Watch the kid in this video try to describe his dream. Now replace that kid with me and his dream with the American Society of Pharmacognosy (ASP) and you've got a clear picture of my first couple weeks with this campaign.
Unsurprisingly, I wasn't the only person to get tongue tied when trying to describe the organization. Even current members of the American Society of Pharmacognosy gave me varying definitions about what the organization does.
Eventually, I just went to Reddit's "Explain Like I'm 5" subreddit and had a 3 day conversation with an anonymous expert. Regardless, this inability to send a singular message was devastating to recruitment for ASP. To get you up to speed, pharmacognosy is the study of the physical/chemical properties of drugs and potential drug substances with natural origins. Basically, studying natural substances to find medicinal applications. However, the inability to communicate this was making the ASP nearly invisible to potential new members.
Opportunity: Our team saw this lack of awareness as an opportunity. Not only would we be getting the chance to rebrand an organization, but we'd also have a chance to "debut" this organization and their work to the world. But how? What story do we tell?
Once I got a better grasp on the field of study, my first strategy was to promote The American Society of Pharmacognosy as a collection of intelligent minds across multiple scientific disciplines working in opposition to Big Pharma's pursuit of synthetic drugs.
A classic David v. Goliath story! Well, this wasn't the Bible and, as such, there were no disciples willing to carry this message. Back to the drawing board.
Key Finding: I went back to my interviews and surveys and looked for something more. That something more was the mentality and motivations of the organization's current members. Discovery. Finding something that no one's ever seen. The members of ASP were modern day explorers. Except, without boats and telescopes but with labs and microscopes. To them, it's all about what's in there, not what's out there. That's the message we needed to get across in order to attract members from all these varying disciplines.
Strategy: Making the invisible, visible.
Creative Concept: Art meets Science
CBM: John Gaglio
CW: Sue Attalah
AD: Chris Chan and Kristie Jackson
CT: Ewa Karweta