YuzuYello, an IPG Health Company
Account wins 7
Active business clients 22
Learning, access, and adherence solutions 100%
If you’re wondering what a yuzu is, the leaders at YuzuYello are happy to tell you. “A ‘yuzu’ is a cute little citrus fruit,” they say. “And what do cute little citrus fruits do? They grooooowwww!!! And that’s exactly what we did.”
Agency executives say, “It wasn’t 100 percent-certified organic growth, but it was pretty dang close,” adding that almost 85 percent of the revenue increase came from existing relationships, with the other 15 percent coming from new business. That led to a 40 percent increase in revenue from 2020 to 2021.
In 2020, YuzuYello was “little more than a sapling within the FCB Health forest,” agency executives stated, with the roster containing just two brands.
“But we’re servicing the heck out of them,” management stated. “More importantly, we’re improving the treatment experience for folks who are dealing with difficult conditions. Painful, disruptive conditions like endometriosis and heavy uterine bleeding. We’re helping women learn about the treatment they’ve just been prescribed. We’re hearing what they have to say and validating their experiences. Helping them sort out their insurance. Connecting them with nurse ambassadors, insurance specialists, and fellow women who understand what they’re going through. Overcoming adherence challenges and keeping patients on track. All in all, we’re building brighter worlds around people who need them.”
One year later, the agency has 20 brands. “How? In large part because our clients kept asking for more!” agency leaders say. “For example, our two-brand partnership with AbbVie grew to an 11-brand portfolio. By year’s end, we were designing and optimizing support programs for rare disease, specialty, and oncology brands throughout their patient services division.”
Some of the support programs the agency launched with AbbVie include unique support programs in women’s health that learn from as well as adjust and respond to patient feedback and behavior; and new personalized support and adherence tools for patients who need to take treatment every day to prevent debilitating migraines.
“As a newly seeded agency within a massive network, we had to find ways to establish our YuzuYello brand internally,” the leadership team declares. “We fired up the Yuzu juicer and gave everyone a taste! From candid town hall videos to friendly social posts to storytelling lunch-and-learns to good old-fashioned convos – we let our colleagues know what a little yuzu could do.”
Managers thought it might lead to new business, “and, boy, did it ever,” they say. “A torrent of referrals, requests, and consulting projects came our way. So much so that we needed to bring a heck of a lot more yuzulings on board. In 2021, our yuzu tree nearly doubled in size from 26 to 46 full-time staff!”
According to management, the agency was “growing faster than we imagined, but no one wants to slow down. When we saw patients in need, we sought them out. Two new client partnerships came from rare disease populations who needed high-touch support. These were patients facing life-altering conditions, complicated medication regimens, and scary infusions. No one needs thoughtful, well-designed support offerings more than they do.”
According to the leadership team, “Our little Yuzu sapling grew stronger” with “roots stretched out through our network, IPG Health. The trunk filled out with new offerings, chief among them the creation of the Inspiration Panel capability. You might know this as an ambassador program. We yuzulings are inspired by the people for which we design. It’s our mission to make sure they are included every step of the way. It starts with patient recruitment and inspirational testimonials, but it doesn’t stop there. We deploy experienced one-on-one support experts to connect with patients and their care circle. Then, we build experiential co-creation sessions and sensory explorations. All this comes together to set expectations, stimulate imagination, and gather inspiration for our brands through a compliant, respectful, and inclusive journey.”
The agency’s second offering came from its desire to help clients gain more than an intellectual understanding of what patients experience.
“We wanted to create a tactile, even a visceral appreciation,” the agency’s leaders say. “To that end, we created our Inspirational Workshop offering. These multisensory experiences have already changed the way we identify – and experience – the needs of patients. By simulating condition-related challenges through physical, visual, and auditory activities, we can empathize better with our patient populations. This deeper level of insight leads to more thoughtful, more compassionate, and, ultimately, more helpful patient support solutions.”
Structure and Services
“While our roots live in New York, our reach is truly global,” agency executives say, and with employees across the United States and Europe, and network agencies around the world, “we maintain IPG Health’s global vision in everything we do.”
YuzuYello’s offerings “stem from the mission to make patient experiences brighter,” management says. The agency “designs patient services that solve human problems; develops learning strategies grounded in behavior science and cognition; creates program identities that elevate brands; and promotes patient services across stakeholders.”
Departments include learning strategy, creative, experience design, account, integrated production, and editorial.
The agency’s “Learning Strategists” are certified health educators, MPHs and Ph.D.s. “They blend behavior science with the art of experience design,” agency executives say. “They’re experts in health literacy, ensuring everything we create builds a brighter patient world.
Agency leaders describe the creative team as “an eccentric ensemble of screenwriters, journalists, illustrators and artists. They unite around an obsession to make every pixel and paragraph easy and alluring.”
The experience design team “is a group of techies and makers. Product designers, creative engineers, and conversational designers come together to create products and services that solve human problems.”
Integrated producers “are experts in agile project management,” account managers are “trained in client experience design,” and editors “are specialized in patient services and clinical terminology. They keep us accurate and on-point.”
“We recently had a conversation with someone (or something) that we didn’t realize wasn’t human,” agency executives say. “Conversational AI is quickly becoming a force within the marketing ecosystem.”
To bring this technology to the world of patient support, YuzuYello created a strategic partnership with Soul Machines. “Soul Machines stands at the forefront of conversational AI with their remarkably personable Digital People,” management says. “Patients need relevant information in an engaging, responsive manner. This partnership is allowing us to reimagine the ‘always on’ patient-services model.”
In the beginning of 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic was raging on, we noticed alarming vaccination disparities among underserved communities,” agency leaders say. “Black and Latino populations were particularly unprotected.”
Wanting to help, YuzuYello developed a plan to get New Yorkers in these communities vaccinated. “We pitched it to New York City Health + Hospitals – the largest public health care system in the United States with more than 70 locations across the city’s five boroughs – and they loved it!”
Management says through a co-creation model that involved Black and Latinx writers, artists and community leaders, the agency created an authentic, emotionally resonant campaign to save lives.