Tamiflu Promo, Case study ARE YOU THAT GUY? by Fleishman Hillard

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Industry OTC Medicines (Pain Relievers, Cold & Flu)
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Agency Fleishman Hillard
Account Supervisor Gabrielle Lee
Released January 2012

Credits & Description

Category: Healthcare and Services
Advertiser: GENENTECH
Product/Service: TAMIFLU
Senior Communications Leader: Tara Iannuccillo (Genentech)
Senior Vice President: John Quick (Fleishman-Hillard)
Senior Vice President: Kathryn Mayurnik (Fleishman-Hillard)
Vice President: Michelle Dionne (Fleishman-Hillard)
Account Supervisor: Gabrielle Lee (Fleishman-Hillard)
AAE: Alexandra Harper (Fleishman-Hillard)
AAE: Kelsey Brooks (Fleishman-Hillard)
Media placement: Survey - - November 2011
Media placement: PSA - 230 million airings nationwide - September 2011
Media placement: Social media - 15 Tweets through flu season, with retweets - December 2011
Media placement: Jimmy Kimmel Live! - ABC-TV national airing - January 2012
Media placement: Press release - 50+ million audience impressions - January 2012
Media placement: Audio news release - 7 million audience impressions - January 2012
Media placement: Satellite media tour - 20 interviews with local TV and radio stations - January 2012
Media placement: Assorted media materials - - January 2012

Summary of the Campaign
Did you fly to Cannes? Did the passenger with the flu – 'that guy' – sit near you? Did you bring his flu virus to the judging room? We hope not.

Knowing the rules of flu etiquette is critical. Why? Flu spreads. Fast. And, too many people downplay symptoms and don’t see a doctor.

Genentech markets Tamiflu, which should ideally be taken within 2 days of symptoms. Company research showed that people go out with the flu despite knowing better. We used this insight (and the desire to do right) to create 'Are You That Guy?' a unique educational campaign using flu etiquette as our main strategy. 'That Guy' is the person the Urban Dictionary defines as someone 'everyone loves to hate and never wants to become'.

The campaign centered on a TV public service announcement (PSA) that brought 'That Guy' to life and encouraged people to go to a doctor right away. We retained an etiquette expert to advise people on what to do when encountering 'that guy' on a plane, in the office, or at a soccer match, and how to get out of sticky situations like avoiding shaking hands with a sick person at a business meeting.

Despite a very mild flu season, we exceeded targets and achieved 50+m impressions, and 33,000+ web hits. The PSA has aired 9,000 times and has been viewed by 230m viewers.

The Situation
Genentech markets Tamiflu, an antiviral medicine that can reduce the symptoms of flu and shorten its duration when taken within the first 48 hours of its onset.

Tamiflu is only available by prescription, so consumers must visit their doctor as soon as they feel sick. This presents a major marketing challenge, as when most people have the flu they ignore it and downplay symptoms instead of seeing their doctor. As Tamiflu has a majority of the market share, Genentech chose an unbranded message.

The Goal
The company wanted to encourage consumers to recognise flu symptoms early and to see their doctor for diagnosis and treatment before heading home and into bed. It also needed to get people to think about the consequences of continuing with their daily activities when they think they might be experiencing early flu symptoms.

Specifically, objectives were to:
- Generate awareness for flu as a highly contagious illness that should be treated and early, when symptoms first appear.
- Engage the public in learning about flu and early treatment.

The Strategy
Our core strategy was flu etiquette, which we used to help people think about the consequences of their actions when it comes to the flu including seeing a doctor quickly to get better, quicker. Simply put, we taught people how not to be 'that guy', the person everyone loves to hate and never wants to become.

Research confirmed a proven double standard: that people admit to continuing about their daily activities when they think they might be experiencing early flu symptoms (66%), yet they feel annoyed, anxious or frustrated when their own health is put at risk by others who go out in public despite feeling flu symptoms (59%).

Working with a third party and an etiquette expert, the campaign offered consumers flu manners tips. Suggestions included how to ask a sick passenger to cover his mouth when coughing, or how to avoid shaking your boss’ hand when she seems to be sick with flu, as well as to educate on the need to see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment, early.

The cornerstone was a TV Public Service Announcement that used cartoon characters to remind people how they feel when they encounter 'that guy' on a plane or in the board room, without seeming judgmental or uncaring; and how seeing a doctor quickly can mean a faster recovery.

The campaign launched with a paid integration skit on a popular national late night show, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, which showed the host’s reaction when a friend came to a post-show party with flu. It was amusing. And it worked.

Documented Results
Generate awareness for flu in a mild season, as a highly contagious illness that should be treated - and early - when symptoms first appear. Despite a very mild flu season, we achieved more than 50m impressions through media relations – 5m more than originally anticipated and 15m more than achieved during the 2010/2011 flu season.

Engage the public in learning about flu and early treatment: The PSA has been viewed by 230m+ viewers, airing more than 9,000 times. If those viewings were paid for, the company would have invested more than $3.4m in advertising. It was also viewed extensively on the campaign’s YouTube channel: We also interacted with consumers who visited campaign web properties, with more than 33,000 visiting during the week of launch. And, the Jimmy Kimmel Live! integration drove a 447% spike in social media from the time period prior.