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Breaking the Ice: Getting The Message Out About A Sensitive Topic


Here at the Providence office, we’re lucky enough to work with Leonard Hair Transplant Associates. Dr. Robert Leonard is a world-renowned hair transplant expert, offering a range of state-of-the-art procedures to increase hair volume and density and improve self-confidence for both men and women.

Despite Dr. Leonard’s expertise, starting a conversation about hair loss can be quite a challenge. Hair loss. Balding. The dreaded comb-over. These buzzwords are enough to make many folks cringe. Although 50 million men and an estimated 20 million women in the U.S. suffer from hair loss, few want to talk about it. Hair loss can be regarded as something shameful, and few are aware of potential treatment options.

Here are some techniques we used to break the ice on this sensitive topic.

Hire a Spokesperson

Having an admired public figure start a conversation can be a great way to lessen awkwardness and stigmas associated with sensitive topics. Wes Welker, a well-respected NFL player and now a wide receiver for the Denver Broncos, was Dr. Leonard’s patient and agreed to discuss his procedure during a press conference. Welker stressed that no one should be embarrassed or ashamed about treating their hair loss, and that his treatment with Dr. Leonard really worked. Since lots of folks look up to Welker, many are now willing to explore their options and learn more about our client.

Give Them Something (Else) to Talk About

Sports media would likely never cover a story about hair loss without another draw. Members of the sports media were encouraged to chat with Welker about his time with the New England Patriots and his upcoming season with the Broncos. This opportunity to discuss football with Welker made our press conference a “can’t-miss” event. We were able to transition this into much broader coverage for our client.

Maximize Your Time

Due to Welker’s busy NFL schedule, we knew we only had him for a 2-day period. In addition to our press conference, Dr. Leonard had arranged a series of commercial shoots for radio and TV. However, between takes of the commercial and wardrobe changes, we scheduled dozens of phone interviews with members of the media. Again, reporters were encouraged to ask Welker about football, and we were able to integrate our client’s message into the conversation by noting Welker was filming a commercial. By being efficient with Welker’s time, we were able to garner even more media impressions.

Don’t Focus On Facts And Figures

When Welker discussed the success of his procedure, he didn’t go into the science and technology behind it. Rather, he pointed out the before and after, and emphasized that the procedure gave him more hair. The public needs to be able to understand the phrasing, and by keeping the language simple and easy to comprehend, we got our client’s message across.

Even with a somewhat uncomfortable topic at hand, we were able to gain more than 123 million media impressions in just two days for Dr. Leonard, including such national outlets as USA Today, ESPN.com, and the Dan Patrick Show. Ultimately, we hope this exposure will help folks who are currently suffering from hair loss to gain the courage to pick up the phone and take that first step.

-Team Providence, RI

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