by Meghan Dillon, Senior Account Supervisor, Digital

The social media app TikTok has continued to make headlines and our team at Green Room has followed updates closely. Lawmakers and security experts have expressed concern that the Chinese government could lean on TikTok as a pathway to access sensitive data from the 170 million users in the US. This week, the Senate passed a bill that will force parent company ByteDance to sell TikTok, and President Biden signed the bill into law. ByteDance has 270 days (or about nine months) to sell TikTok. If it doesn’t sell, the app will be banned in the US.

So, what happens next? Overall, things are expected to get complicated legally.

TikTok will challenge this bill in court.

Experts expect ByteDance’s case to lean on the First Amendment, by arguing that a forced sale would violate users’ free speech rights. A new owner could change the app’s content policies and ultimately impact what users can share on the platform.

Conversely, the US government will need to show that TikTok dramatically impacts national security concerns.

The buyer pool for TikTok is extremely limited, so a sale may not be realistic.

Analysts estimate that the US portion of TikTok is worth tens of billions of dollars. This price tag would limit potential buyers.

Antitrust laws would likely block tech giants like Meta and Google from an acquisition.

The divestment would be extremely complicated, in part due to parsing out the algorithm and its impact on the US portion of TikTok.

The Chinese government may also try to block the sale. Their export regulations appear to cover TikTok’s content recommendation algorithm, which gives them a say in whether ByteDance could sell or license the most important feature of the app.

Our take? Consumers are increasingly searching for healthcare information on social media platforms like TikTok. Here are three key areas that we must consider as healthcare communicators during this uncertain time for TikTok’s future.

TikTok elevates and unites healthcare communities: As a source of healthcare information, TikTok’s #HealthTok has connected individuals searching for community in the areas of mental health, pediatrics, IBD, dermatology, and aesthetics to name a few.  These TikTok communities are extremely active and engaged, and they use the platform to share information and support one another. If the TikTok ban goes through, these communities will likely re-establish on other social platforms. Our team will continue to monitor how these communities engage on TikTok in the coming months and whether they migrate to other video-focused platforms such as Instagram or other emergent platforms.

Healthcare professionals represent the number one profession on TikTok: Healthcare professionals share important content on TikTok to ensure that people find the health information they need on the platforms where they spend the most time.  #DocTalk has enabled consumers to find quick answers to their healthcare questions. People searching for health information on social media will need to turn to other platforms like Instagram and YouTube if the ban goes through, but neither impacts the cultural zeitgeist like TikTok does presently.

TikTok’s short-form viral video content makes it particularly useful for disseminating health information: TikTok’s unique platform relies on short-form video content powered by an algorithm that fuels viral trends. This makes the platform particularly useful for educating audiences about a variety of healthcare topics and sustaining the relevancy of a brand. Sharing content and messaging in short-form videos is critical to reach end consumers and remain relevant. During this uncertain period, brands should diversify the platforms they are using for content creation but continue to prioritize short-form video content that can translate to other platforms (such as IG Reels and YT Shorts).

The TikTok ban will evolve over the upcoming months, and our team will continue to monitor the situation closely.

Will 2024 Be the Year We Lasso the Moon?

In healthcare, we often refer to a “moonshot” in aspirational terms – making a monumental effort to reach a lofty goal – like when it comes to cancer research – but in 2024 private companies like Space X and Axiom Space are expected to drive significant growth in the commercialization of moon exploration potentially making the “moonshot” of accessible space travel a tangible reality. This incredible leap into the future is just one of the seismic events that are likely to shape our perceptions of the world this year. At Green Room, we pride ourselves on remaining on the leading edge of emerging trends in culture and science to drive timely and relatable messaging no matter what kinds of surprises may come our way.

Our outlook for 2024 includes several significant events that will impact our country, our industry and how and when we communicate.

It’s a presidential election year in the U.S.

With presidential primaries already well underway, we can expect to see coverage of the 2024 presidential race dominate headlines throughout the year. While we can’t predict the outcome, there are sure to be some surprises. With passions running high across the electorate, this could be a year like no other. Heated political discourse often finds its way into mainstream conversations, so we’ll be watching to see how developments in the election process and external factors such as legal filings, congressional actions and citizen activism could influence how or when we communicate.

Some of the key dates we have on our radar:

Supreme Court decision could significantly impact the role of federal regulatory agencies.

