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Creativity that’s closer to its audience was the order of this first day of the health track, writes Ian Ray, Head of Copy Pegasus.

GSK’s Carlton Lawson set the tone with the first slot on the Health Inspiration stage, talking through the organization’s shift from product-solution marketing to human interest stories that build trust in its brands.

Next up was our own slot, which you can read about here, and this behavioral theme was continued by Abbott in an honest overview of its setbacks and successes in using wearable tech to change behavior in diabetes.

Eric Peacock offered a sincere and lively overview of his MyHealthTeams platform next, in a co-presentation with Biogen, who have clearly been bold enough to grasp the nettle of investing in patient networks.

Particularly impressive in creative execution was the Malaria Must Die campaign, which was given the ‘story behind the work’ treatment in the afternoon. Kate Wills of Malaria No More told us how, with a miniscule budget but a ton of goodwill, her NGO was able to deliver a daring campaign to reframe our perception of this, the ‘mother of diseases’.

Our highlight of the first day came at the eleventh hour, when Pfizer played its This Is Living With Cancer film in its entirety during the last session of the day. To say this is a great film about living with a disease is to do it a disservice – this is simply a great film.

Shot to an almost hyper-real quality in a stark black and white, it follows a group of people over six months as they go about their lives. Their stories are amazing. Not because they’re running marathons or helping the homeless, but because the film – running at more than 20 minutes – gives us the time to get to know them and root for them.

Find it and watch it when you can. More tomorrow!

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