UPMC’S First-Rate Cancer Center Wasn’t Always the First Choice for Patients.

Although UPMC Hillman Cancer Center was consistently ranked among the best in the world, the number of patients choosing UPMC for cancer care was not increasing.

We Had a Game Plan to Win Them Over.

We led a series of ethnographic interviews and online research studies which revealed that 64% of consumers did not feel an emotional connection to the UPMC Hillman brand and therefore were not inclined to choose UPMC. We used this insight to write a strategy based on the premise that UPMC is your “champion” for cancer care. We then found the perfect person to launch the campaign – Steelers running back and cancer survivor, James Conner.

Cancer patients shared stories of how they are “unstoppable” against cancer.


The campaign gained immediate attention and changed people’s perceptions of UPMC.


Work included TV, print, outdoor, paid social, and patient/doctor testimonial videos.