The Writers' Block

February 27, 2019

About Us

Welcome to the Writers’ Block: a place for the behavioral copywriters at MicroMass Communications to showcase our outside interests, skills, and ideas that aid in our collaborative efforts and creative force.

In these posts, you’ll learn about our process, insights, writing styles, and behavioral skills that piece together to create compelling copy for health behavior change.

Take a look inside the creative brain of our team.

#WriterWednesday: Get to Know Kate

We caught up with Associate Creative Director, Kate Schabot. We talked about how she approaches challenges in her writing. Learn how Kate takes a moment to switch gears before she steps up to create effective copy.

Writers’ Block: How do you overcome a challenge when writing?

Kate: I walk away from it. If I’m afflicted with writer’s block or don’t have a solve for a requested edit, I step away from the work. I switch gears and do something a little more monotonous like doodling, making a snack, or actually going on a walk. I’m not taking a break from the work; I’m giving myself a chance to think about it from a different vantage point. The change in perspective often clears my head and provides an opportunity to come up with the right solution. From there I can jump back into the work feeling more confident and ready to tackle the challenge.

Kate’s approach to a challenge teaches all of us a valuable lesson about self-management.

How could you benefit from looking at something in a different way?

Step into our side of the MicroMass office and you’ll see more than a bunch of people hunched over computers. Over here in creative, you’re as likely to see people laughing as you are to see us huddled in thought.

First, you’ll probably notice the giant jigsaw puzzle on the community table. If you take a look around, you may notice dozens of googly eyes affixed to one writer’s desk, and a menagerie of Star Wars action figures surrounding an art director’s workstation. You may notice that many of our writers and art directors have photos of themselves with Tom Selleck mustaches scribbled on. You may find a quantitative analysis of one employee’s tendency to give out high-fives.

I hope you’ll notice, as I did when I arrived, how welcoming everyone is. This good-natured atmosphere is fundamental to the work we do at MicroMass.

We have 8 behavioral copywriters currently on staff. To do this job, it takes more than just a grasp of science and the complex processes of the healthcare system. It means we must understand how people think, feel, and act—and why. It takes both halves of our brains: the half that reasons, and the half that feels.

Here, human health behavior is our specialty. Behavior change applies to everyone. As humans, we all face moments which force us to consider a change in our behavior. Each piece we write, whether it’s an email, a website, a video, or a brochure, is rooted in empathy and behavioral insight. The behavioral content team is trained in evidence-based behavioral approaches. These approaches guide us in how we write to patients. We encourage realistic goal-setting, self-compassion, and self-awareness. We give people the building blocks of behavior change.

As we write, we draw on our own experience, our own relationships. This helps us transcend what readers expect from a piece of pharma copy.

To me, it’s clear that our genuine affection for each other in the office is fuel for the work we do. Don’t get me wrong—it’s not all googly eyes and high-fives. We take our work seriously, and it is serious work. Still, we dive into new topics each month with Lunch and Learn potlucks. We celebrate Dictionary Day with a party and a bookworm cake. This team runs on a need for cognition and a need for diversion. One does not happen without the other.

So, stop by our office and enjoy yourself as we set loose our inner geeks.
You’re welcome any time.