Marketing healthcare poses challenges that your colleagues in other industries rarely face. Steep government regulations on what you can say in your marketing messages feels like it stifles the creativity enjoyed by CPG brands like Skittles or Dove, but there is still room for great marketing it just takes a little bit more finesse. Remember these three tips when you’re kicking off your next campaign.
1. Context is Everything
The right message at the wrong time ends up being a waste of your audience’s time and your marketing budget. You need to find moments where they are thinking about their health, and ultimately their healthcare. Pitching consumers about health while they are watching Hulu on the couch is a waste of their time and your marketing budget. Think about opportunities to get your message into places like the produce section of the supermarket, fitness centers, or pharmacies where people are already in a health-conscious mindset.
2. Ditch the Jargon
Healthcare can get very technical, but your marketing messages shouldn’t. In order for your message to be retained it has to be easy to understand. If your audience encounters an ad they don’t understand they will just move on and forget you. They are not going to invest time trying to decode the meaning of “arteriosclerosis” while grocery shopping.
3. Make a Statement
Few industries address such serious issues as the healthcare industry. Peoples lives are literally on the line and your message should reinforce that. Don’t ever sell yourself short. Healthcare decisions, like financial decisions have far reaching effects on your audience’s future. Just make sure you don’t cross the line between appealing to their concerns and appealing to their fears. Nationwide’s “Dead Kid” Super Bowl 49 commercial is an excellent example. Even though the dangers were real it severely damaged the brands reputation and cost the CMO his job.
By Mike Tatum