With the brief in hand, our first port of call was to develop their strategic positioning in the market through a deep understanding of their target, category, competition and cultural sentiment around mental health and, more specifically, private mental health.

Our strategy needed to represent who they are today, but also be future-proof to set them up for success as they evolve and change both their offering and facilities.

To get to our brand strategy, we conducted both primary and secondary research: 

Primary Research 
Our diagnosis phase started with interviewing Cardinal Clinic staff members from stakeholders to nurses and learning all about their care philosophy. Things like – did you know that they never use agency staff? A promise no other private mental health hospital in all of the UK can offer.

From a strategy perspective, we knew there was something much deeper to this promise than a functional, operational choice. For patients, it provided a solid structure for them, resulting in consistent development and care. When they walk in, today, tomorrow, or two years from now, the same staff will care for them. In essence, they never have to start over. 

Insight 1: A feeling reminiscent of a family support system. 

Following stakeholder interviews, we talked to patients to verify our theory and get even deeper under the hood. The result? There were even more layers to the family feeling experience at Cardinal Clinic. 
From the warm and cosy sitting rooms and snooker table to nurses who simply chat with you about interests and the latest programs on the television, the sterile hospital notions they had before they walked in the door melted away. 

Insight 2: Day by day, Cardinal Clinic felt like a home, surrounded by family.

And, just like home and family – it’s not always easy. In fact, sometimes it’s really complicated. But at the end of the day, it is comfortable, safe and consistent. Like a home should be. 

Insight 3: Just like family, even when you give up, they don’t. 

Cardinal Clinic checked in on patients even after they left their care. Demonstrating a commitment to care beyond your stay. 

Secondary Research 
When looking at the competition, combined with our primary research, it was clear that Cardinal had a key space to own: 

Cardinal Case Study Asset 1

The perfect sweet spot between premium and community. Where you feel at home, supported (by the best medical care experts in the industry) and comfortable every step of the way. 


With our research and market positioning in hand, we developed our fully articulated brand positioning, targeting and strategy: 

Cardinal Case Study Asset 4
Cardinal Case Study Asset 2
Cardinal Case Study Asset 3
Stuart Grimwood “The team exceeded my expectations. Their insight and articulation of our business have provided us the foundation we need for today and the future to define our brand and create distinction in the marketplace. Cardinal Clinic is passionate about supporting people to make the best possible recovery from mental ill health. When looking for an agency to help us share this message and promote better mental healthcare, we needed to find a partner who demonstrated outstanding knowledge and understanding of the sector and could mirror our passion for empathy, understanding and care in everything they do..” Stuart Grimwood, Managing Director of Cardinal Clinic

Based on this brand strategy, Big Cat, Leopard Co's tactical creative agency, developed a creative campaign called Feel More You