How Your New Year’s Resolutions Trigger Growth in Other Industries

We’re 12 days into 2017 – is your new year’s resolution still kicking? If it seems like less than two weeks is a ridiculously brief time span to lose sight of a new goal – it’s because it is. Research shows that most new year’s resolutions die by January 11th (aka…yesterday). But if you don’t find yourself in this group of fizzlers, congrats! Your willpower is stronger than most and it could be a whole month before businesses start feeding off the profits of your broken dreams.


Year after year, health and wellness-related resolutions like losing weight, being active, eating better, or improving personal wellness are consistently some of the most common resolutions, so it’s no surprise that they dominate the 2017 list. Of all the industries that use the new year to piggyback on thematic marketing campaigns or ads recycling the “new year, new you” concept, the one that surprisingly seems to see the least direct benefit, is the health care industry.

Most health resolutions relate to improving self-image, like losing weight through diet and exercise. When it comes to “getting healthy” 37 percent of individuals made this one of their primary


Brands that want to help with your doomed health resolutions



New year, new you. Right?

Well, only for about 9 percent of you, according to Statistic Brain. And another study conducted by the HealthifyMe app said 82% of users did not stick to their new year fitness resolution in 2016 for more than a week.

Resolutions were meant to be broken, essentially. Especially fitness and health-related ones. Regardless, year after year, they tend to be frequently chosen by consumers across the country. According to Statistic Brain, it leads the resolution pack as the most popular pick in 2017.

Each year, this provides a wealth of opportunity for fitness-focused brands to position themselves as the key to resolution-keeping success, especially given the wealth of media coverage discussing best practices. For instance, Fast Company just released a list of the best apps to help you keep your resolutions in 2017.

Some enterprising brands have leveraged consumers’ desire to be fit when launching new marketing campaigns and products. Below, we take a look at some examples of these in recent history:

1) Virgin Active (UK)

Virgin Active timed the launch of its gym-themed emojis to coincide with the start of 2016 (you know,


Top 5 Most-Read Health Care Buzz Bin Posts of 2016

‘Tis the season for looking back and looking ahead. Today, I’m continuing our tradition of starting the new year by looking back at the most-read health care posts on The Buzz Bin over the last year. We covered a lot of topics on the blog in 2016. Here are the reader favorites!

5. May Means Hope for Stroke Survivors: Kris Patrow eloquently shared her personal connection to stroke to introduce this important post about stroke awareness, prevention and treatment advances. The post also illustrates some incredible new treatments for stroke survivors on the horizon with client SanBio.20151021-s3_best-practices-for-handling-a-data-breach-1024x768

4. Health Care Data Breaches – The New Normal?: The last few years have seen a flood of data breaches in the health care space. Kim Blake dives into this topic, explaining why personal medical information is so valuable to hackers and how health care organizations can protect their data. This is important information looking forward to 2017 as more and more health data is stored electronically.

3. Gen Z: Five Key Insights for Health Care Brands: While everyone is still focused on millennials, Kim Blake looked ahead to Gen Z and shared


So You Hired an Agency… Now What?

The search for an agency is like a lot like dating. You talk to several different candidates, determine whether they meet your criteria and then meet in-person for a chemistry check. If it’s a good match, you move forward with the relationship. But once you’ve found “the one,” it’s important to build a solid foundatioall_about_relationshipsn. It’s those building blocks that you’ll use to reinforce the relationship as time goes on.

I recently started working with a healthcare client that had little experience working with communications agencies. We began our relationship by defining agreed-upon objectives and shared expectations. We told them what they can expect from us, and what they can do to help us be our best for them. This foundation is something we’ve revisited more than once in the last six months to make sure they’re getting the most value possible out of their relationship with us. You can do this with your agency, too. Focus on these three key things:

1. Share everything. Actually.

One of the best things you can do for your agency relationship is to immerse your agency contacts in your business and keep them in the loop…


The Art of Partnerships in Health


Why Sustainable Industry-Nonprofit Partnerships Make Good Business Sense

Industry-nonprofit partnerships can be enormously successful at delivering health messages, prompting both providers and patients to consider a new drug/therapy or learn about a disease and/or an intervention.

Nonprofits play an integral role of helping to spur public behaviors that advance the common good while at the same time providing a valuable, credible source for education and information in public-facing awareness initiatives.

Beyond finances, industry provides invaluable marketing expertise and insights as well as real-world solutions (whether preventative or therapeutic) for the public good.

Industry-nonprofit partnerships, when carefully designed, can earn far-reaching public-private attention. They can resonate in the earned space of all types of media and can thrive on social channels, achieving an unremitting “surround sound” effect. The ideal objective of such partnerships is to not only satisfy the industry’s business goals, but more importantly, have societal health at its core.

By going it alone, industry and nonprofits are much less likely to realize business growth or a meaningful, longer-term impact on Americans’ health. And even if an organization is wise enough to realize the importance of partnership, many go about these collaborations…

Digital Marketing

Health Trend: Teen drinking and drug use declines

takebackshelves_landscapeU.S. teens are better behaved now than they’ve ever been. They are drinking and smoking less and doing fewer drugs in more than 40 years of studies.

