Only Mad Men Like Marketing; Healthcare Consumers Want Content

Healthcare marketers who drive growth and build strong brand connections with their audiences are doing so by providing value outside of a purchasing need.

Consumers have crept into the driver’s seat and have virtually shut off the world of traditional marketing as we know it. It doesn’t matter how many beds your hospital or health system has—a patient is a consumer and vice versa; their behavior is what they’ve acquired in their retail experiences.

A consumer’s brand experience begins online.

Marketing’s dependence on mass promotional campaigns with goals of reach and frequency are being replaced by messaging, information, tools and interactions that target, position and differentiate you from your competitors. This shift in thinking is much different than the promotional marketing efforts you’ve traditionally launched to publicize your product or service or your brand as a whole.

Selling needs to be kept under the radar. What you’re trying to do is build your case and establish trust with prospective buyers of healthcare. Make it easy for them to buy from you. Make them want to buy from you. People buy from people they know, like and trust. So get to know your healthcare consumers. Be likable. And by all means, be trustworthy.

Content marketing helps you get found by the people who matter to your healthcare organization.

Think about the different types of content that contribute to a healthcare consumer’s journey. How can you capture attention and inspire them?

Below is a very simple example of the difference between “promotional marketing” and “content marketing.” Which of the below scenarios is an example of content marketing?

A) Running a print ad touting your joint replacement surgery center
B) Creating a video that provides tips on how to treat knee pain after jogging

The print ad is considered promotional because it will appeal to very few people who need a specific procedure—joint replacement surgery—at the time they see your ad. The content example is the knee pain video because it will connect with a far broader audience who suffer from knee pain.

Understand that content marketing as a philosophy alone will not ensure success. If you take the idea of creating a video on knee pain and run a search for “knee pain video,” it will more than likely result in over a million hits. In order to show up through all of the clutter, you have to create a relevant, compelling program that differentiates you.

How do you begin? By asking the same questions a marketer would normally ask:

  • What are our goals?
  • How do we measure success?
  • Who is our primary audience?
  • What are our differentiators?

Once you determine the answers, you will want to think in terms of providing relevant messaging and content to an audience that may not have an immediate need to buy today. Focus on driving actions unrelated to making a purchase, like signing up for a seminar, requesting information, downloading a case study or white paper, or participating in a webinar. In other words, you are striving for engagement.

Photo credit: Lan Bui via flickr

AcrobatAnt Healthcare Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAntHealthcareMarketing.com
1336 East 15th Street
Tulsa, OK
74120
918-938-7912

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