how to find and select the ideal healthcare marketing agency: 8 smart steps

[Podcast] How to Find and Select the Ideal Healthcare Marketing Agency: 8 Smart Steps

By Stewart Gandolf, Chief Executive Officer
Ed Bennett, Founder of MarTech.Health

Ed Bennett, Founder, MarTech.Health

What’s the best way to choose a healthcare marketing agency?

While I (Stewart) have plenty of ideas about the process of picking the best healthcare marketing agency for your hospital, medical practice, or healthcare network, I thought it would be valuable to ask my friend and venerable colleague, Ed Bennett, to share his opinions during our latest healthcare marketing podcast.

As an original inductee to the Healthcare Internet Marketing Hall of Fame, a former Director of Web and Digital Services for the University of Maryland Medical System, and as the Founder of the MarTech.Health Directory, Ed brings tremendous experience in deciding which digital agency is best-suited for specific healthcare marketing requirements. In our podcast, Ed and I discussed both the basic criteria and critical issues involved in the medical marketing agency selection process.

You can, 1) play the recording of our entire conversation here, 2) listen to our discussion via your favorite podcast directory, 3) read my summary post below, or, 4) scroll down to find the full "How to Select a Healthcare Marketing Agency" podcast transcript.

Other streaming services: This and other episodes of the Healthcare Success podcast are also available...
iTunes | Spotify | iHeartRadio | Google Play | Pod Bean | Tunein | Radio Public | Stitcher

The First Step in Agency Selection: Begin with the End in Mind

Ideally, the agency selection process should yield a true client-agency marketing partnership. To that end, define the marketing goals you are trying to achieve.

  • Growing key service lines?
  • Getting more patients?
  • Effectively reminding your current patients to return, to schedule necessary appointments?
  • Communicating to patients that your healthcare offices and medical professionals are open for business?
  • Increasing your healthcare brand presence in the communities you serve?

Yes, there are so many types of marketing agencies, vendors, and healthcare marketing resources available, and it is often difficult to know where and how to begin the process.

What led you to decide you need a new digital agency for your healthcare organization or medical enterprise?

You’ll need to get a clear picture of how this agency will fit with your team and organization. Are your marketing goals new to you and your team, and do you need a digital marketing vendor that can guide you through the latest best practices?

Define and Refine Your Digital Marketing Objectives

Be aware of errant preconceptions. “In the digital space,” Ed observes, “things change quickly.” Invest time in discussing your business goals, mission objectives, and KPIs.

Test Your Assumptions

“Sometimes (someone choosing) a prospective agency or vendor has a strong opinion that really should be examined,” Ed said.

“Do you need a big marketing agency, one that has a huge, structured process and can pursue dozens of different initiatives simultaneously? Or do you need an agency that is an expert across specific types of marketing projects, that knows how to execute very well in those areas, and is small and agile enough to respond to your needs rapidly?”

Overcoming FUD Factors

Ed Bennett also tells us: “There can be a lot of ‘FUD’, Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. The key is to understand what is essential and what isn't,” he said. “A lot of what I try to do is get down to the nuts and bolts, to make sure that vendors answer the questions that matter. So, what we find sometimes is that you find the right vendor is going to be the one that's asking fundamental marketing questions right off the bat.”

Is Healthcare Expertise All That Matters?

As our own agency’s name suggests, Healthcare Success partners with organizations of all types, from hospitals, health systems, practices, Pharma, medical devices, healthcare networks, ,and health plans, delivering medical digital marketing and healthcare advertising agency services.

As you’d expect, our clients choose us because we specialize. At the same time, many of these same clients love it when someone on our team shares additional insights gleaned from experience in marketing for clients in other verticals (e.g., insurance, financial services, law, hospitality, and automotive).

Ed agrees. “When I first started at the University of Maryland Medical System, the default mode was for a marketing agency 100 percent focused on healthcare. Over time, however, that attitude began to change, particularly with commercialization and where patients were treated with a ‘consumer experience’ focus.”

Is Technology Reducing the Need for a Local Partner?

We asked Ed about whether many of his hospital clients still demand a “local partner?”

As Ed explained, everyone “is becoming comfortable with working from home and using tools like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, or WebEx.” This, by the way, is not just for healthcare, but for nearly all businesses everywhere. But as we become more comfortable with this type of working environment, the feeling that we have to have a “local agency” is going to diminish greatly.

