Lewis Carroll, Yogi Berra and the “Any Road” Healthcare Marketing Fantasy

lewis carrolIn our marketing consultations with doctors and hospitals throughout the nation, there’s usually a moment when we talk about the need to work from a marketing plan. While this seems like a fundamental concept to many, it’s surprisingly common for some people to ask us: “Do I really need a plan? Can’t I just market?”

We like the roll-up-our-sleeves attitude. But, in order to reduce risk and maximize profit in healthcare marketing, the fact is you do need a marketing plan. Here’s why…

Lewis Carroll said it this way: If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there.

In our complimentary video series about healthcare marketing, I use a medical practice analogy. When a new patient comes into the office for the first time, what do you—the physician—really know about them? You may have heard their chief complaint, but that’s about it. But, based on such little information, you would not just start treating the patient.

You would likely do a proper examination and perhaps tests in order to thoroughly understand the situation. You can’t make a proper diagnosis until you have enough information. Only then can you formulate a treatment plan that gives the patient the best chance for a positive outcome.

Why would you do any less when it comes to your own success? In formulating a proper marketing plan, you need to do a thorough exam of your own business, come up with the right marketing diagnosis, the right marketing treatment plan…and a positive outcome.

Yogi Berra put a different ending on the line: “If you don’t know where you are going, you will wind up somewhere else.

So, to answer to one of the most common questions we hear from clients: “Yes, you do need a marketing plan.” And that’s usually when we get the second question: “If I really need a marketing plan, how do I put it together?”

For the answer to that question—and a ton of additional marketing insight—you’ll want to see our new educational video series. (By the way, this engaging seven part series is free.) In the first video, I’ll share with you exactly how we organize a marketing plan and apply the same concepts to your business. Our first video explains How to Use Scientific Marketing to Attract Patients.

 Lonnie Hirsch

Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer & Creative Director at Healthcare Success
Over the years Stewart has personally marketed and consulted for over 1,457 healthcare clients, ranging from private practices to multi-billion dollar corporations. Additionally, he has marketed a variety of America’s leading companies, including Citicorp, J. Walter Thompson, Grubb & Ellis, Bally Total Fitness, Wells Fargo and Chase Manhattan. Stewart co-founded our company, and today acts as Chief Executive Officer and Creative Director. He is also a frequent author and speaker on the topic of healthcare marketing. His personal accomplishments are supported by a loving wife and two beautiful daughters.

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“Despite practicing in a hyper-competitive market, our new-patient counts are double what they were for the same time period last year. Hiring Healthcare Success was one of the best business decisions I have ever made.”


– Jonathan Calure, MD