TikTok takes over

Why a Good Fright Feels So Good

When we get scared, we experience a rush of adrenaline and a release of endorphins and dopamine. The biochemical bleeding zombie rush can result in a pleasure-filled, opioid-like sense of euphoria. According to doctors and psychologists, there are also additional physical, mood, and blood pressure.

A study in Pittsburgh exposed volunteers to an "extreme" haunted house. Most reported a "significantly higher mood" after the experience.

All made possible by some crafty chemistry.

Thanks to the release, for example, of the hormone oxytocin, a good scare with others can be a bonding experience.

Oxytocin is known as the "love hormone" because the body releases it during hugging, childbirth, and sexual activity.

A scary experience can give you the same rush as a 10k run, thanks to endorphins released during exercise.

Fright also releases serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood. So, a boost in serotonin levels can help to lift your spirits.

"From a psychological perspective, [short-term fear] can show the person they are capable of surviving and can regulate their emotions […] and can respond appropriately for self-protection." — Dr. Mayra Mendez

A frightful encounter may also have physical benefits. A 2009 study showed that fear could boost the immune system's leukocyte (white blood cells) count.

Now you know why you should count Halloween as one of your favorite holidays. Get out there and get scared!

Sources: Medical News Today and Psychology Today

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Social media policy

How the Sunk Cost Fallacy Can Sink Your Marketing

Did you ever buy a meal in a restaurant, and it wasn't great, but you ate it anyway because you're paying for it, and it wasn't cheap? Yeah, us too. Or what about that pair of shoes that you bought? They look great but pinch your toes like a couple of angry lobsters, but hey, they were expensive, so darn it, you're wearing them anyway.

This is the sunk cost fallacy. You've spent money (or time or energy) on something, so regardless of whether it's working, you're standing by it.

The same danger exists in marketing campaigns. You go through the process of developing what you think is a kick-ass healthcare marketing campaign. You sink loads of time, effort, and money into it, only to find it falls flat. But you've invested so much up to this point that you loathe the idea of scrapping it and starting over. And so, you invest more time, effort, and energy into it, hoping it will resonate with your market. And it doesn't. So, you invest more time … well, you get the idea.

Sometimes you need to cut bait, return to the drawing board, and start again.


Tips for when you start over.


Do some market research. Find out what resonates with your target audience. The bigwigs in your company may want to tout the bells and whistles of your new medical device, but what problems does it solve for the end user? Stress those benefits in your healthcare marketing.

Be bold. The marketplace is full of companies stuck in the middle of the marketing peloton. Be the breakaway. Differentiate yourself from everyone else. If you've ever been to a medical device trade show (or most trade shows, for that matter), you'll see a sea of blue banners. Be orange when everyone else is blue.

Analyze. Watch how your medical marketing campaign is performing. Set key markers and goals. Adjust as necessary.

If you need an assist with your medical device marketing campaign or your healthcare marketing, we can help. Drop us a line!

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Content ideas for medical devices

Data Storytelling for a Fantastic Press Release

Press releases shoot hither and yon across the universe of the Internet like a massive meteor shower, each one looking a lot like the other. To get noticed by a stressed-out reporter or harried editor, you must make your press release stand out. Or provide something the other press releases aren't delivering. Something like valuable data and statistics. A good reporter knows it's essential to tell a good story, but you must have the data to back it up.

And if your company develops lots of juicy data over the course of doing business, you’re in the catbird seat. For example, if your R&D team is working on developing a treatment for Dry Eye Disease, they’ve probably captured a metric ton of information and statistics about the ailment.

Exciting for the folks in the lab, but possibly Snoozeville for the rest of us.

Package it for Reporters

The key is to wrap that data up into an easily digestible and compelling story. Anyone can recite statistics and data but build a good story with the data as a backbone, and you are golden. Data stories use data, visualizations, and a narrative to help readers understand a topic quickly and easily and can communicate complicated information to a broad audience. For example, tell the story of one patient whose life has changed due to your company's Dry Eye Disease treatment. Use your statistics to show how many more patients could be helped. Describe the process of how you arrived at your novel treatment and how the data helped you get there. Include some data graphics like charts and graphs, and your release becomes even more engaging and provides the reporter with images to break up the text and add visual interest.


Reporters dig data stories because the data provides background information they'd do as a part of researching the story. Also, they're different from many press releases, which read something like: "Company X is excited to announce the launch of their newest and most innovative medical device to date." It's got a bit more meat on its bones for a reporter to sink their teeth into.

Plus, when you're pitching the story, you can describe your data sets so the reporter knows you've got lots of good base material for the story. Have a good story to pitch to the media but not the time or capacity to write the press release? Drop us a line, we can help!

