By Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer
In a quiet moment, every doctor will admit that some people simply make better patients than other people. On a good-to-bad scale, the “bad news” people sink to the bottom slice of chart. They represent a (hopefully) small percentage of your patient-population. For one reason or another, they are uncooperative, unpleasant and/or difficult. It seems like they don’t want your medical help.
Typically, the largest group is the middle-grounders…generally cooperative…neither pleasant nor unpleasant. For the most part, they are cooperative and compliant. And the outcomes tend to be just “OK”—nothing exceptional.
Then there’s the tiny, top-tier of patients that you wish you could clone. These are the people who—in addition to having pleasant personalities—are proactively involved in their health and wellbeing. They regard their healthcare, and their medical providers, as part of a team; a partnership in wellness.
Medicine is a Profession, Healthcare is a Business…
Likewise, in a similar quiet-moment confession, a healthcare advertising agency will tell you that there’s a matching range of clients. These include individual doctors, medical groups and hospitals. And the top-tier—the truly best clients—are among the “smartest people in the room.” What’s more, they enjoy a significantly greater measure of success.
It’s difficult to describe the ideal, marketing-savvy client-agency relationship. There are a lot of moving parts and expectations. But, in random order, here are a few of the important elements of chemistry for success. Marketing-savvy clients, and their advertising agents, understand:
The partnership perspective: An advertising agency and a healthcare client join forces to succeed in business. A partnership is the basis of an enduring relationship with mutual goals.
Marketing drives business: The client wants to market for success and growth. Client and agency actively pursue specific goals, strategies and tactics to generate revenue opportunities, including new, repeat and/or referral business.
Marketing is a profit center: Savvy clients invest the budget and resources for measured, results-driven returns. This is a business investment, based on measurable performance, and not an expense item.
It’s a highly competitive landscape: A new practice, or a well-established provider, is competitive minded and operates in a changing business world. Other healthcare entities are aggressively and proactively working to capture part of your market share for their own.
Forward-thinking: Growth-minded businesses set goals for success. They look past the immediate competition, think beyond the horizon and envision a path to the next level. They enjoy the challenge and plan to win.
Allows for reasonable risks: Every business opportunity or reward includes some degree of risk. Business-smart clients and their agency partners carefully weigh the risk/reward ratio and work to minimize risk.
We have the good fortune to work with many marketing-smart, “ideal” clients, which is both a challenging and rewarding experience. And, frankly, working with some of the “smartest people in the room” demands the best from us.
The product of this mutual trust and partnership also makes our work better and produces a greater level of success. If you’d like to discuss a business relationship, please give me a call at 800-656-0907. We enjoy meeting marketing-smart professionals.