Prepare for Awwwww

by Barak Kassar

I used to think there were two kinds of pre-roll ads (you know, those video ads that play before videos on the web). The really really fucking irritating ones that make me wish the internet was never invented (99.9 percent of them) and the ones I actually want to watch past the the moment when the little buttons changes from “you can skip this ad in 5 seconds” to “skip ad” (0.1 percent).

Turns out there’s a third kind. It’s very very rare. It’s the kind I want to actually share with people. It’s the kind that makes me start looking for the share button.  I look in vain. If it’s there, it’s impossible to find. Likely because it makes no sense for YouTube and other platforms to focus on that since nobody would use it on 99.9999999999999999999999999999 percent of ads.

Anyway, here’s one such ad. From Dignity Health. I couldn’t share it.  So first I got out my screencapture tool to hack together a video of it to send to Kristin. Later I thought to search for it as a video unto itself. Here it is.

Dignity Health is doing a really nice job integrating the concept idea of humankindness into how they express themselves. Check out, for example, hellohumankindness.org.

I also just lost about thirty minutes searching for a photo online of a Dignity Health building that I saw recently (but can’t remember where, grrrr!) that had their nice bright orange letters on the side listing the medical specialities offered and adding a final one called humankindess. Sorry no photo, but you get it.

I think the reason they do such a good job is that they have a very clear idea of how they want to express themselves. Check out the less technical (more emotional, foundational) sections of their brand guidelines. (Note, these are from 2015. They might have changed).

Like this:

And this:

San Francisco based Dignity Health is the fifth largest US hospital system. It was founded in 1986 as Catholic Healthcare West and was part of the Roman Catholic Church. In 2012, it “spun out” and became Dignity.

Not everybody is thrilled with the branding given that many of the hospitals are still run as Catholic hospitals which means certain services (like abortion) are not offered. Some say the branding does not do a good enough job making this clear. See the controversies section on Dignity’s Wikipedia entry.

Oh ….  Dignity has another version of the foal video on their YouTube channel. It makes a good point.

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Prior to co-founding BKW (formerly Rassak), Barak served as CEO of INBOXTV, VP Marketing for CHOW.com (acquired by CNET/CBS); and an early marketing manager at Wink Communications (acquired by Liberty Media).

One thought on “Prepare for Awwwww

  1. My Papa Bernie has principled (I know that’s not a verb but please follow) me to death over the course of 30some years. One of his favorites to repeat.. every job has dignity in it. Don’t say I’m just a this or just a that. Every job has dignity in it. end quote.

    That’s what came to mind checking out this piece of yours.

    Love the work you do.

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