Catchword awarded Hermes Gold for WomenLift Health

By Erin Milnes

July 28, 2020

Catchword is proud to announce that we’ve been honored with a Gold from the Hermes Creative Awards for excellence in brand naming for the second consecutive year. The award recognizes our development of WomenLift Health for the new nonprofit organization within Stanford Global Health that will improve health around the world by investing in women’s leadership.

“We are delighted and honored to be recognized again with a gold, particularly for work on such an important project,” said Catchword principal and co-founder Maria Cypher. “WomenLift Health is literally going to change the face of health leadership on our planet, which will ultimately mean healthier, better lives.”

The Hermes Creative Awards, one of the largest international competitions for creative work, recognizes achievement in concept, writing, and design. The 2020 winners were selected from thousands of entries in more than 200 categories.

What is WomenLift Health?

Despite comprising 70% of the health workforce, women are undervalued and severely underrepresented in its leadership. Women hold only 25% of leadership positions in health occupations and of the 27 companies comprising the health sector of the global Fortune 500, only one is led by a woman.

With funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, WomenLift Health will address the gross gender imbalance in the health sector by promoting and supporting women’s health leadership in public and private sectors. It will catalyze sustained change by working particularly with mid-career women in lower-resourced regional settings to attain better health outcomes worldwide. This critical shift will not only impact the lives of these women and their families, but will create strong and effective champions who will transform the global health landscape.

Why the name WomenLift Health?

The Stanford Center for Innovation in Global Health approached Catchword in November 2018 for naming strategy advice and to name a new program known at the time as the Women Leaders in Global Health Initiative. The organization was in the planning phase and needed a name that would inspire as well as communicate the mission. Catchword worked closely with the Stanford team to understand the program’s mission, messaging, and naming preferences.

Because the organization would be international and responsible for initiating change to deeply embedded structures, nuance was critical. The name had to express the brand messaging, while being understandable across regions and cultures, relatively short, distinct from existing organizations, and available as a domain and as an international mark. At the same time, it could not suggest exporting Western-style feminism or denigrating or excluding men.

“Of the more than two thousand names we developed, WomenLift Health rose to the top,” said Ms. Cypher. “It clearly conveys the organization’s mission of promoting women’s leadership without suggesting any type of exclusion or a particularly Western point of view.”

Because empowering more women in the health sector benefits not only these individuals and their families, but the health and well-being of everyone in the community, Catchword sought a name that could express this broad impact. With its double meaning, WomenLift Health elegantly communicates both the elevation of women to leadership and the elevation of health by women.

The vocabulary of WomenLift Health is straightforward, which means the name is immediately understood by its international audience, yet lyrical, which aids memorability while inspiring program staff, participants, and funders. The name stands apart from the descriptive, lengthy names of government and academic organizations in the sector.

Hermes Creative Awards

Hermes Creative Awards is administered and judged by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals, an international organization of marketing, communication, advertising, public relations, media production, and freelance professionals.

AMCP judges are experienced industry professionals looking for companies and individuals whose talent exceeds a high standard of excellence and whose work serves as a benchmark for the industry.

Named after the Greek messenger god Hermes, the competition highlights the role of marketing and communications professionals as messengers and creators.

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