AdvaMed swaps agency partners for 'Innovation'

WASHINGTON: AdvaMed, the trade group for the medical technology industry, has switched its agency partner for the "Life Changing Innovation" campaign.

WASHINGTON: AdvaMed, the trade group for the medical technology industry, has switched its agency partner for the “Life Changing Innovation” campaign.

The organization chose Story Partners following a competitive RFP process.

The campaign focuses on the value that medical technology provides by diagnosing and providing quality treatment options for patients, improving outcomes, lowering healthcare costs and promoting economic growth. The organization has run various iterations of the initiative since 2004.

Incumbent Neimand Collaborative and AdvaMed agreed to part ways because the firm indicated it did not have the capabilities to increase outreach to target the industry's more than 400,000 employees, said AdvaMed VP of policy communications Wanda Moebius.

A major goal of this version of the campaign is to empower this constituency to advocate on behalf of the industry on policy issues.

“Our employees are an untapped resource right now,” Moebius said. “You can definitely see when communicating in DC, having the voice of employees helps.”

After receiving 12 submissions for the account, AdvaMed ultimately chose Story Partners because it felt the firm could offer a full range of services from digital to media relations, public affairs, and grassroots organizing, said Moebius.

She added that the trade group has a long-term agreement with the firm but declined to disclose a budget. A previous iteration of the effort, which was supported by Powell Tate and GYMR, was understood to have a budget of about $1 million.

AdvaMed is trying to recruit more advocates to promote the repeal of the medical device tax in the Affordable Care Act. Each year, device companies will be hit with a 2.3% tax on revenue. The measure is expected to raise $30 billion over a decade to fund provisions in the bill.

AdvaMed contends that the tax will be levied on medical-device sales in the US regardless of whether companies are making a profit, therefore hurting innovation.

As part of a pilot program, Story Partners and AdvaMed went to device-maker AngioDynamics in Upstate New York to educate its employees about the tax and other policies and tell them how they can affect legislative outcomes. Between 200 and 250 employees attended the presentation, the firm said.

The agency collected video testimonials from employees, some of whom have benefitted from medical technology as patients. It will eventually distribute the videos via the campaign's website and social media. The firm is also publishing a newsletter tracking the effort's activities and discussing other locations for similar visits.

“We're off to a great start engaging employees about what's happening in the industry,” said Trudi Boyd, SVP at Story Partners.

Rich Neimand, owner of Neimand Collaborative, confirmed his firm felt this was a good time to part ways with AdvaMed.

“We helped them get to the good place they are at now. We specialize in developing messages and brands and rarely implement campaigns,” Neimand said, via email. “AdvaMed was an exception because they are good people. We consider them family.”

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