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Graham Mills

Member since September 2010Contact Graham

Articles by Graham All articles by Graham

  • The Ghost Of Searches Past in Marketing: Health on 11/11/2016

    Last winter, I went online and bought a parka just in time for the New York cold snap. Like any right-thinking modern person, I researched it online, read the reviews and eventually bought the parka that met all of my expectations. Once it arrived, I was very happy with my purchase. Until I discovered that my cozy coat was haunted.

  • Going For Gold? in Marketing: Health on 06/10/2016

    More agencies are running into the healthcare space. And who can blame them? There is revenue in "them thar hills" and no one is passing up the opportunity to dig up a little more. However, I am less certain that the creatives inside those agencies are all running towards health with the same excitement. And I get it. Health is tricky, and at first glance, not an obvious creative goldmine.

  • Creating The Future in Marketing: Health on 12/11/2015

    Peter Drucker once said, "The best way to predict the future is to create it." That's great, but may also require us to recreate ourselves in the process. With that in mind, here are three broad principals to embrace to as we imagine the future of our business: Longevity, Connectivity and Creativity.

  • The Art And Science Of Effective Work in Marketing: Health on 05/29/2015

    Chuck Porter, chief strategist at MDC Partners, gave a lovely talk on creativity at the Cannes Lions Advertising Festival last year. In the Q&A that followed, someone in the audience asked him a question he did not understand. The person asked again, a little louder, but Chuck still didn't understand. Someone fetched a microphone and we all heard the question. Chuck still didn't get it. The question was asking how a great creative mind reconciles the difference between highly effective and highly awarded work.

  • Health Builds Brands And Business in Marketing: Health on 12/12/2014

    Brands that are not directly health-related are becoming health relevant. This is because the world now expects more from a brand than just products; people want to see a sense of purpose, of corporate responsibility and global citizenship. And where better to make a real difference than in health? The one thing you can be sure absolutely everybody cares about.

  • Let's Kill Off 'Traditional Media' Once And For All in Marketing: Health on 08/08/2014

    Working for an agency that delivers work across all channels is a linguistic challenge when it comes to talking about media. We all seem to be hung up on describing the unnecessary: the relative age of media. Just today I was on a client call during which we were asked if "we could buy old media as well as new?" The answer is, of course, yes, but it made me think. What is old media? And how old is old? And does it matter? Much more important these days is whether you have the right media. Not for your agency or your network, but for the idea. Because Marshall McLuhan's age-old maxim, "The medium is the message," is becoming ever more true.

  • Can Pharma Brands Do More Than Just 'Like' Social? in Marketing: Health on 12/13/2013

    In her recent article (Medical Marketing & Media, Nov. 3, 2013) Zoe Dunn posed the question "should Pharma abandon social media?" Her premise was that, in a world where brand marketers change every 18 months, can there ever be enough commitment for long-term tactics such as social? And she is right, to a point. The trouble is that today, at least in the Pharma space, social media is still widely considered a tactical "nice to have."

  • It's A Wonderful Brand in Marketing: Health on 07/12/2013

    In the classic Frank Capra movie "It's a Wonderful Life," the hero hits a low point where he ponders whether the world would have been better off if he had never been born. Spool forward 67 years, and it feels as though our industry is having a similar crisis of confidence about brands. Do they still matter? Are they relevant in today's world? Articles and opinions abound telling us that brands have less and less of a role because people want content that is (or at least feels) independent of commercial interest.

  • Mind Your Language in Marketing: Health on 04/12/2013

    Many years ago I showed some draft copy to my creative director. I was very pleased with it and thought that it was great advertising copy. After he agreed that it was great advertising copy, he asked me to take out "all of the marketing." It made the copy a thousand times better and gave me an important lesson that has stayed with me: write like a real person. Be persuasive, but speak in the language of the customer - because if you talk like a door-to-door salesman, you'll be about as welcome.

  • Healthy Is As Healthy Does  in Marketing: Health on 10/12/2012

    It is possible to draw parallels between the green movement and what is happening in health today. Both are human problems that have grown to be global crises through our actions and inactions. Both have their advocates and their nay-sayers. Both ask all of us to take personal responsibility for doing everything we can to fix the problem. And, perhaps most importantly in this context, both have a huge impact on brands and how they are expected to behave. Today, people want the brands that they buy or associate with to demonstrate that they share the same standards and beliefs. And it is much more than a product story.

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