McCann Health Global CEO John Cahill was recognized as the 2020 Industry Person of the Year at the Med Ad News 2020 Virtual Manny Awards on June 18th. Under John Cahill’s leadership, McCann Health has emerged as one of the world’s leading professional and consumer health communications networks, continuing last year to take major strides worldwide in its three core pillars of creativity, science, and strategy.

UCB’s Mamta Chhabra was recognized as the 2020 Marketer on the Rise at the Med Ad News 2020 Virtual Manny Awards on June 18th. Whether launching new products or award-winning DTC campaigns, Mamta has a proven record of success in driving brand growth.

Med Ad News talked to Sharon Callahan, the new CEO of CDM, and Robin Shapiro, who moved into the position of CEO of TBWA\WorldHealth, about changes at their agencies and what it’s like taking on new roles at a time when COVID-19 has literally changed everything about the way that everyone works.

Med Ad News chatted with Ed Mitzen, founder of Fingerpaint – which won the 2020 Manny Vision Award – about his new book that factors empathy into ad agency culture: “More Than a Number: The Power of Empathy and Philanthropy in Driving Ad Agency Performance.”

HCB Health President Nancy Beesley shared insights with Med Ad News about how her agency promotes diversity and what the industry needs to improve on. Beesley also talks about the agency’s hometown of Austin, Texas, as a city that encourages diversity, how pharma advertising has provided more opportunities for women than other industries, “leaning in” versus “leaning out,” and learning how to say “no.”

2019 was another year of growth for agencies. And when the world turned upside down in 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the globe, agencies reached deep into technology and took themselves into the virtual realm.

To qualify for Med Ad News’ annual healthcare communications agencies and networks report, agencies must have the capabilities to develop marketing strategies that target healthcare professionals (physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, pharmacists, etc.), and/or consumers, and/or patients, and/or stakeholders such as managed market payors.

For 39 years AbelsonTaylor has been an industry leader in health and wellness advertising. “Of the more than 3,500 drugs approved by the FDA since 1981, AbelsonTaylor has been proud to represent 7 percent of these approvals spanning almost every therapeutic category on behalf of more than 250 different clients,” agency executives say.

AREA 23 has certainly earned a reputation as a challenger brand over the last decade, and in 2019, agency leaders say they challenged many of the accepted tenets and preconceived notions that define agency business. According to Renée Mellas, president, “From our growth strategy to the very role of pharma agencies in the bigger industry picture, we look at 2019 as the year AREA 23 defied the laws of advertising.”

Arteric is a digital marketing agency that serves life science and healthcare brands throughout their life-cycle, from digital recruitment of participants for clinical trials through commercialization and healthcare delivery. According to management, 2019 and 2020 have been breakout years for the agency.