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Takeda partners with Marvel for IBD superheroes

Will work with the entertainment firm's content marketing agency
Takeda IBD Unmasked

Entertainment firm Marvel - best known for the likes of Captain America and Spiderman - has been signed up by Takeda to produce a series of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) superheroes.

The first of these is Samarium, whose mission will be to raise awareness about IBD and the “unsung heroes” who battle it on a daily basis.

Takeda's accompanying campaign, IBD Unmasked, aims to highlight the “bravery, strength and determination” of the IBD patient community.

The new superhero and accompanying graphic illustration series were developed by Marvel Custom Solutions, Marvel's little known content marketing agency.

Marvel Custom Solutions has previously worked with Western Union, ESPN, Siemens and Visa (“the Guardians of the Galaxy help out with financial literacy”).

Its new IBD Unmasked online series for Takeda will feature educational resources, interactive quizzes, infographics and Q&A sessions. As more chapters of the novel series are released, new members of the 'IBD Unmasked' superhero team will also be revealed.

Readers are encouraged to create and share their own heroes on the site, with an accompanying social media strategy enabling users to follow the story and IBD community conversation with the hash tag #IBDunmasked.

Takeda's head of global product and pipeline communications Elissa Johnsen, said: “As a company, we are focused on providing continued support to the IBD community.

“In partnership with Marvel Custom Solutions, we are tapping into the power of visual storytelling to raise awareness and help people living with IBD feel more confident expressing themselves to their family, friends and IBD community.”

She added: “Takeda is proud to launch 'IBD Unmasked', and hopes to help spark productive conversations, shift perceptions and improve understanding of the impact of these diseases.”

Over five million people live with IBD worldwide, and affects people of all ages though diagnosis is most common in early adulthood. The two most common types of IBD are ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD).

A recent European survey of people living with IDB found that 48% of participants said their lives were either significantly or somewhat impacted by IBD symptoms even between flare-ups, with 26% reporting their disease made making and keeping friends difficult.

Article by
Dominic Tyer

13th July 2016

From: Marketing

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