Five-Star Differentiation: Nonclinical Experience Twice as Important as Clinical Reputation in Patient Choice of Hospital

red carpetHospital marketing is increasingly using hospitality to differentiate their brand.

News reports say hospitals are looking more like luxury hotels. And we’ve posted articles about facilities throughout the nation that have linked their hospital marketing, advertising and public relations messages to exceptional “patient experience.”

These nonclinical patient benefits include spa-like women’s centers, family-friendly patient rooms, massage therapy, hotel-like room service, free Wi-Fi, concierge assistance, valet parking and more. “In crowded hospital markets, especially in areas populated by well-insured patients, such [patient] amenities play an increasing role in the competition for market share,” the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) reported last week.

It’s a growing marketing approach of increasing importance. Significantly, the NEJM study found that: “Patients themselves said that the nonclinical experience is twice as important as the clinical reputation in making hospital choices.”

The Emerging Importance of Patient Amenities in Hospital Care speculates about why amenities matter so much. “Perhaps patients simply don’t understand clinical quality. Data on clinical quality are complex, multidimensional, and noisy, and they have only recently become systematically available to consumers. Consumers may be making choices on the basis of amenities because they are easier to understand.”

Differentiation is a fundamental marketing concept and experience-based differentiation is an effective means to achieve a competitive advantage in hospital marketing and advertising. Read more about successful branding strategies in healthcare, medical and hospital marketing on our website.

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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