Image Courtesy of Women in the World
For the second year in a row, Merck for Mothers raised awareness of maternal mortality as a proud sponsor of the Women in the World summit in April.
Merck Chairman and CEO Ken Frazier participated in a panel moderated by journalist Soledad O’Brien on the latest advances against maternal mortality in developing nations and in the U.S.
Attendees were asked to help in the fight to ensure a healthy pregnancy by making sure loved ones “have a PEP Talk” with their doctors and/or health care professionals about potential pregnancy complications associated with the three leading causes of maternal death in the U.S.
Merck also announced an exciting new collaboration with Ferring Pharmaceuticals and World Health Organization. To learn more about this partnership, read the press release here.
Image Courtesy of Mederma®
MMC recently joined forces with Mederma®, the #1 doctor and pharmacist recommended brand for scars, to support its family of leading Mederma® scar products and Mederma® Stretch Marks Therapy.Last week, MMC and Mederma® launched the brand’s latest innovation — Mederma® PM Intensive Overnight Scar Cream, a new one-of-a-kind scar cream specifically formulated to work at night, when skin naturally regenerates faster. Mederma® PM features some of the beauty world’s most buzz-worthy ingredients– peptides, collagen, and antioxidants – and through robust media efforts has become a hot item among consumers looking to care for their scars as part of their nighttime beauty routine!
For the launch, Mederma® PM partnered with leading NYC-based dermatologist Dr. Debra Jaliman to brief top beauty magazines during an exclusive VIP event, consumer media and short-leads with deskside interviews and blogger engagement – which together, sparked robust conversations about the product and the benefits of caring for skin at night. Additionally, influential beauty experts have shown their excitement for the product through features such as a GMA Live segment with beauty influencer Limor Suss, and stories on Parade.com!
To view the full Mederma PM press release click here!
What’s the first thing you think of when you see the color purple? You may not associate it with epilepsy awareness, but we’d bet that’s about to change.
Since its inception in 2008, each year on March 26, people around the world show their support for epilepsy awareness by wearing purple and hosting events. “Purple Day” which began as a grassroots effort led by nine-year old Megan Cassidy, motivated by her own struggles with epilepsy, is now recognized internationally. One 9-year old girl starting a worldwide movement – it’s incredible.
With disease awareness days aplenty, how can marketers ensure they are meaningful and move the needle towards improving patient lives? This is a question top of mind at MMC, as we have been working with our client Eisai on initiatives to provide resources for the epilepsy community and improve the lives of those living with the condition.
Marketers should align their goals with those of the sponsoring organization’s, for the most impact on those in need. Both the marketer and organization benefit from integrating their overall strategy and outreach, which together packs a more powerful communications punch than either effort alone. To microtarget patients around the world, it is essential to post shareable content that can be easily customized in any market. While the competition is steep for awareness days, we’ve seen the ripple effect of Megan Cassidy’s efforts around the world.
We hope some of you participated in Purple Day activities or at least took note of the people dressed in purple hues. Here is a taste of activities from across the globe:
- United States – From encouraging bakeries around the country to bake purple cupcakes to awareness walks, there were many fun events around the U.S. that promoted awareness in unique ways.
- Canada – Epilepsy Ottawa-Carleton hosts a “Paint the Rink Purple” at the Rink of Dreams at Ottawa City Hall, with a special appearance from Purple Day founder, Cassidy Megan.
- United Kingdom – Epilepsy Action of the United Kingdom hosted an “Epilepsy Awareness Extravaganza” at the famous King’s Cross Station in London
- Scotland – Purple sheep? Yes, you read that correctly. Epilepsy Scotland’s campaign to “Turn Scotland purple for 24 hours” includes a field full of purple sheep, and lighting up famous landmarks with the color purple.
- Romania – The Palace of Victoria, where the Romanian Government has its offices, is lit up in purple. Additionally, local Bucharest transportation companies partner with The Association of Patients with Epilepsy from Romania (ASPERO) to fly a purple flag on vehicles with the message “Epilepsy Is Not a Monster.”
MMC’s Eisai (client) team celebrates Purple Day and shows their support for epilepsy
Image Courtesy of STAINMASTER®
STAINMASTER® PetProtect™ carpet was the first flooring sponsor ever at the 138th Westminster Kennel Club (WKC) Dog Show, a two-day event at Pier 94 and Madison Square Garden with the renowned, nationally-broadcast “Best in Show” grand finale.
At Pier 94, where the preliminary breed judging took place, STAINMASTER® and MMC covered the area with a 120′ x 70′ piece of STAINMASTER® PetProtect™ carpet and cushion system dyed in the WKC signature purple color, creating the perfect plush purple paradise, receiving over 50,000 foot and paw prints over the course of the show.
MMC and STAINMASTER® hosted editors from Access Hollywood, InStyle, Parade.com, Woman’s World, AllYou, Real Simple, Home Textiles Today, BlogHer, Mom Central Consulting, StrollerintheCity.com, and Examiner.com at the Best of Group confirmation competitions at Madison Square Garden, where STAINMASTER® PetProtect™ carpet was displayed at the entrance to the competition ring.
