wealth of creative components, including a website, print materials and digital promotions.
“It’s an educational initiative to support a portfolio of diagnostic solutions across multiple tumor types. The campaign was designed to drive the importance of biomarker testing and promote best practices,” Jenkins says. “Knowing the genetic profile of cancers ensures that the patients get the right treatment.”
AZ Oncology ID includes an augmented-reality activity, which has been featured at key oncology conferences throughout the year. “What it was designed to do is be an immersive experience for attendees. Using an iPad, they can essentially walk through the process of biomarker testing via an activity on the screen,” she continues. “Everything from taking a core needle biopsy to thinking about turnaround time for test results to getting support with the appropriate treatment options is part of it.”