John Wayne Cancer Institute (JWCI) was dissatisfied after having dealt with numerous high range public relations firms and was wary of any new firm it hired. MGA had the obstacle of trying to change JWCI’s expectations of public relations.
MGA took the approach of “what you see is what you get” in terms of a PR representative, and made it a point to build personal relationships with the physicians. The assigned Account Executive (AE) met face-to-face with each of the doctors to discuss what they wanted in terms of public relations and performance, in an effort to build trust. The AE met with doctors specifically, to better acquaint himself with patient stories and their individual specialties to find the best avenues of media for pitching stories. JWCI wanted to see dedication and integrity from its new PR firm.
Dr. Donald Morton of JWCI was Maureen Reagan’s physician when her skin cancer made its way to her brain, resulting in her death. MGA proposed educating the public about the reality of death from treatable cancer. Morton wasn’t sure if he would be able to make the early broadcast, so Longo picked him up from his house around 4 a.m. and drove him to the studio. On the drive over, Longo was able to connect on a personal level with the doctor and instill his confidence in MGA.
Longo established a trusting relationship between MGA and its client
JWCI. He says that commitment and a long-term asserted effort everyday is what it takes to launch a good client relationship. He also believes that trust is initially more important than media results and integrity is vital.