Client: Greater Glasgow Health Board
Project: Alive handbook
Consultancy: Lewis Moberly
Project: Nicotine patches
Consultancy: Newell & Sorrell
Project: Daily supplement systems
Client: Norton Healthcare
The Glasgow Health Board wanted to provide the youth of the city with a
practical and influential health directory as part of its multi-media
campaign, Get Up and Glasgow.
The aim was not simply to provide a reference guide to life, but to
provide information on a wide range of important and sensitive youth and
health-related issues, explaining and interpreting each in a positive
It was recognised that good design was essential to appeal to the
discerning 16-25 age group, and the open brief asked for an imaginative
use of colour and bold graphics. Northcross got a feel for the project
through discussion groups with fifth and sixth formers, asking what
motivated them, the nature and extent of any pressures, and where they
went for information.
The handbook’s design reflects the style and imagery of current youth
literature and the visual language of youth culture, with each section
clearly identified by bold headings, graphics and amusing anecdotes. It
has been well received, due to the nature and relevance of the content
and the frank editorial.
Many consumers want vitamin supplements, they just don’t know which
ones. And perusing the list of ingredients on most bottles is a
thankless task. Faced with increased competition, Boots decided to focus
instead on the needs of different lifestyles.
Last year, it launched an initial six products, aimed at groups such as
vegetarians, menopausal women and those leading active and demanding
lives. The design used simple silhouette illustrations to communicate
the lifestyle of each product line, with the Boots logotype drawing on
Boots values. The success of the initial six lines has been immediate.
The market for nicotine replacement products (NRT) exploded in 1993 when
over-the-counter sales were first allowed.
Nicorette and Nicotinell, the leading brands, built a market worth
pounds 60m, but after the first year, sales slid to pounds 40m due to
consumer disenchantment and misuse. However, Boots was convinced it
could attract new and current users of NRT products, growing the total
market and its share.
It asked for packaging and literature which would grab consumers’
attention, stand out on shelf, and give its brand a completely different
positioning and an innovative identity when compared with its rivals.
Lewis Moberly came up with a rainbow illustration which conveys
optimism, while stressing (unlike other brands) that this is a course of
Within eight months of launch, the Boots brand had become the third-
largest brand. The design paid for itself in terms of profit by the end
of the second week of launch.
When an asthma attack hits and the chest tightens, the hardest task is
to co-ordinate pressing an inhaler and breathing in the medicine. So
when it became obvious in 1988 that the CFC propellants used in inhalers
would have to be replaced, Norton Healthcare set about designing a low-
cost improvement which would overcome this problem.
Its solution, launched last year, operates with both current and new
ozone-friendly propellants. ‘Easi-Breathe’ is used simply by opening the
dust cap, inhaling and closing the cap, a big improvement over the
complexities of the standard actuator, which requires eight to ten steps
This article was first published on Marketing