Healthcare marketing and advertising entails a certain amount of risk. Always has and always will.
So the challenge for modern healthcare practices and practice owners facing the new consumerism and intense competition is how to achieve practice and professional goals with a limited element of risk.
Many practitioners are uncomfortable with the need to market their services. For some practices, just surviving is the greater risk. As a rule, most practitioners are risk-adverse. But some element of risk is a business fact of life. Successful practice owners seek to understand and limit risk. In fact, effective marketing is a risk reduction strategy that protects the practitioner’s practice, answers the competition and helps achieve defined practice goals.
It turns out that the biggest risk is not taking any risk. But it is sound business to minimise risk in a results-based marketing system.
The cornerstone components include a tested and proven methodology and a trackable approach.
- Proven Strategies: Much like the practical side of patient care, learning from the experience of others provides valuable insight. Proven and specialised Healthcare business consultants like Ideal Practice are a great resource.
- Marketing Plan: Create a goal-based strategic plan; one that is specific, written and quantifiable. The absence of a plan increases risk. Marketing planning is similar to the “exam, diagnosis and treatment recommendations” process. It begins with clear objectives and goals, utilises SWOT analysis, applies other planning tools, and identifies the best strategies and tactics for the current situation and goals. Most importantly, the plan provides for a budget that sufficiently supports achievement of the goals.
- Effective Implementation: These are the carefully orchestrated action steps that apply the dedicated resources to the defined strategies and tactics. Experience, knowing what works and what doesn’t work, helps guide implementation, increase efficiency and enhance Return-on-Investment (ROI).
- Evaluate Results: Testing strategies and tactics before roll-out, and measuring results provides data to measure ROI of results-based marketing. In addition, the performance data guides adjustment to “push the winners” for greatest effectiveness.
It is important to visualise these four elements as a circular system. It’s a cycle that returns and repeats. Marketing and effectively reducing risk is an ongoing process, not a singular event.
Regarding risk in business, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said… “In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”