Picture the concentric rings on a paper target. The “bull’s-eye” center is primary, but "hits" within the other circles contribute to the total score. In medical practice marketing, it’s easy to overlook the fact that for each “ideal new patient,” there are several others around him or her.
For accuracy (and marketing effectiveness) the complete target audience definition should thoughtfully consider these broader circles of influence. Here are some hypotheticals to illustrate possible ancillary marketing targets. Depending on their degree of influence, a medical practice advertising message may be appropriate to secondary or support circles.
From the simple to the complex, every scenario will include “patient influencers” who play a greater or lesser role in the healthcare decision-making process. How do you know who is who? How do you reach them, and what is the message for each?
And perhaps the most insightful resource will be:
4. Have a conversation and ask patients; identify additional and/or less obvious influencers.
A well-considered marketing plan will carefully examine these dynamics, and where it is appropriate, provide educational and/or informational material that supports their role in the decision process.
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