Northwestern Medical Center

After reviewing five agencies, NMC selected us to guide their branding efforts. Our engagement started with significant amounts of research, where we found that Northwestern Medical Center's core challenge was to gain acceptance from its community for the last 15 years worth of work they had done to expand their service line offerings.  It was especially important for the hospital to enhance its credibility with higher educated community members and those with quality heathcare benefits, as these patients provide an outsized revenue contribution to the hospital.  Like many rural hospitals in Vermont, NMC found it challenging to hold onto these key prospects in the face of the larger area players, especially Fletcher Allen. 

NMC Brand Pyramid

Over the course of the first few months we worked with NMC, we conducted extensive research with area patients, hospital staff, and local physicians. The insights we uncovered allowed us to bring to NMC a surprising conclusion: instead of trying to look large, they could compete on the basis of their size. The result was the brand pyramid you see here, which has guided all of our marketing communications since.  

In it, we identified three areas of emphasis for NMC's communications: intimacy, excellence and access. Research revealed that the hospital's smaller size provided a meaningful and differentiated benefit versus Fletcher Allen's unwieldy, institutional feel. Rather than focusing on NMC's "smallness," however, we decided to focus on the positive aspects its smallness conveys: intimacy and community connectedness. We focused on the "excellence" theme to reassure patients that being treated at NMC does not mean compromising the quality of health care they receive.

NMC Tagline

Over the past 15 years, NMC had expanded its service line offerings to include many of the capabilities that used to only exist in larger area medical centers such as Fletcher Allen.  These included orthopedic surgery, diagnostic imaging, and rehabilitation services to name a few.  It's only natural that the community did not have a strong understanding of the service line offerings, as the hospital's marketing efforts had not systematically launched and supported these offerings.  So, to a great degree, our challenge was to devise a campaign that could reinforce the breadth and depth of the new service offerings to the community.  That's how we came up with the "we do that here" tagline.  We've used it ever since, and have found it to be infinitely flexible in discussing the multiple offerings the hospital has for its community.

NMC Thematic Print Ad: Jack Hurlbut Hip Replacement

Our "we do that here" tagline allows us great flexibility in how we use the campaign to deliver against various hospital marketing objectives. In this case, we're emphasizing the quality of orthopedic care at NMC using a patient testimonial. St. Albans is a small community, and, as such, we take a great amount of effort in identifying people who have had the hospital play an important role in keeping them healthy.  When these ads run, we turn these individuals into miniature area celebrities, and it generates positive buzz in the community.

NMC Thematic Print Ad: Wendy Campbell

Wendy Campbell of Swanton has always been diligent about attending her annual physical. Unfortunately, the unthinkable happened; her mammogram indicated she had a lump so small that it could not yet be felt. Her physician, Dr. Frank Zsoldos, immediately set up an appointment with a local general surgeon, and within three days, her surgery at NMC was complete. It's too early to declare victory, but for now, the cancer is in remission. Wendy's now enjoying the company of her newest grandchild, Ben, and is pleased that she had her mammogram.

NMC Thematic Print Ad: Kevin and Lindsay Jarvis Birth

This is an example of our telling the "intimacy" story. Kevin Jarvis, a soldier who was sent overseas, couldn't be present for the birth of his daughter. The dedicated staff in both the NMC Birthing and IT departments bent over backwards to help set up the birthing room with internet connectivity so he could be there for his wife.  It is a touching story that reinforces that the instution has its heart in the right place. 

NMC Multi-User Brochure

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NMC Thematic Print Ad: Avatar Award 4-Peat

Year after year, we’ve received a prestigious national award recognizing our outstanding patient satisfaction scores. The award is given by Avatar International, a leading research firm that surveys patients about their level of satisfaction with healthcare services.  NMC is one of approximately 300 hospitals nationally using the Avatar system, and one of only 18 hospitals being recognized with this honor. This thematic print helps reinforce the theme of "excellence" that is consistent in our marketing approach.

NMC Physician Directed Print MRI Wait Time

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Marketing to Physicians: New Surgeon Support

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NMC Recruitment: Custom Viewmaster

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NMC Blimp

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NMC Tradeshow Banners

We're proud of how flexible this campaign continues to be on behalf of NMC. Here we're using the "We do that here" language to reinforce the lifestyle benefits of working at NMC.

Restored Vision for Lee

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Early Detection for Wendy

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Great Leaps for Alisha

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Northwestern Medical Center Website

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