I was delighted to see that this year’s Super Bowl advertisements included health related ads. While the Rams rushed to victory, Americans got to experience a new type of entertainment experience, one that gives us a glimpse of the future.
Let’s start with Headspace Health’s John Legend Super Bowl ad. John Legend, American icon and EGOT winner has been with Headspace as their Chief Music Officer since 2020, providing curated music for mental wellness content. Headspace recently merged with Telehealth provider Ginger to take their consumer offering to the next level of care — providing therapy and psychiatry. Using Headspace’s consumer friendly presence, Headspace Health has built a digital front door for mental healthcare that will leverage the best of entertainment to make mental healthcare as easy and convenient as watching Netflix. In fact, Headspace’s Netflix shows and collaborations with the likes of Sesame Street are taking the stigma out of mental health; increasing awareness and access.
Not to be outshined by their rival, mental wellness app Calm recently announced their acquisition of care platform Ripple, launching their new healthcare solution Calm Health. Much like Headspace, Calm has built a library of entertainment driven experiences to deliver relaxation to the masses; from celebrity sleep stories to a TV show on HBO Max. Having built traction as an entertainment company, Calm is using their advantage to build out their own healthcare solutions. Don’t be surprised when Calm Health is treating you for depression with both their sleep stories and talk therapists.
What’s so unique about Headspace Health and Calm Health is they are making healthcare as easy as pressing play. While legacy health companies boast about being the next Netflix of healthcare , it’s the consumer first, entertainment companies that will really deliver health entertainment.
Now back to sports –
While mental wellness is front and center of everyone’s mind, it was Cue Health’s at home COVID19 testing commercial narrated by actress Gal Gadot that really met audiences where they are. Featuring a mom and her child, the at-home MedTech device makes COVID19 testing as easy as turning on the TV. Breaking the boundaries of home and healthcare, companies who lean on entertainment — be it spokespeople, influencers, or even entertainment products — will be able to create a new healthcare narrative that people will actually want to be a part of. If Wonder Woman can tell me if I have COVID19 or not, then what’s stopping Hollywood from guiding me through the rest of my health journey?
And while navigating healthcare is hard, it’s nice to see traditional health legacy companies break out of their B2B marketing to speak directly to the people they serve. Seeing singer Mary J Blige in Hologic’s first ever commercial finally gave audiences a chance to understand the role of MedTech in an individual’s life. Healthcare is a complex environment. Using a celebrity like Blige and placing MedTech in the context of her life empowers audiences with better understanding and confidence as they navigate healthcare.
Ultimately, these ads are just a preview of what’s to come for health entertainment. As healthcare continues to be disrupted, entertainment will be the differentiating factor for winning health offerings. Using the best of Hollywood to our advantage, the broken American healthcare system might just have a chance of success.