Have you heard of the Chevron Doctrine (AKA the Chevron Deference)? This pivotal case, decided in 1984, which is related to the power and scope of federal regulatory oversight, is currently being challenged in front of the Supreme Court. With a decision expected imminently, a ruling that overturns or limits the scope of the 1984 guidance could significantly impact the process and power of federal regulatory agencies including the FDA.

Pending the outcome, we could see significant disruption in the FDA approval process. If the guidelines for regulatory oversight shift, federal agencies, including the FDA, will need to scramble to interpret the ruling. As the agency determines how best to adapt their current standards, we could see a delay in FDA decisions and approvals while federal regulators hash out the best path forward.

The Olympics are coming!

The 2024 Olympic Summer Games are scheduled to take place in Paris this summer, from July 26-August 11. After the pandemic disrupted the scheduling and scope of the 2020 Olympics, we will likely see a surge in interest this year as athletes and spectators converge on the City of Lights. If audience viewing trends continue to follow the path set during the previous games, social media is going to play a pivotal role, with many tuning in to coverage on social platforms such as YouTube or Tik Tok and bypassing traditional television viewing altogether.

It’s tempting to want to leverage a global spectacle of this magnitude to drive communications but be aware that the Olympic committee maintains tight control of who can use their branding and how. Even sponsorships are tiered, so understanding how – or even if – you can mention the event will be critical before developing any communications tied to the games.

Climate has entered the chat.

With several major climate conferences set to take place around the world in 2024, the topic of global warming and sustainability is sure to remain top of mind this year. As the world continues to grapple with the fallout from natural disasters and evidence of our changing climate continues to pile up, climate activism is also on the rise.

This year we’re likely to see more activity on all fronts: climate-related events could wreak havoc on supply chains, scheduling and travel; while climate activism will likely continue to disrupt planned events and the ability to pivot when plans go awry will be critical.

The elephant in the room

2023 saw an alarming rise in global political and social conflict and unfortunately, 2024 is likely to bring more of the same. With active fronts in both the Middle East and Ukraine and a heated national debate over the best ways to aid our allies, there will be no shortage of fodder for debate here in the U.S. and around the world.

Social media will continue to be the global water cooler for discussion, with conflicting, passionate opinions driving all sides of the conversation. It will be more important than ever to tread carefully when mentioning even the most tangentially related topics and to monitor social engagement diligently with a plan of action tailored for individual scenarios.

What else is on our radar?

Big ideas, shifting trends and unexpected events are all certain to be on the menu for 2024. As we continue to navigate whatever comes our way, some of the other topics we’ll be watching closely are workplace culture and the continued push/pull around hybrid structures, shifting consumer demographics and the remarkable growth of AI. Buckle up for an exciting year ahead!

As the new year begins, we are reflecting on our Green Room team who work hard every day to provide excellent client support. Throughout 2023 our team has also experienced many personal wins. To celebrate the team’s excellence, we are sharing some of our team’s professional and personal bests of 2023!

Julie Dannevig, Assistant Account Executive

In 2023, I graduated college in the spring! Between transferring schools and navigating college during the COVID-19 pandemic, I didn’t have a traditional experience but I’m so grateful for where I ended up. Post graduation, I joined Green Room as a fellow (my first job post-grad) and I’ve learned and grown so much in my position over the past 5 months!

Julie DeVoti, Account Executive

This year at Green Room, I learned how to organize media interviews, from outreach to scheduling, to follow-ups with media contacts. In my spare time, I was able to read more books and discover new authors I enjoy in historical fiction and mystery genres.

Esha Estrada, Senior Vice President, Client Navigation

After supporting a client for 4 years, I had the opportunity to take the partnership to the next level by starting a 6-month in-house solutions role.

I also had a personal best of seeing my 4-year-old overcome significant speech delays to become much more verbal, social and really thrive in school.

Hannah Hoffman, Account Executive

I had the opportunity to work on three different FDA approvals this year, which was exciting. I was also promoted to Account Executive! In August, I adopted a kitten from the shelter.

Amber Kelly, Senior Account Supervisor

My professional best of 2023 was receiving my promotion to Senior Account Supervisor this year, as well as contributing to the growth of and providing mentorship to other team members across Green Room. On a personal note, I (unexpectedly!) got engaged in Italy back in March.

