Never underestimate the power of a good idea. It will stick in your head for years. It will push itself to the forefront among other ideas. And when the right people see it and believe in its potential, they will jump on your bandwagon. I came up with the idea for “Secondhand Smoke, Secondhand Rose”, 17 years ago working on the Michigan Department of Community Health account at Brogan.
At the time, we were doing some TV spots, so radio wasn’t in the budget and YouTube did not exist. But the tune, “Secondhand Rose,” (which is in public domain) and my rewrite of the words had a sticking factor. And the tune stuck in my head for years. So recently when I heard MDCH needed a radio spot about secondhand smoke for parents of young children, I remembered that idea from long ago. Of course, the original script was gone, considering it was written on one of the first Macs! But I recreated it. And I couldn’t have scripted what happened next better. Our wonderful clients at MDCH, Kelly Niebel and Jason Holben, let us produce it as both a radio spot and a YouTube video (the latter has over 4,000 hits just after a couple weeks). Serendipitously, we found the perfect talent shooting another spot for STEM awareness. We called in favors to make it amazing and stay in budget. But the icing on the cake: powerful results. The calls to the Michigan Tobacco Quit Line were so dramatic, one of our clients exclaimed she “almost fell out of my chair.” So that great idea you have, it can happen. It just may need a little longer incubation period. What do you think of our “Secondhand Smoke, Secondhand Rose” spot for the Michigan Department of Community Health? I'm glad it stuck in my head all those years!
Did you know that March 25th is the kickoff date for Michigan STEM Awareness Week? You’re probably wondering what is STEM and what does it have to do with me? Well, STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. It turns out that STEM occupations are the highest paying, fastest growing, most influential jobs of the future to drive economic growth and innovation. Which we all know is important for the State of Michigan. Michigan STEM Awareness Week is being sponsored by the STEM Alliance of Michigan (SAM).
I had the pleasure of working with these forward thinking folks on a TV spot to promote STEM education awareness. Working with the kids featured in the spot was too much fun, they were spontaneous, charming and hilarious. It’s times like this that I love my job. A job I couldn’t do without my MAC and technology. So learn more about the good stuff going on during Michigan STEM Awareness Week, March 25-31. How will you build STEM awareness? Start by sharing the spot with your family, friends and social networks. I did.
As a breast cancer survivor, nothing makes me happier than media that really gets women to check their breasts. After all, it was Brogan & Partners’ spot for St. John Health that inspired me to be more diligent about checking my own breasts. Soon after we created that commercial more than four years ago, I discovered a lump and caught my cancer early.
This PSA from Rethink Breast Cancer makes me doubly happy. Not only is it a great two-and-a-half minute tutorial on checking your breasts, it’s also hilarious! Not to mention easy on the eyes. The PSA stars Anthony, a spokesmodel with sparkly eyes and bare, washboard abs. He demonstrates how to examine your breasts with TLC: Touch, Look, Check.
So if this message is aimed at women, why do we see a man palpating his pecs in the shower (complete with pink shower cap)?
Because, explains Anthony’s co-star, a gray-haired doctor, “Studies have shown that women are more likely to watch a video if it features a hot guy.”
Clearly, that’s true. The PSA has gotten more than 1.5 million views on YouTube.
Rethink Breast Cancer has also produced a great, free app called the Your Man Reminder. Users customize their regularly-scheduled reminders to feature the hottie of their choice. They can even alter his pose. He’ll send sexy/cute messages to remind them to do their breast-checks.
I think this is great. It calls to mind another irreverent (and effective) breast-check prompt, Check Your Boobies.
But I don’t just like Rethink’s PSA because it gives me a laugh. I think its humor makes it more effective. Good advertising makes an emotional connection. Some move you tears, like our St. John Health TV Spot for breast cancer. Others make you laugh like our Michigan Department of Community Health TV Spot to remind women to get regular pap tests.
And when you’re talking about a breast check reminder, memorable is as good as it gets.
What do you think of the Your Man Reminder? Can you think of other breast cancer prevention spots that have lodged in your memory?
For generations there has been an endless debate of who rules the world, men or women. During the sixties, James Brown stated his opinion with “It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World”. In Beyonce’s new song “Run the World” she sings, “Who run the world? Girls, girls”. The debate will continue. But in the world of social media, we have a definitive gender winner. It’s women who rule. Sure, men created most of our social platforms but it is women who are maintaining and growing them.
According to Read Write Web, a study done by an online company rapleaf.com revealed that on most social network platforms “women outnumber men by a considerable amount. On Facebook, the 18-24 age group is the largest, with 1,685,029 women in that age group compared to 977,753 men.”
Why are women the largest contributors to social media? According to Jessica Faye Carter, an award-winning author and owner of Nette Media, it is simply because as mothers, we like to share information, educate others as well as develop new trends.
As expert multi-taskers, women like how easily they can share information with family and hundreds of “friends” simply with a click of a button. And as the leading household purchasing decision-maker, they use social media to share information about products, services, time-saving tips and money-saving offers.
Men want to rule the world. Women want to save the world. So it’s no wonder so many women are using social media to make social change. Whether raising awareness for lead paint or money for the breast cancer 3-day, women are using these social tools to build a better world for all of us.
Who do you think will rule the social media world in the future?
