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emotive: Inspiring Change within the Healthcare PR Landscape

Jo Spink, Creative Strategist,emotive
Jo Spink, Creative Strategist, emotive

Amidst the ongoing chaos of the COVID-19 pandemic and a series of lockdowns, WHO launched #HealthyAtHome to help the world combat coronavirus. The initiative addressed not only the easy ways of staying physically active and adopting healthy habits but also emphasized mental health and healthy parenting. The healthy parenting section is filled with fun animated videos, children’s books, and other creative content to help parents make kids understand the COVID-19 situation and also easily instill hygienic habits in them.

In addition to WHO, many hospitals, healthcare organizations, and NGOs have taken a creative approach to educate and empower people about the ongoing pandemic. But who manages and oversees these creative campaigns and promotional plans? The answer is the healthcare PR agency.

And among the leading global healthcare PR and communications agencies is emotive, which has been disrupting the healthcare PR field and transforming lives since its inception. Jo Spink, the Creative Strategist at emotive, shares the highlight of her time working with the agency. “Working with exceptional people, from clinicians and stakeholders to fundraisers and patients, and of course, building strong relationships between our clients and the talented PR team has been a privilege,” she says.

Read the following interview where Jo has shared how she became the creative strategist of emotive, and how the agency has helped its clients tangibly improve the healthcare space through its innovative thinking and strategic approach.

Please brief our audience about your company, its values, and vision.

emotive is a leading global healthcare communications agency that transforms lives by inspiring change that has a positive impact on people’s health. The PR & Advocacy team was recently formed through an exciting merger with Spink, an award-winning healthcare PR agency with more than three decades of experience.

Driven by our strategic insights and original thinking, we raise awareness, change behaviour, and influence policy to deliver tangible improvements in healthcare. Throughout all our work, we embrace our key values of collaboration, empowerment, integrity, imagination, and agility.

Importantly, as an agency, we establish an emotive connection with our audiences because we know it’s how something makes us feel that moves us to act.

Brief us about how you have set yourself apart from the competition through your expertise in healthcare PR and communication?

Our deep understanding of the drivers of change enables the emotive PR & Advocacy team to build bold and influential healthcare campaigns based on establishing a unique emotive connection with the audience.

We draw from decades of market and consumer insights to ensure our work delivers meaningful and transformational results. Our specialist healthcare experience allows us to deliver strategic counsel that unlocks brands’ potential and shapes commercial success. And whether we’re educating clinicians, mobilising patients, or influencing stakeholders, we bring visionary, innovative thinking to our campaigns to create cut-through and make a real, positive difference.

What other services does your company offer, and how are you making an impact in the global healthcare industry?

emotive drives the advocacy and up-take of life-changing products, brands, and services with expertise in multiple therapy areas including rare diseases and advanced therapies. We provide the key areas of communications that make an impact in healthcare. In addition to PR & Advocacy, we also offer Medical & Scientific and Brand & Patient communications.

Working across all stages of the product lifecycle on a range of strategic, educational, and commercial materials, we are helping more people get access to the treatments and services that will have a positive impact on their health. We are making an impact because we understand that clinical research and data are so much more than numbers; they have the power to change lives. These pieces of information just need to be expressed to those who can affect change in the right way. Our expert team of scientific, digital, and creative minds creates experiences that establish the emotive connection needed to inspire change across the global healthcare landscape.

Jo, please brief us about your journey in the healthcare industry.

My background is in consumer marketing, which means I bring a strategic perspective to everything I do. I’ve got a passion for getting under the skin of consumer behaviour and understanding how and why we behave in a certain way, and what triggers a behavioural change.

Since launching Spink back in 1989, I’ve put service at the heart of the agency and I believe that it’s this ethos, combined with our passion, creativity, and ground-breaking work, that has driven the agency’s success and reputation as a healthcare specialist agency.

Over the years, the real highlight has been the privilege of working with a diverse range of exceptional people, from clinicians and stakeholders to fundraisers and patients, and of course, building strong relationships between our clients and the talented PR team.

The merger with emotive provides an incredible opportunity to work with a wide array of talented professionals with scientific and medical expertise. This new venture is already benefiting both our clients and employees alike, and I am eager to see what the future holds for the PR & Advocacy team.

Being an experienced leader, share with us your opinion on how the adoption of modern technologies and platforms in PR and communication has transformed the industry and what more could be expected in the future?

Technology has transformed many aspects of PR, as it has other areas of our lives. The media we target, our interactions with clients and journalists, and the ways we reach our audiences are different from a decade ago. We incorporate a strong digital or social media component into virtually all our campaigns because we understand that this is how people want to source information.

Undoubtedly, the pandemic has accelerated our adoption of technology. For example, over the past few years we have seen medical congresses offering greater digital capabilities, such as live streaming. However, COVID-19 forced them to move from predominantly in-person events to fully online experiences. The success of the virtual congresses that we have run for our clients indicates that hybrid meetings are more likely to occur in the future with as many online attendees as in-person delegates.

Although technology has changed many of the ways that we deliver our campaigns, the strategic heart of communications remains the same. We still want to engage consumers, healthcare professionals, policymakers, and stakeholders in a shared conversation. This is how we will continue to transform opinions, challenge misconceptions, and inspire change.

Taking into consideration the current pandemic and its impact on global economies, how are you driving your company to sustain operations and ensuring the safety of your employees at the same time?

COVID-19 has impacted our working practices; however, it hasn’t negatively affected our business. In fact, we have been exceptionally busy with more new business pitches than ever and the pandemic hasn’t had any negative impact on our existing client budgets.

We put this down to our outstanding PR team who have worked remotely since March 2020, except for a few socially distanced days in the office last summer. They have been incredibly hard-working, professional, and resourceful throughout.

We are looking forward to welcoming everyone back into the office in July when UK government guidelines permit. We are introducing a new flexible working policy that allows our people to choose where they work four days each week because we know they’ll always get the job done.

What would be your advice to budding entrepreneurs who aspire to venture into the healthcare PR sector?

Healthcare PR is a fantastic sector to work in for anyone creative, dedicated, and motivated by making a difference to people’s lives. It’s good to have some healthcare industry knowledge but not essential as it’s possible to learn on the job. Indeed, our PR team members come from a variety of backgrounds. I’d say that it’s more important to have strong written and verbal communication skills and a hardworking attitude. Employers and clients want to work with someone with ‘can do’ positivity.

Where do you envision your organization to be in the long run and what are your future goals?

We are very excited about our future with emotive. As the PR & Advocacy arm of a leading healthcare comms agency, we have access to best-in-class scientific expertise with enhanced technology and creative capabilities, and this is already opening new opportunities with more life science companies.

We are looking to expand our client portfolio and work on more international initiatives, such as our behaviour change campaign for the Global Hygiene Council that is helping to improve health outcomes by promoting the link between hygiene and health on a global scale.

As an agency, emotive is always working to inspire change that has a positive impact on people’s health. Looking to the future, we aim to widen our reach by making a global impact across more markets.

Exhibiting Excellence

“One of the best agencies we’ve worked with. They always deliver what they say, which is extremely uncommon in PR. They are always professional and reliable.” – Lanes Health

“The team consistently demonstrates a passion for Reckitt brands and contributes insightfully and strategically into all elements of the marketing plan to ensure the PR campaigns build effectively on the brand’s plans as a whole.” – Reckitt

“The team created assets and a campaign that delivered the perfect outcomes for Orchid. We have sometimes struggled with our share of voice in prostate cancer, but this campaign has certainly changed that, and we are now in a stronger position to capitalise on this in both the political and public arena.” – Orchid, Fighting Male Cancer

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