With provisions of the new national healthcare plan ready to take effect, some media companies might wonder whether hospitals will bother to allocate a marketing budget anymore. An analysis of the industry recently written by Brad Seitter at TVB shows hospitals will be advertising specific services and at specific times of the year. The report also shows that, for now, TV remains the top influence for consumers who have a choice when it comes to healthcare services.
Seitter points out that hospitals do engage in seasonal marketing campaigns. For example, during times of insurance open enrollment periods, hospitals will advertise to consumers. By promoting their services and physicians, hospitals may be able to win new potential customers who are deciding which insurance plan they should choose. Hospitals also advertise services that face competition and are subject to consumer choice. This might include mammography clinics. One key season for mammography is October, National Breast Cancer Awareness month. Similar 'choice' services include the emergency room and maternity departments. Hospitals face plenty of competition on these fronts and a campaign that positions an institution’s unique strengths can increase patient traffic.
Numbers from the TVB/The Future Company show that TV holds far more influence over consumers than all other media formats when it comes to awareness, interest, consideration and purchase want. With respect to intent to purchase, here’s how various media types influence consumer hospital choice in the local marketplace:
- TV 35%
- Newspaper 5%
- Radio 2%
- Email 2%
- Internet Search 2%
- Outdoor 4%
- Other 5%
Based on the information in this report, media companies and sales reps will likely be taking a fresh look at the local hospitals in their markets and preparing their pitches to sell more advertising.[Source: Seitter, Brad. A Prescription for Improved Hospital Sales. Tvnewscheck.com. 28 Sept. 2012. Web. 8 Oct. 2012]