Making sense of RFPs/RFIs -- the Request for Proposal/Information Process

The entire RFP (request for proposal), RFI (request for information) process can be difficult and challenging for everyone involved. While this work can be quite useful, these efforts can also wind up being a frustrating, monster task. We asked Ed for his thoughts about the pros and cons of RFP/RFI.

“Certainly most large organizations have some mandated proposal process to follow,” says Ed. You can't just hire anyone or spend a $5 million budget for your agency search without some process to make sure your choice in the right one (and that you’re not wasting time).

A diligent agency proposal process assures that:

  1. Vendors/agencies getting your RFP are the best fit for that RFP, and that
  2. The RFP you send out is a document that a) agencies can reasonably respond to in a timely fashion, and b) gives those agencies all the information that they need to respond effectively to your request.

There needs to be the right balance and understanding of relationship building. Plus, you need to be able to give agencies enough information so that they can make a good recommendation.

This means detailing your current situation on the RFP, and detailing the drivers necessitating you to look for another agency. Make sure the vendor understands exactly what business goals your pursuing, what issues are on your agenda, and what your expectations are.

Healthcare & Medical Marketing RFPs & RFIs: An Agency Perspective

As a healthcare marketing agency, Healthcare Success weighs every opportunity based upon several criteria, including likely fit (“chemistry”), marketplace realities, and economics. We are far more likely to participate in the RFP process when:

  1. The healthcare organization’s team starts the process by requesting an exploratory phone meeting,
  2. The process includes an RFI as an interim step to ensure a potential fit, and,
  3. The process feels informative, transparent, and fair.

We respectfully decline obvious "cattle calls" because RFPs take an enormous amount of thinking, time, and resources to respond intelligently. Red flags include receiving an RFP out of the blue without a preceding exploratory call, lack of transparency or clear objectives, 40 competing agencies, or language that makes it clear the client has already chosen a favorite, and the RFP is just an administrative exercise.

For example, about a year ago we received a blind RFP that on page 89 said, ‘We will heavily favor PR agencies based within our county.” First of all, we’re not a PR agency. Secondly, we're not even located in their state, let alone their county. We pride ourselves in building successful client partnerships, and these kinds of signals do not foreshadow a respectful, win-win relationship.

What’s more, that kind of process is detrimental to the client as well. Ed agrees that transparency is critical, and those hospitals and other organizations that try to hold their cards too close to the vest are probably shooting themselves in the foot. They're ruling out or discouraging vendors who might've been an excellent match for them. Also, who wants to dig through 40 off-point proposals? It really is best to be as upfront as possible and invest everyone’s time wisely.

More Resources to Help You Find Your Ideal Agency

  1. You can find close to 100 healthcare marketing agencies and other vendors on Ed’s free directory MarTech.Health. This directory is designed for healthcare marketing, communications, and digital marketing professionals, and features profiles, reviews, and other marketing services vendor categories.
  2. You can also hire Ed to consult with you, or lead your agency search. Ed has an incredible wealth of knowledge, and he can help you from start-to-finish. You can reach Ed through MarTech.Health or directly by email to schedule a call.
  3. You can download and review the Healthcare Success eBook, “How to Choose the Right Healthcare Marketing Agency?”
  4. And, you may also contact Healthcare Success directly to explore whether our healthcare agency’s experience could be a good fit for your marketing needs.

Podcast Transcript

Note: The following 'healthcare marketing agency selection' podcast transcript is computer generated and may not be 100% accurate.

Stewart Gandolf:
Hi, everybody Stewart Gandolf here, welcome to our podcast. Today I am pleased to host Ed Bennett, and Ed is a friend of mine and a very respected figure in the world of healthcare and internet. In fact, I'm going to let an Ed introduce himself in a moment. Ed is currently Founder of the MarTech.Health Vendor Directory. Previously, Ed was also with the University of Maryland Medical System. And Ed, welcome to our podcast.

Ed Bennett:
Well, thank you Stewart, pleasure to be here. Thanks for having me on.

Stewart Gandolf:
I mentioned it earlier, you're a legend in this business and you've actually received some recognition. Tell us a little bit about your background, just to give listeners a little bit of context of what your areas of expertise are and how we got to this meeting today.

Ed Bennett:
Sure. Well, that's normally a four hour story, so I'll try to keep it down to less than a minute. I got into the internet in the mid 90s back when it was just starting to become the commercial entity that it is now, and really saw that this was going to be a game changer and make huge difference for every person in every industry, across the world. And so I got into it very early, I started my career in a mid 90s helping companies get set up with their first website. And I found that I really enjoyed the process of understanding how the business functions would work on the internet. Although I built a lot of first-generation websites, I also spent most of my time talking to the business owners and understanding what their business was, how it worked and figuring out how that could translate into how the web functioned at least back into mid 90s.

