McMillan has the prescription for Ontario’s Doctor’s Day

An Ottawa agency wants Ontarians to thank their doctors

The Ontario Medical Association (OMA) is working with Ottawa-based creative agency McMillan to promote Ontario Doctor’s Day, which falls on May 1.

OMA created its “Thanks, Doc!” campaign to promote Doctor’s Day, producing videos showing patients thanking their doctor and soliciting doctor appreciation letters through print. This year, the association has enlisted McMillan’s help to broaden the campaign.

“The overall objective is to generate awareness for the work that Ontario doctors do and expose people to the multiple positive experience that patients had with them,” says Marianne Poirier, an account director with McMillan.

The agency aims to engage Ontarians with a simple online interface: a collage that they help create. Over the next 31 days, people who visit are met with a graphic that says “My doctor makes a difference.” Once they’ve written a message (pre-populated or customized), their tile becomes part of a digital collage that will eventually be sent to Ontario doctors as a thank-you for their work.

For inspiration, the site links to a YouTube video featuring patients with messages like, “Without my doctor, I wouldn’t be here.” Also available, an infographic that breaks down just how many doctors there are in Ontario and what they do.

McMillan wanted to distill something complex—Ontario’s health care system—into one simple message: doctors work hard for their patients.

“Thanks to [the OMA’s] open attitude, our creative team was able to design a fresh, innovative campaign distinct from more typical ‘professional day’ experiences,” says Gordon McMillan, the agency’s president and chief creative officer.

McMillan is relying primarily on pay-per-click ads on Facebook, and Google Adwords, to spread the message. To gain further traction, after they write their message, participants are prompted to share it on Facebook or Twitter. As an incentive for spreading the word, any Ontario resident who tweets #thanksdoc in the next month is entered to win an iPad. Print ads will also run in several Ontario newspapers May 1.

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