Good marketing is critical in healthcare – but it can be a challenge for multilocation providers. Whether you’re merging with another company, taking over an existing clinic, or building a new site, patients and vendors may be confused about the structure of your organization. To help you communicate your brand story, review these recommendations from AMNY Health Marketing.
1. Gather Your Team
Before you dive in, think about who you will need at the table to ensure your branding campaign is a success. This could include:
- Site directors
- Marketing managers
- Graphic designers
- Social media managers
- Web developers
- IT specialists
You may have the required talent in-house, or you may need to bring in an outside firm with healthcare marketing expertise.
2. Define Your Goal
Many healthcare organizations have similar goals: improve patient satisfaction, reduce wait times, or increase referrals. With multilocation practices, there’s often an added layer: patients need to see the healthcare provider as one unified, trustworthy brand. Inconsistent branding across different locations can be a hindrance. At the same time, if your company has recently taken over a practice or clinic, you may want to retain some elements like the site name. Take time to reflect on the values and key concepts you want to communicate to patients, and let those guide your brand campaign.
3. Do Your Research
Don’t rely on your observations or colleagues’ anecdotes. Rather, make sure that your branding decisions are backed by substantial data and market research. These can include:
- Stakeholder interviews
- Patient and employee surveys
- Competitor research
Thorough research will help you better understand your target audience and how to reach them, as well as your position in the current market and what you can do to get an edge over your competition.
4. Decide on Your Brand Architecture
Brand architecture is simply the framework you use to organize each of your locations or services. For example, some hospitals also operate a network of clinics. Each clinic might have a distinct name, but its logo or branding can communicate its connection to the hospital. Some healthcare practices distinguish their sites geographically – they may have one brand, but differentiate locations with cardinal directions or town names.
5. Create Your Brand Identity
Now that you are armed with research and have your architecture in place, it’s time to communicate your brand identity. This includes:
- Brand offering: What unmet need does your organization fulfill, and what sets you apart from your competition?
- Brand voice: How do you communicate your value and your services? What language and tone do you use when communicating with current and prospective patients, insurance partners, suppliers, and other stakeholders?
- Target audience: Who are you trying to reach, and how does your branding help you communicate with that audience?
Regardless of where you’re located, your target audience likely has multiple options for where they get their healthcare. Your brand identity should help potential patients see you as the best choice.
6. Define Your Brand Guidelines
Whether you already have established brand guidelines or you’re starting from scratch, consistency is key. An organization’s brand identity is expressed through:
- Marketing copy
Your brand identity should be consistent across your website, your social channels, and all your print materials. Develop a brand kit that your creative team can easily access and share across the organization so that your public-facing image is always consistent.
7. Launch Your Brand Campaign
Once you have all these pieces in place, it’s time to launch your brand. Create a detailed plan and timeline for the rollout, and communicate the launch across all departments so that everyone knows what to expect. Create a checklist of all your print and digital assets so that you can ensure everything is updated. And don’t forget to give your team some time to celebrate – branding is a major undertaking.
Build Your Brand with Help from MassLive Media
Need guidance creating a compelling, consistent brand story across all your locations? MassLive Media is here to help. Our healthcare marketing capabilities can help you attract new patients, grow your web presence, and improve your visibility. To learn more, contact us today.