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Posts Tagged ‘wellness’

MMC and U by Kotex Help Save the Undies

ASH_0960Image Courtesy of U by Kotex

Millions of pairs of undies are casualties to failed period protection every month. To help fight senseless underwear loss, U by Kotex has introduced 3D Capture Core to all its ultra thin pads to help stop leaks.

To showcase new 3D Capture Core, MMC and U by Kotex hosted a media event at a top lingerie boutique in SoHo. A U by Kotex representative explained how 3D Capture Core works and the store’s lead merchandiser shared underwear care tips and tricks. Media stopped by a nearby U by Kotex Undies Activist event, where U by Kotex brand ambassadors encouraged women to Save the Undies by educating them about the new 3D Capture Core technology.

Read more about U by Kotex brand’s mission to Save the Undies on MediaPost Marketing Daily and see some great social posts from the launch event here: Honestly Jamie, Entertainista, and Cosmo for Latinas. You can also check more of the online buzz with the hashtag #SaveTheUndies and visit www.ubykotex.com/save-the-undies for more information.

MMC and Poise Introduce Women to SAM (Super Absorbent Material)

Poise MicrolinersImage Courtesy of Poise

Light Bladder Leakage, LBL, the spritz. No matter what you call it, one in three women experience common little leaks that can be triggered by everyday occurrences like coughing, sneezing, laughing and exercise. Even more surprising is that many women who experience LBL use feminine care products or nothing at all to manage their LBL because they don’t know there are solutions designed specifically for it or because they don’t think incontinence products are for them.  But that’s all going to change, thanks to Poise!

Poise has launched new, shockingly thin and surprisingly absorbent Poise Microliners, featuring SAM (Super Absorbent Material). The thinnest liners in the light incontinence category, Poise Microliners are designed specifically for LBL and stay three times drier than period liners to help women manage their LBL with confidence.

MMC is supporting the launch of new Poise Microliners with a mix of traditional and digital tactics to encourage women to meet SAM (Super Absorbent Material). Read more about new Poise Microliners on MediaPost Marketing Daily, and visit www.Poise.com to meet SAM (Super Absorbent Material), learn about Poise pads and liners and request a free sample.

The Color Seen ‘Round the World: Supporting Epilepsy Awareness Day

Purple Day

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 Team PurpleMMC’s Eisai (client) team celebrates Purple Day and shows their support for epilepsy

From Inside The ePharma Summit: Wearables

This year’s ePharma Summit continued to bring out the best and brightest of the industry to share successes, exchange best practices, and talk about some of the new opportunities that exist where the worlds of digital and healthcare meet.

An exciting technology that presents lots of opportunity for Pharma is wearables. These devices, which range from the almost ubiquitous FitBit, Jawbone, and Nike Fuelband, all the way to Google Glass and the Google contact lens that can detect glucose levels in tears, have been around for a few years, but are really starting to become more mainstream. They were all the rage at the Consumer Electronics Show, too. Wearables are turning people into data centers, with a constant stream of information generated daily. Pharma is in a unique position to help make that data meaningful for patients, doctors and research.

While the future value of wearables in healthcare are yet to be fully realized, ZocDoc took a stab at predicting the future:

Wearable tech – An infographic by the team at ZocDoc

At the ePharma Summit there was lots of speculation about the use of wearables– and the data they generate– in health management, adherence, insurance and treatment. While the verdict is out on how to capitalize on this data and technology, this is an area that MMC, and all of Pharma, is going to be following closely. It represents an area for the courageous Pharma executive to lead.

FTC’s New Year’s Resolution is to Trim Down Foul Weight Loss Marketing

I want to be skinnier in 2014. I want to eat less and better and exercise more – and ideally come across a remedy that magically helps me shed pounds instantly, with minimal effort. I’ll pay whatever I can afford. I’ll take it everywhere I go. I’ll Instagram, Tweet and Facebook it.