Allison Pishko, Senior Vice President, Head Internal Communications and Culture

After 10 years working with a client, I began working on part of the business I had never touched before and helped the team become more strategic and purposeful in their communications. My family celebrated two milestones this year as my daughter, Sarah, graduated from the College of Charleston in May and my daughter, Anna, got married in October!

Julianna Vannucci, Vice President, Client Navigation

In 2023, I got to be a part of developing logos and branding for a Phase 1 clinical trial and provided overarching communications support for emerging biotechs. I also, purchased a Kindle which led to the rediscovery of my love of reading!

At Green Room we promote a work-life balance to allow our team to flourish both professionally and personally. We are thankful for our team and look forward to seeing what we accomplish in 2024!

Carrie Goldstein, SVP and Head, Product and Corporate Communications


Emerging biotech companies face a unique challenge. How do you demonstrate leadership and commitment before you have an approved therapy on the market? In a four-year period leading up through 2021, 42% of the innovative medicines approved in the U.S. have been first launches for their respective companies.[1] That is a dramatic increase from previous timeframes. This means to emerge as a leader in an industry crowded with newcomers, the journey to define your company and position begins long before your product ever sees the light of day.

At this early stage, biotechs are often focused on pipeline science and fundraising, which are, of course, critical success factors; but there is an equally important need to define who you are to your stakeholders. There are several ways burgeoning companies can set themselves up for success by focusing on the value of a thoughtful and strategic narrative approach to serve as the underlying current for future product launch communications.

Define Your Corporate Narrative

Be prepared to answer questions like: What differentiates your company in the marketplace, to healthcare providers and to patients? What impact do you want to have on the world? How is your business story reflected in what you are trying to achieve with your investigational product?

Define the vision for your company’s destination. This North Star may include how it will change the way a disease is diagnosed or treated, how it will shape the patient journey, and what outcomes it strives to give patients. But it should not be tied to one product and must consider the future of the company holistically.

The value proposition you define may need to have nuance depending on the key audience you are communicating with; and it should be reflected in all materials you proactively distribute, including executive visibility in the media, industry events and social media and your corporate assets including the website, social profiles and industry presentations.

Tell A Brand Agnostic Story

Differentiating your broader corporate story from a product narrative is essential to building a strong foundation with all your stakeholders, not just your investors and future prescribers. As your asset reaches clinical and regulatory milestones, the corporate narrative will guide how you tell the bigger story of your company; aligning with product messaging and delineating the future of your pipeline.

Your corporate vision and your esteemed leadership team will provide the foundation and the fodder for the brand agnostic corporate story. To support this, executives can share their passion and depth of experience, leadership transitions and corporate growth milestones. While a strong product narrative can differentiate your therapy and build customer interest; a well-crafted corporate story will serve to attract and retain investors, customers, and employees long-term in the highly competitive biotech industry.

And especially at the intersection of your company and your product, always communicate with transparency and authenticity. Be upfront about your challenges and setbacks as well as your successes; which will help build trust and instill confidence in your company and your brand.

Build Your Community

A McKinsey analysis found that successful biotech companies define and initiate patient advocacy strategies four to six months sooner that their less successful counterparts. Companies that are viewed as leaders, deeply committed to their mission, are often those that have developed enduring connections with patient and professional communities, regardless of the status of their leading therapeutic asset. To do that, it’s imperative to understand the needs of your stakeholder communities and identify what support they need to address the obstacles they encounter and the needs of their patients.

Advocacy is a part of our DNA at Green Room. Not only is our Managing Director, Deb Fowler, the founder of Soft Bones, a U.S.-based advocacy group focused on the rare disorder, hypophosphatasia, but we have the first-hand experience of how and when to engage patients to infuse critical insights throughout the development process. It is an area where we constantly counsel clients and shape mutually beneficial partnerships with advocacy groups and patients/caregivers.

We see time and time again the positive impact organizations who choose to engage early and often, have on their bottom line results come launch season. Our proprietary approach to mapping and engagement infuses advocacy engagement at every step of the life cycle, ensuring strong buy-in from these essential stakeholders. These relationships should start as a two-way dialogue, and demonstrate the commitment your company has to the patient population, beyond providing a potential treatment option. This bridge-building exercise can result in a broader understanding of the niche issues they face and the broader challenge your company is working to solve.