A recent Reuters article revealed that the use of alcohol, prescription medications and illicit substances – other than marijuana – among U.S. teens is largely down in 2016, based on a study conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The annual survey is part of a series called Monitoring the Future which has tracked drug, alcohol and tobacco use among teens since 1975.

So, what’s the cause?

  • Some experts think the decrease in smoking may be responsible for the decline in drinking and drugs. For the longest time, smoking has been a gateway to illicit activities. Cutting down on smoking means fewer teens are drinking alcohol and doing drugs.
  • It’s been suggested that social media and video games may have contributed by keeping teens occupied at home and away from any peer pressure to consume alcohol or drugs outside of the home. In this case, the distraction is a welcomed one.
  • One professional relates it to better relationships between teens and their


What’s Trending Now? Personalized Nutrition

joggerA highly anticipated trend for 2017 in the food and nutrition industry is personalized nutrition. As consumer behavior around health shifts from reactive to proactive, personalized nutrition marries the health self-assessment with science, answering the consumer’s demand to take control of their own health.

While this is still a fairly new industry, here are the top 5 things you need to know about personalized nutrition:

  • The Science
  • Personalized nutrition explores the interplay between genes and diet, delving into how dietary habits affect gene expression, and how genetic variations influence how individuals respond to dietary components such as caffeine and sodium. Personalized nutrition companies use different technologies including DNA and blood tests to guide diet recommendations for their customers.

  • The Diet
  • Each personalized nutrition company has their own spin on their personalized diet plans. DNAFit is one of the leaders in this field with their program that includes diet type education, a suggested shopping list, 12-week eating plan and recipes. The company produces a diet type based on factors such as carbohydrate and saturated fat response, how genes are affected by micronutrients (vitamins and minerals), antioxidant needs and lactase persistence. It also takes…


    Pharma and Med-Tech: PR Insights from the Early Christmas Blitz


    The holiday season is upon us. And with it another season’s worth of dismay at how early it starts. One minute you’re sneaking your kids’ Halloween candy, and the next you’re face to face with Santa at the mall after some time warp transported you into the holidays nearly two months ahead of time. It’s enough to turn anyone into a Grinch. But pharmaceutical and med-tech companies could take a cue from retail in this instance, because the time to prepare for a product’s commercialization is not just two months – but at least two years – before FDA approval.

    That’s right. At least two years to “seed the market” for your product’s success. Here are five PR insights about what that entails.

    Shifting your mindset.

    Research is what gets you to “the next big thing,” so understandably that’s where your focus has been. But preparing for commercialization requires you to move from that singular goal/singular audience mindset to more “multi-level thinking.” Who needs to know about us? Where do we need to be seen? What publications do we need to be in? Before the market can trust in your product,


    3 Legislative Watch Items Impacting the Health Industry

    captureBREAKING NEWS: House passes Cures Act, which now includes mental health funding, Senate passage is expected

    Has the ACA Really Been Trumped?

    President-elect Donald Trump has nominated Tom Price, MD, as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. Both a surgeon and a congressman, Price seems as well qualified as anyone for the role. As an avid and tireless critic of Obamacare, Price has introduced alternative legislation in every session of Congress since 2009. The Empowering Patients First Act would effectively repeal the ACA and replace it with the following:

    • Refundable, age-adjusted tax credits that individuals would use to purchase individual and family health insurance policies
    • Ability to opt out of Medicare, Medicaid or Veterans Affairs benefits and receive the tax credit to buy an individual plan
    • Incentives for people to contribute to health savings accounts
    • State grants to subsidize insurance for “high-risk populations”
    • Interstate commerce of insurance plans
    • Association-style health plans for business/professional groups to provide insurance coverage

    Some of Price’s other health-associated efforts have included supporting repeal of the Medicare SGR formula and adoption of MACRA, advocating for streamlined physician reporting requirements associated with value-based purchasing, and reigning in the authority…


    Marijuana: The Next Big Headline Facing the NFL?

    Photo from Nathan Shively

    The National Football League has a marijuana image problem, and, no, it has nothing to do with Laremy Tunsil’s gas mask Twitter blunder.

    For years, the League has taken a stringent stance on not allowing player marijuana use, including for medicinal purposes. The original, collectively bargained policy (between the NFL and the NFL Players Association) was born out of the 1980s “War on Drugs,” which listed marijuana in the same risk group as heroin.

    Fast-forward to 2016, and little has changed in the policy; players are charged varying levels of fines and punishments based on the number of infractions.

    However, recent polls highlight shifting viewpoints on medical marijuana use in the United States. On top of that, over 70 percent of NFL teams now play in states that allow medical marijuana after three states passed laws on ballot measures last week.

    Another point of contention is the growing issue of opioid addiction across the country. This issue is given a face by personal stories from former NFL players like Eugene Monroe, who was recently featured in ESPN The Magazine. Instead of taking opioids to…