Hooray For Healthcare

Why did healthcare become a dirty word? 

As a popular boogieman in the last election cycle, healthcare got beat up pretty good. In marketing circles, healthcare has always been the ugly stepchild to the alluring worlds of fast food, beer and fabric softeners. 

It’s hard to understand, given that few (if any) of us would place anything above the need to be and stay healthy.

My theory? The truth of healthcare is hard. 

Healthcare is profoundly personal. It’s us at our most vulnerable -- whether we’re confronting an illness, wanting to stay healthy for our family or extending our vitality. Traditional healthcare marketing has struggled with these realities. 

Fortunately for all of us, a new healthcare marketing model is emerging. A model that’s rooted in the well-being of people (us) and our need to make better, more confident decisions. This is also a model that can bring out the best in us as marketers.



New healthcare marketing model

A host of market forces has pushed healthcare marketing to conclude that traditional practices are no longer valid. As a result, healthcare marketing is in the midst of an exciting transformation -- a shift from product-focused to people-focused brand building. 

This new model is helping to break old habits, and it’s creating a new openness to change and innovation.

So what’s new?

  • The increasingly active role we’re playing in our health
  • The fact that marketers are building brands that create value by helping
    people be well
  • The need for more generous ideas and marketing strategies
  • The importance of durable brand ideas that fit meaningfully into people’s lives 

It’s inspiring. Still, the complete transformation of healthcare marketing will not be easy (transformation never is), and a model can only do so much. Success requires people with the strength and stamina to prevail.

The people who make the model successful

Imagine if your child or mother/father was attempting to overcome an illness or trying to improve or extend their wellness. 

What level of talent and effort would you demand be put into the design of the information they need to be successful? 

I assume you want them to get the best of the best -- that the people producing the work put your loved one’s needs first and put their heart and soul into the work.

It’s true that navigating the complexities and regulations can be daunting. And the industry’s reliance on traditional marketing machinery is frustrating.

But where else can you wrestle with this level of complexity, develop stunning creative and help people in profoundly important ways?

At our best, our efforts give voice to people who need it most.

That warrants the resilience and fortitude to negotiate the complexities.

Healthcare marketing affords each of us an opportunity to help people make better, more informed and confident healthcare decisions.

In summary: bring your best

We’re excited by the opportunity that the change in healthcare marketing is creating for folks who wish to use their powers for good. We’re excited that great people with great ideas can accelerate the transformation.

We think our (and your) daughters, sons, mothers and fathers deserve the best we can do.

There are few (actually can’t think of any other) industries that impact people like healthcare. In healthcare we find ourselves at our most profound and human moments.

We are proud to say we work for a healthcare agency. We’re proud to work with people who come to work every day to help people be more successful in their pursuit of well-being.

Hooray for healthcare. 

2 comments about "Hooray For Healthcare ".
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  1. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, December 11, 2012 at 11:23 a.m.

    Healthcare: The margin for error is slim to none. Get stuck with the wrong pair of shoes - eh. Get stuck taking the wrong medication - not so eh. The marketing must be precise as well.

  2. Kelley Connors from KC Healthcare Communications LLC, February 13, 2013 at 3:26 p.m.

    Sorry for the delay in response to my favorite topic. I think the problem lies in the fact that marketing is really close to sellling and selling healthcare gets tangled up in problems like falsifying clinical data..etc. etc. But, as your premise is about transformation, I'm on board. I think if we become more patient-centered, people-centered we can become our own regulators, as we're governed by the emotional realities that healthcare is US. Yes, even marketers "age", care for family, and get sick. I am focusing on midlife women and now women over 50 because we're a highly "invisible" group except to cosmetic companies who want us to look younger. Invite me to your meetings so I can help you focus on women over50. I bet there's not too many there in your organization who advocate for midlife women!

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