August 22, 2023
Case Study

Value-Centric Marketing Strategies: ChatGPT prompts eBook, emotion from the Arthritis Foundation, audience-focused content


Many customers view marketing as a net negative. Just trying to take, take, take from them. Or worse, take advantage of them. Blech! Who wants a career doing that?

You can have marketing success by providing value, instead. In this article, we bring you three examples. Read on for examples from the Arthritis Foundation, a tech interviewing platform, and a health resources website.

by Daniel Burstein, Senior Director, Content & Marketing, MarketingSherpa and MECLABS Institute

Join MECLABS AI Guild (MECLABS is the parent organization of MarketingSherpa). Learn more at

An empathetic, value-centric approach to marketing can resonate with your audience. Here are three suggestions for improving your content creation and marketing strategy, followed by specific examples to spark your best ideas for your own campaigns:

  • Offer Tangible Value: Whether through an eBook, tailored content, or an emotional connection, delivering real value can significantly increase engagement, as seen across all the case studies in this article. For example, in quick case study #1 a tech interviewing platform focused on providing an eBook with valuable content, personalizing the ad, and using video illustrates the shift towards adding value.
  • Utilize Storytelling: Integrating personal stories can create a deeper emotional connection with the audience, as seen in the Arthritis Foundation case study (quick case study #2). Emotional connection and personalized engagement are core aspects of providing value to the audience. The nonprofit’s phrase ‘We Journey Together’ emphasizes unity and support
  • Invest in Audience Research: Understanding the target audience and their needs leads to more impactful content, demonstrated by the health resources website profiled in quick case study #3. Understanding the audience's needs and tailoring the content accordingly exemplifies creating value for the users.

Quick Case Study #1: ChatGPT prompt eBook gets tech interviewing platform 200 leads from social media ad

For four months, the team at Tacnique completely relied on organic social media marketing to generate leads. The results were not impressive, so they started running paid ads.

BEFORE – Static image ads on social media

“My team and I ran our first ad on LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook,” said Parth Sharma, marketing manager, Tacnique.

Creative Sample #1: Social media ad

Creative Sample #1: Social media ad

The team only got seven leads. After reviewing that ad, they identified reasons they thought the ad may have underperformed:

  • “The image was very impersonal, especially for LinkedIn,” Sharma said.
  • The headline did not mention their ideal customer profile (ICP) of HR practitioners and recruiters – ‘One-Click Access to Top Engineers.’
  • There were few words since they hypothesized the ideal customer had a short attention span for an ad, but that made the messaging abstract.
  • No CTA.

So they ran a second ad. This time they used a person's image and added a CTA.

Creative Sample #2: Social media ad with improvements

Creative Sample #2: Social media ad with improvements

This ad got 18 leads, but the team still felt there was room for improvement:

  • The messaging was still hard to understand. The headline was ‘Get 5 Interviewed React Candidates.’
  • No clear ICP. Confusion regarding who should sign up for what they were offering, resulting in some irrelevant leads.

AFTER – Video ads on social media with AI prompt eBook

In the third ad, the team created a video ad instead of going for a static image. They got their HR Manager to record an 18-second video to run as an ad, speaking straight to their ICP. They also created an eBook – “33 ChatGPT Prompts for HR Practitioners and Recruiters.” The conversion goal for the ad was to have people fill out a form to download the eBook.

Creative Sample #3: Screen grab of frames from social media video ad with ChatGPT prompt eBook

Creative Sample #3: Screen grab of frames from social media video ad with ChatGPT prompt eBook

The team felt they got the following aspects of the ad right this time:

  • Recorded a video instead of using images. “People respond better to a video than images,” Sharma said.
  • Ensured the messaging was crystal clear in the headline – ‘33 ChatGPT Prompts for HR and Recruiters.’
  • Focused on adding value with the AI prompt eBook rather than just selling their product directly.

RESULTS – Far more leads

The team got 80 leads in six days, and nearly 200 leads by the time they closed the ad campaign.

“Simply running ads won't generate lots of leads. I must cut through the noise and bring value to the ICP. Only then can I expect good results,” Sharma said.

Quick Case Study #2: Arthritis Foundation shifts focus from stats to emotions, increases traffic 50%

The Arthritis Foundation is the largest nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention, control, and cure of America's leading cause of disability.

BEFORE – Focus on arthritis symptoms and statistics

Historically, Arthritis Foundation campaigns focused on arthritis itself – featuring statistics, symptoms, and disease types. “Arthritis is sometimes called an invisible disease, so we’ve used marketing to raise its visibility. But it affects nearly 60 million adults and children, even though you can’t always see it,” said Kelley Graham, Senior Director, Creative, Content & Brand, Arthritis Foundation.

Last year presented a new marketing challenge. “It’s 2022 and there’s a lot happening in the world,” Graham said. “We’re coming out of the pandemic. We have an opportunity to re-energize the arthritis community. 2023 is the 75th anniversary of the Arthritis Foundation. And we have a barely used tagline, ‘We Journey Together,’ with untapped potential.”

Graham felt this was a good time to raise awareness for the nonprofit organization. “Recent research showed that less than 15% of patients and caregivers are aware of the Arthritis Foundation and our expert-led content, resources, and programming, which means there’s a huge opportunity for us to grow our community. While I think we suspected this, it was quite eye-opening to see these numbers.”