This is the topic that the Federal Trade Commission discussed yesterday at its press conference. It turns out that several companies have developed products with this audience in mind and promoted benefits that seemed too good to be true. Turns out they were.

These companies and products got hit with fines as part of the FTC’s law enforcement initiative to combat deceptive claims to weight loss products:

  • Sensa: claimed users can simply sprinkle, eat and lose weight
  • L’Occitane: claimed skin cream slims down your body
  • HCG Diet Direct: marketed unproven human hormone
  • LeanSpa, LLC: promoted weight loss supplements through fake news websites

The companies will pay a combined $34 million to settle these charges. Ouch.

Image source

Good, Better, Best. Never Let It Rest.

Not many company meetings end with the words “here is $300 now go change the world.” Ours did, and my life will never be the same.

The ultimate challenge– in celebration of Marina Maher Communications’ 30th anniversary– was to see which employee could raise the most money for She’s the First, an organization that helps girls in the developing world by giving them the chance to be the first in their families to graduate from secondary school. MMC chose to partner with She’s the First because it is aligned with MMC’s mission to help women achieve their goals and better the world around them.  Because Marina started MMC with $300, those who accepted the fundraising challenge would receive $300 starter money  and would be matched with a mentor at the agency. The grand prize was an all-expenses-paid trip—including 10 days off from work– to the Arlington Academy of Hope in Bududa, Uganda, where the winner would meet the girls that MMC worked so hard to sponsor.

For six months following the announcement, I stressed, strategized, called in favors, lost sleep, and called in more favors. But waking up every day with a challenge to change someone else’s world invigorated me, and nothing was off-limits for fundraising. My desk became a rotating pop-up shop of snacks, kitchenware and assorted beauty products donated by friends to support my cause; drinks with friends were turned into fundraising parties and yoga was no longer just a means for meditation but a pay-what-you can event to help a girl go to school.

When the competition ended on my 26th birthday, the founders of She’s the First called with the world’s best birthday news: I had won the opportunity of a lifetime…not just to change my life…but to make a difference to others! Six weeks, four vaccines and a handful of malaria pills later, I left NYC’s comforts of Seamless Web, laundry service and Duane Reade for Bududa, Uganda and two dozen unforgettable girls.

I landed at Entebbe International Airport and was greeted by Sula, my driver, 24 hours after locking the door to my Murray Hill apartment. Sula spoke English with a thick, African accent that I tried hard to understand as we drove six long hours to the eastern part of the country. Africa was, at first glance, just like I imagined. Women carried fruits and vegetables on their heads in flowing, exotically printed dresses, trees were flat on top, and the ground was a dark, earthy red that quickly stained my feet. But nothing could prepare me for what I was about to experience.

Living in Bududa, I quickly learned what the word luxury really meant — electricity, toilets, showers (not just hot showers!) and clean drinking water. In this East African village, for example, a “toilet” is a hole in the ground, a “shower” means dumping a bucket of lukewarm water over your head, and turning on a light usually meant clicking the top of my headlamp so I could go outside to use the bathroom after 8 p.m. Most New Yorkers would also be surprised by the number of passengers we squeezed into a Bududa taxi.

At the clinic, the volunteers proudly showed us their new maternity room, which they encourage expecting women to stay close to when they near their due date to help reduce maternal mortality in the area. Because Bududa is so mountainous, women often don’t make it to the medical clinic in time to give birth and end up coming in with severe bleeding. The volunteers also showed us the newly created charts that track malaria and HIV/AIDS in the area. Fortunately, malaria is easy to treat and many deaths in the area have been prevented thanks to the recent accessibility of medicine. HIV, however, is a different story. Because it is common for Ugandan men to have multiple wives, the number of cases in the area continues to grow, and most people don’t know that they have the virus until they develop symptoms.

