Siddall was hired by this non-profit hospital in Woodbridge, Virginia, to define its brand. In the face of increased competition for physicians, patients and employees, this community-focused institution knew it had to do more to create preference for the facility and its areas of medical specialty. They had already invested in updating their facility and patient rooms – now they had to connect emotionally with people who could use their services or be key recommenders.
Through the planning process, which included board, physician and employee interviews, the agency determined that the core strength of Potomac Hospital’s brand lay in the attitude of the people who work tirelessly to deliver care – it was the impact of their “healing spirit” that truly defined the Hospital and how it felt to be a patient. Most importantly, this brand sentiment had to be accepted as authentic by Potomac employees and physicians to be effective.
After all, they are the true “deliverers” of the brand, and it would not succeed if we did not win their unconditional support. To bring the brand’s emotional connection to life, Siddall created a tagline – “Better feel. Feel better.” – and incorporated it into a badge similar to a Scout merit badge. This patch appears in all the campaign materials and is incorporated into the website. Most importantly, when the Hospital created real patches to hand out as tokens for the internal brand launch, 400 were scooped up in the first day. Security guards asked if they could have them formally attached to their uniforms. And banners including the new logo and patch were produced and hung in parking lots around the Hospital. Employees and physicians embraced the brand, blazing the way for everyone to genuinely bring it to life every day.
According to the research, Potomac Hospital owned a significantly smaller share of mind than other institutions that had been advertising for some time, such as Inova Health System and Mary Washington Hospital. But consumers had no distinct impression of which hospital was “the best.” Siddall seized the opportunity by creating a campaign that made it clear that Potomac Hospital has a “better feel” and that you will, can and should “feel better.”
The campaign launched with print, radio, commuter train cards and Internet, along with the very enthusiastic support of the board, staff and physicians. A tracking study revealed that the campaign not only succeeded in increasing preference and favorability – over 8 in 10 people felt more favorable towards Potomac after seeing the advertising – but that it was at the expense of the region’s reputation leader.