I know from experience in working with healthcare marketing clients throughout Australia and internationally that every situation requires a unique and proven approach to achieve closely defined marketing goals and objectives.

Below is the final common-to-classic healthcare marketing and advertising mistakes that I have encountered over the years.

Insufficient (or excessive) budget. There’s nothing more wasteful in healthcare marketing than expecting a grand ROI payback from an inadequate budget. The “too-little” money, time and effort is squandered, and the non-existent results are opportunity lost. Conversely, a needlessly lavish budget is wasteful from the start, steals from other plans, and that instantly erodes ROI. Take guidance from experienced professionals and be prepared to adjust your budget, either up or down, for greatest efficiency. If you’re not measuring, you’re probably not marketing.

Tracking is as important as doing. Advertising and marketing efforts are not a clinic expense. If they have a plan and a purpose, they are an investment that requires tracking and a quantifiable Return-on-Investment (ROI). Before you launch any strategy and tactic in your healthcare marketing plan, create a system that carefully accounts for results. How are you tracking the number of new patients, for example, or the change, hopefully the increase in revenue for specific cases or procedures? Without a measurable ROI you’ll never know what works or doesn’t work.

Failure to test first. Even the best of plans and marketing projects can encounter unanticipated obstacles upon rollout. And among several advertising options, one or two might have the potential to significantly outperform the others. Testing your creative and advertising tools can provide answers, anticipate performance and reduce financial risk. Whenever possible, use an A/B testing regimen to identify strengths and weaknesses before your full-force (or large scale) medical marketing or advertising rollout.

Learning from and avoiding painful mistakes… Any of these pitfalls can do serious damage to your otherwise-carefully-considered plans. On the other hand, these mistakes are relatively easy to avoid or correct. Producing measurable results, the quantifiable product of professionally guided medical marketing and advertising is challenging at best.

Successful people learn from their mistakes; the most successful people learn from the mistakes of others.