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Balancing Head and Heart


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Arguably no industry is more complicated and emotional than healthcare, yet regulatory constraints and corporate culture have impeded the authenticity found in marketing for other verticals. But the tide is finally turning…

If any kind of marketing demands synergy between mind and body, head and heart, then healthcare must be it. On the clinical side, our 37 trillion cells can suffer from thousands of maladies, triggered by nearly as many causes. On the personal side, patients are different from consumers, more like “resumers” who see their treatments as a means to an end, a way to protect rather than celebrate themselves.

Pharma clinical claims are heavily regulated to ensure fair balance between efficacy and safety. At the same time pharma corporate culture is usually structured around traditional approaches to marketing, more fitting of the print and broadcast media dominated era of passive audiences and static content. The result leads to tight restrictions in terms of messaging and distribution, most of them habitual rather than mandatory.

Despite the slower start, healthcare brands are increasingly embracing emotional authenticity and experiential engagement of other industries. Cannes Lions Health is a celebration of this shift, an enthusiastic homage to the heartfelt intent, compelling creativity, and storytelling bravado now pouring into healthcare and even pharma marketing. As we’ve shared, discovering the real patient experience is what our job is all about.

Our audiences concur: Advocates remind us that patients are far more than people who happen to be sick, what interests them is often very different than what pharma assumes, and a new language must be explored to help bridge the unnecessary gap between treatments and those they benefit. Clarity, transparency, honesty, creativity, and most importantly a seamless fusion between head and heart turns brands into advocates.

Along the way new awards are won and experiments made, explorations into humor and storytelling on the content side, innovative tech in the form of machine learning and virtual reality on the other. Is your pharma marketing partner well versed in both head and heart? Are they experts in healthcare and technology, also sensitive to patients, caregivers, and the professionals who treat them? If you need to find the balance, partner with Klick Health.

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