Kantar Health Blog

Iggle Piggle’s Guide to Healthcare Brand Optimization

by Mark Sales | Sep 23, 2015
Mark Sales

As a parent of a 19-month-old boy I spend an inordinate amount of time sat in front of the BBC’s Cbeebies channel, watching the phenomenon that is In the Night Garden. My family and I even attended In the Night Garden Live a few months ago (where my wife happily paid £40 for a goodie bag). This show was sold out across the United Kingdom, as it is every year.

As we drove home I explained to my wife how this could be one of the best integrated marketing campaigns I had ever seen. Everything our son interacts with seems to be connected to In the Night Garden: our local theme park has a branded ride, his cutlery has their characters on them, not to mention the educational games on the iPad. The branding and messaging are so tightly controlled to deliver the same experience through each channel. It really makes you realize how good the BBC is at branding (Top Gear had a similar approach until their presenters went a little too far off the piste).

So, what has all this got to do with Pharma? To some degree I think we are at the opposite end of the scale. As an example: you get diagnosed with type II diabetes, your physician prescribes an oral antidiabetic (with a name you can’t pronounce) and a blood glucose meter (with another name you can’t pronounce), and that’s the closest you get to any kind of brand alignment. I know the laws around direct-to-consumer and physician promotion are fierce, but can you honestly remember the last time you saw drug campaign that made you think, “That’s awesome”?

Iggle Piggle and his friends will only stay with a child for a few years, but type II diabetes will be with you for the rest of your life, so why not learn from In the Night Garden and build some equity – across multiple channels and with multiple stakeholders. Imagine a world where your new type II diabetes or dyslipidemia drug becomes something you actively support and something you build an emotional connection to. This picture may change over the lifecycle of a drug. At and prior to launch you may want to build these connections with market access people and KOLs, but as you move through the lifecycle it becomes essential to connect with healthcare professionals and patients.

I know I sometimes look at the world through rose-tinted spectacles, but surely we can take a leaf out of Iggle Piggle’s book and build a holistic, emotional connection to our brands.


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