Ed Bennett:
And in around 1999, I left of that consulting type of a business and took a position at the University of Maryland Medical System. And was put in charge of their digital program, building their first website that grill into, of search engine marketing and optimization, mobile, social media, a whole bunch of other things. And was there for about 17, 18 years and then left to start this new business MarTech.Health, which is the vendor directory for our industry focused on healthcare communications marketing.

Stewart Gandolf:
You were going to talk today about how to choose a healthcare marketing agency, which is a topic... Obviously, our firm is an agency, there's a lot of different agencies out there with different areas of expertise. So this will be an interactive discussion talking about your experience with this. So Ed again with his vendor directory at MarTec.Health, and you can certainly search through the list of lots and lots of different agencies and different types of vendors there as well. And also Ed is available if you're looking for more curated ideas, you have a specific request and a specific need you can certainly contact Ed and his contact information will be available on the post. Ed, tell us about, when we were talking offline a little bit, we were talking about when you're approaching this task, where I need a marketing company or a marketing agency, where do I even begin? Help us through the process here.

Ed Bennett:
Well, this is one of those problems that has lots of different dimensions and you have to weigh out lots of different factors before you could figure out what the right choices. So how I try to frame things up to start with, is to get a better understanding of exactly what is the goal or the task that you're trying to accomplish. What drove you to feel that you needed a new vendor or maybe a vendor for the first time for a particular type of service or maybe a new vendor, if you're dissatisfied with your current one. So what were the factors that drove you to that? And then look at what exactly is it that you need to accomplish with that vendor. And then how does that fit in to where you are as an organization?

Ed Bennett:
For example, are you fully staffed with lots of really excellent professional people who understand the nuances of the things that you're trying to do, and you simply need a vendor that can provide a set of services and you've got the staff that understands how to make use of them. Or are you really new to whatever the thing is you're trying to accomplish and you need a vendor that can really help guide you into the best practices and hold your hand as you get up to speed to it and you're able to take it on. So those are some of the factors that you start off that you have to drill down in a conversation to figure out, what are the limitations and advantages that you're looking for in a particular vendor, to help figure out which is the right one for you. I can stop now, I could go on for another half hour. But I mean that's the very first step in figuring out where do we start.

Stewart Gandolf:
So let me ask with the mindset when you're talking to people, when they're considering a new vendor, what are they thinking? Are they worried about making a mistake? Are they trying to get a sense of what even matters or what their criteria are? What are the common mindsets people would have as they begin to approach this process?

Ed Bennett:
Well, many times what I'll find is that folks will have a certain set of preconceptions about what they're trying to accomplish with the new vendor. In the digital space things are changing so quickly and all the different things that matter change all the time. That it's very difficult sometimes to really understand exactly it is what it is that exactly what it is that you're trying to do. So a lot of my questions are to truly drill down to that and get to get a very concrete idea of what you're trying to accomplish. So someone may come to me and say, "We need a mobile app." And so the natural conversation it's all, "Why do you think you need a mobile app? What are you trying to accomplish?" Many times that conversation will lead us to decide that a mobile app, isn't what they really need, they just think they need it.

Ed Bennett:
But there might be something that they could tweak that they're doing already that would solve that particular ask. So a lot of times it's a matter of weighing what is the expertise that you have on hand and balancing that against what you need out of the vendor. So many times you'll find that you might have staffed that understand exactly what they're trying to accomplish. They need someone to just help them get started and provide the right infrastructure. Other times you'll find that they need someone who can really hold their hand and walk them through the whole process.

Stewart Gandolf:
What do you find are some of the biggest challenges to finding the right vendor? Again, there's certainly a lot of people out there, what are the things that hold them back?

Ed Bennett:
I think it can be very confusing because in the digital space, there can be a lot of FUD, fear, uncertainty and doubt. As you're trying to understand concepts that are being bandied about to figure out what is really important and what isn't. So a lot of what I try to do is really get down to the nuts and bolts and make sure that the vendors are answering the questions that really matter. So what we find some times is that you find the right vendor is going to be the one that's asking those questions right off the bat, instead of just saying, "Sure, you want a mobile app? We can build a mobile app for you." So a good vendor will be taking a step back to make sure that what they offer really is a good fit for what you need. And then if it's not then guiding you to the right person.

