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For Bridging the Gap Between Sales and Marketing
Title: Director, Cardiovascular Marketing, Brand Marketing
Company: Boehringer Ingelheim
Education: BBA, Marketing, Roanoke College
PErsonal Brand: There are no barriers
Dan Guinipero, director, cardiovascular marketing, brand marketing at Boehringer Ingelheim, is “Captain CV” and has been since 2009. The 17-year veteran at BI has been knocking down silos and creating good relationships between CV marketing and sales, as well as with the brand’s agency of record.
He brings together people from all sides — sales, marketing, agencies — to produce customer-centric, open-minded, innovative marketing programs.
In this mission, Dan likes to challenge traditional marketing principles and develop innovative collateral that sets the brand apart in an otherwise crowded oral anticoagulant market.
In addition to being an inspiring, well-respected colleague, Dan is also a dedicated, collaborative agency partner, bringing big ideas to brainstorm sessions and rolling up his sleeves to get creative. And because of his sales background, he is able to communicate his objectives clearly so that his agency and internal teams can develop creative solutions that work. Colleagues report that Dan spends every minute of every day thinking about the customers and how they can be supported.
The most compelling example of this may be the creation of the provocative unbranded emergency reversal videos that sales reps use as an opening for calls with HCPs. The objective of these videos is to disrupt the doctors’ mindset and shift HCP thinking to “Let’s prepare for everything, including the unpredictable.”
Reps and doctors alike have spoken about the profound impact the video has had in starting a conversation about the importance of reversal. The videos are provocative, and allow the reps to set up an emotive story that reinforces the brand strategy.
One of these videos, called Split Second and produced by McCann Health New York, won a Bronze at the 2017 Cannes Lion awards. Colleagues say the award was truly a testament to Dan’s vision and relentless pursuit of innovative ideas that will move the brand forward, and his tireless commitment to working with his internal teams to make it happen.
Colleagues and team members describe Dan again and again as innovative and inspiring, with an infectious energy that is impressive given the length of his tenure on the brand. He exudes passion, confidence, and supreme command over the morass of data that supports the brand.
Sales representatives love to interact with Dan because of the life he breathes into the product, and because he listens to their ideas, suggestions, and frustrations, and then actually follows up and acts, showing the reps that they are being heard. There are no barriers between sales and marketing where Dan is concerned; all work together as one team and, as a result, sales reps are highly committed because Dan cultivates a culture of unity, ownership, and accountability.
Colleagues who have been in the business for decades say they have never worked with a more attentive and responsive marketing executive. Dan can always be counted on to bring passion for the job and products he represents. (PV)
For Being An Advertising Champion
Title: Executive VP, Managing Director
Company: Area 23, an FCB Health
Education: MS, BA, Communications, Iona College
Family: Family: Mother, strongest person she ever met as a seven-year cancer survivor; daughters, Lauren and Brooke, remind her of what really matters
Hobbies: Die-hard Bronx-born NY Yankees fan and NY Giants season ticket holder; dog’s name is Eli
Personal Brand: Work hard. Play hard.
If you need agency growth, pharmaceutical marketing pro Renee Mellas is your woman. No matter where she works — her own agency or for major network— she propels revenue and client growth in percentages most just dream about. She has spent the past 20 years tackling the industry’s toughest challenges and turning them into opportunities for success. She is both an entrepreneur and an “intrapreneur” who works very hard to elevate the level of work in the industry.
From her first position in 1992 at Vicom/FCB Health Network, to an historic launch at LLNS, to partnering and co-founding not one, but two agencies, Wishbone and Calcium, she has launched and built some of the world’s most recognizable pharmaceutical brands, including Zocor, Celebrex, Diovan, Jardiance, and Shingrix.
Since joining Area 23 in 2011 after the acquisition of Wishbone, she has grown Area 23 from 75 to 425 people and increased revenue from $17 million to $100-plus million.
As Area 23 executive VP and managing director, she is responsible for the overall growth and strategic guidance of all the agency’s brands. She and co-managing director Tim Hawkey have led the agency to win more than 15 new accounts in the last two years alone. Area 23 has the distinct honor of being one of the most awarded healthcare agencies in the world, and has made history by being honored as Agency of the Year, Most Creative Agency, and Most Admired Agency in both 2017 and 2018 by MedAdNews. In addition, Area 23 was the first ever U.S.-based agency to win Healthcare Agency of the Year at the Cannes Lions Health Festival in 2017. In fact, Area 23 swept all major industry awards including MM&M, Clio Health, and The Global Awards Agency of the Year.
As a former athlete and now an avid sports fan, Renee truly appreciates the “thrill of victory,” but this is not without persevering through the “agony of defeat.”
Renee recalls one of the biggest challenges in her storied career occurred in 2016, the day before Thanksgiving, when the agency received word that solanezumab — a Lilly product in development for Alzheimer’s disease — did not meet its clinical endpoint. As a result, the agency lost a $13 million piece of business, but more importantly, Renee says it meant hope was taken away for millions of patients and caretakers, including herself.
“Addressing the agency that day was very challenging both personally and professionally,” she says. “The people at Area 23 are special people. Over the past three years we have worked on more than seven products that failed in late stage trials. We are resilient. We support each other. We pick each other up.”
Renee inspires her teams, colleagues, and clients by sharing her genuine love of what she does.
“I work really hard but I also have a lot of fun and laugh a lot,” she says.
