Mixed feelings? Havas tackles the emotional motivations behind healthcare decisions with new agency

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Havas Health & You launched a new agency under its umbrella, Havas Health Plus, to address the emotional drivers in healthcare. (Havas)

Emotion is a strong decision driver, particularly in healthcare. It's so important, in fact, that Havas Health & You has launched an entire agency to focus on it.

Using advanced algorithms and analysis, the new Havas Health Plus aims to understand and address the emotional triggers—what makes people do or choose something—to build better user experiences and creative communications.

Havas calls Havas Health Plus a first-of-its-kind creative agency; it revolves around the mountains of data that weren't available even just a few years ago.

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Today, that deidentified aggregate data—from sources such as neuroscience market research, search, electronic medical records and insurance claims, as well as lab, observational and client data—can be combined and analyzed using advanced technology, said Donna Murphy, global CEO of Havas Health & You.

Central to the mission of Havas Health Plus is HVH Patient Precision Analytics, formed in 2016 by Havas Health and Vencore, a longtime, defense-grade analytics firm for the Department of Defense. HVH's national security-level algorithms will distill emotional insights and develop predictive analytics for decisions made not only by consumers, but by doctors and other providers, too.

“With all the emotions involved with healthcare decisions, we felt this was a huge opportunity to unearth,” Murphy said, adding, "With HVH, we believe that we’re beginning to drive algorithms and analysis that can help us dig in deeply and define the emotional triggers to drive better creative and user experience.”

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The insight that emotion is key in health considerations was evident in Havas' annual Meaningful Brands study last year. In healthcare, Havas found that more than 50% of doctors and patients searched online for information to address emotional needs, Murphy said.

HH+ was born out of a merger of consumer and professional agencies last spring—including Havas Life New York and Havas Lynx—to create Havas Health & You. The newly created Havas Health Plus already has a staff of at least 150, Murphy said, but will continue to add people to serve existing clients and new business.

It will also work as needed with the other 80 agencies under the Havas Health & You umbrella. Its pharma clients include Sanofi and Bristol-Myers Squibb.