Ogilvy CommonHealth targets smaller pharma and healthcare companies with new Nano agency

Ogilvy CommonHealth is looking out for the little guys and devoting a new agency specifically to serve small- to midsize healthcare companies. Ogilvy CommonHealth Nano will operate as a full-service agency catering to the different needs of smaller clients, such as operating more nimbly and maximizing smaller marketing budgets.

Ogilvy CommonHealth managing partner Darlene Dobry

The CommonHealth clients, including some pharma and biotech, that have already moved over to Nano "see this as an opportunity to have something that's very customized for them, but also allows the ability to tap into the rich resources, tremendous creative talent and expertise within the larger Ogilvy," said Darlene Dobry, Ogilvy CommonHealth managing partner.

Nano aims to help drugmakers capitalize on the advantages of smaller, more focused operations. The companies may not have size on their sides, but they do have the ability for fast footwork. They're also ready for creative, nontraditional approaches to pharma marketing.

"There are fewer layers in small- to midsize clients, so they're interested in making rapid decisions and testing new ideas, and are willing to take more risks. They're looking for an agency partner that's going to be very responsive and brave and come up with innovative solutions," Dobry says.

One of the challenges facing smaller pharma and biotech companies is that they don't have the scale to blanket the market with sales reps. Nano sees tech helping to fill that gap. "Some of these clients don't have sales forces either," Dobry pointed out, "so a lot of the work they need is going to be very different and much more non-traditional and non-personal using technology and digital innovation."

Nano will be led by general manager Peter Rooney who moves from Ogilvy CommonHealth Medical Marketing where he was executive VP and director of client services. He reports to Dobry, who oversees the Ogilvy CommonHealth Medical Marketing and Specialty Marketing groups. In a related move, Andy Willmer has become general manager of Medical Marketing, taking over those day-to-day duties from Dobry.

"As a leading agency in this industry, we have to look at how things are evolving. … This was a natural evolution because it is reflective of industry trends." Dobry said. "My experience with small to midsize clients is that they are willing to take more risks. They're very brave and they know they have to compete against bigger competitors and large pharma in many categories, so they are looking for new and different solutions to help them address their business challenges. … I think (Nano) will be a great think tank, if you will, and spark some of those fresh new approaches to solving business problems."

- read Ogilvy's release