Align Your Corporate and Brand Narratives

Emerging biotechs often have a singular focus – to get their clinical asset over the finish line. What we are proposing here is that a 360 degree view of the long-game is necessary for success in building your reputation and garnering the attention of your audiences.



Matchmaker, Matchmaker, Make Me a Match

National Matchmaker Day is typically all about dating and falling in love – but at Green Room, matchmaking is part of our day-to-day operations. We sat down with our resident matchmaker, Heidi Floyd, EVP, Strategic Operations & Integration, to better understand the benefits of building powerful teams and how it works in practice.

As Heidi describes it, “At Green Room, we look beyond the scopes of work that we are expected to deliver and develop long-lasting, impactful partnerships. Having the right person, in the right seat, with the right client, makes all the difference. No one does it like we do and this matchmaking process is a crucial factor for forming relationships between colleagues, clients and agencies.”

Q: Why is a “matchmaking” approach so important to staffing accounts at Green Room?

A: Every client has a “what I want in an agency” wish list. Matchmaking allows us to figure out what clients really want or need from their agency team and identify the right set of skills to deliver on those needs. Making the match is critical! Our agency’s success hinges on our perception as a partner, not a vendor, to our clients. This allows us to gain a deep understanding of their world, their needs and how their organizations work, so we can deliver the most value (and efficiency) as possible. This only happens when matches are strong.

On the flip side, there are also benefits to making the right match for our Green Room team members. People who are happy are more productive. We keep an open conversation with our team about the areas they want to work in, and if they don’t have the skills, we see this as an opportunity to grow. Addressing those gaps becomes an integral part of development plans.

Ultimately, a great match is a win-win for everyone involved.

Q: How do you implement a successful match for Green Room’s clients?

A: When looking to find the right team for our clients, whether it’s an agency team or a consultant, we always follow the same process:

-Ask the right questions: Aligning with the client on the specific skillset needed for the role is critical, but don’t stop there! Understanding their personality traits and work styles is also important. Slow down and try to identify the subtext—sometimes what clients don’t say is as significant as what they do say. For example, a client may say that they need someone with data communications experience and related skills, but what they may also need is someone who can work directly with a senior executive to communicate about the data. These nuances can make or break a successful client/agency relationship.

-More than skillsets: In an interview, we ask questions like “What’s your Enneagram number?” or “What’s your Myers-Briggs type?” It’s all part of the “secret sauce!” and we really try to understand each person’s personality, interests and where they perceive their strengths, and where they want or need to grow. This tells us not only about the different types of roles where they will be successful – but also thrive! There’s a place for generalists or jack-of-all-trades, but identifying a team member’s unique passions and strengths, and aligning them to the right client, makes a meaningful difference.

-Pressure test and assess: Like any new relationship, there may be a few bumps before finding hitting a stride, but we keep a close eye on how things are progressing (from both sides) to determine if it’s a fit.

Q: How do you know when a match is working or needs to be re-evaluated?

A: Similar to the feeling you get on a good first date, it’s easy to tell when there’s a match. There are early signs that it’s going well: open communication, trust and an ease of collaboration. There’s a spark in the air and, if you pay close attention to the energy around a project, the good matches are easy to spot. Equally as important is recognizing signs that a match may not be going as smoothly as anticipated. A sudden shift in tone, behavior (e.g., a client is no longer as responsive as usual) or heightened critical feedback is a telltale sign. Sometimes what works on paper does not always match in practice. Staying connected to the client, paying attention to cues and addressing challenges quickly is critical to earning and maintaining client trust and creating a successful environment for everyone involved.

Whether building or growing new relationships, we all maintain a “Heidi” mindset at Green Room. This Matchmaker Day, and throughout the year, we hope these tips help to shape your business relationships for greater trust, connection and success!

In the last few years, companies committed to driving positive social impact have embraced ESG and DEI – the framework used to evaluate a company’s diversity, equity, inclusivity, performance and sustainability. Having previously taken a backseat to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), ESG and DEI have recently evolved to become a moral imperative and vital tool to conduct business. Investors are making moves based on company ESG and DEI commitments and disclosures. In fact, the Securities and Exchange Commission has yet to finalize new rules for company disclosures regarding ESG and DEI policies, but initial thoughts are these topics will continue to be a high priority.

