Embracing Collective Differences to Build One Cohesive Health Care Brand

August 9, 2016

// By Daniel P. Stevens, DMD, PhD, MBA //

Daniel P. StevensHealth care is changing—and so are health care brand campaigns. Building a strong health care brand in an environment that is undergoing drastic change is challenging: the switch from fee for service to value-based care; the emergence of accountable care organizations; the consolidation of hospitals—the list goes on. Sure, these shifts bring forth changes in the way that hospitals function, but how do these changes impact brands? Our hospital system found success in celebrating each entity’s uniqueness, coupled with the system’s collective strength, to create unity and awareness.


unc logoIn 2010, UNC Health Care (UNC HC) consisted of UNC Hospitals and UNC School of Medicine in Chapel Hill, Rex Hospital in Raleigh, Chatham Hospital in Chatham County, and a variety of clinics across the state. At the time, UNC HC was considering how to best fulfill its role as North Carolina’s public health provider, all while health care was changing dramatically. Soon, smaller community hospitals began to contact UNC HC to discuss partnerships, managerial agreements, and outright purchase.

Within five years, UNC HC had expanded to include eight hospitals, quickly adding thousands of employees from across North Carolina to the system. As a result of this rapid growth, old and new employees didn’t have a clear understanding of what it meant to be part of the UNC HC system. And external audiences didn’t know about the value that the statewide system provides through cutting-edge research and clinical expertise.

To address this issue, UNC HC needed one unified brand.

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