Visit www.STAINMASTER.com and throw us a bone on Facebook.com/STAINMASTER or Twitter @STAINMASTER.
Image Courtesy of Stainmaster
Earlier this week, STAINMASTER® carpet announced its official sponsorship with the Westminster Kennel Club. In conjunction with the launch of its newest breed, PetProtect™, STAINMASTER® willcarpet areas at the Westminster Kennel Club’s 138th Annual Dog Show. PetProtect™, a carpet and cushion solution that resists pet stains, releases pet hair, and helps reduce pet odors, will be featured in the WKC iconic purple color at both Pier 94 and Madison Square Garden during the show on February 10-11, 2014.
As part of this tail-waggingly wonderful partnership, the STAINMASTER® brand introduced the PetProtect™ Unshame Your Pet Photo contest hosted on its Facebook page. Inviting consumers to like the Facebook page and upload their favorite pet-shaming photo, STAINMASTER® is giving one lucky winner a getaway package for two to New York City, tickets to the Westminster Dog Show, and $1,000 cash.
For more on this exciting sponsorship or to enter the contest, visit Facebook.com/STAINMASTER.
Photo courtesy of Merck
On any given day, MMC’s entertainment specialists are busy researching, negotiating or working with a wide range of talent on behalf of our consumer and healthcare brands.
So how do you choose the right brand ambassador for your client – that person who will authentically mesh with the brand and inextricably deliver messages in a way that engages target consumers and media? Research might be helpful, Google some key words that meet your criteria and see what pops up. Or, based on your relationships, you could call the talent’s representative and see if you can get a top-line idea of that person’s connection to your campaign. If you know the talent’s publicist, makeup artist, stylist, etc. very well, you could reach out to them for insights.
Or, you could just ask the talent directly. As part of MMC’s “Meet the Talent” series, celebrities, sports figures and other key influencers stop by and share their interests, ideas and projects directly with key MMC account staffers, who in turn can delve a bit deeper on behalf of their client to uncover potential partnership opportunities. This insider intel has fueled unexpected ideas, created unique launch opportunities and has given MMC clients the edge on not only leveraging talent news, but in some cases breaking it. When a noticeably pregnant Melissa Joan Hart walked into our offices, it immediately sparked an idea for one of our clients with a major maternal health initiative. Fast forward four months later, and after intense negotiations with her agent, Melissa and MMC gave birth to Merck for Mothers’ “Once Upon a Birth” campaign which was strategically timed to break immediately following the birth of Melissa’s third child. Jo Frost, aka The Supernanny, has stopped by to talk about her severe allergies. Heather Graham her latest projects and La La Anthony how she juggles family and a hit show STARmeter. The lovely Mel B is our next scheduled guest.
There are lots of ways you can identify the perfect brand ambassador. But we believe there’s no better way than meeting them.
For many decades, it’s been common practice to engage celebrities, experts and others to credential brands. The process is pretty cut and dry. Experts or celebrities are positioned to media and consumers as paid spokespeople. But today, the process is a little more complicated. When brand marketers engage experts just to use their personal social media channels to spread brand messages, how will target audiences know if they are being compensated for that tweet or post? Some of these experts and celebrities don’t routinely disclose their brand relationship. And that’s when they, the brand and its agencies risk hearing from the Federal Trade Commission.
The FTC’s updated Dot Com Disclosures, emphasize that “consumer protection laws apply equally across all mediums,” from traditional channels like television, radio or print to newer forms like desktops, laptops, and now, mobile. Worth noting is that these rules don’t just apply to bloggers and other Social Media content creators; they also affect socially-active spokespeople whose every status update, tweet, shortened URL, uploaded image and @reply is being monitored. This means that brands that pay others to “speak” on their behalf must insist that those parties disclose their connections. The FTC has stated publicly it is “cracking down” and companies that don’t comply can incur stiff penalties — in the neighborhood of $12,500 for the first offense and exponentially more for subsequent offenses. Not complying risks damaging company and brand reputations as well as those of the agencies involved.
To ensure compliance with the guidelines, here are some tips for “clear and conspicuous” disclosure:
- In situations where money or goods have changed hands, stipulate that all third-parties include statements of disclosure when they use personal social media channels to promote products or services. Some best practices include opening blog posts (or video segments) with “I received X from Y,” and placing “Ad” or “Sponsored” at the beginning of a status update or tweet.
- When sponsoring an online event – like a Twitter party, Google+ Hangout or Facebook chat – encourage hosts and channel owners to kick off the festivities with statements of disclosure and ask that they repeat them as often as necessary. Never assume that an audience has been “on” from the onset.
- When working with vloggers, make sure they incorporate statements of disclosure into their scripts as well as their landing pages. This same rule also applies to audio reviews (podcasts).
- When activating partners and advocates, build “compliance” into contracts and recommend that they use understandable language, clearly placed, to avoid confusion. “Clear and conspicuous” should be just that!
We are responsible for protecting the reputations of our brands and anyone who acts on their behalf. While the FTC updates aren’t actual laws, they are designed to provide a more open and honest consumer experience – and in the end, isn’t that what every brand wants?