Now, on the heels of the Supreme Court decision to strike down affirmative action, it’s more critical than ever that companies evaluate their existing ESG and DEI commitments – or develop an ESG and DEI strategy if they have yet to build one – to assess the implications of the ruling on their workplace culture, policies/benefits and charitable giving initiatives.

As a communications agency that has partnered with a variety of healthcare clients to build internal and external awareness for DEI and ESG programs, we believe that a well-thought-out communications plan can support companies in not only remaining consistent, impactful and transparent in their ESG and DEI communications, but can help align positioning around key societal issues that impact their commitments.

We offer three critical steps for communicating your value system that you should be doing right now.

Evaluate Your ESG and DEI Strategies

First, assess the possible implications of the Supreme Court ruling on any diversity and representation initiatives you support so you can proactively prepare for future impacts to your key stakeholders and business values. The potential impacts on the corporate world are still unclear, but the decision could embolden attacks on corporate diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives. It could result in a less diverse candidate pool in coming years or in companies feeling obligated to remove ‘diversity’ from titles, for example. It’s also important that all programs and activities align to a clearly defined ESG and DEI strategy that has buy-in from both leadership and employees, to ultimately serve as your north star as you navigate external factors and influences. Finally, assess what has been communicated already around your ESG and DEI commitments and where, to guarantee continued transparency and accountability, and pivot or reinforce messaging as needed.

Tell Your Story – Consistently.

If you can’t articulate your story, no one else can. Creating a core narrative that holistically captures your ESG and DEI commitments while reinforcing its connection to your values and business strategy will ensure your efforts are well-articulated by leadership and understood by internal and external stakeholders. A compelling narrative will assist in the short-term, allowing you to present business changes in a coherent way and in the long-term by catalyzing engagement across your employee and customer base. A core narrative also enables you to remain nimble and agile in taking a stance on societal issues by providing a framework for all proactive and reactive statements – and it doesn’t stop there. How you measure against this strategy is equally important. Ensure that you’re developing a measurement plan with key metrics to track return on engagement. How you cascade the narrative is also essential to its adoption within the organization. Don’t forget – your people managers are a critical communications channel and essential to bringing employees along your ESG and DEI journey.  It’s important that everything you include in your narrative has proof points of tangible actions taken by your organization — in short, proof that you’re really walking the walk.

Deploy Your Plan

Once your defined strategy has been communicated to key audiences, it’s time to scenario plan. Scenario planning as soon as an issue arises that has implications to your business will ensure your ability to engage quickly, decisively and in alignment with your strategy and values.

While these steps will aid your organization immeasurably in the short term, it’s the long run that will matter even more. In an ever-polarizing world, these divisive topics will continue to make their way to the forefront, and corporations will be increasingly pressed to put their stake in the ground. Where you put that stake is an individual choice for each organization to make, but the expectation will be to make that decision and communicate it widely internally and externally. As the longtime leader of Walt Disney Co., Roy E. Disney, once famously said, “When your values are clear to you, making decisions become easier.”

Natalia Forsyth, SVP, Head, Digital


Social media has altered just about everything about how we connect with others. While the established Dunbar’s social hypothesis suggests that the human brain can only form stable attachments with 150 individuals at one time, social media demands so much more of us, connecting us to hundreds, if not thousands, of others across a myriad of platforms. But a new era of ‘Psychologically Responsible Social Media,’ may be changing the tide and this could be good news for health communicators everywhere. Users will creep slowly back to 150 meaningful connections by seeking out private social media spaces where they can be themselves. So what is this new trend, and how did we get here?

The Genesis

During the pandemic, social media usage hit an all-time high. We had more time on our hands and less in-person interaction with others. Naturally, people sought out entertainment and connection online, but there were a handful of devastating consequences.

Heavy social media users reported strong feelings of loneliness. Others struggled with comparing themselves to others on social media, with many reporting feeling lower self-esteem as a result. This added turmoil forced users into different corners of the internet, with different features that didn’t impact them so negatively.

The Tipping Point

Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter seems to have brought on a storm of innovation across the social media landscape. With a social media giant like Twitter going through a crisis of faith, other platforms have had the opportunity to take their place as leaders, while giving newcomers the opportunity to sprout.

Established platforms such as LinkedIn have benefited from this shakeup, however it’s the smaller more nuanced platforms that have most caught my attention. These niche platforms will be the future of social engagement and are perfectly primed for healthcare.

