You've probably heard the quote, "If you always do what you've
always done, you'll always get what you've always got." Although
this quote is typically used to encourage innovative thinking, for
some, the notion that doing the same thing as before will produce
similar results brings comfort. In fact, despite so much talk about
the benefits of "thinking outside the box" and being "innovative,"
a Harvard Medical School study conducted in 2011 revealed that 60
to 80 percent of people find the task of thinking differently
uncomfortable, and some people are exhausted merely by the thought
Why? Because it's hard! When it comes down to it, "original
thought" is pretty nonexistent. We are all so connected and
"ideas," especially the really good ones, tend to spread like
wildfire through social media and online communities.
But we have to try (harder), because the one size fits all
approach to communicating messages doesn't work anymore. Public
relations professionals and other communicators used to be able to
blast their message to the "world," and it worked. Once upon a
time, we were publishing messages in magazines, newspapers, and
newswires and on television and radio. Now, we've got all that plus
email, search engines, social media, online news, mobile
applications, and the list keeps growing.
Andrea Rothschild, co-founder of ARC2 Communications and Media spoke
to a group of health communicators at the 2014
PRSA Health Academy about consumer engagement in a time when we
all tend to be "over engaged."
Rothschild presented a case study from ARC2's portfolio.
The challenge: Advance Pfizer Inc.'s reputation and gain
trust among consumers by:
- Developing a genuine relationship with consumers
- Positioning Pfizer as a credible source of health and medical
- Motivating consumers to take action to improve their
To do this, ARC2 launched a unique communications campaign with
CBS television. As part of the campaign, Pfizer's CMO Dr. Freda
Lewis Hall appeared as a recurring, on-air guest on the shows The
Doctors, Rachael Ray, and others. The point was for Dr. Hall to
talk about health. The key was that she didn'ttalk about Pfizer.
The campaign was designed to enhance brand recognition and foster
trust, but it was not intended to sell Pfizer products or directly
impact sales. Dr. Hall has made more than 70 appearances.
Check her out on the Dr. Phil Show talking about obsessive
In addition to the television appearances by Dr. Hall, the
campaign included a health and wellness website, GetHealthyStayHealthy.com,
to provide consumers with additional health information. To read more about the details of the
campaign, visit ARC2's website.
The results: Consumers with a favorable opinion
of the company increased from 45 percent before viewing any of the
interviews to 62 percent after. In addition, more than 50 percent
felt that Pfizer was a credible source of information compared with
30 percent before, 75 percent of consumers found the information
trustworthy, and, most importantly, more than 50 percent of viewers
expressed intent to act on the information they had heard.
Developing new and effective messages is challenging, for sure,
but as this case suggests, the payoff for both you and your clients
can be significant. Find the right message, channel, and vehicle
foryouraudience, and make it happen!