AFTER – Emotional connection

The team launched a campaign to reimagine the existing tagline, ‘We Journey Together,’ to forge an emotional connection between the Arthritis Foundation and the arthritis community. The idea, says Graham, is to “let people living with arthritis know they don’t have to go it alone. We see them. We understand them.  And we’re here to support them on their journey.”  

Most ads use the word ‘journey’ in the headline to seed the campaign idea. 

Creative Sample #4: OOH airport ad for Arthritis Foundation

Creative Sample #4: OOH airport ad for Arthritis Foundation

Graham further explains, “The brackets give us the chance to sprinkle in other words from the campaign and invite people to ‘fill in the blank’ with the word that fits their experience.” The brackets are also used to draw attention and focus to individual moments or emotions.

For example, to highlight the foundation’s 75th anniversary, 'We {achieve} together.' For the Juvenile Arthritis audience, 'We {hang} together.' To promote active, outdoor lifestyles, 'We {conquer} together.' To capture the daily reality for many in the audience, 'We {struggle} together.'

Creative Sample #5: Print spread ad for Arthritis Foundation

Creative Sample #5: Print spread ad for Arthritis Foundation

The team chose brackets {} vs. parentheses () or square brackets [] for their distinct shape and the fact that they artistically represent bending joints – where arthritis hits.

The media mix targets people living with arthritis using platforms like paid social, eblasts, CTV, pre-roll, Google ads and out-of-home.

PR is an important part of the plan as well, with outreach focused on key timeframes like Arthritis Awareness Month (May), Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month (July) and Pain Awareness Month (September). 

"One of the 'happiest accidents' in this campaign is the fact that one of the key members of our PR team working on the account – Jill Konopka – has herself benefited from the resources of the Arthritis Foundation. Jill was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis when she was 27. Since then she has run 16 marathons! So in addition to being a key contributor to the incredible press this campaign has received – including the building light up efforts – she also stars in some of the marketing material. Truly art imitating life," said Wally Stoneman, SVP, Creative Director, Mower (Arthritis Foundation's agency).

RESULTS – 50% increase in website traffic through branded search

The campaign has been in market only three months, and initial feedback is exceeding expectations. Follow-up awareness research is planned for Q1 2024, and in the meantime the Foundation is tracking engagement and media metrics to assess impact.

 “All KPIs are on track to exceed our goals by year end,” says Graham. She cites stats through June showing a 50% increase in website traffic through branded search, and a 20% increase in website engagement.

Quick Case Study #3: Health resource website conducts audience research, increases time on site 50% with new content

In 2019, Elderly Guides faced a challenge. The website had a decent amount of traffic, but conversion rates were low. 

BEFORE: Simple website

The Elderly Guides website contained general information about elderly care and a few blog posts. The design was simple, and the content was informative, but it lacked depth and relevance to the target audience. Navigation was not user friendly, and the website lacked a clear call-to-action.

They decided to implement a comprehensive content marketing strategy, focusing on creating high-quality, engaging content that directly addressed the needs and concerns of the target audience. To do that, the team needed to learn more about the people it was trying to bring value to.

AFTER: Content based on audience research

The team conducted audience research using a two-pronged approach: surveys and analysis of existing user data.

They sent out 5,000 surveys to existing users and subscribers, asking them about their key concerns, interests, and what kind of content they found most valuable. The response rate was about 20%.

They also held a few focus group discussions with select users to gain deeper insights. Each group consisted of eight to ten participants.

The team analyzed website and social media metrics to understand the type of content that was resonating with the audience. This included looking at metrics like page views, time spent on each page, and the number of shares and comments. “We used Google Analytics for website metrics, and native analytics tools for social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram,” said Amber Dixon, CEO, Elderly Guides.

One key insight they gained from the research was the need for more comprehensive resources for caregivers. Many respondents expressed that while there was plenty of information available for seniors themselves, resources for caregivers were lacking.

Based on this, they decided to create a separate section on the website dedicated to caregivers. This section includes resources like tips for managing caregiver stress, financial advice, and guides on navigating healthcare systems. They also started a blog series highlighting personal stories from caregivers to provide emotional support and community.

Another discovery was the interest in preventative health tips for seniors. Users wanted more proactive health advice rather than just information on managing existing health conditions. So, they started collaborating with healthcare professionals to create content on topics like diet, exercise, and mental health for seniors.

RESULTS: Time on site increased 50%

Within three months of launching the new content, the website saw a 15% increase in conversion rate and a 15% decrease in bounce rate. On top of that, the average time spent on our site increased by 1.5 minutes, a 50% increase.

“However, the real success came from the feedback we received from our users. We received numerous emails and comments thanking us for the valuable resources we provided, indicating that we had successfully managed to create content that resonated with our audience and provided real value,” Dixon said.

“The transformation of our website engagement was a journey of understanding our audience better. It's not just about putting out content, it's about creating value. We learned that when we listen to our audience and respond to their needs, we not only improve our marketing performance, but we also build a community of trust and support,” she said.

Related Resources

Marketing Chart: Does customer-centric marketing fall short of satisfying the customer?

Customer-First Marketing Strategy: The highest of the five levels of marketing maturity

Content Marketing: Strategies of businesses that improved (and replaced) digital content marketing

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