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Highmark Health named among Top Ten Marketers in North America at 2018 Effie Awards Gala

Highmark Health is the first health care company to earn awards for three different campaigns: Blue Hen, #LivingProof, Doc Talk Checklist

PITTSBURGH (June 7, 2018) — Highmark Health was named as one of the Top 10 Marketers in North America for campaigns in both its health care insurance and provider businesses during the North American Effie Awards Gala, held on May 31 in New York City. Highmark Health is one of only two health care companies to have achieved this distinction since 2011, and the only health care company to have made finalist in three different campaigns in one year.

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware's Blue Hen and Allegheny Health Network (AHN)'s #LivingProof campaigns were awarded three Effie Awards, securing gold in the healthcare services category, and bronze in small budgets services category. Blue Hen was among the top eight highest scoring campaigns in North America, making the campaign a contender for a Grand Effie, awarded to the most effective campaigns in North America across all categories. Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield's Doc Talk Checklist was also a finalist in the small budgets services category.

With over fifty categories and only a small number entrants awarded each year, Effie Awards are a rare and highly prestigious honor recognized globally as one of the highest achievements in the marketing industry. Only 101 North American Effie Awards, including only 19 gold, were presented to campaigns which have best demonstrated effectiveness in solving a marketing challenge, connecting with target audiences, and achieving measured results. Points are awarded in four categories including challenge, context and objectives, insights and strategic idea, execution of the idea, and measuring tangible business results.

Allegheny Health Network's #LivingProof campaign

Allegheny Health Network's #LivingProof campaign, which was awarded gold in the healthcare services category, was developed to significantly increase unaided brand awareness and ultimately drive patient growth for a newly formed health care network which competes against a well-established, academic medical institution supported by aggressive marketing and spending. The campaign goal of increasing call volume was exceeded by 119 percent points, total in-patient volume increased by 2.3 percent points, exceeding the -1 percent industry standard in Pennsylvania, and primary care experienced growth that exceeded the original campaign goal by 4.6 percent points.

"#LivingProof broke health care's conventional marketing standards of using claims and ratings by focusing the campaign on real patient 'proof points' in an industry where the consumer experience is highly individualized," said David DeMuth, president and chief executive officer of Doner, the creative agency which partnered with Highmark Health's marketing team to create #LivingProof. "We wanted to present a preponderance of evidence of quality care through 30 real stories told in 30 consecutive days to highlight the myriad ways AHN helps people — real patients with Parkinson's disease, and those in need of cancer treatment, orthopedics, heart surgery, trauma care and more. It was all about making care personal and tangible."

#LivingProof's stories featured actual moments of patient care which were captured in real-time, without scripts, sets, or reshoots. The campaign was supported by TV, radio, print, digital, social media, and larger-than-life activations including the world's largest cast highlighting the more than 26,000 bones AHN mended and the world's largest game of Operation®, which recognized the 102,219 operations performed in the network.

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield's Blue Hen campaign

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware's Blue Hen campaign, which won gold in the healthcare services category and bronze in the small budgets services category, addressed the challenge of retaining the health plan's membership as a major national insurer entered the small state market. Facing a potential loss of millions of dollars and a challenging goal to retain its state employee members, Highmark Health's marketing team partnered with agency Partners + Napier to create Blue Hen.

"Building on our insight that local pride can overcome outside advantages, we were able to connect with state employees on an emotional level by tapping into Delawarean's deep Blue Hen pride," commented Michael Baron, SVP creative director, Partners + Napier. "The Blue Hen campaign served as an effective and strong reminder of Highmark's deep roots in Delaware and why its residents have chosen Blue for over 80 years."

The Blue Hen campaign was a new, creative, and highly visible campaign which featured Delaware's beloved state bird, the blue hen. The campaign was supported through TV, newspaper ads, radio, billboards, and digital and social media.

Despite the national competitor advantages of scale and budget, and additional challenges such as competitor auto-enrollment options and communication channel restrictions, Blue Hen exceeded its campaign goal by more than 10 percent points on switching members from its HMO plan to its PPO plan, achieved 93 percent points of its goal of retaining current PPO members, and resulted in a 3 to 1 return on investment to the business.

"I am deeply honored and proud of our organization and team for these achievements. It's absolutely amazing to see the power of these small region campaigns on a national stage. Health care presents some incredible challenges but also tremendous opportunities for creativity as we continue to rapidly evolve. We are challenged to meet customer expectations which are now, more than ever, influenced by how they interact with other consumer-driven industries," commented Cindy Donohoe, EVP and chief marketing officer, Highmark Health.

"In health care, however, no two patients have the same expectations or definition of quality and experience. Health care is personal, so the way we connect with consumers needs to be as well. We weren't going to do it like our competitors. We didn't spend aggressively, we didn't use the standard claims or elaborate sets. Healthcare isn't about us, it's about our customers, and the power of their stories and local pride is proof of that. I am proud of the results we achieved with these campaigns and we are excited to continue to connect with our markets in creative, disruptive ways."

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Contact us for more information or to arrange an interview:

Krista Lardieri
Highmark Health
Office: 412-544-8574
Cell: 817-937-3749
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Effie Worldwide is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization that stands for effectiveness in marketing communications, spotlighting marketing ideas that work and encouraging thoughtful dialogue about the drivers of marketing effectiveness. The Effie network works with some of the top research and media organizations worldwide to bring its audience relevant and first-class insights into effective marketing strategy. The Effie Awards are known by advertisers and agencies globally as the pre-eminent award in the industry and recognize any and all forms of marketing communication that contribute to a brand's success. Since 1968, winning an Effie has become a global symbol of achievement. Today, Effie celebrates effectiveness worldwide with the Global Effie, regional Asia Pacific, Euro, Latin American, North American and Middle East/North Africa Effie programs and more than 40 national Effie programs. For more details, visit www.effie.org.

Highmark Health, a Pittsburgh, PA based enterprise that employs more than 40,000 people who serve millions of Americans across the country, is the second largest integrated health care delivery and financing network in the nation based on revenue. Highmark Health is the parent company of Highmark Inc., Allegheny Health Network, and HM Health Solutions. Highmark Inc. and its subsidiaries and affiliates provide health insurance to nearly 5 million members in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Delaware as well as dental insurance, vision care and related health products through a national network of diversified businesses that include United Concordia Companies, HM Insurance Group, and Visionworks. Allegheny Health Network is the parent company of an integrated delivery network that includes eight hospitals, more than 2,800 affiliated physicians, ambulatory surgery centers, an employed physician organization, home and community-based health services, a research institute, a group purchasing organization, and health and wellness pavilions in western Pennsylvania. HM Health Solutions focuses on meeting the information technology platform and other business needs of the Highmark Health enterprise as well as unaffiliated health insurance plans by providing proven business processes, expert knowledge and integrated cloud-based platforms. To learn more, please visit www.highmarkhealth.org.

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