Silicon Valley: Where You Can Call Potential Patients “Nerds”

January 18, 2018

Veteran copywriter and regular SHCM contributor Peter Hochstein suggests an interesting proposition: “Run some hospital advertising that flat out calls your potential patients nerds. Nah, come to think of it, that probably wouldn’t work, and might prompt some irate letters to your CEO. Well then, how about offering advice that sounds financial, and encourages people to ‘go public?’ Umm, that kind of talk, especially coming from a hospital, sounds off-topic and might simply leave people mystified.”

But, he notes, “[I]t’s all a bit different if you happen to be in California’s Santa Clara Valley, aka Silicon Valley. Here, the designation ‘nerd’ is nearly an honorific, and feverish dreams of developing a new app or internet social medium, and then going public with a fledgling company, powers the valley’s economic engine.”

Julian Hernandez, client engagement director at Maricich Health

Julian Hernandez, client engagement director at Maricich Health

In Hochstein’s new article, he discusses an advertising campaign created for Santa Clara Valley Medical Center by the ad agency Maricich Health. The campaign “has been able to put a new spin on the old technique of appealing to people by celebrating where they live. The recently launched campaign doesn’t always portray familiar landmarks. Instead, it employs a vocabulary that locals will recognize as specific to their Silicon Valley ethos.

“[P]erhaps most notably, a 30-second cable television spot portrayed a cross section of patients, hospital staff, and ordinary citizens, including a farmworker, more or less dancing in time to a musical soundtrack that ended by promising “whether you’re a tech nerd or farm nerd, our healing nerds are here for you.” This was followed by a call to use the publicly owned health facility: “Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. Go Public.” The spot generated more than 600 gross rating points during its five-month run, says Julian Hernandez, client engagement director at Maricich Health.

Read the full story now: The Vocabulary Is the Message — At Least in a Unique Hospital Ad Campaign for Silicon Valley

Best regards,
Matt Humphrey

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