Community Outreach Conventional/Digital Newsletter
Challenge: As a freelance writer with Periscope advertising agency, I was tasked with creating the second issue of the Community Stories newsletter for Periscope's client - UnitedHealthcare. The first issue had been pulled together quickly, so the design and layout needed to be reworked. The goals of the second edition project were to showcase UHC community outreach efforts, build the company's philanthropic brand, and create a template for future editions of the newsletter.
Action: The client provided me with a variety of short clips about UHC's philanthropic events. I grouped them into categories, and blocked each category onto a page. I titled each page to signal specific themes and create a cohesive, meaningful flow for the audience. I wrote each story, incorporating the UHC brand voice and mission into all content. And I collaborated with the designer to identify opportunities to showcase UHC community outreach outcomes with infographics and other visual devices.
Result: The newsletter was delivered on time and on budget, and its format now serves as the template for subsequent issues.
B2B2C Employee Benefits Engagement Email/Direct Mail Campaign
Challenge:Prior to this campaign, Voya's B2B2C content about employee benefit claims was too long, too hard to understand, visually unappealing, and underperforming. The goals of this project were to:
Improve the user experience
Drive member awareness and engagement in claim-filing process
Increase the number of employee benefits claims filed
Action:I stripped the existing content of all unnecessary copy and rewrote each message to be singular, simple, and straightforward. This gave each piece more white space and branding opportunities with images, taglines, and calls to action. Each piece was personalized with the recipient's name, their employer's name, and type of coverage they had. And each piece contained one easy-to-understand, actionable message. Deliverables included emails and postcards.
Result: Data is not available to the public; however, this project resulted in a series of personalized, easy-to-understand and actionable communications to guide employees through the claim-filing process. The design and content have become the prototype for future employee benefits communications projects.
Webpage UX Redesign
Challenge: Leverage data to enhance user experience and improve lagging webpage performance.
Action: As lead writer of an agile-based cross-functional team, I led the development of the design, layout, and content of key Capella webpages. I partnered with the UX team to guide the design and development teams through in-depth examinations of heatmaps, SEO data, and other performance indicators that identified problematic moments on the pages. From there, I led a series of collaborative design sessions to explore and incorporate SEO and design elements to create a smoother, more facilitative user experience. The sessions resulted in a variety of UX solutions:
Eliminate the unnecessary
Increase white space; decrease clutter
Increase visual interest with infographics and images
Make it easy-to-read, engaging, educational, and empowering
Create a more interactive user experience by embedding more links to other appropriate areas of the site
Result: Page performance increased substantially (data not available to the public), and the redesigned pages became the template for over 1,300 pages on the Capella University website.
Challenge: The writing for this project had been outsourced, and was not under my supervision during production. The first time I saw the content was when I was asked to edit it - one day before it was to go live. It was immediately evident that the content was not empathic to the audience, nor was it written to Capella University writing or brand standards. If published, it would damage the university's reputation and credibility.
Action: At 11:00PM that night, I contacted the VP of Marketing and recommended that production be halted on the project so revisions could be made. I fiercely advocated for the doctoral audience, arguing that they needed thought leadership content that was empathetic, educational, and empowering. I stressed the importance of the user experience in thought leadership content. And I provided clear examples of errors in the copy. The VP agreed that publication should be delayed, and I cleared my calendar. I spent the next five days rewriting and elevating the content.
Result: My rewrite offered the doctoral audience an informative, inspirational user experience. By focusing first on the audience, and then infusing the Capella quality and brand standards into the copy, I established the tone for thought leadership content throughout the website.
Challenge: Create emails to introduce and drive prospective doctoral students to a newly launched thought leadership webpage.
Action: I leaned into the empathetic quality of the Capella brand voice to create inspirational, actionable content and compelling subject lines.
Result: The new subject lines boosted the email open rates by 7% in one month (data for clickthrough rates not available to the public).
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Member Engagement Calendar
Challenge:Create an engaging, easy-to-read calendar that prompts two Medicare populations to engage in healthful behaviors. Calendar must have a theme that appeals to the audience.
Action:Recognizing this demographic's civic pride and penchant for nostalgia, I created a "Minnesota Through the Years" concept, featuring quotes from famous Minnesotans and important events in the state's history. I included season-specific nutritional and safety tips, ideas for exercise, and reminders for medical appointments. Additionally, I created a timeline for the back cover that featured special dates in Minnesota history.
Result: The calendar was produced and distributed on time and on budget; all stakeholders were satisfied with the finished product.
Member Engagement Flyers
Challenge: Create content to drive healthful behaviors in two Medicare populations.
Action:I researched the Medicare populations' demographics; then researched the complex medical topics that would be addressed in the flyers. I distilled the topics into accessible, actionable, on-brand content.
Result: The flyers contributed to 4.5- and 5-star Medicare Stars Center of Excellence ratings (out of 5).
Blue Zones/Blue Zones Project
B2B Worksite Assessment Whitepaper
Challenge:Presented as a simple editing project, this job expanded after I found the existing worksite assessment - a true white paper- to be disorganized, off-brand, overwritten and off-putting.
Action: I chunked the content into smaller portions, organized it into a meaningful sequence, and rewrote the copy with more lively language that incorporated brand voice and tone. Additionally, I made recommendations for incorporating brand colors and fonts into the headers, subheads, sidebars and text boxes, and placing on-brand images throughout the document to create interest and break up the text.
Result: The document became a dual-purpose corporate wellness tool - 1) an on-brand wellness roadmap for existing clients, and 2) an on-brand marketing asset to present to prospective clients.
Blue Zones Project Digital Success Stories
Challenge:Tell the stories of three Iowa cities that modified their surroundings and behaviors to become healthier communities.
Action: I interviewed city officials, architects, engineers, and school and government officials to learn how they became involved with Blue Zones Project, and how they incorporated the Blue Zones tenets into their communal ethos. I researched studies on healthful behaviors, and the effects of infrastructure on well-being. Then I distilled my findings into easy-to-understand, inspirational stories.
Result:The content was used in a variety of media, including sales materials, and digital and print collateral.
Challenge: Create content that supports Blue Zones tenets, incorporates brand voice and tone, and educates and inspires readers to delve further into healthful living.
Action: There were no limits on the blog posts - I could choose the subject matter for each one. I realized that I hadn't seen much literature about the effects of anger on health so I began researching it. I found a wealth of studies about the negative effects of anger, and balanced them with research about how to manage anger when it arises. I distilled my findings into a conversational, easy-to-access piece. Result: This post was one of the most-read posts on the Blue Zones website for months after publishing.
Challenge: The Welcyon website was lacking in content that served its members and drove business objectives. We needed to create thought leadership content to build brand awareness, drive enrollment and member engagement, and add value for members and prospects.
Action: Blog 1 - Because strength training was one of the four pillars of the Welcyon fitness program, I chose to feature it as the website's first blog post. This population was intimidated by weightlifting, so I wrote the blog in an empowering voice, emphasizing that members and prospects already knew what Harvard Medical School was professing. Blog 2 - Holiday eating is an evergreen subject, so the challenge was to write about it in an appealing, engaging way. I used five bullet-pointed phrases that could stand alone and convey the message when scanned; then I supported each bullet point with easy-to-read, informative and inspirational copy.
Result: These posts and others I wrote served as templates for thought leadership blog posts going forward.