SHR: 3 marketing ways to communicate with patients
Updated: Nov 25, 2020
Communication is one of the most important skills you need in life. As marketing professionals we understand that as much as we’d love that communication to be two-way, it’s often just a transfer of information to a particular target or group. It’s vital that the information is clear, concise and speaks to the target as they expect - think nuanced language or images that make it relevant.
Building brand loyalty and influence is an art that requires a well thought out strategic plan. If everyday communication is challenging, it’s off the charts when it comes to communicating important healthcare issues during a pandemic. Let’s face it, marketing has hardly ever been associated with literal ‘life and death.’
We know we’re not doctors or first responders, and marketing is typically the first to go during budget cuts, but… 2020 has revealed even more clearly that marketing and communications during a crisis, COVID-19, in this case, is especially critical to saving lives. Especially when it comes to inspiring confidence in a product, brand or company. This is a perfect time for that brand personality and promise to align with what and how you communicate.
Using infographics and fact sheets is one way to accomplish this. Not only relying on the words that are used, but also using visual cues and iconography to tell a compelling story that is easily digestible.
Take, for example, your brand personality should be the ‘go-to’ source, knowledgeable, dependable and compassionate. It’s important to communicate COVID-19 information to your target segment of parents, and your goal is to help them have a conversation around COVID-19 safety. Check out a section of a fact sheet that might help you do that while aligning with the messaging strategy.
Factsheets are also easily shareable through website or email marketing downloads or printable for self-serve distribution.
The collective purpose of the medical industry is to keep everyone safe, and patients want you to focus on that goal. Having a healthcare marketing strategy and plan in place will help broadcast the intended message on a larger scale through preparation and implementation of your strategy.
Marketing best practices to consider while planning your strategy are:
Adjust your marketing collateral for each platform you’re visible on
If you send email marketing messages to your patients, send something that will catch their attention like an infographic that will visually help resonate with your reader. Infographics are a great way of distilling the information you want to share in an easy and digestible way.
Be clear with your message
Identify the elements you’re trying to convey, choose the outcome you’re trying to achieve with the message, and make sure it’s communicated effectively. Avoid using jargon or unnecessary fluff that will dilute the intended message. When collateral is needed for multiple languages, be sure to capture the essence of the message and cultural nuances, not just a word-for-word translation.
Transparent communication is the best communication
Navigating a topic like COVID-19 can be tricky. The goal is to roll out the information so that the audience is informed and persuaded. It's best to keep messaging factual and to the point. If you must take a position, it should align with the broadest, most relevant and trusted source - like the CDC in this case.
As marketers, we’ll encourage your team to be clear and transparent about the full picture of what’s at stake when creating any piece of collateral. We know it’s especially important when problem solving for difficult issues and emotional subjects. The purpose is to persuade the reader with critical information that’s easy to understand, actionable, and can ultimately save lives.