The New Era

In the ‘Psychologically Responsible Era of Social Media,’ platforms are leaning toward genuine social interaction. They aren’t looking for reach or likes, but instead seeking out smaller spaces where they can have intimate connections with their community. Users are in pursuit of privacy and safety, and new platforms are serving it up.

Platforms like Community, Discord and Substack have begun to flourish during this time because they offer just that, an intimate discussion for a small group of trusted individuals. A platform like Community allows individuals to curate their social engagement through SMS, reaching their most loyal followers in a more personal way. Substack allows individuals to share their content through curated newsletters, allowing for authentic engagement without any of the stressors of more mass market social platforms.

What This Means

These new platforms allow us to move further down the funnel than ever before. Whereas legacy platforms like Facebook and Twitter allow us to spread broad-based awareness across social media, these more intimate spaces lend themselves more to engagement and conversion. This means we’ll be able to reach a more selective audience with more impactful messaging. What we will lose in scale we’ll make up for in targeting. In the end, social programs will garner a higher ROI.

This is especially good news for healthcare where we often have to engage niche patient communities or specific healthcare provider populations, and reach them with deeply personal health messaging. These safer spaces may allow for health conversations to flourish like never before.

Only time will tell how this shakeup will impact our strategies in 2023 and beyond, but one thing is for sure, change is upon us, and it appears to be positive for social media marketers everywhere, especially in healthcare.

Allison Pishko, SVP, Head, Internal Communications


Return to office has been a subject whispered – and yelled – about in board rooms since 2022 and there are still no clear answers in sight. While remote work started as a means of keeping employees and their loved ones safe throughout the pandemic, it’s made way for a broader debate surrounding the long-term value of work-from-home vs. in-office work.

There are cases to be made on both sides of the issue. Employees are reluctant to give up the flexibility of working from home. They relish the work-life balance and the lack of an arduous commute. Many stress they have been more productive working from home, and happier too.

And employers place value on in-person collaboration and efficiencies in decision making when working in person as well as opportunities to grow their staff professionally by having face-to-face interactions with leaders.

Many companies are mandating a hybrid model of work where employees will spend 2-4 days in the office per week – but even this compromise is proving challenging for employees to accept.

In the end, whatever your return to office policy is, how you implement it matters. For those of you in the position of steering a return-to-work policy, here are a few points to keep in mind to ensure the messaging is received with clarity and empathy.

Clearly Communicate Your Company Values

Focusing just on the policy will feel punitive to employees. Instead connect to the broader story of the company’s goals and vision, with the return to office policy as an integrated part of the narrative.

Acknowledge the Pros and Cons to Both Sides of the Argument

Don’t be blind to the fact that there are people on both sides of the argument with legitimate points. Use the debate to address questions and concerns and help explain the policy. Providing an open forum for both perspectives is key to cultivating open dialogue.

Ensure Leadership Buy-in and Pull Through

If leaders are not in agreement with the policy and willing to embrace it themselves, it will never work. Full stop. They need to be seen in person and as champions of in-office benefits. Employees follow leaders.

Remain Consistent and be Willing to Adapt

The message needs to be delivered more than once and on more than one platform. If there is an aspect of your policy that needs to be adjusted, don’t be afraid to make that change. The landscape is constantly shifting so be prepared to make changes to existing policies if needed.

Bring Employees Along on the Journey

Shift the focus when surveying employees from “how is your work/life balance?” to “how does it feel when you meet with your colleagues in person?”.  Help them see the advantages of being in the office while still maintaining a level of flexibility whenever possible.

Create Meaningful Connections

Treat teams to coffee vouchers to use when having a 1:1 in person with a team member, host monthly onsite team lunches, etc. It doesn’t have to be big, but a gesture to show appreciation for the return to office will go a long way.

The one thing everyone can agree with is that COVID-19 has changed the workplace forever. By being transparent, compassionate, and consistent, we can help create a workplace that will serve everyone’s needs.

Green Room Communications last week unveiled its enhanced practice areas and new website, which capture the agency’s heritage, reflect our core values and connect to the work Green Room does for healthcare clients every day.

