Omnicom Health Group, the largest healthcare marketing and communications group in the world, and part of Omnicom Group Inc., announced that it has acquired Snow Companies, a full-service patient engagement agency that focuses on direct-to-patient (DTP) communications, marketing, education, and patient research initiatives for major pharmaceutical and biotech companies around the world.
“Snow Companies has been the market leader as an independent agency in patient engagement, and when we looked at the timing for a strategic partnership that really preserves our culture, there was no one else I wanted to be with than the Omnicom Health Group,” Brenda Snow, CEO and Founder of Snow Companies told PM360. “As a big agency, they have put a stake in the ground to support the patient community and to continue bringing the industry and patients together. It was the perfect fit from a client and leadership perspective, as well as making sure that Snow Companies’ long-term vision had the right support.”
Snow, inspired by her own experiences as a patient, founded Snow Companies in 2001 to ensure patients were given a voice. Based in Williamsburg, Virginia, Snow Companies has more than 300 employees and works in more than 80 disease states and therapeutic areas. Through its trademarked Patient Ambassador® model, the agency has helped tens of thousands of patients tell their personal health stories and has inspired millions of people living with diseases and health conditions to become empowered patients.
“The patient is rising, but they are still not fully connected to where medicine is today and I think we have a role to help fix this,” Ed Wise, CEO, Omnicom Health Group, told PM360. “I am really excited to be engaged with a company that brings not just a market value to us, but a real value in terms of how patients will be treated in the future. Snow Companies are the originators and leaders of patient storytelling—they created the center of the business and they are the best at it. Our goal is to be the best and we wanted to be associated with the best.”
Snow will continue to lead the agency as CEO together with co-owner and COO, Corbin Wood.
“The day-to-day operations of Snow Companies will not be largely impacted,” Snow says. “We are going to continue to do the same types of things we’ve always done, but now with some added firepower and heft through Omnicom Health Group’s strategic and creative services. We think it is a bright future and don’t anticipate any significant changes other than more support and a broader, bigger footprint.”
Snow Companies will add another patient-focused company to Omnicom Health Group, which already includes Patients & Purpose, which is a full-service agency, and MMG, which is a clinical trial recruitment company that is oriented toward patients.
“Our philosophy is independent minds, brilliantly connected,” Wise explains. “We are about having good, strong, entrepreneurial, independent companies that have a way of doing business that is uniquely their own. But there is also a tremendous amount of shared knowledge, experience, and best practices across Omnicom Health Group and we look at this as an economy of experience that all of our agencies can benefit from. Patients & Purpose and Snow Companies already have a long-standing relationship partnering together on client business. But what Snow Companies does is very specific and very different from a lot of what our other agencies do, so it’s an extremely complimentary business.”
Over the course of 2018, Wise says that in addition to getting Snow Companies on-boarded they will introduce them to the other agencies within Omnicom Health Group through cross-agency events. But the goal is to help the agency continue to do what they do best, while offering them the larger scale of Omnicom Health Group’s network.
“Our goal is not just to get bigger,” Wise explains, “but to be better and be in a position to offer innovative solutions that help combine with other things that we are offering to provide a powerful holistic patient experience.”
Snow adds: “At the heart of this for me has always been the patient voice and the individuals and the families that are affected by a lot of the very tough medical conditions that we work in. My passion is that if we keep doing all of these things right and we keep succeeding as partners and as individuals then outcomes will get better for patients. Industry and patients are collaborating and that’s really been my life’s mission over the last two decades, and so it is very exciting for me to be able to think about even more meaningful ways that we can continue to tell the stories and affect change in patients’ lives.”