Archive for category Marketing Strategy
Remaining relevant and up-to-date on all digital platforms is essential for healthcare advertisers and providers’ long term success. For some, this includes having an app, which more and more hospitals are beginning to implement. But before investing time and dollars into app development, there are questions to ask to determine if an app is the best healthcare marketing solution. Based on the hospital’s marketing goals and objectives, is an app effective? Is it worth the cost? Is it App Worthy? Below are 3 Steps to help you answer these key questions and prepare for an effective hospital app strategy:
Step 1: Establish web presence that translates across all devices and has strong mobile visitorship, and review Google analytics and traffic trends to uncover patient, staff and community mobile behavior and needs. Websites for hospitals and healthcare organizations play a significant role in patient experience and in managing the hospital’s brand perception in the marketplace. Learn more here.
Step 2: Develop an app concept that addresses needs of the mobile or tablet-based user that are not and cannot be met by the optimized website, and therefore, will offer a new or different experience to patients and the community. For a hospital or healthcare provider, this experience could be scheduling an appointment, real-time Emergency Room or Urgent Care wait time updates, or an interactive physician referral tool. There must be a strategic, defined purpose for an app that will enhance an individual’s life, in a way that is unique, not provided anywhere else, and is true to the brand and brand strategy.
Step 3: Allocate the necessary resources for ongoing app management. For example, if the app is for appointment-setting, will the software between the mobile app and in-office desktops sync? If there are bugs, is IT or another vendor available to address issues in real time? If for a physician referral platform, is there a designated process for updating physician information and insurances accepted as changes occur? Plan ahead to ensure that the app will run smoothly, otherwise you risk the integrity of the user experience.
With more than 100 million consumers generating $7 trillion a year in goods and services, the Baby Boomer generation has more disposable income than any other age group. According to marketingcharts.com, Baby Boomers control 70% of disposable income in the United States. They are generally in a stronger financial state than other demographics and have a growing number of personal and professional interests, which continues to impact the economy by creating new business opportunities.
So, how do you influence Baby Boomers and increase market share with this lucrative demographic? There are many relevant ways to reach this age group, yet one often overlooked method is digital marketing. A common misconception is that online marketing and advertising only appeals to younger generations, such as Millennials. Although it is true that the younger demographics were the first adopt online technology, Baby Boomers were not far behind.
Understand Online Behavior
In fact, much of the technology being used today was invented by famous Baby Boomers such as Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. The tech savvy generation spends on average of 39.3 hours online per month and 1 in 5 use social media as a means to find healthcare information. (Read more on Digital Healthcare Advertising) http://www.orangelabeladvertising.com/blog/2014/07/3-reasons-why-healthcare-providers-should-use-digital-advertising/
Send the Right Message
However, when using online marketing to reach Baby Boomers, it is important to understand that they were the first generation to be constantly exposed to advertising messages coming from all angles. Quantity of ads alone is an unlikely way to secure new customers and gain their loyalty. To create an online campaign that captures attention and elicits response, it is important to focus on quality, which Baby Boomers associate with customer service and personal communication. Provide contact information, feature a live chat on your website, and encourage current and prospective clients to connect on Facebook.
Baby Boomers are among the fastest growing groups on social media – particularly Facebook – using social platforms to keep up with family and friends, read the latest news and current events, and stay connected to brands. To remain relevant and top of mind it is important to be present with a social media and content marketing strategy that resonates.
Digital marketing capabilities and digital advertising products have grown immensely in the past few years, and continue to provide innovative, relevant and cost effective solutions for reaching target audiences. Brands across industries benefit from these technological advancements, and healthcare organizations are no exception. Digital outreach, when implemented strategically as part of an integrated advertising plan, can cause hospital marketers and medical providers an increase in website traffic, online engagement and marketing ROI. Here’s three reasons why…
A challenge in the medical world is tracking advertising campaign results due to patient privacy issues and the role of insurance in the decision making process. However, digital marketing vehicles provide analytical information and data regarding campaign audiences and response.
“Digital tactics such as search engine marketing, targeted email blasts and display advertising offer real time insight into the age, gender, location and behavior of visitors, as well as performance statistics for every link, keyword, placement and creative component tied to the strategy. This allows healthcare marketers to optimize much more efficiently and effectively, and therefore produce an increased ROI and response.”
- Michelle Torr, Senior Integrated Advertising Executive
When advertising for any product or service it is essential to target the appropriate audiences. The targeting capabilities associated with digital have grown immensely – including behavioral, geographic, keyword and contextual, retargeting and more. For hospitals and healthcare providers this is a key benefit, as digital campaigns, even those running concurrently, can include custom targeting criteria and layers by message.
For example, geographic targeting can and should vary per service line. Urgent care, emergency services and primary care will likely require a tighter radius, since these are services sought close to home. However, for more complex surgeries or specialized treatments, patients tend to be willing to travel further to receive the best care and therefore, the geographic range can increase greatly.
