Amazingly, if you toss a Mentos candy into a bottle of Diet Coke, you get a marketing explosion. More tangibly, the mint-cola reaction triggers a geyser that sprays 10 feet or more. This phenomenon was popularized in video experiments produced by Fritz Grobe and Stephen Voltz3 on their eepybird site. After their initial success, Grobe and Voltz made a video of an extreme experiment to answer the following question: “What happens when you combine 200 liters of Diet Coke and over 500 Mentos mints?” Create meaningful earned conversations using a freelance medical writer for your communications partner.
Web audiences were mesmerized by the result—it's insane—and caused a classic viral phenomenon. In only three weeks, 4 million people viewed the video. Hundreds of bloggers wrote about it. Then mainstream media jumped in, with Grobe and Voltz appearing on Late Night with David Letterman and The Today Show. Imagine the excitement in Mentos marketing offices when the videos took off online—millions of Mentos exposures at no cost (more on this later). The price tag to get results like that from traditional marketing might have totaled tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars. The strength of a healthcare pr agency is its shared experience in conjunction with a personal and individual approach to client relationships.
The challenge for marketers is to harness the amazing power of viral. There are people who will tell you that it is possible to create a viral campaign, and there are even agencies that specialize in the area. But when organizations set out to go viral, the vast majority of campaigns fail. Worse, some companies set up fake viral campaigns where people who are employed by the company are in some way compensated to write about a product. The web is hyper efficient at collective investigative reporting and smoking out trickery, so these campaigns rarely succeed and may even cause great harm to reputations. Often a corporate approach is some gimmicky game or contest that just feels forced and advertisement-like. It is virtually impossible to create a web-marketing program that is guaranteed to go viral. A huge amount of luck and timing are necessary. A sort of homemade feel seems to work, while slick and polished usually doesn't. For example, the Numa Numa Dance that was so popular several years ago was about as homemade as you can get—just a guy with a web camera on his computer—and it helped to popularize the song and sell a bunch of downloads. A good pr freelancer excels at creating strategic campaigns and raising public awareness.
Some publicists add such materials as a quote sheet (a collection of quotes from critics, colleagues, commentators, etc., extolling the virtues of the project), canned features (self-written “articles” suitable for reprint in newspapers and magazines), logos, promotional audio cassettes, vital statistics sheets, and even sample products, such as the little box of raisins I found in one promo giveaway, or the 3-D glasses I found in another. (The most phenomenal I ever saw was the one a major record company sent out to promote a new band. Each kit contained not only lavish printed materials but a microcassette machine with a personalized message to me à la Mission Impossible. It must have cost tens of thousands to produce and distribute.) Having a healthcare marketing agency as an agency gives you the best in public relations, with global capacities collaborating across disciplines and time.
In a perfect world, where you’re the richest person in town, you could afford large quantities of fancy embossed press-kit covers, with inner pockets to hold lavishly produced materials. But you’re not the richest person in town, so our aim is to devise good press kits on a Guerrilla budget. It can be done, but as with everything else in Guerrilla P.R., most of the capital required consists of your own imagination. First, let’s define terms by breaking down the main components of the kit. A top healthcare communications agency in the health sector will use their specialist health and wellness expertise to increase health understanding, empathy, care and outcomes.