Healthcare Research – At a glance

Getting started: Ask yourself questions

Once more, companies have started spending extensively in market research. Indeed, in September 2011, the American Marketing Association reported that marketing research firms enjoyed a much-needed revenue upsurge. That, after a disappointing period of survival-versus-growth mode, when most businesses were firmly ensconced. Healthcare Research has some nice tips on this.

In comparison, over the last several years the healthcare industry has remained strong. It competes successfully for the business of customers against any industry, as it is more critical than buying the newest tech gadget or luxury car that good health and well-being continue. Healthcare organizations are also well-practiced in conducting surveys on patient satisfaction and utilization, as well as community evaluations.

And yet, many companies, including healthcare, still fail to take lessons gleaned from marketing research to the next level by, for example, understanding the experiences of their customers — daily habits, daily expectations and top priorities. In fact, many often feel as though research initiatives go largely unnoticed within the communities they serve. What could be the cause?

Messaging: While one group may be responsive to your current message, there may not be another. Considering if your words express what you want, start with a look at your own expertise. For example, MD Anderson, whose medical center is located in Houston , TX, is synonymous with care for cancer around the world. Indeed, its mission is clearly stated to “eliminate cancer in Texas, the nation, and the world through outstanding programs that integrate patient care, research, and prevention.” In evaluating your own messaging, start with one simple question: What do you want people to say when they walk away from your facilities?

Customer Track: Consider the everyday path typical of customers who know you and those who don’t. This is essential in marketing talk to understand the steps in the “buying” process-pre, during, and post-when consumers are most open to influence. Comprehension of the community-at-large provides another dimension to this monitoring mechanism of relation to healthcare organisations. Ask yourself: What is it that my society wants?

Public Relationships: Even provided with data from the most comprehensive studies, when their messages are not conveyed effectively , organizations will see little success in reaching their public. It starts with messaging, but continues to deliver those observations with the tools. A changing media landscape raises questions regarding the efficacy of planned awareness campaigns. The continued role of social and mobile media also increases the number of ways to reach consumers and communicate with them. That often leads to a shot-in-the-dark strategy that is gaining little attention. Now remember this: Where did I see investment returns?

Brand Consciousness: What Is It?

Creating a positive reputation at the birth of every brand is top-of – mind. But consciousness is a term that should not be de-prioritized throughout a brand ‘s life and evolution. In fact, awareness studies should be conducted periodically to take a pulse and measure against benchmarks already set.

Not only do you need to be sure that people are aware of your life, but you also need to know their positive or negative views of your organisation. A study of attitude and awareness helps you to keep track of how well you know people, and what they think of you. It also enables you to change your messages to accentuate the positive, resolve the negative and over time build your brand.

Change in Perspective: Who are you missing?

Start with those with little or no information, rather than spending the bulk of time assessing the more encouraging group of respondents who both know and like you the best. It is with them that there could be the greatest opportunity. Begin by doing a gap analysis that will further identify who you are attaining as opposed to who you lack. In other words, a gap analysis analyses the gap between actual and future results, so you can create a roadmap that will explain how to close the gaps. Ask yourself before we move on:

  • Who would we miss?
  • Why do we lack those?
  • Aren’t we where they are?