Contextual and keyword targeting add layers based on content. For example, if a user is looking at symptoms for Chicken Pox, based upon the live text on the screen, an ad can be served for a PCP or urgent care center nearby. This creates a direct response opportunity for a “transaction” to occur and provides value to the user who may need assistance quickly.
Through these targeting tactics, digital advertising allows specialized services to be promoted to a relevant audience and prospective patient base, in a way that is cost efficient and relevant for today’s consumers.
“There is an abundant amount of information about health on the web. This is the first place people look to find information about healthcare providers, insurance, doctors, and symptoms. There is relevancy for being online and with digital targeting, you can be even more specific and reach people who are looking for the information and services you are promoting.”
- Michelle Regrut, Jr. Integrated Advertising Executive
From Millennials through Baby Boomers and beyond, consumers turn to the web for information. When an organization isn’t present on the web, or when that presence isn’t representative of the organization’s values, it reflects poorly on their credibility and relevance in today’s world. This is especially the case for hospitals and healthcare providers, who rely on advanced technology for care and where quality can be defined by life-saving experiences. A strong website that is content rich and responsive is the core component of maintaining a credible digital brand and supporting a positive patient experience (read more about hospital websites here: http://www.orangelabeladvertising.com/blog/2014/05/the-role-of-websites-for-hospitals-and-healthcare-organizations-2/).
But a website alone isn’t enough – consumers need to be able to find you when they need to. Search engine marketing, strategically placed digital display banners, content marketing and social media presence all work together – especially when integrated with traditional marketing tactics, to drive site traffic and provide real value to patients, their family members and the community.
To read more on why advertising in the healthcare industry is important, click here: http://www.orangelabeladvertising.com/blog/2014/05/why-advertise-healthcare/
To achieve thriving brand leadership, a business leader must think long term, see beyond the current state of the company, and be fearless in the face of change. For OLAA client, Heather Petersen, CEO of National Merchants Association (NMA), exhibiting these characteristics has provided the determination to achieve long-term goals and has brought NMA’s vision to life. Along with being an educational resource for the latest rules and regulations of the electronic transaction processing industry, NMA is also one of the fastest growing merchant service providers in the world.
When NMA reached out to OLAA, the firm had already achieved a core level of industry brand awareness. However, to fully tap into their potential and continue to grow in such a fast-paced industry NMA understood the need for a more aggressive and coherent marketing strategy to drive brand loyalty and capture additional market share. Through the Orange Label ProcessTM, OLAA developed a 2014 campaign theme and execution strategy to powerfully position NMA in the high-risk niche of their industry.
“High-Risk? Done.” This became NMA’s core message – a bold, focused, and confident power statement that strongly resonated with prospective Independent Sales Agents (ISA) and Independent Sales Organizations (ISO). To drive this theme, OLAA developed a strategic marketing execution strategy that implemented powerful trade show and print advertising presence utilizing NMA’s revitalized marketing message.
The tradeshow components were designed to be a branding vehicle and increase engagement with potential merchants and agents. In order to do this, OLAA supported NMA’s messaging and marketing tactics by developing the “GoPro Giveaway,” implemented at each tradeshow. Marketed through a strategic direct mail and e-blast campaign that tied in NMA’s newly launched ProAgent Partner Program, NMA created more excitement, enhanced booth presence, and increased vital face-to-face communication opportunities with ISO’s and ISA’s.
In addition to tradeshows, OLAA negotiated and secured premium ad space in niche print publications. These trade magazines were selected through customer feedback obtained from OLAA’s View From the FieldTM.
“I see a company that is aggressive in a positive way; NMA appreciates marketing and advertising. As a result, they’ve been able to differentiate themselves through a powerful marketing campaign. They are changing their industry by how they have embraced market leadership.”
- Kelsey Phillips, Integrated Advertising Executive
Heather Petersen has a clear vision of where she is taking NMA. By embracing OLAA’s aggressive marketing strategies and tactics, NMA is successfully cutting through industry clutter and mundane tag lines to differentiate themselves from their competitors and present a clear and effective message to their current and prospective customers.
“NMA’s vision is clear. Their willingness to invest in success, their energy to make the vision real, and their drive to deliver the best product and service is what makes them a Thriving Brand Leader.”
- Wes Phillips, Agency Principal, Integrated Advertising
When it comes to annual planning, how do you begin conversations to manage goals set by your organization’s strategic vision while also achieving marketing objectives and satisfying physician demands? It’s important to identify what to focus on and when, considering the financial and political landscape of the short and long-term.
The questions below will help to focus conversations for fiscal year planning and determine the service lines to be prioritized and promoted.
- What service lines have been profitable in the previous fiscal year?
-What service lines generated positive cash flow in the previous fiscal year, or have potential to generate positive cash flow in the next fiscal year?
-What feedback has been shared from key physicians and/or the executive team regarding messaging, media vehicles or service lines that they believe deserve more attention?
-Has any positive or negative feedback been shared regarding any previous campaigns?
