2015 Digital PR Awards: Online News Room

Winner: Aetna - Thought Leadership

Working in partnership with Aetna, Weber Shandwick conceptualized and developed The Health Section, a branded editorial destination designed to provide in-depth news, analysis and C-suite perspectives on the changing health care landscape.

The Health Section program launched in May 2014 and has quickly become Aetna’s primary vehicle for delivering industry POV’s; for example, media outlets, from top-tier media to social influencers, have referenced Health Section content 435 times. Top performing content also indicates that the majority of readership comes from health consumers.

To ensure alignment with emerging trends and Aetna’s growth strategy, Aetna created an advisory board of senior leaders who meet monthly to discuss content priorities and identify related industry trends where the company had a POV. In addition, functional communication leads from Aetna’s PR, Social, Public Affairs and Business Communication teams meet every week to ensure editorial alignment across external communication channels.

Contributions from 15 Aetna C-suite executives, including CEO Mark Bertolini; Dr. Mark Friedlander, Chief Medical Officer; and Susan Kosman, Chief Nursing Officer (among others) have added credibility and improved overall media interest. Similarly, the day-to-day content production team is made up of subject matter experts from Aetna’s corporate communications group, who mine the organization for timely news stories and utilize sources from within relevant business units as their primary sources. Four third party experts, including representatives from The American Heart Association, have also contributed content to The Health Section.

The content focus is broken into two separate topic areas: “The Health System” covers the macro health industry topics while “Your Personal Health” provides practical advice for consumers trying to navigate the healthcare system. These focus areas represent two message tracks within the Aetna corporate narrative.

Honorable Mentions:  

•             Genentech & Weber Shandwick & FleishmanHillard - Genentech's ASCO Newsroom Raises Bar, Again

•             National Shooting Sports Foundation