Leaders From Northwell, Sanofi and Havas Talk Health & Wellness

Clio Health launches first 'Catalyst Conversations' event

The inaugural Clio Health "Catalyst Conversations" event kicked off last Thursday at the NYC offices of Havas Health & You. Three panels broke discussed purpose-driven marketing, health equity and making consumer health brands approachable and relevant.

Northwell Health's purpose-driven marketing

The evening's first panel, "Breaking Through the Clutter: The Power Of Purpose-Driven Marketing," focused on purpose-driven measures vs. transactional strategies.

"The healthcare market is hyper-competitive. Consumers have great choices," said Ramon Soto, chief marketing and comms officer at Northwell. The brand leads with purpose-driven marketing to cut through clutter, but not all healthcare is purpose led. Rather, many are focused on transactional aspects. But, Soto notes, consumers don't consume healthcare that way.

Few people think "what am I going to do when I have my next heart attack?" he says.

Of late, the brand has focused on gun violence in New York market, which drives purchase preference for the brand, helping consumers to know the brand before they need the brand, Soto says.

And there was a doctor in the house—Dr. Jose Prince, chief of pediatric surgery, at Northwell, and one of the docs featured in Netflix's Emergency: NYC.

He walked attendees through a clip from the show and asked, "How do we make a difference [to curtail gun violence]? That's the struggle on our end."

"After 25 years of pulling bullets out of children in our country ... We're told to stay in our lane. If we just stay in our lane, in my sterile operating room, how much can I really accomplish?"

Firearms are now a leading cause of death for U.S. children. "How is that acceptable?" Price asked. "It's a uniquely disastrous problem we have created in our country. But I'm very optimistic because we can tackle complicated things and make a difference."

Michelle Hillman, chief campaign development officer at The Ad Council, explained how the organization works to shine a light on stories in a human and authentic way, rising above politics.

"Gun violence is a public health crisis and that's the way we treat the work," she said. 

Ad Council campaigns in this regard "are designed to be inclusive, respectful, talking to gun owners in their own voice ... but helping them understand that safely storing guns is a gateway to preventing tragedy."

Defining health equity and how 'well-tainment' can help

The next panel, "Changing The Script: Creativity at the Intersection of Health Equity & Entertainment"— moderated by Muse by Clio executive director Charell Star—began by defining terminology.

"Sometimes treating people equally can be inadvertently unfair," said Dr. Olajide Williams, professor of Neurology, vice dean, Columbia University Medical School, and president/co-founder of Hip Hop Public Health. He noted that distributing vouchers in regions with health options won't have the same impact as in zones of deprivation, because folks in the latter still needs access and accessibility.

"It's the access to quality healthcare for everyone" that's paramount, agreed Damien Escobar, global chief music officer at Havas.

"The biggest driver of life expectancy in the U.S. is zip code," Williams said. "Whether it's dental health, stroke, asthma literacy, by using a Hip Hop model that targets kids in a fun way, you can get them to do pretty much anything."

"Money is not the solution to this. Millions have been spent to close the health equity gap and it continues to grow," said Eric Weisberg, global chief creative officer at Havas, Health & You. With "Well-tainment," delivering messages via episodic television, gaming sports and the like.

Such an approach helps translate complex concepts "to clients, consumers and everyday people," Escobar said. "When a brand is doing something correct, it shows up in culture and it becomes a thing in culture."

Ideas shaping consumer healthcare

The evening concluded with "Challenging Convention: Building a Fast-Moving Consumer Health Brand," featuring Andrew Loucks, head of N.A. consumer healthcare chief at Sanofi, and Claudine Patel, who leads brand and innovation.

"The role of self-care and consumer health at large has a very tangible and sizable impact on society," said Loucks. "How can we be the solution around alleviating universal healthcare tensions that we all know and feel? By making healthcare as simple as it should be."

He noted an Icy Hot campaign with Shaq as one example.

Patel explained how traditional health and pharma advertising is not relatable. "How often does one run through a field of flowers only to stop and take an allergy pill?"

Some innovative efforts include a team-up with Live Nation on behalf of allergy medication Xyzal, and a Dulcolax partnership with Jeannie Mai.

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