-From a business development perspective, what service lines will be growing and/or changing in the next fiscal year?
-Will there be any new key announcements to the community?
-From a competitive perspective, what service lines have opportunity to shift market share to your facility?
Not only will these questions focus strategies up front, they will also arm you to answer the age old question: “Why aren’t you promoting MY service line?”
Just like marketing and advertising, the healthcare industry is always evolving. With advances of medical technology, research and knowledge, healthcare professionals are able to save, prolong and improve millions of lives. In fact, since 2010, 43% of deaths worldwide occur after the age of 70, compared to 33% in 1990. With life expectancy increasing and the aging population growing, healthcare is a topic that is of great importance to many.
The Affordable Care Act has pushed progress towards cost effective care that produces the best possible patient outcomes, and with new procedures being constantly tested and introduced, healthcare providers must adopt the latest, most effective treatments to be able to compete. This means that many healthcare providers have similar services and offerings, which is both a benefit to the community, and a challenge for differentiating oneself in the marketplace.
Working with many healthcare clients, Orange Label has 3 tips on how to position a healthcare provider as an industry leader in a sea of service uniformity:
1.) The Brand
It starts with the brand of the hospital as a whole: the mission and vision, logo, visual identity, core messaging, positioning, etc… When a brand is consistent and recognized by a community, the reputation of the brand impacts the individual service lines.
2.) People Matter
Offering a higher quality of care is a key differentiator in the healthcare industry, and for most, quality is defined by the experience. Experience in healthcare is emotionally driven, personalized by nurses, administrative staff and physicians that interact with patients. When demonstrating this human element, it is often best translated through authentic language.
“People rely on their own experiences or the experiences of others they trust. Testimonials are a way to connect these concepts in a way that is relatable.”
- Michelle Torr, Sr. Integrated Advertising Executive
“Your brand isn’t built by what you say. It’s built around what other people say about you.”
- Mary Ellen Kubik, Integrated Advertising Coordinator
Learn more about patient testimonials and how to leverage the power of patient stories: http://www.orangelabeladvertising.com/blog/2014/05/nuance-2-testimonial-promotion-in-a-world-of-patient-privacy/
3.) Highlight the Tangible
With every service line, there are several tangible differentiators that influence a patient’s hospital or medical facility of choice. These factors can include location, physician, technology, clinical studies, awards, centers of excellence and/or research institutes. Each of these factors should be communicated in a clear manner on educational and reference-based marketing materials such as brochures, one-sheets and especially websites. (Read more on best practices for hospital websites: http://www.orangelabeladvertising.com/blog/2014/05/the-role-of-websites-for-hospitals-and-healthcare-organizations-2/ ). These materials are key tools that prospective and current patients utilize to learn about the specifics of a medical provider, treatment method and service offerings.
However, how these tangibles are prioritized should be customized for the service at hand. For example, for emergency and urgent care, where medical attention is immediately sought by patients, location is often the biggest influence. Alternatively, with major surgical procedures like joint replacement, patients are willing to travel further and location, while a factor, is of lower importance.
Enjoy these tips? Learn more about the impact hospitals or medical groups can make by investing marketing and advertising: http://www.orangelabeladvertising.com/blog/2014/05/why-advertise-healthcare/
Just as people grow, so do companies and their brands. Yet even with normal change, the indications that an established business or organization should reassess and recalibrate their name, logo, positioning, messaging and/or visual identity can be fuzzy. So how do you know when a rebrand is the next step, or when a simplified brand refresh or marketing strategy revamp is the best course of action?
Regular checkpoints proactively address the brand’s position in the market, and should occur when…
…there has been (or will be) a diversification in products or services. With additions or changes in offerings, a stagnant brand may misrepresent the customer experience. This causes confusion and lack of trust with consumers, which doesn’t support long term relationships or brand loyalty.
…the company is establishing groundwork for growth. On a larger scale, if a company is expanding its geographic footprint or broadening its audience base, the brand strategy must reflect the bigger vision and represent the values as a whole.
…there has been a change in leadership. New leaders often come with new ideas and direction, or at least a variation of what’s been in place to date. When the brand doesn’t align with their vision, there is no longer internal buy-in. This leads to lack of brand consistency internally, which translates directly to lack of external brand power.
…the company is losing market share. A decline in sales can indicate a loss of brand relevancy and the rise of a competitor whose brand, products or services resonate stronger with customers. To maintain an edge and reclaim market share, it’s imperative to analyze the source of the change and respond in a strategic manner.
…the industry has changed. From electronics and software, to healthcare and even fashion, business segments change as technology advances and new generation’s behavior evolves. Companies must keep up to date to survive industry development, and the same goes for their brand and marketing strategies.
The decision to rebrand is challenging, involving a significant amount of time, energy and emotion. Yet, the rewards of reinvesting, at the right time with the right people involved and with the right approach, are substantial. The opportunity is a powerful brand that resonates with strategic leadership, is believed by internal audiences, embraced by consumers and a successful organization that truly achieves thriving brand leadership.