Colleagues say there’s no challenge Renee has not absolutely conquered or shies away from.
Over the years, she’s built a robust career, tackling nearly every therapeutic category in markets domestic and global, professional, and consumer. In fact, she received Agency of the Year in all three categories in 2009, including MedAdNews’ Agency on the Rise, for her beloved Wishbone.
One industry challenge that Renee would like to fix — give her time — is to overhaul the agency pitch process. She feels much of it is a wasteful exercise, as agencies work artificially in a vacuum, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, only to start the real process all over again in collaboration with clients – the way it should be done – the way Area 23 does it.
“A better approach would be to spend more time together, work together on a real project, and really test the chemistry,” she says.
Renee believes that bureaucracy and fear of failure are the greatest killers of innovation. Area 23 has been successful because FCB Health Network CEO and President Dana Maiman has given Renee and Tim permission to fail for the greater good, and this approach is clearly working.
And finally, an unconventional wrap up for an agency leader who has built an agency on the unconventional, Renee wanted to take a moment to thank two leaders she was fortunate enough to work for and to learn from: Tom Domanico and Al Nickel.(PV)
For Revolutionizing Oncology Marketing
Title: VP, Sales
Education: MBA, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University
Family: Wife, Chenoa, two sons, Jack and Thomas; parents, John and Lorraine Lyons
Awards/Honors: Pharmaceutical Executive Magazine Emerging Industry Leader, 2017; PM360 Trailblazer Initiative Award Finalist, 2017; Eli Lilly & Company awards include: President’s Award (Japan), 2015; Marketing Excel Award, (Japan), 2014; Marketing Excel Award (USA), 2013; Marketing Excel Award (USA), 2012; Marketing Excel Award (USA), 2011; Indianapolis Community Leader Award, Citizen’s Energy Group, Indiana, 2011; Marketing Excel Award (USA), 2010; Models The Values Peer-nominated Award, 2010; President’s Council Award (USA), 2008; Models The Values Peer-nominated Award, 2008; Director’s Council Award (USA), 2007; Models The Values Peer-nominated Award, 2006; Director’s Council Award (USA), 2005; Models The Values Peer-nominated Award, 2004; Director’s Council Award (USA), 2002
Personal Brand: Keep Going
Michael Lyons is an innovative leader who is pushing the boundaries of pharmaceutical marketing. With more than 17 years of pharmaceutical experience, Michael has taken on a number of roles, including a chief marketing officer in Asia, an oncology director in Japan, and director in Thailand for Lilly, and later as senior director of U.S. immuno-oncology marketing strategy at AstraZeneca, where he deployed a number of effective strategies and initiatives across the commercial landscape. At press time, Michael took on a new role as VP, sales, at Tesaro.
He has led a number of revolutionary initiatives that have encouraged colleagues to break away from the standard block-and-tackle commercial tactics and to really think differently about what matters to physicians and how best to meet those needs in a memorable way. His efforts have not only inspired his teams, but have had an impact on physicians and the industry at large.
“I’m very proud of operating in a creative white space and building out the U.S. customer strategy in five tumor types for immuno-oncology while at AstraZeneca,” Michael says. “We created new marketing channels, innovated existing channels, and built out a full team that enjoys working together.”
Colleagues say Michael’s passion is not only evident in his work and partnerships, but in every interaction his teams have with him. They say he inspires them to work harder and think differently each and every day. Michael is committed to reaching and connecting with physicians in new ways and he has made it his mission to be innovative in everything he does.
For example, he changed the way in which AstraZeneca approached clinical consultancy with leading physicians. Rather than just leveraging traditional advisory boards and activities, where input can be limited and strong personalities can dominate the conversation, he created a Delphi method of engagement to improve interactions with oncologists.
At ASCO 2017 and ASCO GI 2018, Michael and his team convened the top 50 key opinion leaders in lung cancer to engage in a dynamic, interactive session providing feedback on a number of key clinical topics. Physicians welcomed this approach as a better way to gain insights.
Michael recognized early on that with the emergence of digital platforms in healthcare and the increasing role of social media, physicians and healthcare providers were changing not only how they sought and obtained information, but how they engaged with each other and the industry. As a result, Michael successfully executed a large Pioneers Summit at the beginning of 2018. This event was focused on understanding physician interaction within the digital healthcare space. It was the first of its kind summit for AstraZeneca and a new approach to consultancy in healthcare. At the summit, more than 30 top national physician thought leaders from multi-tumor specialties convened to weigh in on how AstraZeneca could adapt its promotional and educational efforts and how to position the company ahead of the game.
Physicians’ reactions were overwhelmingly positive, with the specialists commenting on the innovative approach and desire for other pharmaceutical companies to follow suit.
Leveraging the customer insights he received, Michael also restructured how AstraZeneca provides educational and promotional content to physicians across the United States.
Employing a highly targeted, regional approach, he has enacted a strategy in which content is tailored to each physician’s geographical region and unique needs. Through a large thought leader video initiative, Michael leveraged renowned physicians in each part of the United States to speak with their local peers regarding the treatment of lung cancer and the unique considerations for their community. This educational content is distributed through digital and social platforms, using zip code geo-targeting and strategic placement to target priority customers.
Michael says he measures success by impact, and he is gratified to know that he has guided a revolution in oncology marketing. “To know that my team and I have moved marketing toward greater success, I consider that impact,” he says. (PV)