Page 2: Developing a corporate publicity programme
Until recently, even though Roche was a major player in the UK healthcare market, it was not a household name. Its somewhat conservative approach to publicity affected its attitude towards the media. It reacted when faced with bad publicity, but rarely talked of its achievements.
The company decided to take a more proactive approach. At the same time, it was invited to become a sponsor of the Body Zone in the Millennium Dome. This would give the company a chance to demonstrate its integrated healthcare capabilities to many million visitors. Also, Roche could highlight the importance of research and the advances that will enhance health and well-being as we begin the new century.
Sponsoring the Body Zone
Boots the Chemists, L’Oreal and Roche put together a package worth £12 million to design and build the Body Zone. The Body Zone consists of 2 elements; the body itself and a large plaza area filled with interesting interactive exhibits.
The body, a piece of modern architecture, 27 metres high, represents both the male and female figures in one reclining form. Visitors enter through the elbow, travel up an escalator in the arm and take a journey through the body. Passing through state-of-the-art special effects, they arrive at a gigantic beating heart.
The journey is designed to induce a whole range of different emotions including relief, apprehension, fear, humour and sadness. The plaza area contains a range of thought-provoking exhibits which explore the opportunities that science, genetics and medicine will bring in the new millennium.