6 Rules for Your Health Promotion Brand


For many wellness programs, branding starts and ends with a label and a cutesy logo (often involving an apple or variations on the stick figure). While a name and visual element are part of the branding equation, there’s more to it than slapping your logo on every flat surface you find:

  • Keep it simple. From your program name to the range of services, the simpler the better — especially at the start. If people have a hard time getting their mind around what you do, complexity dilutes your impact. “Health Improvement” department, for example, is better than the “Health, Productivity, and Work/Life Initiative.”
  • Stand for something. You can’t be everything to everyone. Using “health promotion” as a catch-all for anything from ergonomics to relationship classes to onsite massage to yoga risks confusion — no one knows exactly what you do. Develop a tagline for your program that says it — such as “Active Living for Better Health.”
  • Invest in face time. Maybe the biggest downside to technology for health promoters is the mistaken belief that you can cut back on visibility. Just the opposite is true. Get out on the floor… you’ll stand out more while other support functions believe they don’t need to.
  • Know your audience. If you’re a 20-something in a workforce with a median age of 38, you need a lot of input for each service and promotion. Don’t assume; get feedback constantly, then use it to strengthen your brand.
  • Measure your progress. Include wellness program brand awareness questions in annual HR employee surveys.
  • Stay the course (or not). If everything is working, don’t change brand messages — keep reinforcing what works.

Branding takes time. People have a million other things on their minds and they’re constantly bombarded with messages. But if you maintain consistency and your services have relevance, in time everyone will know what your program stands for and how it can help them.


Dean WitherspoonDean Witherspoon
Chief collaborator, nudger, tinkerer; leads the most inventive team creating well-being and sustainable living programs. Reach out if you’d like to talk about employee well-being, emotional fitness, or eco-friendly living.

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