7 Healthcare Marketing Trends for 2017

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Marketing trends for the healthcare industry emerge with each passing year. The transition between fee-for-service healthcare and allowing healthcare consumers to have more of a say in the industry drives marketing strategies for hospital clients. Doctors and healthcare professionals are continually becoming more involved in strategy and the decision-making process, but it’s still crucial for marketers to recognize that upcoming marketing trends are worth watching and potentially following to market your healthcare client effectively.

1. Personalization is Everything

Healthcare consumers are tired of the old communication methods of marketing. Consumers want individualized content as if an email, ad, or other form of marketing is speaking directly to that consumer. Personalized messaging is continually generating a larger interest in healthcare promotions and an increased likelihood of response.

Display advertisements can indicate whether a consumer is interested in your client’s services or website by retargeting ads to these healthcare consumers. To stay relevant, marketing methods need to continually identify consumer interests and deliver content in a personalized, timely manner with content that is specific to the consumer.

2. Social Platforms are Marketing Platforms

Social media should be included in your healthcare client’s marketing plan this year because it can increase engagement among patients, providers, and the hospital with relevant and informative content. Evariant reports that 57% of a patient’s decision to receive treatment is influenced by a healthcare facility’s social media platforms. When a healthcare facility shows interest by forming connections on social media with potential patients, patients are more likely to trust that facility before visiting the facility.

Though platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are still favored by social media users, other social apps like Snapchat are increasing in popularity and are quickly evolving. Not only are these apps convenient, but they allow users to use the apps for multiple uses. For example, users are able to communicate with one another through real-time chatting. Improve your healthcare client’s social media presence by continually staying up-to-date with the social media platforms that patients are currently using.

3. Search Engine Research is the Norm

According to The Digital Journey to Wellness, 77% of consumers research healthcare facility and provider information before scheduling an appointment. Of these patients, 44% perform research via mobile devices, so it is important to consider how these consumers are viewing your healthcare client’s content on not only laptops and desktops, but mobile devices as well.

Traditional forms of advertising are becoming less effective towards healthcare consumers due to the research conducted by search engines for symptoms and illnesses, a tactic that drives nearly three times the visitors to healthcare websites. Marketing content in today’s world must be new, innovative, and shareworthy.

4. Focus on Patients and Payers

Healthcare marketers are not only targeting patients, but healthcare providers and payers as well. Further, healthcare providers are the most important group to target. Based on a study by MM&M/Ogilvy CommonHealth, 93% of healthcare consumers who are targeted are actually healthcare providers due to the act of buying, prescribing, and recommending products or services that healthcare marketers advertise.

What is surprising, however, is that both patients and payers were only about 56% of the respondents each. This statistic could be due to the shift towards patient and payer decision-making as opposed to physician recommendations. Therefore, it is crucial for healthcare marketers to increase its target audience to patients and payers and shy away from targeting prescribers, while still keeping physicians in the overall strategy.

5. Market Based on Location

Since research and social usage via mobile device continues to grow, healthcare marketers need to know how to reach consumers by targeting advertisements and search results that are location-based. By targeting consumers based on location, marketers can advertise based on the personal preferences of consumers and even alert consumers of nearby healthcare facilities.

6. Live Video is Louder Than Words

When a healthcare facility increases its video presence on resources such as social media and YouTube, the facility will most likely gain a stronger appeal from its followers than by writing text. This is due to the facility’s ability to share stories on social platforms and create live video that followers can view in real-time. Live video not only allows timeliness and connectivity, but the provides additional educational impact for their followers as well.

7. Programmatic Video Buying

Programmatic video buying is becoming increasingly more important. According to Healthcare Success, programmatic video buying will make up most of a client’s digital video budget. However, the programmatic videos will speak for themselves and turn out to be more cost-effective than other traditional marketing measures. With the right software, marketers can gather data and produce effective media strategies and budgets to accommodate this marketing tactic.

Are you a healthcare facility that is in need of marketing services? BlaineTurner Advertising uses proven healthcare marketing strategies to deliver measurable results in the industry. For experienced healthcare marketing, contact BTA today.

Resources:

Gandolf, S. (2016). 10 Healthcare Marketing Trends to Watch in 2017.

Girardi, C. (2017). 3 Ways Social Can Improve Healthcare Marketing Efforts.

Lockard, P. (2017). 5 Healthcare Trends to Watch in 2017.

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