By now, we've all seen a lot of H1N1 ads. But are they working? Our client, Michigan Department of Community Health, decided to go straight to the target audience - minority populations of African Americans, Arab Americans and Hispanics who have NOT received the vaccine - with focus groups to understand WHY NOT. The problem? They simply don't trust it. Respondents said it was "rushed into circulation", "pushed by the government", and is "unsafe", "untested and experimental," and "unproven." Of course, all misperceptions and untruths, as the vaccine is the safest, most effective way to prevent the flu. We know that trust is a critical component of the healthcare marketing equation -- and that we had to overcome this basic feeling of mistrust. Since the majority of respondents said their doctor would be the single person they would trust the most about whether or not to get the H1N1 vaccine, we encouraged action through this open door. Even though we know 61% if adults search online for health information and 81% of Internet users search online for health information (Pew Research Center), we bravely persevered with what research told us is the most effective call to action: TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR.
The print ad is straightforward. Designed to help people make a list of questions to ask their doctor about seasonal flu and H1N1. I think its simplicity and utilize are unexpected -- and will break through the clutter.
Kudos to MDCH for their research-savvy approach. We'll keep you posted as this just started running. Let us know what you think!
I wrote about HealthCamp RDU a couple of weeks ago, and really looked forward to the event. Unfortunately, I had to leave after the keynote (such is the life of an account person). But wow, what a great lesson from speaker Nick Augustinos of Cisco on the direction of health information technologies and trends in health information sharing. Be sure to check the homepage soon to see videos of the conference.
I can't recap everything Nick said here, but one thing I wanted to pass along is the idea that we are moving from a "Culture of Pathology" to a "Culture of Wellness"- the basic concept isn't new, but hearing it spelled out in terms of technology was enlightening, so thanks Nick. I want us all to consider how healthcare marketing shifts as a result of this cultural transformation. How do we as marketers move consumers away from a diagnose/fix mentality to a prevention mentality? It has been the mission of public health officials for years, and it is clearly becoming an important direction on which providers and managed care companies should focus. The technology available today makes this the opportunistic time - so what would you do first?
As advocates of making an emotional connection, I have to blog about the Embrace Life spot that rates 10+ for EC. It got forwarded to me a couple months ago thru the adworld, and my sister (non-adworld) just forwarded it to me. Which tells me this internet phenomenon is now reaching stay-at-home moms. Now she's a very intelligent gal, and she thought it was pretty, but she wasn't sure she got what they were trying to communicate - hence, her question to her adsister. She got the main message - Wear Your Seatbelt - but she was looking for something deeper...Why is his family there? Are they saving him? Are they the reason he should wear it?
All good questions, and all likely part of the message intent. The key point is it made the emotional connection for her to begin questioning and thus, interacting with the communication...and bravo, she understands the main point - Wear Your Seatbelt! I passionately explained the whole emotional connection thing to my sis to which she responded, "hmmmm...so, are you bringing your broccoli salad Sunday?..."
We do a lot of social marketing (we call it "oughta marketing") and this is one of the best spots I've seen. I believe the beautiful emotional connection (love) has created this beautiful viral phenomenon (6 million plus views). If you haven't seen it yet, you really oughta click below.
Does it make your favorite commercial list?
May 1st is quickly approaching. For most, it’s just another normal day. For Michigan residents, it will mean that we can walk into any bar or restaurant and walk out still smelling like the sweet scent of perfume that we put on earlier in the evening.
But, more importantly, it means we will no longer be exposed to secondhand smoke, the third leading cause of preventable death in Michigan.
In order to raise awareness of Michigan's new indoor smoking ban, we partnered with our long-time client, the Michigan Department of Community Health, to kick off a very cost-effective social marketing PSA campaign. Check out the spot below.
And join us in saying so-long to smoked cheesecake, smoked side salad, smoked carrot cake...
Trying to explain how cool this interactive cause marketing campaign for the homeless is just can't do it justice. You have to watch the clip below. I promise it's worth the minute of your time. You are forced to "not ignore" the virtual homeless person on the streets of NYC. You can control the situation by making him open a door to a home.
Then after you're engaged, you can text a donation. Kudos to Pathways to Housing for this imaginative, innovative, interactive campaign. We do a lot of cause marketing and it gives me goosebumps when we can really make a difference. Hopefully, this campaign will not go unnoticed, like its subject matter, and truly make a difference for the homeless.
So what did you think...was it worth your minute?
What is the product? Hope. During the holidays, the Portugal Red Cross opened a retail store in one of the busiest malls in Portugal, with the idea to sell tangible donations of hope.
What a brilliant non-profit marketing and fundraising idea. Leo Burnett Lisbon developed the campaign that helped the Red Cross climb into the top ten for sales at the mall. Here is a brief snapshot of what they did.
The Red Cross has now opened additional stores in Spain and Portugal but will sell Stories of Hope this time. Books being sold have titles such as, The Children who learned to Smile, The Engineer Who was a Super Hero and The Girl who Forgot to Cry. The books are completely blank inside other than a marker and a note that reads “You can help make each book a happy ending by donating to the Red Cross.”
I hope that the Red Cross continues to raise money in this new venture, and that it soon makes it to the States. What do you think? Would you be more willing to donate if you were actually able to “shop” for your donation?