Tips and insights on building a stronger healthcare brand.
It’s been a big couple of years for healthcare globally. In 2020, UK healthcare expenditure was estimated at £269 billion – an increase of 20% on the previous year. With this surge in demand, it’s a crucial time for the healthcare industry to build trust amongst stakeholders and suppliers, as well as within the patients they deliver to.
When creating marketing materials, it might be difficult to create collateral which feels authentic and has a true point of difference amidst other competitors in the market – all at a time when it’s especially important to maximise value for money and ROI. With this in mind, we’ve taken a look at how different marketing channels and activity can be explored to create materials and communications that really resonate with your audience – driving home exactly why they should place their trust in you.
Harvesting people’s trust often begins when you can demonstrate your experience and knowledge, which in turn builds brand authority and reputation.
According to research by LinkedIn and Edelman 58% of key decision makers in B2B businesses read one or more hours of thought leadership a week, with 60% saying that thought leadership had led them to awarding business to an organisation.
Writing for Hubspot, Rebecca Riserbato also advises that creating thought leadership content which is educational positions you as “helpful” and enables you to become active in the industry community – so when your reader needs a service you offer, they’ll turn to you as an expert.
So where to start? It doesn’t have to just be a traditional printed whitepaper - although there’s certainly a time and place for those - it’s worth considering what other platforms are available for you to become involved in.
Speaking at healthcare industry events can be a great way of capturing the attention of individuals who are hungry for information and in the mindset to learn. Similarly, podcasts, webinars or educational videos can provide opportunity for you to bring subjects to life in a more engaging way than is possible on paper. Take a look at what competitors are talking about, but more importantly see what your audience is talking about and what they really need; what are their pain points at the moment and what expertise can you offer to help with those? And make sure you remain active on LinkedIn – share any content you create and join in any conversations to strengthen your position in relevant networks.
Be Persistent and Consistent
The Marketing Rule of 7 claims that a prospect needs to read a message at least 7 times before they’ll take action. So with that in mind, you’ll need to work out where and how you’re going to find those 7 points to communicate your message. It’s important to make sure you consider who your decision makers are and what format is best suited to deliver the message – for example, practising staff such as consultants and nurses will have different preferences and requirements to board level decision makers. You can then tailor a multi-channel approach which targets your audience at different opportunities.
So with this in mind, if messages are more believable when repeated, you’ll need to make sure that your message is told consistently throughout. Your audience want to feel confident that they have a clear understanding of what you offer, how it fits with what they do, and how it positively impacts on the care and service that is ultimately delivered to patients. It’s something we considered throughout when working with Subtrakt Health, promoting their PatientPack® App.
Earlier this year, Deloitte documented that there are five forces of potential disruption to the biopharma industry:
prevention and early detection
digital therapeutics, and
With the pandemic having such a large impact on healthcare delivery, your customers will be keen to see innovation throughout your marketing approach. They want to see what you’re doing in relation to new trends, and how you’re continuing to improve your service to evidence that as a company, you aren’t plateauing or standing still.
We recently collaborated with the NHS and J&J on a great initiative set to support patients with colorectal cancer. We developed their existing collateral to have a distinct creative look and feel that resonated with their target audience and stands out from the bulk of usual NHS collateral. We also accompanied it with a suite of animated videos, accessed via QR codes within patient booklets and large format print around the hospitals. By delivering information to patients in a more engaging, contemporary and accessible way, the scheme better provides them with information on pre-op, operation and post-op care – with the idea that patients who are better prepared and better educated have higher success rates following their operations, faster physical recovery and better mental wellbeing.
Face to Face Marketing
Salesforce claim that “68% of marketing leaders believe their company is increasingly competing on the basis of customer experience.”
And with people increasingly craving “experiences”, it’s important to remember the value of face to face marketing in a world that is becoming increasingly online.
Experiential marketing gives your audience opportunity to make a personal connection with you – both as an individual and as an organisation. It gives you opportunity to communicate your brand in a way that’s authentic and genuine, and face to face events seem to have a knack of sticking in the mind of your audience.
The execution can be scaled up or down to suit your time and budget. You could start small and go to networking events or speaking at an industry event. Or go bigger, and exhibit at national conferences (the likes of NHS Confederation). Hosting your own roadshow or event can also be an incredible platform to meet a rapt audience, providing you with the opportunity to be flexible and creative in how your message is delivered to your audience.
Testimonials and Case Studies
For healthcare organisations, choosing a new supplier is never a small decision. When dealing with organisations such as the NHS who are steeped in policy and processes, it can often feel like the easier and safer choice to stick with existing suppliers and products. So how do you get your foot in the door, and open the door to conversations which may help your audience in the long-term – whether that’s by saving them time and money, or by providing solutions that improve clinical outcomes and patient experience?
Testimonials and case studies - whether printed, video or online - are a great way of showcasing previous success stories. It demonstrates firstly that other Trusts or organisations have trusted you, and secondly gives you the opportunity to provide tangible facts and figures that quantify the impact you had. For example – this could include cost savings that were made, the amount of bed days saved, or time savings that were achieved. It’s also worth including quotes from key decision makers that conversationally highlight the positive impact your work had.
We love working with healthcare organisations to help deliver marketing that really engages with your audiences and maximises your return on investment. If you’ve got any questions or would like to chat through any ideas, we’re always happy to talk. You can drop us an email on email@example.com or contact us here.