The New York Times is reporting this morning of a new trend in hospital advertising: more YouTube, less gloss. For instance, an ad for Akron Children’s Hospital in Ohio features a 14-year-old boy talking about his plans of life after cancer.
The Times said this TV commercial is “emblematic of a new approach to advertising by hospitals—an industry that, despite the recession, is not slashing ad spending.”
The campaign, by the Marcus Thomas agency in Cleveland and running on about 20 cable channels and network stations in Ohio, is entirely unscripted. Other spots feature more patients and their young siblings, who talk about how their families are coping.
Patients in ads usually are success stories, survivors crediting hospitals with saving their lives. But the Akron campaign features patients in the throes of crises, with no inkling of their outcomes (which, considering that the footage was shot within the last few months, may still be unknown).
Are you more persuaded by the ad about Austin, or a more traditional commercial like this one for Community General Hospital in Syracuse, New York?