Health Care PR and Marketing Campaign of the Year

Tie-in to a popular TV sitcom was just one element of this impressive multichannel campaign

Effective use of research, sentiment analysis and social media propelled diabetes education effort.

Get Real About Diabetes - Logo -

Pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk is known best for its diabetes products. In the U.S. alone, nearly 30 million Americans have type 2 diabetes (T2D), but Novo Nordisk recognized that about half fail to achieve their treatment goals. The campaign it launched to address the situation has won Ragan’s Health Care PR and Marketing Awards’ “Campaign of the Year” honor.

The failures result from the overwhelming nature of treatment, which involves a lifetime of monitoring, food choices, exercise, assessments and (for many) medications. Patients are typically stressed, overwhelmed and in need of support. Research found they also feel misunderstood, trivialized and implicitly judged.

Market research identified the channels most frequently used by the target audience, finding they are heavy consumers of both TV and social media, especially Facebook. To reach them in both places, Novo Nordisk enlisted Anthony Anderson, the star of the hit TV series “Black-ish” and a T2D patient himself.

In addition to Anderson serving as a spokesperson sharing his real-life experiences and creating empathy with the audience, the company orchestrated a first-of-its-kind T2D diagnosis into the storyline of Anderson’s series. Dubbed “Get Real About Diabetes,” the campaign launched on World Diabetes Day, when interest and receptivity to information about diabetes is at its peak.

A sentiment analysis performed on one of the campaign’s content items found nearly a third of people who commented on the video acknowledged or committed to changing their behavior and taking control of their type 2 diabetes.

The social media results are impressive, including 9.9 million views of video content and 1.2 million unique engagements; the campaign also achieved a 40% open rate for its welcome email.

Congratulations to the Novo Nordisk team and the many agencies who assisted in the effort.

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