When Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas came to us, they were the only dedicated freestanding pediatric facility in the region. Serving a 46-county area and beyond, Dell Children’s remains the premier health care provider for children and adolescents.

In 2007, Dell Children’s was preparing for a major relocation. Previously known as Austin Children’s Hospital, the healthcare provider was making a move to a new, mixed-use development complex and living community in Northeast-Central Austin’s Mueller. Aiming to bring their hospital to capacity and eventually adding on a new wing, Dell Children’s needed the public to quickly become familiar with its new name, location, and expanded services.

Over an eight-year stint, we developed research-based branding campaigns that first pulled on heartstrings and later tickled funny bones.

Upon its opening, we honed in on Dell Children’s key differentiator: it was the only hospital in Central Texas (at that time) that was 100% devoted to children, with rooms, beds, and even needles scaled down to a child’s unique needs. After narrowing in on the fact that moms were the decision-makers in choosing their family’s medical care, we knew we needed to develop a campaign that connected with our target on an emotional level. So we made that our branding keystone, putting together a comprehensive advertising campaign that demonstrated both the technology and touch behind this thoughtful facility. “We know how to treat kids” became a key messaging point in our ads, demonstrating the care put into each hospital room and each doctor’s demeanor.

But shortly after the opening of Dell Children’s, a competing healthcare facility devoted to children opened up in Central Texas, prompting us to aggressively reassert the brand. And this time… we’d tickle funny bones.

While maintaining a focus on our client’s excellent facility, our marketing and advertising took a tonal shift. After assessing the emotional, heartfelt messaging of other children’s care facilities, we decided to focus on a unique differentiator in the healthcare market: humor. By utilizing humor, we were able to distinguish Dell Children’s from other local children’s medical centers. Today, in regional public opinion polls, Dell Children’s is consistently ranked as the most recognizable healthcare brand in Central Texas.