Making connections: Public Health + mobile innovation Jeff Martin, CEO Tribal Brands, explains how behavior economics through mobile devices can be used to engage the public with key health messages Former Apple senior executive, Jeff Martin, founded Tribal Brands in 2001. The company uses marketing and development of groundbreaking technologies to drive consumer interactions with entertainment, sports, and philanthropic industries.
One of the biggest challenges for organizations is developing integrated cross-platform communications with consumers. How is the best way to tackle this? Develop credibility through innovation. Consumers do not believe PR agencies – I’m not saying PR is not important but these messages should not be the direct method of communication by an organization with consumers. And organizations are viewed as just that by consumers - they are too corporate. Relationships between organizations and consumers need to be based on trust; just as a celebrity is trusted by his fan base (and celebrities can be used by organizations). The celebrity is followed by super fans, who are themselves followed by affiliate fans, who are followed by friends and family… and so the message is spread. Incentive and adding value is key. Super fans are incentivized by their need to know everything about the celebrity. Fans get a credible and trusted message, which is then passed on to their own friends and family.
How can the impact of a pubic health messages be measured?
In communication, trust leads to advocacy which results in action. There is a good example from the US which illustrates this. The people showing up in the US at the emergency room are not always those who need care. For ‘ObamaCare’ to succeed it needs to connect with the ‘young invincibles’– those people who believe they are too young to need healthcare as illness/ injury happens to someone else and as a consequence do not take out medical insurance. They also want interactions with organizations to be personal to them and
incentivized in exchange for that ‘good’ behavior. By using trusted NBA stars a campaign was launched to reach these young people. The stars acted as a spring-board on social media speaking about how they had benefited from medical support College Basketball teams joined in (the super fans) – their own fans joined in and the campaign took shape. To the fan, the improved access to healthcare was a bonus, they just wanted to be part of the campaign and gain valued access to their favorite star.