Changing Your Healthcare Marketing, Service Over Product,

Most Of Our healthcare marketing is product based, how can we change it to service based?

By Geoffrey Cooling

It is obvious from many conversations I have had that many of us are unhappy with current marketing strategies. Many feel that our healthcare marketing leverages product and actually hurts us as healthcare professionals. In fact the structure of our business actually drives this home, the bundling versus unbundling argument.

So how are we to change our marketing practices in order to reverse this situation? We currently tend to market products, offers on products, open days around products. We will need to reverse this process, so what do we market in that case. More importantly what will you have to do in order for it to make sense as part of your healthcare marketing strategy?

If we dismiss product we are left with, the audiological testing process, aftercare and ongoing service and Patient outcomes. So of those what can you leverage and indeed how can you leverage them? In order to use the audiological testing process in your healthcare marketing strategy you will have to consider unbundling to give you a structure to leverage. Are you ready to do that?

If you are not, give over whining about product defining us and we are professionals etc. If you are, then you need to start considering the terms of reference you will use. Full audiological work up, efficient and in-depth audiological testing, thorough and comprehensive audiological work ups from fully trained and qualified healthcare professionals!

I am afraid they are all a bit tame for me, I want to hear and believe them as a prospective Patient. But is it enough for me to bite? I don’t think so. So maybe we use that as a leader, what can we introduce as a closer, as a real call to action? Okay aftercare and ongoing service, unless your unbundling they really don’t have a defined value. They are also something that most Patients expect off the bat, so no not a closer, but certainly a strong filler.

So we are left with outcomes, how are we to market outcomes. How can we market them with real power, real pull, leverage them as a major part of your healthcare marketing? The answer has got to be proven outcomes, because people trust proven outcomes. Proven outcomes can only be ones that are proven by testimonials. Testimonials, if done properly are very powerful things. They have the ring of truth, they are real people giving you their seal of approval.

Testimonials are a closer, a good in-depth testimonial would make me bite. Consider it for yourself, how do you make purchase decisions? I would say I research quite deeply, I would respect reviews and testimonials from people I trust. If none of my network have an opinion I will search out the opinions of users. I take it that you would do something similar, in fact I believe most people would.

In fact if you look at the forums that our prospective Patients are using, you will find they are doing just that. So testimonials can indeed be a powerful closer,  but, there is always a but, only if leveraged and deployed properly as part of your healthcare marketing strategy. Are you leveraging testimonials, if not will you leverage them?Do you want to move away from product? Because even if you don’t, testimonials still have massive value in your marketing activities. 

Regards

Geoff

About Geoffrey Cooling

my name is Geoffrey Cooling and I am the author here at Just Audiology Stuff. I have been involved in the Hearing Healthcare Profession for several years now. I initially worked as a Hearing Healthcare Professional for a large national retailer in Ireland. After several years in Practice I was approached to work for a manufacturer, where I was employed for five years. I am now the Co Founder of a business called Audiology Engine. We design websites, undertake content marketing and generally look after everything digital for audiological practices. I am also a contributor to many hearing profession periodicals and websites. I have written two commercially available books, The Little Book of Hearing Aids which is written for hearing aid consumers and Audiology Marketing in a Digital World which is written for Audiology Practice Owners. They are both available in Paperback and Kindle versions on Amazon. I also write for consumers on the website Hearing Aid Know, which is a website with the mission of demystifying hearing aids, their types and their technology. I have a great interest in commercial strategy as it applies to Healthcare in general and specifically to Hearing Healthcare. I also have a great interest in the psychology of sales and human interaction. I have been involved with social media for some time, both personally and professionally. I find the engagement and discourse on some social media channels fascinating. I instituted social media strategy for the company I worked for as an experiment. That experiment soon spread throughout the company and I am proud to say that the company is probably one of the most active in the industry. I would like to point out that all views, opinions and thoughts here are mine own. Unless of course they have been planted by the pod people, you just can’t take your eyes off the pod people. Those views do not necessarily reflect upon any views or opinions held by my employer, if I ever get another one. I think that our industry is in the middle of a time of huge change, I think that the change will be forced by both internal and external pressure. I think that private Independent Healthcare Practices will have to be smart and lithe of feet in order to meet these changes. I hope that some of my blatherings are of benefit to those Practices, Independent Hearing Healthcare Practices need to survive. I believe that if that occurs it will be of real benefit to Patients. I hope that I, and my writings will play a small part in their continued success.

2 Comments

  1. Geoffrey,
    Very nice article and perceptions that lead to the value of the “testimonial”. I completely agree that a testimonial, and sharing of a truthful and positive experience, can be overwhelming in a referral being more comfortable in seeking us to care for their needs. Good job!
    I look forward to following your blog and posts.
    Rich Reikowski, Au.D

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