Cardinal Health

Cardinal Health

CLIENT: Cardinal Health
PRODUCT: Surgical instruments
External – Surgeons
Internal – Sales and customer service reps



Cardinal Health had just purchased Snowden-Pencer, a high-tech laparoscopic instrumentation manufacturer, to augment Cardinal’s high quality, traditional- instrumentation V. Mueller line. The acquisition of Snowden-Pencer filled a major gap in Cardinal’s product offering, enabling the company to compete as a single-source instrument provider.


There were many, among them:

  • Though considered the highest-quality instrumentation in the business, the 100-year-old V. Mueller brand had not marketed themselves for many years.
  • Snowden-Pencer, while also known for quality, was perceived as cutting edge.
  • These two very different brands had to be combined and brought under the Cardinal mother ship brand – without losing their equity. And together, they had to appeal to not only surgeons across a wide range of specialties, but also material managers and the central sterile services department.
  • Two sales forces had to be combined as well…quickly.
  • There were multiple sales channels with multiple influencers and decision makers.
  • While Cardinal’s product line remained on the high end of the quality and price spectrum, the category was becoming increasingly commoditized with most competitors selling on price.



RBK created a brand within a brand – “Full Circle Instrumentation” – which helped Cardinal go to market with a compelling value proposition and standout point-of-difference. It went beyond offering the largest product line (e.g. the competition’s position) to offering a comprehensive, integrated approach to surgical instrumentation with value far beyond acquisition cost. Essentially: All the best products, maintenance services, purchase efficiencies and experienced support with single-source convenience.



  • Positioning platform
  • Messaging platforms
  • Campaign branding
  • Sales brochures
  • Direct mail
  • Sell sheets
  • Video
  • Trade show
  • Digital
  • Sales training



The brand integration was successful, vertically and horizontally. Cardinal was able to go to market with a cohesive message and protect their premium pricing by selling the value of being a single-source supplier.