A hospital system here in central New Jersey has been one of our clients for many years. To support many of their high-profile doctors who are affiliated with the hospital, the public relations department will often work with the physicians to write topical health and wellness articles under the doctor’s name.
These informative and timely articles are then submitted to various media outlets. Recently, we were assigned to write an article for a pediatrician focusing on surprising dangers in the home for young children.
Last year we began introducing simple and direct 30-second television advertising spots forclients targeting specific geo areas here in New Jersey. To keep costs down, but reaching the central New Jersey viewing market, we chose Cablevision to air our ads.
A year later, we are more than pleased with the results.
MPW Communications developed the script focus, worked with our client to select a real-life on-air testimonial and even added our client to the commercial.
We carefully selected specific cable channels that suited our target demographic to air our 30-second spot and even determined the optimal time of day each ad would run.
We monitored results and changed targets seasonally.
Finally, we negotiated lower advertising rates per ad run and successfully added additional channels to the ad run at no additional charge.
Certainly, today’s marketing strategies are focused primarily on the Internet. However, the vast majority of us still spend plenty of time watching television.
In today’s Internet media arena, a single timely and interesting article can be placed in a variety of marketing avenues to increase visibility, boost your reputation and attract new clients or patients.
For example, if you are a physician marketing your private practice, a well-timed, 500-word article about a healthcare topic in your medical specialty can win placement in several areas and immediately be seen by thousands of viewers such as:
Yes, yes, we know. Print media is dead. We hope our competitors keep believing this so that our team here can continue to win very valuable (free) editorial placements in these publications.
Regional magazines are especially important for our healthcare clients targeting a local patient base. 201 Magazine is a perfect example. This is a northern NJ monthly targeting upscale Bergen County residents. In addition to this popular edition, they offer several additional spin-off publications including 201 Health.
We began pitching them in mid-2011 and in early 2012 they called us for an interview with our Bergen County client and its new pain therapy treatment. The end result was a three-page feature articlewhich included on-site photos, an interview with the lead doctor and two of his patients. The article was beautifully written and the images were right on target. Keep in mind, this article was published at $0 cost to the practice. (Incidentally, the cost for one full-page ad is close to $5,000).
Best of all, people suffering with chronic pain in northern NJ now know this non-invasive pain treatment is available just minutes from home. Due to the success of this placement, our client is interested in launching an ad campaign in the magazine next year.
For some years now, we’ve had the pleasure of working with the Frogbridge resort and Windows on the Water banquet facility. Once the recession dug its ugly teeth in a few years ago, consumers and businesses collectively pulled back and stopped spending. But Windows on the Water, a higher-end catering facility for weddings and special events, did exactly the opposite —
They embarked upon a very expensive redesign of their large facility. From interior decor to outdoor hardscaping (from entrance to lakeside patio) to upgraded cuisine, they expanded, reconfigured and renovated.
And it paid off. Just a few years later, bookings have more than doubled. Their advertising budget has actually decreased because customer word-of-mouth is so positive — their marketing campaign is practically viral (although the healthy Twitter and Facebook accounts we manage never hurt).
What does this all mean? Sometimes in business, you have to keep driving ahead when everyone else has taken the detour. Because, in the end, those who take the biggest leap of faith during a time of uncertainty, will reap the biggest reward. Congratuations on your success, Windows, you’ve earned it.
We have placed another client on the weekend health program, “To Your Health” hosted by Dr. Derrick DeSilva. We are big fans of News 12 and their continual effort to share all the resources our region has to offer. This time around, our surgeon client talked about the benefits of bariatric surgery. We encouraged him to appear with one of his articulate patients who also happened to be a nurse at one of the hospitals where the doctor is on staff.
HOSPITAL MEDIA SUPPORT
This turned out to be a very fortuitous effort as the three hospitals our client is affiliated with will also run the programs on their internal and external social media outlets, expanding our outreach tenfold.
If you are marketing a product or service to a regional audience, don’t forget about television. Once your PR person has booked your appearance, devote some time to undergoing some basic media training. Then, when it’s time for your close-up, you’ll be ready to shine.
NO TELEVISION AD DOLLARS EXPENDED HERE
Best of all, don’t forget the cost of this powerful media opportunity. $0.
A simple and direct way to reach new patients is to offer patient-targeted tips and advice, referred to as doctor-to-patient or (DTP) marketing, like this recently published article. This piece was optimally publicized by our client using the following distinct avenues:
Health and Wellness sections of area newspapers
Doctor and affiliated hospital websites
Offered as a take-one in the practice office
Note the practice’s contact information is conveniently provided at the end of the article–
It’s not often you have the opportunity to help play a role in a revolutionary new medical treatment that can literally help millions of Americans. Rutherford Allied Medical Group is one of just five certified providers of this pain-free, drug-free treatment for many types of chronic pain including cancer, chemotherapy-related, diabetes pain and particularly RSD (reflex sympathetic dystrophy).
We established and currently manage Rutherford Allied Medical’s–
Advertising program including print and banner ads
Beginning in January of this year, our campaign to reach patients who are living every day in pain, beleaguered by failed treatment therapies, reliant on pain medication and justifiably mentally and physically fatigued, a true challenge. But we moved forward supported by the Rutherford Allied Medical’s firsthand evidence that Calmare Therapy can successfully minimize or even alleviate pain in the most treatment-resistant patients.
And, unexpectedly, these patients became raving fans. From around the country, they asked how they could help spread the word to other people in pain. Since that time, we have created info packets and memos and FAQs and anything our “Calmare Patient Ambassadors” might need to tell other patients and medical professionals that a solution was available.
And, today, with exciting new medical studies by the Mayo Clinic and other prestigious medical communities documenting that Calmare is a viable solution to treatment-resistant pain, the word is out.
What best practices can we share about marketing a newer healthcare brand?
Be true and honest throughout the process
Tell the story of your brand through your patients’ voices
Welcome your patients support and bring them into the project
Use video as often as possible to let patients easily access other patients
Build your patient social network forthrightly and with a health dose of politeness (pretend the target patient is your grandmother).
You’re savvy enough to realize the importance of updating your practice blog, garnering ‘likes’ on Facebook and connecting with patients and colleagues on Twitter and LinkedIn. But it is a time sensitive and time consuming effort because what you post needs to inform, help or educate your supporters.
And you don’t have time to do this yourself nor does your staff.
Welcome to MPW Communications. We’ll step in and hit the ground running on all cylinders as soon as tomorrow. Need to boost your visibility by also posting on blogs which are relevant to your specialty? We’ll take care of that as well.
Give us a call to discuss your goals and we’ll get you there. Fast.