Sleuthing for Clues: A Planner’s Story

SleuthingI am currently an associate rotating through Ogilvy Healthworld’s planning department. This month I have been tasked with working on an oncology brand in its mission to become the drug of choice for HCPs when prescribing patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) a first- or second-line treatment. As an agency, we must develop a bold new campaign that will differentiate the brand from its largest competitors.

But how do you even begin the process of developing a creative campaign? The answer starts with a key insight, and it’s the planner’s job to provide it.

During my rotation, I have learned that it is the planner’s responsibility to uncover key insights and turn them into a story that inspires, provokes, and connects. To find these insights, planners must look at factual research through the eyes of a storyteller. Can we find a fresh new perspective to highlight? Have we overlooked a key pain point or desire of HCPs that no one else is addressing? Is there a better way to tell the story? These are the kind of questions that planners need to ask themselves as they sift through pages and pages of data.

During my own search for insights, I teamed up with another planner to scour many reports and decks. Our intent was not only to learn more about the brand’s competitors, but also to strategize a way to differentiate it from the others. Through co-collaboration, the two of us turned stats and quotes into ideas. We then took these ideas and boiled them down in simplicity. From there, we were able to come up with 6 distinct insights that we felt were ready to inspire the creative team.

Here is a list of our initial rough ideas:

  • · Brand X gives you the power to put your best foot forward when treating CML.
  • · Brand X: confidence that you are setting a higher standard.
  • · Brand X provides confidence/certainty regardless of the scenario.
  • · Brand X: satisfaction/confidence that you are not settling for less.
  • · Brand X gets you to where you need to be faster.
  • · Brand X allows you to start strong for the best chance at success.

During our meeting, we deliberated on which ideas were best, and how to repurpose what survived. Planners must work in unison with creatives to develop a strong idea for the campaign. If a concept requires too much explanation, it is often eliminated. Keeping it simple is key, as it arms the creative team with a higher degree of clarity when developing an image.

At the end of our first meeting with one member of the creative team, we had one solid idea:

       Different patients, different risks, different challenges, one solution.

At the end of our second meeting with the creative and account teams, we had an additional idea we thought was executable:

       A faster response for a more positive conversation.

Before we can hand over the reins to the creative team, we need our client to pick between the two strategies. But before we can send the ideas to the clients, the planners have to provide the rationale—the why—behind the campaign strategy.

My fellow planner and I are currently back again in the decks and reports, pulling insights that support why these two ideas are valid for the brand as a basis for its new campaign. We will build a deck in the next 24 hours and send it off to the client by the end of the week.

Which campaign do you think they will choose?

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