Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

Check out how this “eye language” campaign gave paralytic patients the ability to express themselves! [Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]

July 7, 2022

Miles Everson’s Business Builder Daily speaks to the heart of what great marketers, business leaders, and other professionals need to succeed in advertising, communications, managing their investments, career strategy, and more. 

A Note from Miles Everson:

I love Guerrilla Marketing. 

As someone who’s been in the business and consulting industry for 30+ years now, I’ve seen how this marketing strategy does wonders to a brand’s key performance metrics. 

According to Jay Conrad Levinson, the person who coined the term, “Guerrilla Marketing,” this strategy works because it’s engaging, easy to execute, and sometimes, inexpensive. Campaigns of this type not only make a huge impact but also stick to consumers’ minds. 

Today, let’s talk about a powerful and communicative guerrilla marketing campaign. 

Keep reading to know how a medical institution and non-profit organization teamed up to break the barriers of communication between paralytic patients and their caregivers in 2018. 

Miles Everson
CEO, MBO Partners
Chairman of the Advisory Board, The I Institute

Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing 

ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis). 

—a progressive nervous system disease that affects the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, causing a person to lose control of his or her muscles. 

This disease is also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, named after the baseball player who was first diagnosed with it. 

According to a 2018 study by the NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute, a stem cell therapy center in India, about 60 million patients of ALS, MND (motor neurone disease), and spinal cord injuries live around the world with a paralyzed body and alert mind. 

This means while they’re aware of what’s happening in their surroundings, they can’t speak, write, or use any sign language. Every day, they struggle to communicate their needs and desires to their caregivers. 

What’s worse? 

Many alternative methods of communication such as the E-TRAN board and other hi-tech assistive tools are unaffordable and inaccessible! This problem leaves many patients helpless, with no power to communicate. 

The only body part that remains functional till the end? 

Their EYES. 

Using the insight that millions of paralytic patients suffer from their inability to communicate, NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute partnered with Indian non-profit organization Asha Ek Hope Foundation to find a solution that was convenient and accessible for ALL patients. 

In April 2018, the organizations created a campaign that they called… 

“Blink To Speak!” 

The “Blink To Speak” campaign is the world’s first-ever “eye language” for patients who have an alert mind but paralyzed body. 

Through months of research and consultation with patients, doctors, and nurses, the NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and Asha Ek Hope Foundation was able to curate the most commonly needed messages by patients. 

… and the 8 main alphabets of the eye language? 

Shut, blink, left, right, up, down, roll, and wink! 

During the campaign, paralytic patients across hospitals in India were given printed “Blink To Speak” guides. Starting with basic eye actions for “yes,” “no,” “I’m okay,” etc., patients and caregivers easily learned the language in a span of 2 to 3 months. 

Once they were done with the basics, they moved on to more advanced eye movements. These enabled patients to communicate “thank you,” “I love you,” or even notify their guardians about any danger or emergency. 

Amazing, right? 

If you’d also like to learn the “Blink To Speak” eye language, you may click on this link to download the eBook version of the guide. 

The material was also translated into 13 languages, namely: 

  • English
  • Hindi
  • Marathi
  • Gujarati 
  • Tamil
  • Telugu
  • Kannada
  • Bengali
  • Arabic
  • German
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Turkish

Was the NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and Asha Ek Hope Foundation’s “Blink To Speak” campaign effective? 

Though the duration of the campaign was only during April 2018, the eye language continues to be used by many medical practitioners, paralytic patients, and caregivers to this day. 

In fact, the eBook versions of the guide still record downloads from people all over the world! 

According to Dr. Alok Sharma, Director of the NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute: 

“With advances in medical science, we use treatments like stem cell therapy to save these patients. But we’re not able to give them a quality life. I believe ‘Blink To Speak’ is going to benefit innumerable patients around the world.” 

Take a look at the results of the campaign: 

  • A total of 10,000 printed copies of the “Blink To Speak” eye language guide were distributed to paralytic patients in India in April 2018. 
  • At present, the “Blink To Speak” eBook has over 200,000 downloads. 
  • The “Blink To Speak” campaign was featured in various articles from local and international media companies, such as Campaign Brief Asia, e4m, Ads of the World, Activation Ideas, Branding in Asia, AdAge, and more. 
  • The campaign bagged several awards and nominations at the Cannes Lions event in 2018: 
  • The “Lions Health Grand Prix for Good” award 
  • A Gold award under the Pharma category
  • Nominations under the following categories: 

Design Lions – Promotional Item Design and Books

Direct Lions – Healthcare, Art Direction/Design, and
Low-Budget/High-Impact Campaign

Pharma – Non-Regulated: Direct to Consumers, and Non-Regulated: Direct to Patients

Health and Wellness – Non-Profit/Foundation-Led Education

Print & Publishing – Publications for Good

Product Design – Medical Products

These results are clear as day: The “Blink To Speak” campaign truly made a HUGE impact on the lives of patients, caregivers, and medical practitioners not only in India but also in different parts of the globe! 

Great job on this revolutionary campaign, NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and Asha Ek Hope Foundation! 


What made this campaign phenomenal was its ability to address a communication problem through a tool that’s accessible for all ALS, MND, and spinal cord injury patients. 

Just imagine how hard the situation was for these people prior to the campaign. Without any other means to move, speak, or write, it was simply a terrible experience for them. 

Others might even think it’s torture! 

… but when the “Blink To Speak” campaign was launched, that situation changed. 

Thanks to the newly created eye language, paralytic patients now have the opportunity to easily communicate their needs and desires even without saying or writing a word. 

As Dr. Hemangi Sane, Founder and President of Asha Ek Hope Foundation: 

“‘Blink To Speak’ is going to break all barriers of paralysis and help millions to express themselves.” 

Through this campaign, the gap between paralytic patients, caregivers, and medical staff was filled, and ALL patients, regardless of their class or social status, benefitted from this initiative. 

Likewise, the NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and Asha Ek Hope Foundation further strengthened their reputations as organizations that genuinely cared for patients. 

We hope you enjoyed reading today’s guerrilla marketing feature! 

With a unique offering and marketing tactic that fulfill an otherwise unmet need/s, you and your brand can also make a HUGE impact and stick to your target market’s minds. 

P.S. Take care of your eyes! About 80% of what you perceive comes through your sense of sight… plus, as a “window to your soul,” this sense organ also helps you communicate beyond words! 👀

(This article is from The Business Builder Daily, a newsletter by The I Institute in collaboration with MBO Partners.) 

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.

Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers, and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.

Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.

This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.

It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing can be inexpensive.

The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.

Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.

This is every business’ or brand’s dream!

Every Thursday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.

Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.

Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Thursday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing!


Kyle Yu 

Head of Marketing 
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities 
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