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Why Branding & Marketing Medical Businesses Is So Different
Whether it is supplying healthcare for the NHS or a medical device designed for connected health in some of the globes remotest locations, at the core is the need to gain trust from your audience.
The world of healthcare covers many disciplines, including; primary care, pharmaceuticals, bio-tech and nutrition all feeding from trust. Whether it is an innovative med-tech startup or an established hospital, ensuring that trust is in abundance for a brand is essential. Patients have to trust them, Doctors have to trust them, Executives have to trust them.
So why is it so challenging to market brands in this industry?
Well, we have come up with ‘Six Secrets To Marketing Healthcare’.
There is an absolute need to be seen as innovative and ‘state of the art’ when operating in this sector. How you communicate this is vital, your brand must be shouting that you have the latest thought processes, the latest techniques, the most advanced research and the best facilities. Failure will result in you being seen as just another player, many of which fail to get off the launch pad.
Achieving this does however require a significant amount of time, effort and resource. This results in little being available for crucial marketing activities.
ACTION: Engage early with a specialist medical marketer to maximise resource.
Medical services are often highly localised with suppliers becoming siloed in their thinking, rarely gaining valuable global experiences. The healthcare world is fast changing with more global exploration.
With any branding or marketing, global trends and subliminal messages must be considered.
The globe is your market place, access is improving!
ACTION: When planning your marketing consider the interpretation of any campaigns across multiple locations, cultures and social differences.
Attention To Detail
By the very nature of healthcare, there is a huge expectation on medical professionals to have lazer focus on the finer details. This results in medical brands requiring a higher level of management to ensure that they are being marketed with zero imperfection.
ACTION: Ensure that your QA processes are reinforcing robust professional marketing services.
Extreme Ends of the Client Spectrum
As we mentioned in the opening paragraphs, the target audience can be vast; patient, doctor, manager or critic.
There are a couple of specific profiles that we feel may benefit from specific consideration.
Vulnerable Clients – The majority of medical and healthcare businesses or organisation will at some point come into contact the ultimate recipient of the product or service. By the very nature as to why the end user is the recipient, they are likely to be vulnerable. This vulnerability will often result in reduced capacity, requiring others to make choices on their behalf. Regardless, it is essential that any marketing or branding must communicate brand values.
Time Poor Clients – With the increasing pressures on medical professionals it is becoming ever more difficult for medical brands to engage with the medical professional. It is critical that any marketing imprints on this particular audience group.
Medical Miracle Workers – This is the same profile as the above, but this time we are focusing on how they market themselves. Of course, we can’t expect our medical professionals to be marketing guru’s, after all many have spent a significant chunk of their lives studying to gain the skills to care for us all and not marketing themselves.
ACTION: Understand your market audience and address their needs through applied psychology.
External Influencers – The medical sector is under consent scrutiny. Whether it be the provision of care, a medical blunder or a pharmaceutical corruption claim, we will often find headlines dominated with healthcare howlers. Any marketing and communication strategies must be highly agile to address any external influencers. Choosing a marketing partner who focuses heavily on proactive surveillance is crucial in leveraging a competitive advantage.
ACTION: Employ a proactive strategy to monitor and react to external factors.
Diverse Market Flow – The market is one of uniqueness. For example, in the case of medication, the end user (the patient) doesn’t choose or pay for the product, the paying body (insurance or in the case of the UK the NHS) doesn’t choose or use the product and the person who does actually choose the product doesn’t pay or use the product.
So who do we need to focus our marketing efforts on? Simply, it is essential to be diligent in achieving insight into which audiences will be receptive, absorb the message and deliver to our objectives. How do we achieve this? i5 have worked with healthcare professionals for many years, culminating in a wealth of resource and insight to call upon.
ACTION: Market intelligence mapping followed by multichannel attribution strategies must be at the core.
We understand that this is a lot to take in. We would be happy to offer support to the healthcare sector wherever possible. Please feel free to make direct contact with our Healthcare Team.
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