Stewart Gandolf:
What are some of the mistakes people make in your experience when they're looking for the vendor process, what are some of the really common things that you can predict before you even get started?

Ed Bennett:
I think a lot of times some of the factors that folks may come in and have a very strong opinion about that really should be examined or things like, what is the size of the organization? Do you need someone that is big and has a huge structured process and can do 100 different things or do you really need someone who is an expert in a very particular niche executes on that really well and is small and nimble and can quickly respond to your needs. So a lot of times that's one of the first set of questions, is to figure out what is it that you exactly in terms of the size of the organization and the diversity of the services they offer and the focus that they have. What are those factors that really would be the right fit for you?

Ed Bennett:
My directory, I will ask vendors to pick the services they offer but then give that a weight, do they focus 100% on one service or do they... A broader agency that looks at a dozen or so different services and offers some, all equally. So many times you're looking for that one person who is 100% laser focused on one niche. Other times you wants someone that can pull in other types of services that might be needed as you go along on the project. So a lot of that just really gets back to how comfortable are you that you can... In what you're asking for so that you can get what it is that's really going to be a good fit for your needs.

Stewart Gandolf:
Now Ed of course, most of your experience is with hospitals and health systems and of course our readers certainly comprise of hospitals and health systems, but also smaller and larger enterprise level practices, pharma device, lots of different categories. But as this relates to the hospital market specifically, although I think these principles apply across the board, let's talk a little bit about healthcare experience. And in your experience at least from the hospital and healthcare systems side, do you find that people are commonly really want that health care experience? Maybe some are trying to think out of the box and don't want healthcare experience, maybe some of the pros and cons on what you would advise on that particular topic.

Ed Bennett:
Yeah, it's a really important question. Back when I first started at the university of Maryland Medical System in the late 90s and early in early 2000s. The default mode was, we need a vendor that's 100% focused on healthcare, because no one really understands health... We're special, we're different than every other industry, so we need a vendor that all they do is focus on healthcare. That really started to change as the internet became more and more important to all the marketing and communications efforts that healthcare organizations did. Especially as the commercialization of healthcare came along, where people were treating as a consumer experience. They expect to see star ratings for their doctors. They expect to be able to do online appointments and all those convenience things that we're comfortable now, we expect from our organizations, they now expected hospitals to do that.

Ed Bennett:
So then hospitals realized, well, maybe we should bring in vendors who have a lot of experience in other industries, so that they can bring to us the best practices from those industries and helped us fit those into what we do in healthcare. So I think right now I'd be very surprised if any large organization said, "We need a vendor and they have to be 100% focused on healthcare." I really think that right now, most organizations are going to look at that and say, "We need to find a balance. We need someone who knows healthcare but also can come back to us with their experience and best practices in other industries."

Stewart Gandolf:
Another question that often comes up is, depending on the scope of what needs to be done, right? So sometimes somebody or people are looking for an agency of record, where they really want to have the general contractor who's handling most, if not everything. But certainly in the hospital market at least, oftentimes it's something more specific, they may have either act as their own general contractor. They may have an agency of record but they want to work where somebody is doing the SEO and somebody else is doing paid social and somebody else is doing something else. How important is for the vendor to be able to play well with the other people that may be involved, both internal resources and external resources?

Ed Bennett:
Well, I would say that's absolutely critical. I mean the days of a vendor coming to you and saying, "We're going to sell you this product and here's a system and all the data is inside this walled garden and nobody else can ever see it and we have to guard it very carefully." Those days are over. Pretty much the default now is that, the expectation is that any vendor you work with should be able to set up an API to be able to kick the information that they're managing for you to other systems that you have. And I'd say that's absolutely critical, because without that you're going to be spending a lot of time and money on a vendor to do something for you, but you're not going to be able to leverage the value of that service to the other systems that you might have. So whether it's a CRM that needs a talk to Epic and be able to manage the information flows there, or any other system you can think of, that integration is really just completely a must have now.

Stewart Gandolf:
Not very long ago, people were very focused on finding partners that were local to them. And clearly in something like, for example, enterprise software that just is impossible, there's only one or two or three major vendors. But the local issue for example on the agency side, how important is that to your... Did you find that some clients really, really want to find somebody local and maybe give up some of that vertical expertise and others find that it's just fine to work with people across the country? And how is that evolving obviously, with technology and the needs of pandemics and all those kinds of things, how is that evolving?

