What do you expect?

 July 22, 2015

Back to the basics: Health Care Marketing Revisited

What do you expect?

You’re about to commit a big chunk of your resources to a marketing communications campaign.

Good for you.

A marketing communications campaign steered by a sound objective, guided by a well-though-out strategy, and executed with creativity can lead to great things.

The question is, what great things do you expect? As the old saying goes, if you don’t know where you are going it doesn’t much matter how you get there. Or, by extension, know when you’ve arrived.

Every time you devote funds to marketing communications, you ought to have a clearly defined goal. Which isn’t always easy in a loosey-goosey venture like advertising. With few exceptions, it’s not a direct cause-and-effect situation, and what you do today may not pay off for quite some time. But, that’s no reason not to identify a destination, map out a route to get there, and establish milestones along the way.

It is good to remember that turning a prospect into a customer is a complex process that requires several stages, from awareness to understanding to trial to satisfaction to retention. Realistically, marketing communication can only influence the first two steps: awareness and understanding. Those steps, of course, lead to the others—but advertising can only get a prospect so far, and after that, many other factors come into play that marketing communications cannot influence, let alone control.

Your first realistic expectation, then, ought to be creating awareness. That can be measured, and changes can be monitored with good research.

Achieving awareness will get you off to a good start. Expect nothing less.

Next time: Why spend the money?

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