Back to the basics: Health Care Marketing Revisited
Why spend the money?
Years ago, a reluctant client likened paying for advertising to “buying a pig in a poke.” He was never sure what he was getting, and suspected the whole business was a bit dubious.
In a way, he was right. Despite all the years of research and study and testing, advertising remains an iffy proposition. Outside of direct marketing, it is always difficult and often impossible to determine what your advertising budget buys, and whether the return on investment—if it can be measured—is worthwhile.
It’s easier if you’re selling an often-used and regularly replenished product at retail. Sales can be tracked, compared with advertising expenditures and promotional programs, and, over time, some semblance of cause and effect revealed.
It’s more difficult with big-ticket items rarely purchased, and even more difficult with services purchased on an as-needed and unpredictable basis—such as health care.
While it may seem counter-intuitive, that makes “investing” in advertising even more important. Because when your service is required, if you haven’t established a presence in the prospect’s mind you won’t stand much of a chance of providing the necessary service.
Buying awareness and understanding with advertising buys share of mind. And share of mind becomes share of market. And without investing in the first, you can’t buy the second.
Next time: How do you know?
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