Dr. Steve, Usain Bolt and a large Russian Dog – The CHR Hansen Story
For Dr. Steve Lerner, head of Marketing for North America at CHR Hansen, explaining the core probiotic messaging to veterinarians and producers was a full-time job.
He had the sales pitch down to a 40-minute ppt (that could be forced into 15 minutes in extreme situations). Dr. Steve had been working with farm animals since childhood. Today he helps share education with vets and animal producers in the US. He has his pitch down pat with 3 laughs a minute and lots of simple science. But for the whole marketing team at CHR, they were losing the content game.
“We needed to find a better way to communicate with farmers and larger audiences on social media platforms”
He needed to turn this:
Together with Michele Egan, Marketing Manager for Animal Health & Nutrition, North America, they split the project into 3 videos:
- Supporting Normal
- Strains Matter
Dr. Steve agreed to provide the voice over for all 3 videos to create a “TED-Talk” style video that made the education more authentic. Dr. Steve knows this stuff cold and you can hear it!
The “Strains Matter” story included fun, simple and memorable visuals to drive home the point. That’s because Steve and Michele understood that our brains retain story information 22x longer than facts alone! A drawing of Steve standing next to Usain Bolt shows how having the same genetic makeup can still vary wildly between individuals of the same species.
We went into the project knowing the main way to measure success was specifically. We decided before ever writing a script that success for these videos would be: increase in internal sales rep understanding of the Bovacillus Probiotic and Strain Matters messaging.
Whiteboard Geeks would run an internal pre and post survey after the 3 whiteboard videos were launched internally in late 2020.
Then there would be a consistent social media and marketing plan featuring the videos, run by the unflappable Michele Egan.
- Sales rep sharing on Linkedin
Their corporate team made a special Youtube playlist on Animal Health to share with sales people and customers:
Michele Egan took the imagery and video links and ran with them. Below is a screenshot of Michele’s “Improving food outcomes email to all sales reps and distributors.”
Once the videos were completed, Dr. Steve told us: “Fantastic engagement! Looking forward to the next project.”
Survey of the Sales Reps: in November 2020:
- “I love these videos! It provides as unique way to tell our stories virtually”
- “Very well explained. I think the length of the videos is just right”
- “I think it’s a great visualization of the supporting normal and strains matter story. I like the ease in which its presenting and discussed, the only drawback is the the length. We don’t always have 5-10 minutes to watch a video or 2 and then discuss but it has its place”
- “I enjoy the videos. Very well done. They seem better suited for producers and owners much more so than Nutritionists or DVM’s”
While a few of the salespeople surveyed remarked on length -some said it was “just right” while others showed concern. Our research shows that our videos are shared 3x more on social and have up to 2x the completion rates of other types of media.
In fact, we did a video with them shortly after, adapting an existing PDF for style and cohesion with their brand.
In less than 5 weeks we saw a 9% increase in understanding from an ALREADY knowledgeable audience. That’s a lift for CHR, who wants their sales reps to feel confident in their message. Marketing Directors like Dr. Steve come to us when they need to make complex scientific concepts simple and fun. We even have a clinical research veterinarian on staff to help break down the harder biological processes to the artist team. We love you Dr. Mario Dance!
All surveyed agreed the whiteboard method was effective- 77% thought it was very effective.
Praise from one of our happy clients Momo at Evonik (grey) texting our CEO, Cameron (blue). The feedback was “this is genius”. from a semi-competitor no less!
In summary, CHR took an already strong presentation and supercharged their messaging with hand drawn media, achieving rousing praise from salespeople and C-suite alike, plus getting thousands of eyeballs from their target audience focused squarely on them.
Dr. Steve got a framed poster version of “Strains Matter” and said “I’m so happy with how this turned out! I would hang this but I want to keep it on a shelf behind me so everyone on Zoom can see it.”
So why was this a success?
The key was starting with smart clients who had honed a powerful message. We added the imagery and the power of mirror-neurons to keep viewers engaged.
[Strong Message + Exciting Visuals] x Storytelling = More Eyeballs.
And we know more eyeballs means more money!
Want to see what a visual storytelling campaign can do for your change project?