Marketing thru the Holidays
By: Tina Bell Director of Marketing, HealthCARE Express ‘Tis the Season to be Sneezin’! The holiday season has officially arrived this week, and with it, so has the opportunity for seasonal colds, flu, respiratory problems, and more. It also means the opportunity to use creative marketing tactics to reach your audience are easier than ever. So what should you be doing to ensure your Medical Practice marketing plan delivers this holiday season? A Recipe for Success Cold weather means it's time to bring out the comfort food. One of the things your Medical Practice may consider putting together this holiday season is a staff cookbook, or a healthy recipe of the week sheet, to share with your current patients. This value added marketing piece can be published in-house and given to patients at check-out or given in the room at discharge by your nurse. After all, when you have a cold, there truly is nothing like a delicious bowl of homemade soup. Need to save money, but still want to share some holiday health tips? Consider posting healthy holiday recipes and food tips on your website or Facebook page instead. Or put together a press release on tips for eating healthy over the holidays and submit it to the local media. Thankful for Thank Yous With Thanksgiving this week, your heart is probably already full of gratitude for all you have been able to accomplish this year. The holidays are a great time for you to also share that gratitude with those who have made you successful. Consider visiting area pharmacies and local doctor’s offices with small baskets of thanks. Remind them you will be open during the holidays – or with special holiday hours – to take care of people throughout the holiday season. If you have occupational medicine in your Medical Practice, the holidays are also a great time to take thank you gifts to some of your largest accounts. During the visits, make sure to ask them if there is anything you are not currently doing that they would like for your clinic to be doing. One of the things I have learned over the years in marketing is you should never stop asking people what they want. Then build your marketing campaign around those desires. Too often as marketers, we build campaigns around what we THINK people want, but we never stop to ask them what they really need. Getting Fit for Success Remember people want to look good for the holidays, but they really want to look good in the New Year. After all the holiday parties have finished, and the calories have set in around the waist line, people will begin once again making those New Year’s Resolutions. If your Medical Practice offers a weight loss, fitness, or diet plan, December and January are the ideal times to being marketing those. Mid-December is typically the deadline for ad placements in area magazines for January issues. Since the holidays also equate to engagement rings as gifts, January and February typically bring on the onset of bridal fairs. These events are unique places for you to promote both your weight loss programs and the fact that your Medical Practice offers travel medicine vaccines. Medical Practice medicine is unique, and you have the ability to market what you do to a wide variety of audiences. This holiday season, think outside the box. Look for health fairs and wellness expos to attend. Make sure hotels and the local Chamber have brochures to send people your way when holiday travelers get ill as they’re visiting family members, and never miss an opportunity to network at a holiday party sponsored by your local Chamber or other business organization.