Having a quick look around as a regular consumer of products and services, there is no doubt that the 21st century approach to marketing has seen a seismic shift over the last few years. The emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic further propelled this shift as lockdowns around the world forced the hand of many businesses to not only reconsider their marketing strategies, but their operations as well.
In 2020, talk of the ‘new normal’ meant that businesses had to find ways to work remotely and approach their target customers from afar. This trend was best illustrated by Statista recently when the UK saw the percentage of online retail sales shoot up earlier this year. While the decrease in figures was noted, this was possibly attributed to the lockdown relaxing and more consumers ventured outside to spend.
At the time of writing this blog, we are in the midst of Lockdown 2.0, not more than eight weeks away from Christmas. Perhaps we can extrapolate the percentage trends following what we learnt from the recent past?
Spikes in trends as a result of significant global events aside, there is no debate that the trend for eCommerce was already present. So, what does this mean for medical and healthcare? The trend is coming for you too.
Emergence of Enabling Technologies, Demands and New Opportunities
There has been a lot of interest in enabling technologies this year, especially in the medical and healthcare sector. The pandemic has made it so that seeing a doctor online is more mainstream than ever before. The rapid evolution of artificial intelligence (AI), demand for wearables and adoption of telehealth services (using computers or mobile devices to access healthcare) are all buds of an emerging market.
Here are some interesting figures from Connecting the Dots, by Globalwebindex, a report on consumer trends for 2020:
- 51% of internet users across the UK and US would like the ability to find doctors and make appointments online
- 50% would like the ability to consult with a doctor by a phone/video call
- 48% would like the ability to order prescriptions through an app
- 43% would find use in wearables that can monitor health
- 42% would like health tracking apps to help manage their health
This report was released in 2019; pre-pandemic, as we know it. With how things stand today, we are no longer looking at the “wanting the ability to…” stage of consumer demand, we are at the precipice of needing sustainable health technologies that serve the needs of society.
So, how do we go about marketing medical and healthcare in a cacophonous world of marketing?
1) Analyse Your Industry Landscape and Your Ideal Customer
Regardless of how groundbreaking a product or service is, by the time it has reached the market, there will be other options available to choose from. By identifying them and how they differ from your existing offering, you have the opportunity to process where you stand against your competitors and have the chance to improve your competitive edge.
By doing this, you will also be able to identify who your ideal customers are and the trends that impact your demand. This provides you a systematic foundation towards your marketing strategies.
2) Deep Dive Into Strong Brand Identity and Messaging
Odds are, your product or service solves an existing challenge or problem faced by your target market. In a world where there are more than one way to address a problem or an issue, how do you stand out against the others?
This comes down to how you speak to your target audience.
Medical and healthcare can be quite an emotive market because it strikes a cord with a person’s wellbeing, aspirations, lifestyle and even stability of their social standing. When they look for a solution to address their medical and healthcare needs, they need to be able to trust and relate to it.
Key things that you should consider for strong messaging in medical and healthcare.
- What are your key messages? Is it consistent enough for your ideal customer to recognise them and easily point you out from the crowd?
- Does your messaging speak to your customer? Are they streamlined in a way that makes it easy for your target audience to understand?
- What is your unique selling proposition? How does your offering differ from other industry players?
- Does your messaging inspire confidence? Are you addressing the concerns of your ideal customer?
- Have you considered the lifestyle implications of your offering?
Visual branding identity matters in medical and healthcare too.
- Do your website and marketing materials convey calm and confidence?
- Do you have a distinct visual style that is easy to recognise?
- Are you consistent with brand identity across all marketing platforms?
With the above considerations, you have the foundation towards a robust marketing strategy. However, it doesn’t end there.
3) Look at Building an Effective Website for Your Needs
If your website functions just as an online brochure to your business offerings, there is more than can be done to achieve better results.
Going back to Statista’s findings at the top of this blog, there is a greater demand for eCommerce than ever before. The pandemic has effectively re-engineered the way we do business in this century as more companies make the transition online.
In order to stay competitive, a website needs to be built with clear purpose and strategy. For more information, take a look at a blog I wrote recently on the 6 reasons to invest in your website.
4) Identify Your Key Marketing Platforms
Marketing channel options in this day are more diverse than ever before. The reason for this is because digital marketing has made it possible for businesses to streamline marketing efforts to their target with needlepoint precision. This also means that there is no longer a ‘one-size-fits-most’ solution for your intended audience.
A robust marketing strategy should involve both online and offline tactics to establish trust and relationships with your ideal customer.
SEO and Online Advertising
With good analytics, a strong SEO and social media marketing strategy, businesses have been able to put themselves in the eyeline of their target market consistently and effectively. My colleague Antonios wrote a valuable piece about SEO marketing recently.
Social Media Marketing for Medical and Healthcare
While it can seem intimidating or be a bit of a minefield, it doesn’t mean that you should shy away from adding social media marketing for medical and healthcare. The approach and strategy will be different from marketing general consumer goods.
However, when used correctly with the ideal customer in mind, it can provide qualitative insight on the psyche of your audience and provide a strong platform for education.
Chat With the Digital Glue Team
Digital Glue is a full-service marketing agency that has expertise in various marketing services. Reach out to one of our team members at Digital Glue. We are here to help and we would love to hear from you.
Download our latest SL/CED webinar and its resources all about the importance of creating a marketing plan for your business.