Elena Rivera-Cheek, Founder & Chief Creative Officer
Scientific merit alone does not determine the success of a drug, especially as new technology and digital vehicles for communication compete for attention in a crowded marketplace. Investments in advertising and marketing are increasingly vital, as is engaging with agencies that understand the complex pharmaceutical and biotechnology spaces.
“Most large advertising agencies that pharmaceutical marketers rely on aren’t specialized in these industries. Not surprisingly, companies end up receiving a subpar creative approach,” says Elena Rivera-Cheek, chief creative officer and founder of Copy & Art Advertising, a creative advertising agency with deep experience in the pharmaceutical, biotech, and healthcare sectors.
"Elena Rivera-Cheek says Copy & Art takes into account the distinctive requirements of pharma, something that only niche or specialty marketers can offer"
“As a result of this inadequacy,” Elena continues, “many advertising initiatives fail at achieving the necessary coverage and adoption for these products at successive stages of the product life cycle.”
Copy & Art specializes in getting the right message to the right audience in the most compelling way and developing marketing materials that resonate with audiences across the healthcare spectrum. “Our rich expertise in pharmaceutical communications and collective experience in Physician, Patient, and Payer markets make us unique,” says Elena, who holds an MBA in media management. “We are highly creative; we understand pharmaceutical marketing from the perspective of the interplay of those three Ps and help clients position their products in the best way to achieve their strategic and business objectives.”
The agency has extensive experience in the payer marketing space, where value propositions and awareness campaigns help ensure formulary consideration and acceptance. In a similar light, Copy & Art has a rare proficiency in patient-facing materials focused on product access and affordability to help patients understand their cost responsibility (if any) and how their type of pharmacy benefit may best support them. Market-access visual aids, billing and coding guides, and disease-awareness information help healthcare providers and prescribers understand the product and support patient access to the treatments they prescribe. Each audience segment has distinctive needs, Elena says, and each product requires a different approach based on its market position and where it falls in its lifecycle. This three-pronged communications skill set is one of the aspects that differentiates the agency.
Creativity: Where Tech and Brand Align
Having worked in the pharmaceutical marketing ecosystem for more than 20 years, Elena founded Copy & Art to bring not only segment expertise but creativity to the industry. The agency enhances the brand value of pharmaceutical and biotech products by intuitively engaging all the stakeholders of a drug manufacturing life cycle.
Christina Reyes, VP and Creative Director, highlights her team’s ability to tailor marketing campaigns to the diverse needs of their clientele.
Our rich expertise in pharmaceutical communication and collective experience in Physician, Patient, and Payer markets make us unique
“We are expert communicators and visual storytellers at heart. When you have a profound and deep-rooted understanding of the technology, attributes, and brand differentiators of a product, you can help market it effectively,” she says. Her core ideology—to focus on relationships with clients and nourish the creative department—influences the work that targets pharma and other key value areas such as hospitals, cancer centers, and medical centers.
A results-oriented organization, Copy & Art functions as a one-stop hub of creative services for clients. It delivers content for pharmaceutical organizations with a personal touch that combines the best of both worlds, what the team at Copy & Art likes to refer to as “big agency experience and small agency love.” The portfolio of services includes full-spectrum healthcare communications, such as:
• Website design and content development
• Innovative digital media projects
• Social media creative campaigns
• Video marketing including patient testimonials
• Radio and television ads
• Traditional print materials
• Value proposition development
• Branding and marketing strategy development
The agency covers an array of media distribution platforms, supplying curated content to create awareness of drugs among consumers, and also helps clients build marketing strategies that reach all segments of the market and align with their business objectives.
“When you hire Copy & Art, you get the collective benefit of experience and product positioning that justifies the cost associated with marketing,” Elena says. “Unlike the traditional methodology employed by large agencies that doesn’t take into account the distinctive requirements of pharma, Copy & Art’s product positioning is based on a comprehensive study of patients, physicians, and payers—something that only niche and specialized marketers like us can offer.”
Copy & Art is noteworthy for its specialization in the regulatory and compliance requirements of the pharmaceutical marketplace. In industries like pharmaceutical and biotech, every claim made by marketing agencies needs to be supported by a body of evidence; Medical Legal Review (MLR) committees often rewrite or change some of the claims made by marketers, posing an uphill challenge to organizations. With many years of experience, Copy & Art manages this hurdle by thoroughly understanding the regulatory standards of the pharmaceutical landscape and creating content that aligns with marketing objectives while adhering to MLR guidelines.
The Modus Operandi
Copy & Art provides comprehensive market research and designs analytics tools and metrics that monitor success as a campaign rolls out. Everything is geared to ensure a positive ROI and ongoing market penetration. “We are committed to a holistic approach with each client,” says Pam Kerlan, vice president, client experience.
“We don’t buy into the quantitative methodology of servicing clients. We take the time to develop a highly personalized approach, to understand each client’s needs, and deliver the right product or service at the right time.”
Consider this recent example that illustrates how Copy & Art’s communications strategy led to a client’s dramatically enhanced ROI. In this case, the pharmaceutical division of a large company struggled to share its strategic objectives with the rest of the organization. They used old-fashioned PowerPoint presentations with bulleted lists, chunks of statistics, and mind-numbing figures. Not surprisingly, the approach failed to deliver a complete and compelling message. Once they engaged Copy & Art, the agency team dove into the data sets and technical specifications and devised a new strategic plan using intuitive, accurate, and engaging visual aids.
Delighted with the results of the collaboration, the pharmaceutical client re-hired Copy & Art to create multiyear brand report cards. “Although this particular case study differs from the brand enhancement campaigns that we often work on, it sheds light on our ability to understand a business comprehensively to create strategies that maximize the return on investment,” Elena says. She attributes the success of such collaborations to her team and their devotion to transforming a client’s marketing vision into reality.
Kristen Semanchik, the agency’s content and strategy lead for healthcare clients, says there is no secret formula for success in marketing. “Understanding the value-add for clients through our marketing initiatives requires the right combination of people with passion, creativity, and a diverse set of skills. And, I’m not the one saying this—our clients who have reaped the rewards of our expertise can’t wait to tell us how we’ve helped. It is the team’s superior talent that makes the difference.”
Now celebrating eight years of excellence in the pharmaceutical marketing landscape, Copy & Art has achieved a double-digit growth rate since inception. Elena credits its referral-based client sourcing model. “When you win clients on a request-for-proposal model, it means that you have a good sales or new business team,” she says. “On the flip side, when you earn business on referrals, it showcases the proficiency of the team that does a great job with every engagement—not just a pitch. Most pharmaceutical companies appreciate our model, and the testimonials we’ve received reinforce it.”
Elena emphasizes how Copy & Art strives to create “raving fans” out of clients, how the agency isn’t content just to meet client satisfaction initiatives sought by most organizations. “A satisfied client could be happy with a certain engagement and still choose to conclude their partnership with the company for various reasons,” she says. “A raving fan client, however, will never leave you. They know the value you bring to the table.”
The relationships cultivated by Copy & Art are testaments to its expertise in the pharmaceutical industry and its position at the forefront of pharmaceutical and healthcare marketing.