In the past, the pharmaceutical industry has come under fire for issues such as the high prices of certain medicines and treatments. So it was high time to formulate the industry’s core message of innovation and communicate it to the general public. The timing was exciting, at a time when our health was in the spotlight more than ever before. All eyes were on the pharmaceutical industry as they raced against the clock to develop vaccines that would get us out of the coronavirus crisis.
First, we wanted to get a better idea of the industry’s perception and understand its strengths and weaknesses. We conducted extensive stakeholder research and organised a quantitative survey targeting the general public. The research phase was followed by an intensive ‘purpose exercise’, with a participatory workshop for the executives of all the pharmaceutical companies. Sciences serving life is the pharmaceutical industry’s raison d’être. Scientific pharmaceutical research is crucial to find solutions to the challenges posed by a healthy life. Research saves lives. This became more apparent than ever during the pandemic that is gripping the entire world. We then converted this purpose into a communication campaign for the general public. This campaign conveyed the core message of the impact of pharmaceutical research and contributed to creating a more positive brand image for the industry. We opted to work with a video clip: we showed the contrast between the stillness of pharmaceutical research and its tremendous resonance in our lives, to the tune of Netsky’s rousing ‘Rio’. The campaign ran on TV, online and in social media for the first time in the spring of 2021.