Ed Bennett:
I'm smiling because, if you would ask me that question a year ago, I'd probably have a slightly different answer. My answer then might've been, if you're looking for an agency of record where you're going to have lots of meetings talking about big picture things about branding and logos and the whole scheme of things at a marketing function has to deal with, then probably having someone who you could meet with in person on a regular basis without having them to fly across the country and stay at a hotel, someone who might be local would have a big advantage. However, things have really changed and I think that as we become they get more comfortable with working from home and using tools like Zoom and restore in the early days of figuring all this out, not just for healthcare but for all businesses everywhere. But as we become more comfortable with this type of working environment, I think the feeling that we have to have someone local is going to diminish.

Stewart Gandolf:
Let's talk about the whole marketing agency RFP and RFI system. Certainly that can be very effective, it can wind up being frustrating, a monster task for everybody involved. What are some of your thoughts on this pros and cons better ways of doing it than others?

Ed Bennett:
Well, certainly most large organizations have some mandated process that you have to... You can't just go hire somebody, spend $5 million a year with them without some process to make sure that they're the right fit. Well, usually an RFP, an RFI of course is what you do before that, when you're trying to figure out the vendors. So I think that that's not going to go away. A large organization that's being financially stable and responsible is always going to have a process in place to make sure they're getting the right vendor. And they're following all the rules that they should be following in terms of the people that they give the contracts to. However, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't be doing a lot of work ahead of time to make sure that one, the vendors that you're sending this RFP to are the right vendors. And two, that the RFP that you send out is something that they can really respond to and gives them all the information that they need.

Ed Bennett:
One of the things that I see many times from the vendor side is that the RFPs that come in are really light, they don't really give enough background information so that the vendor could really understand where the customer's coming from. So I think there has to be a good balance between understanding that there's a relationship that you're building with this vendor or whichever vendor you ultimately select. And you need to be able to give them enough information so that they can make a very good recommendation. So for example, that means really detailing on the RFP, what your current situation is and what are the drivers forcing you to look for another agency. And making sure the vendor understands exactly what's on the table, what you're coming to them in the relationship with and then what your expectations are. So that's much larger than just a straightforward RFP that doesn't have a lot of meat on it.

Stewart Gandolf:
From our point of view as an agency, that's... I'm usually much more excited about is when I can get a sense that there is a RFI at the beginning, request for information. And in that step, what that means to me at least and I would love to get your feedback on this is, okay, great. We're not having a cattle call, we're making sure that the people that are going to invest the time and energy to create the RFP, because not only is it a massive amount of work for an agency, for example, to respond. Especially if it's a formal RFP process with that you're qualified and it's a reasonable number of people competing. So from my point of view, the RFI process is a really, really important first step and of course, from the... It's also a lot less to review on the hospital side or the health system side. Do you agree with that? I mean, how important are RFIs?

Ed Bennett:
Totally. I totally. I mean, I think that these structured processes have a place and the RFI really should be there to make sure that you're qualifying the vendors, that first of all, the RFI gives you information. I mean, request for information, it's going to help educate you on the customer on what is possible, because a lot of these vendors are going to come to you with solutions to things that you've never even thought of. Some of them might be very useful, others may not be appropriate to you, but there's going to be a lot that you're going to learn from an RFI.

Ed Bennett:
And once you have that, then you're in a better place to make an RFP that it's actually much more relevant to what you actually need. When I did vendor selection projects at the University of Maryland, I definitely had used those two steps. I did an RFI first, actually would bring in a consultant who had expertise in that particular area to bring down the number of vendors that I was sending the RFI to. And then based on those responses, then that would bring it down to a smaller number of vendors that would receive the RFP.

Stewart Gandolf:
Again, some people may have to legally accept it or put the RFP out to the entire world but from an agency standpoint, if you're one out of a 100 agencies, the question is do I even want to get involved with this? From my point of view at least lose some good people or good prospects, because it seems so daunting. Do you have any advice on the number of people that you are soliciting and should you be up front with that? What are some of your thoughts there?

Ed Bennett:
Well, I think you should be upfront, I think many times the vendors are left out in the cold and that the customers are coming to the vendors and they feel like they're in a complete position of power and they can be as opaque and mysterious as they want in the RFP. However, a really good vendor may not need to deal with that obstruction or problems. They're going to have customers coming to them that are actually looking for the right vendor and are giving lots of the information out that will help that vendor make the right choice. So I think that companies and large organizations that try to hold their cards to colorless close to the best, are sometimes they're shooting themselves in the foot.

