How This Agency Cleverly Stopped People From Googling Their Medical Symptoms

The right ads at the right time

If you're like me, you type your symptoms into Google every time you get the sniffles or feel the slightest bit under the weather. Well, that plan is ill-advised. It can yield reams of misinformation and all manner of (potentially harmful) misdiagnoses.

The Flemish government in Belgium commissioned DDB Brussels to help remedy the situation, and the agency came up with an intriguing cure.

They bought Google AdWords for the top 100 symptoms. Now, when people search Google about their ailments, the top result reads, "Don't Google it, check a reliable source," and clicks through to the Gezondheid en Wetenschap (Health and Science) website.

Check out DDB's amusing minute-long promotional clip below, featuring hair loss, a bloody nose, gangrenous finger and festering boils. I feel better already!


Client: Gezondheid en Wetenschap

Campaign: "Don't Google It"

Clients: Marleen Finoulst, Elizabeth Bosselaers, Patrick Vankrunkelsven

Agency: DDB Brussels

Creative Director: Peter Ampe

Creative Team: Tim Arts, Stefan van den Boogaard

Head of Digital: Geert Desager

Strategic Planner: Maarten Van Daele

Senior Account Manager: Silvie Erzeel

Television Producer: Brigitte Verduyckt

Digital Producers: Stefanie Warreyn, Maarten Breda

Web Developer: Christophe Gesquière

Design: Andreea Buescu, Cedric Lopez

Content Planner: Michael D'hooge

Production Company: Lovo

Director: Norman Bates

Producers: Bert Brulez, François Chandelle