Q & A with Kate Cronin - Healthcare

Kate Cronin, Managing Director
Global Health Care Practice
E-mail | 212-880-5200

Back to Healthcare

1. What is Ogilvy's greatest asset or edge in helping clients?

Ogilvy is a brand builder. We are well poised to reach the consumer, who has seized control of evolving media. We offer expertise in digital influence, health policy, and brand marketing, as well as other disciplines through the other Ogilvy brands. Our edge is truly the 360 Degree Brand Stewardship®. Brands are built by a number of influences, from mass advertising to digital to product placement to PR. And Ogilvy really knows how to weave them all together.

2. What are some of the challenges clients face, and how does Ogilvy address them?

Leading up to the upcoming elections in 2008, there will be a laser focus on healthcare costs for candidates in both the Republican and Democratic parties. This puts our pharmaceutical clients in a defensive position, forced to justify and explain their drug pricing policies, when the reality is that drug costs are a small portion of the overall healthcare costs. In addition, other pressures these companies face include increased regulatory scrutiny, late stage drug failures and weak pipelines, downsizing as more mergers occur and as products fail, and increased litigation and IP issues. Ogilvy is working with our healthcare clients to proactively address the reputational issues they are facing by highlighting the innovations of their products and the work they are doing beyond drug development. This includes the development of comprehensive disease management programs, healthcare practitioner training programs for specific disorders, and innovative patient initiatives that connect patients and caregivers with each other.

Another challenge to PR practitioners is how to harness the ever changing world of media and truly optimize the different mediums. I recently read that the average circulation of the nation's daily newspapers dropped by about 3 percent the last six months -- which is the biggest drop in 15 years. This is clearly where the digital world is making its mark. Certainly, pharmaceutical companies are particularly challenged in terms of capitalizing on this medium due to all of the regulatory restrictions they face when communicating directly to patients, where they are required to include fair balance and report adverse drug reactions should they see anything written online. We are helping our clients navigate these waters through our digital influence team, which can take best practices from clients and identify solutions for reaching consumers within regulatory guidelines.

3. What makes you proud about saying that you work for Ogilvy?

I'm very proud of the Ogilvy brand and what it represents. In particular, I'm most proud because of the people who represent the Ogilvy brand. The employees of Ogilvy are a unique breed. We are hungry to achieve, excited to delight our clients, and always ready to have a laugh.