Who am I anyway?

The horizon is clear. All the many, many marketing pieces, channels, content, metrics, have joined in a horizon-like picture. It is a natural instinct. A hardwired analytical intuition. Seeing marketing plans from this perspective identifies the gaps that so easily occur — between channels, messaging, analytics, User Experience…so many, many elements of communication to be knit into the whole cloth.

This isn’t just “work”. The Digital/Multi-channel work I do is powered by a personal mission. Yes, there’s plenty of tales of client and work successes I can list, but the genesis of what I do, is about a promise made and kept.

I got into this business to impact lives; at my core is the passion to help brands and companies succeed in this tumultuous, media-fractured world. 

It starts with my sister. Some years back, I worked in mass multi-channel marketing — I was doing credit cards, banks, telecom, but never had touched anything in healthcare. 

When my sister was diagnosed with Stage IV metastatic melanoma, I was asked to research online around the disease — it was shocking and eye-opening. The dearth of information, the poor way it was presented, the navel-gazing communication, the lack of customer-centricity, the lack of even the simplest nod to humanity shocked me. I wanted help figuring this all out but found…nothing. My sister knew this, too. Before she passed, she created a melanoma foundation.

Because of her, I switched over to Biopharma knowing I had found my passion, my Mission:

Create more human, customer-centric Brands that truly engage in the art and science of marketing and humanity.

If this “Mission-based” credo that guides my multi-channel/digital work is something that resonates, write me: aoneill@harbingerassociates.net

Harbinger logo 5.28.14The hurricane has hit the Biopharma industry. While many organizations are working hard to define the new model in Biopharma marketing/sales and customer engagement, the struggle is an uphill one against culture, history and a highly regulated environment.

As cyclonic and tumultuous as trends are in the industry, it is also an opportunity for true Digital and Multi-channel Transformation to occur and help re-frame the Biopharma business model in a more efficient and effective ways that can save money create smarter KPI’s and deliver greater ROI.

Recently, a former VP of Sales for a billion dollar drug said to me, “We all know the Pharma model is broken…” But when I probed what that meant and what she thought should be done, this 20-year sales veteran could only shrug. She could identify the problem, not the solution. Her shrug spoke volumes:

To be successful, Digital Transformation must be carefully planned, envisioned, organized, implemented, measured and optimized. Even more importantly, everyone has to own it. In fact, Digital and the Big Data promise are not the hammer that finally solves that nail problem  – the hammer is best used by a crafts person who can bring to bear the depth of experience, shaped by both success and failure, to assure the smartest planning begets the most flexible solution. You don’t start by buying the hammer. You start by building the plan and then choosing the best tool.

I take great pride in “helping”. “Helping” for me is the nuance of intuition based on deep experience, of understanding the roles and responsibilities of different people at different levels in an organization and aligning them as best as possible to a shared Vision. “Helping” has a strong pragmatic aspect: planning and executing in a way that balances the needs of the company and shareholders to those of the customer.  It is not about giving in to the new world of the empowered customer, but engaging in a mutually beneficial way. Digital can do that.

In conclusion, I revel in thinking strategically but with the right balance of innovation and pragmatism – innovate but measure! This is true “Help” in a time of change.