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avoiding content decline

Managing a Social Media Crisis

This we all know to be true: Folks on social media love to get their knickers in a twist. Chances are, someone, at some point in time, is going to take exception to something your company has done or said. And they'll air those complaints on your Facebook page or take you to task on Twitter. If it hasn't happened yet, it will. Trust us. When it does happen, here are some guidelines on handling it with poise.

Have a crisis communication plan. Please, please, please have a social media crisis communication plan. Get this done in the clear light of day, so the junior employee operating the switch knows what to do when the stuff hits the fan, and your Head of Social Media is on vacation in Costa Rica. (If you need help developing this, we can help.) Respond quickly. Ignoring the problem doesn't make it go away. And the sooner you react, the better. That could mean deleting the post. Or issuing an apology. Or correcting the errant information. Or simply acknowledging the problem and letting your followers know you're working on the fix. Whatever response you determine is correct, reach that decision as soon as possible and make it.

Employ social listening to identify potential problems. This can help you spot a developing issue on social media well before it turns into a crisis. Social media has evolved into one of the best bellwethers companies can have to monitor brand sentiment.

Engage. This shows you care about public sentiment. Develop key phrases ahead of time (see crisis communication plan.) Helpful hints: keep it short. Don't argue. Don't insult. (Unless your Wendy's, in which case, roasting people on social media is what you do.) Try to move the communication into DM's, email, or even a phone call. Pause your scheduled posts. If your feed is being consumed by crisis, you don't want posts that were scheduled a month ago showing up in the middle of the conflagration.

Secure your accounts. We've all seen commercial accounts get hacked by ne'er-do-wells. Make sure your cyber security is air-tight and protect those passwords.

Do a post-mortem. After the crisis has abated, go back and look at the experience. What went well? What can you do better next time? Update your crisis communication plans and social media policies accordingly.

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LinkedIn's problem with links

AI Signals Red Alert for Copywriters


Want a decent copywriter without paying healthcare benefits? Copy.ai might be for you. It's simple to do. Enter all your inputs, like copy points and keywords, and let Copy.ai craft the writing.

AI cowriting involves collaborating with artificial intelligence on a writing task. The key word here is collaboration. You'll still need someone with marketing savvy to ensure that you get the right inputs. The axiom "Garbage in. Garbage out" still holds. Use Copy.ai to generate blog posts, meta descriptions, search ads, product descriptions, and ad headlines. Companies use AI copywriting to save time and money. Consider the non-edited paragraph below that we asked Copy.ai to write about itself:

Copy.ai is a web-based artificial intelligence application that helps write blog copy, articles, and web pages. One of many such applications, like Parsely and Helport, mimics the language used in your most popular posts.

Not bad, huh?

You might let AI run on its own. But it can also improve content quality and decrease the time spent writing. AI can also help you shake loose ideas, like a digital muse, when your mind is blank, and the clock is ticking.

Should copywriters be worried about AI writing? Maybe a tad, but it should free them up to focus on intangibles, like brand tone, empathy, authenticity, style, and strategy. So far, AI isn't there yet.

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numerical buttons

Email Still Tops the ROI Charts

Is email worth it? Check out the numbers below. They show statistics that have been growing yearly and that marketers use email for several marketing objectives – organic search, paid search, social media, and customer acquisition and retention. It's a cost-effective way to engage new customers and nurture relationships with existing ones. For every dollar invested in email, the ROI is around $32 or higher. The stats paint a marketing picture you can't ignore.
  • 4.3 billion. The number of email users globally is nearly half the world's population.
  • 332 billion emails are sent per day
  • 37% of brands are increasing their email budgets.
  • Smartphone users prefer to receive brand communications via email.
  • 33% of marketers send weekly emails, and 26% send emails multiple times per month.
  • Over the last 12 months, 77% of marketers have seen an increase in email engagement.
  • 87% of marketers use email for content distribution, second only to social media at 89%
  • Welcome emails, often overlooked, have an 82% open rate that exceeds the average open rate of 21%
  • Emails with personalized subject lines generate a 50% higher open rate.
  • Adding videos to your email can increase open rates by 300%
  • 49% of consumers say they like to receive promotional emails

Email Marketing Benchmarks

See how your email marketing stacks up? Check out this table on Mailchimp that gives open and click-thru rates by dozens of industries.

Find out how email can boost the effectiveness of your marketing budget. Call Susan Abramovitz at 513-967-6480 or use our online contact form.

Sources: Oberto, MailChimp, Content Marketing Institute, Martech Advisor

Send comments to Bill Abramovitz