Blog post thumbnail, "Branding & Expanding: Another milestone for the MedAssist program", depicting the Santa Clara County downtown office building with a graphic of the new MedAssist logo over imposed.

Branding & Expanding: Another Milestone for the MedAssist Program

The last time we wrote about the MedAssist program was when phase one of our marketing campaign successfully helped connect over 1,000 patients to vital grant funds. While we reached our first milestone with much fanfare, we knew we couldn’t just stop there. In order to continue generating quality leads, we needed to shift gears into phase two: rebranding and expanding. With that came two new objectives:

  • Refresh the brand identity to build recognition within the community
  • Update messaging to promote the expansion of the program to include adults and children

And so our work began!

Building a Brand

The MedAssist program offers grant funding to offset the increasing costs of certain life-saving medications for people living with chronic conditions in Santa Clara County. The overall goal is to improve health outcomes through medication adherence. Therefore, branding is an essential part of building a relationship with potential enrollees and developing trust in the program. We want people to see the name MedAssist and associate it with a legitimate county-funded program. Establishing those feelings directly tie into the brand identity, including a logo and other design elements.

Our team got to work on preparing dozens of logo options for the County of Santa Clara. After a careful review process and a few adjustments, we finally landed on a brandmark that depicts two hearts coming together—the heart of the MedAssist program, which genuinely cares about the health and well-being of Santa Clara County and the heart of the program’s beneficiaries. The overlapping hearts further form a Venn diagram to abstractly represent the program’s connection and commitment to serving the “missing middle” population. Lastly, the two hearts combined form a shape similar to a map pin, as one might see on a digital navigation app. This shape signifies that the program is geographically bound to Santa Clara County.

MedAssist: A Program of the County of Santa Clara, logo

In addition to the logo, we stumbled upon the perfect mascot: a piggy bank. We used the imagery of a pink piggy bank in the first phase of our work to build on a universal understanding that piggy banks are associated with financial savings. Until that point, it was viewed as more of a fun addition than an official part of the brand. However, when planning the brand reveal, our team saw the opportunity to run with it. I found a vendor specializing in custom inflatables who could make us an inflatable piggy bank almost six feet tall with the MedAssist logo displayed prominently on one side. We got client approval, hit “send,” and this life-sized little piggy stole the show!

A life-size, inflatable rendition of MedAssist's mascot: A piggy bank.

Our extensive media buy used these new assets (logo and mascot), which launched simultaneously with the rebrand. The last component of our plan was a press conference to get coverage from journalists to help spread awareness about all the new developments.

Expanding Awareness

Partnering with EMC Research, JP Marketing surveyed 642 individuals who live in Santa Clara County, along with 373 current MedAssist enrollees. Our questions revolved around collecting feedback on brand messaging and logo design that were either already in place or were part of our creative development. One of the biggest takeaways was that even though the program was available to an extensive group of people, most people in the county still didn’t know much about it, with only 7% of survey participants reporting that they had heard of MedAssist. So, we knew we needed a strong outreach plan to spread the word among our newly expanded target audience. This insight led us to start planning a press conference in San Jose.

We worked closely with the County of Santa Clara’s Public Information Office and the Board Supervisor’s Office for months to plan the event. We arranged for five speakers with different perspectives and relationships with the MedAssist program to participate, including Supervisors Joe Simitian and Otto Lee, who are also the Chair and Vice Chair of the Santa Clara County Health and Hospital Committee. They have both been advocates of the MedAssist program, and ultimately, the program reports back to them, so their attendance and support were essential. (Plus, their presence attracted a good amount of media attention!)

Our primary focus for the event was to reframe our messaging about the program’s eligibility to include adults and children. Now, people of all ages living in Santa Clara County with an annual gross household income of up to 94% FPL (Federal Poverty Level) can enjoy the program’s benefits. These changes meant an individual earning $138,364 a year or a family of four earning $284,700 may qualify. Opening the door for more enrollees means more potential to make positive ripples of change throughout the community, so leaning into this narrative was hugely important.

Once everything was in place, our team drove to San Jose in September to attend the press conference and ensure everything went smoothly. Once again, our clients were beaming with pride and spoke highly of the hard work and dedication of our team at JP Marketing.

The Event Told in Pictures

Photo of Supervisor Simitian speaking during MedAssist new brand reveal press conference
Supervisor Joe Simitian speaks about the expanded eligibility of the program, which now includes people of all ages with an annual gross household income of up to 94% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).
Group photo of MedAssist pharmacy team posing in front of inflatable Piggy Bank Mascot
The people behind the program. As part of Supervisor Simitian’s remarks, he recognized the hard work of so many individuals who played a role in the development and administration of the MedAssist program, including the Pharmacy Team (pictured above). They worked nights and weekends reviewing and approving applications leading up to the original goal of 1,000 enrollees—a milestone the team hit in June 2023.
Photo of Supervisor Otto Lee speaking during MedAssist press conference, smiling, holding a stress-ball piggy bank.
Supervisor Otto Lee holds up one of the branded piggy bank stress balls to emphasize the relief from financial anxiety associated with the MedAssist program. Also reiterating that the MedAssist program was created out of the belief that medication adherence means better patient outcomes and less pressure on the local healthcare system, Supervisor Lee shares that the program is working and is actively making an impact on the lives. To date, MedAssist enrollees have a 50% lower rate of visits to the emergency room!
Photo of Supervisors Simitian and Lee with inflatable Piggy Bank to their right in front of the County Office Building of Santa Clara.
Supervisors Simitian and Lee unveiled the new MedAssist logo, which was presented on the side of a 5’ 9” representation of the program’s new piggy bank mascot.
Program Director Narinder Singh, PharmD, MBA explaining the significance of the logo and mascot.
MedAssist Program Director Narinder Singh, PharmD, MBA, explains the significance of the logo and mascot.
Photo of Dr. Laurie Cammon speaking during MedAssist press conference.
Dr. Laurie Cammon speaks about the program’s impact from a pediatrician’s perspective, taking this as an opportunity to emphasize the inclusion of children in the program’s eligibility. Her ability to communicate in English and Spanish also allowed MedAssist’s messaging to reach a broader audience with additional press coverage by Telemundo and Univision.
Photo of Pamela, a patient of MedAssist, speaking during the press conference.
Pamela, a MedAssist enrollee, speaks about how much the MedAssist program has helped her personally. This heartwarming story was affirming to the crowd as it provided a first-hand perspective of how all of these efforts to develop, launch, and spread awareness about the program are truly making a difference.
Photo of Supervisors Simitian and Lee, and Hung Wei, the Mayor of Cupertino, posing in front of Piggy Bank.
An impromptu Q & A moment topped off the event with only one question coming from Hung Wei, the Mayor of Cupertino, who asked how the cities could help support the MedAssist Program. Supervisor Simitian’s answer was simple, “Help spread the word.”

Spreading The News

All in all, the event was a striking success! Ten news stories were published about the MedAssist press conference in three different languages. Furthermore, the Board of Supervisors reaffirmed their support for the program and desire for it to expand to support even more enrollees in Santa Clara County.

It was gratifying to the JP team to interact with everyone in person whom we had been working so closely with remotely to ensure the success of the rebrand. Everyone we spoke to following the event was so pleased with how our work turned out, making all of us extremely hopeful for future work with the County of Santa Clara and the further success of the MedAssist program.

Photo of MedAssist Team posing in front of MedAssist piggy bank.


Elisabeth Cunningham | Account Manager