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Brand Launch // Clover Health

NEW BRAND LAUNCH (Just in time for open Enrollment)

I joined Clover just as the Red Antler agency had finalized the branding guidelines. The colorful branding was intended to stand out in the healthcare space, but they didn’t take into account many of the complexities of being a Medicare Advantage plan. Each year there is only a very short enrollment window for Medicare plans, and we were rolling out this new “disruptive” brand; we needed to raise awareness of Clover clearly and quickly.

I immediately identified that initial brand awareness should focus on what Clover was offering, which is not something that the agency’s simplified brand guideline had specified. I developed direct headlines and successfully made the point that the text-only treatments the agency dictated were inadequate at identifying the audience for this new brand. Soon I was in New Jersey, art directing a photo shoot with members and taking the opportunity to have conversations with them to understand the member mindset better.

To add to the challenge, most of the startup’s San Francisco/tech side was new to working in healthcare and unfamiliar with the highly-regulated field of Medicare plans and its particular 65+ audience. In my first month, I read, highlit and came to understand all of the procedures and guidelines laid out by the Center for Medicare Services. I also gained as much understanding of the process of enrollment I could from interviewing beneficiaries, and the customer service leads on the New Jersey/plan side of the startup. I helped develop the voice and tone guidelines, convinced the team we needed to hire a copywriter immediately, and then passed on as much knowledge as I could to her in record time.

billboard Photoshoot and editing

At Clover, we wanted as much as possible to eschew stock photos and clichés and to amplify our real members. I helped organize, and art directed this first just-in-time photoshoot with beneficiaries and used the opportunity to speak with them about their lives and validate potential headlines and colors. I clipped and retouched the resulting selects for use on the website, sell-in and provider collateral, member collateral, as well as a significant out-of-home campaign in the plan’s limited coverage area.

Out of home advertising

The Annual Enrollment period for Medicare plans is very short, from October to December. Clover had the challenge of being a newcomer and getting from awareness to conversion for something as critically important as one’s healthcare. I designed a blitz of out-of-home, print brochure, direct mail, and social media tactics in close collaboration with the copywriter.

Enrollees often mentioned the out-of-home campaign as something they had seen and remembered. And the sales brochures helped the field agents tremendously answer questions about the plans and establish brand legitimacy when they spoke with potential enrollees or their families.


One of the great things about being on-hand with the members at the photoshoot is I was able to have short interviews with them, learning a lot about who they were as well as how they felt about the brand’s nascent messaging and colors. When tasked with designing a banner for a recruiting event, I wrote effective and authentic copy using the information I gathered.

Further research into Medicare beneficiaries provided the groundwork for persona-building and a lot of insights for me personally: my time at Clover was a terrific education in both the complexities of healthcare and anti-ageism.

.…And More

After Open Enrollment was over, I spent time refining the brand system’s typography and color palette for consistency and legibility.

I also proposed using beneficiary and provider testimonials, explored how we might use data visualization, and expanded workplace wellness and culture. Please drop me a note if you’re interested in talking through any of these projects.

Owen was our second designer at Clover and was instrumental in developing the brand and leading the marketing design efforts.

I worked closely with Owen throughout our intense open enrollment selling season. He pushes for perfection, but understands when tradeoffs need to be made to meet timelines and move quickly.

Owen is also passionate about defining culture. His calm and peaceful demeanor is a welcome addition in a high-paced environment.

Louisa Henry

Product Director, Gusto

To say Owen would be a big catch for any organization is a vast understatement. Personally very sincere, thoughtful, and earnest to help his coworkers, Owen moreover is a truly gifted designer, thinker, and collaborator. I worked alongside him at a Medicare health insurance startup on a small marketing team, and though Owen’s specific role was Senior Designer, he lent on-the-spot project management skills to produce down-and-dirty marketing campaigns on tight timelines.

When working with Owen, one has the feeling they’re being listened to, having their viewpoint authentically considered in depth. Owen’s professional skillset becomes evident immediately upon working with him.

What’s more, I have Owen to thank for my introduction to mindfulness practices, as he was solely responsible for developing a daily meditation at our company, which was a staple part of several coworkers’ days and work-life balance. Owen is professionally talented, but more importantly, is truly his brothers’ and sisters’ keeper.

Brian Gilton

Senior Content Designer, Intuit