The rest of our days were spent at school with the Arlington students, which were a blur of books, bubbles and beans over matoke (a typical school lunch). The students were eager to learn and asked millions of questions: “Is Barack Obama a good man?,” “How do you get crops in the winter when there is no harvest?,” “How tall are the buildings in New York City?,” “Who was the 5th president of the U.S.?” When they ran out of questions at the end of the day, our sponsored girls would take us back to their parents’ homes for dinner.

Dinners were my favorite– not because the food was incredible– but because when I was invited into their homes I was able to understand the positive impact we are making. That’s when the entire reason that I fundraised and traveled across the world really hit me. It’s hard to find the words to describe the love and gratitude that radiated from the girls’ parents when we met them. Though many of them could not communicate with us in English, we were able to communicate through the universal love a parent has for a child.  I knew that they understood that their daughters’ education ensured that they had a chance to avoid early pregnancy, HIV and a future of poverty. They expressed their sincere appreciation with ear-to-ear smiles, big meals, rib-cracking hugs and gifts of live poultry (which, we learned is very common in Uganda). What they managed to communicate to me comes down to this: these people love us for helping their daughters…not in the abstract way that you think recipients of these kinds of programs feel gratitude, but personal, heartfelt love. They bless MMC every day, they remember us in their prayers; they feel an individual and ongoing relationship with us.

I felt humbled and indebted, and searched for something meaningful that I could leave behind.  When I was a little girl, my dad taught me a saying: “Good, better, best. Never let it rest. Until you’re as good as better, your better best.” As I thought about what to leave these special girls with, I realized that it was not a monetary gift, but rather my father’s favorite quote. These girls have inspired me and I felt that this mantra, that encouraged hard work and determination, was something they could bring with them on every journey just as I have. On my last day in Bududa, a handful of girls followed me home from school repeating it. I asked them to define what it meant to them, and reminded them that they could be anything they wanted to be before we parted ways.

When I got back to the U.S., reassuming my life made me feel greedy and guilt-ridden.  Listening to others complain about bad haircuts, long commutes or lack of weekend plans seemed superficial and nonsensical. I’m adjusting back, but I can say with 100% certainty what I know now is how important it is to appreciate everything that I have– safe drinking water, a great pedicure or the accessibility to a medical facility– just like the girls at Arlington appreciate their school lunch or a new pair of shoes.

In the end, I don’t know who learned more from my visit to Uganda—me, or the students at Arlington.  But I do know that I am lucky to work at a place that inspires me to be my “better best” and help change the world, one girl at a time.

Images courtesy of Marina Maher Communications LLC

What Health Innovations Are You Talking About?

Image source

This interactive infographic sheds light on some of the major health advancements of all time that are widely debated and discussed. This includes:

  • Pasteurization – Raw milk advocates say key health benefits are being destroyed. Scientists say there are too many risks associated with drinking untreated milk.
  • Reproductive Health – Certain religious and cultural institutions take issue with birth control and Gardasil as condoning sexual activity.
  • Vaccinations – While vaccines have eradicated serious diseases like smallpox, some parents fear a connection to autism. Fewer children are getting vaccines than in years past.
  • Stem Cell Research – Some say it isn’t moral, despite its potential to cure currently incurable diseases.
  • Toilets – Seems like a given in developed countries, but many people worldwide still lack basic sanitation.
  • HIV/AIDS – Treatments have evolved the disease from a death sentence to a chronic disease. Yet stigma still deters people from seeking testing and treatment.
  • Public Healthcare – One of the most heated, divisive issues in the U.S.
  • Antibiotics – Truly lifesaving medications. Yet overuse can produce resistant Superbugs.
  • Quarantines – Which regulations go too far?
  • Environmental Protection Agency – There’s ongoing debate how much environmental health should be regulated. There are still many unknowns – for example, how pollution is related to chronic illness, asthma, cancer and death.
  • Malaria – Prevention is extremely costly, and there are risks associated with certain prevention methods.

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