“When we founded Green Room Communications more than 15 years ago, we aimed to be an agency that gives clients access to the specific expertise and skills needed in the healthcare communications space, in an innovative way,” said Deb Fowler, founding co-partner of Green Room Communications. “We have never been afraid to do things differently, as evidenced by our model that brings together both employees and consultants to deliver customized support to our clients.”

Since launching in 2008, Green Room has grown to more than 40 employees and expanded to a network of more than 300 senior-level communications consultants across the United States and around the globe. As part of the agency’s continued evolution, two new leaders have been added to oversee specialized communications strategy and execution for our clients: Natalia Forsyth, SVP & Head, Digital Strategy and Andrea Tillman, SVP & Head, Consumer & Stakeholder Engagement. Allison Pishko, who has been with the agency since 2014, has been elevated to SVP & Head, Employee Engagement & Culture.

“Sometimes our clients need grit—problem solvers who just know how to step in and get things done. Other times our clients need higher level strategy, creative ideation and counsel to manage pivotal milestones or challenging issues,” said Karen Carolonza, founding co-partner of Green Room Communications. “With the additions of Natalia and Andrea, and the elevation of Allison, we are continuing to build out our robust expertise, while also keeping true to the flexible and scalable model that Green Room Communications has become known for in our industry.”

Learn more about Green Room Communications’ areas of expertise and new look at

When Celebrities and Pharma Converge

Andrea Tillman, SVP, Head, Consumer Health & Brand Integration


Celebrities are no strangers to pharma and biotech partnerships. Since the 80’s we have seen celebrities raise awareness around different diseases or treatment options, tell their story, or that of a loved one. They are the perfect vehicle to get out a broad-based message to a sweeping group of admirers, all with a personal, humanistic, touch. There’s no denying that this type of partnership can be valuable when trying to reach an audience, but there is often a significant investment. Determining where these types of partnerships are most impactful, and who to engage, is critical.

The Credibility Necessity

Above all, your celebrity must be seen as credible to your specific audience. This means your celebrity must have a personal connection to the disease state or product and be open to speaking about it on a personal level. Take a step back. Would you believe and act on the message of your chosen celebrity?

A best-in-class example of a highly credible partnership was Hologic’s work with Sheryl Crow, Mary J. Blige and Ciara. Both Crow and Blige were breast cancer survivors who could speak passionately about the need to get screened early and often and Ciara is a well-known champion for health equity. Their credibility was wildly compelling and Hologic witnessed a significant uptick in mammograms post launch.

The Celebrity ‘Sweet Spot’

Are you working in a rare disease or in a condition that impacts millions globally? If it’s the latter, a celebrity might be a perfect addition to your marketing mix. Celebrities are costly but that’s because they come with an enormous audience to mimic the broad-based audience of your target demographic.

A best-in-class example of a campaign that impacted millions was Khloe Kardashian’s work with Nurtec ODT, a migraine drug. Migraines impact more than one billion individuals each year so it makes sense that Pfizer sought out a celebrity with a wide following of nearly half a billion.

Keeping it Real

Celebrity marketing can really hit the mark when it comes from the heart. Celebrities are known for their glossy exteriors, so when they open up and share something a little raw with their audience, it catches attention and engages their audience in a deeply personal way. This kind of personalization moves consumers to action.

A best-in-class example a campaign that got real was Kristin Bell’s partnership with the online Rx provider, Hers. Bell opened up about her longtime struggles with mental health and used her message to fight stigma around seeking appropriate treatment. The campaign came across as authentic in all the right kinds of ways.

Evaluating Risk

Finally, and arguably most importantly, make sure you partner with a celebrity who will be low risk for your brand, and be prepared to deal with the consequences if they end up becoming more risky. This means extensive and appropriate vetting of the celebrity as well as perception analysis. Some celebrities have said uncomfortable things in the past, others may have alienated whole segments of the population. You must mitigate that to the best of your ability.

A great example of a brilliant celebrity campaign that came under fire after launch was Chrissy Teigen’s work with Ferring Pharmaceuticals. Shortly after Ferring launched their Fertility Out Loud campaign, Teigen came under fire for insensitive comments made on her personal Twitter profile. Suddenly, a low-risk, much beloved, celebrity became divisive and the team at Ferring had to weather the storm.

Celebrities can move mountains for brands but only in the right setting, with the right message and the right safeguards. Do you due diligence and choose wisely and you could be amazed by the results of your campaign.