Ed Bennett:
Because they're ruling out vendors that might've been a great match for them. So I try to be as upfront as possible, there definitely should be some phone calls and conversations to help qualify the vendors before you even send out an RFI. Why should you be wasting anybody's time if that company isn't the right fit for you. So I think the more work you can put up front with that discovery, the much more likely you are to have a better outcome.

Stewart Gandolf:
Again, the agencies are busy too and once in a while, I'll get an RFP blind, I don't know who this is. And I remember the one I got about a year ago which was, they were really looking for a PR firm. And if you looked on page 89 in [mice type 00:22:05] it said something like, "We will heavily favor PR agencies in our County." Well, first of all we're not really a PR agency, secondly we're not in their county. So I had to read through 80 pages to get to that and it's a waste of my time and it's a wasted their time too, it doesn't make any sense. And so I think that the idea of communicating and being a little bit more upfront will lead to a better outcome. And I guess I have a comment on this too and I don't know how you can describe this, but really we're presuming you're looking for a partner typically. If you're starting a partner that way, that's kind of a right way to start.

Ed Bennett:
I mean, I can tell you that every vendor selection project where I was running, nobody got any surprise RFPs or RFIs. I would have the phone calls, that first introductory call, tell me about your company, what do you do, what do you focus on, what don't you focus on? And the folks that would get an RFI or an RFP from me, they'd already talked to me. They already knew, they'd asked the questions, I'd answered, we had a good conversation, so it wasn't a surprise. To me if I was a vendor and I received a blind RFP or a blind RFI, that would definitely go a bunch of lower on my priorities than someone who would actually made the effort to talk to me and make sure that I was the right fit.

Stewart Gandolf:
It's really rare that when we get something like that blind, where they haven't talked to us and it's usually not only have they not talked to us, they refuse to talk to us. And so they're asking us to spend hundreds of hours preparing for something and they won't even tell us who, if anybody, how many people are playing. And usually when we get those things, "Opportunities." There's dozens of agencies that are out there and we just pass, we're too busy. We want to be a partner and I think that at the end of the day the key issue here is, without being obnoxious we only have so many hours in the day. And if we feel already, there's this obscure need and we're just guessing and throwing proposals over the castle wall, that's never worked out well in my experience in anyway.

Ed Bennett:
And it probably won't work out for the customer either. Which has always mystified me, that you would take that stance as a customer to say, "Well, I'm not going to talk to them, they're going to respond to the RFP, it's on them." That's not how I want to start a partnership.

Stewart Gandolf:
From the agency standpoint, I can speak for the industry to some regard on that matter, is that it's a pretty common issue and from the agency side is even respond to this and again the more... The problem is again, you could lose somebody who's really great, because they feel this is already starting off in their wrong foot, it's not exciting to them. Are there any other final thoughts or any key takeaways or things we haven't talked about, that you think are really important for people remember?

Ed Bennett:
Well, I guess I'm going to pitch my a directory, because there's one really big factor, very positive factor in our industry. And that is how the folks inside our industry, the people running marketing programs, inside healthcare organizations. I've been going to conferences with these folks for over 20 years and I find that it's a community that really helps each other out. So I go to conferences, I see people talking in the hallways, they're talking about their experiences with different vendors, they're helping each other out. And my directory is designed so that anyone can come in and see reviews and ratings from their peers, talking about their experience with these different agencies. So I think that's really critical and whether you go to my directory or you just pick up the phone and you talk to your colleagues across the street, getting that feedback will be very, very valuable to you.

Stewart Gandolf:
Ed is currently founder of the MarTech.Health-

Ed Bennett:

Stewart Gandolf:
... it's a website directory. And then we talked offline again about, a new and enhanced version of your business where, for those hospitals that feel maybe overwhelmed or they really need someone to call those vendors. And they want those personal insights of all that experience that you have for over the years and would like it to help you get you involved in a bigger way to curate their list and cover the short list and hold their hands through these very, very important decisions, you're open to that as well, correct Ed?

Ed Bennett:
Definitely, definitely. The first thing they should do is simply reach out to me via email or pick up the phone and call me, I'm happy to have that conversation and see if what I offer is a good fit for what they need. And then we can figure out the process from there.

Stewart Gandolf:
Very good. And your contact information, Ed?

Ed Bennett:
So on my website, I'm at [email protected].

Stewart Gandolf:
Well hey, Ed this has been fantastic, it's always fun to talk to you.

Ed Bennett:
Same here.

Stewart Gandolf:
Again, Ed he's a member... Were you the first member of the Healthcare Knight Hall of Fame?

Ed Bennett:
I was one of the first back when it was first launched, I think 2012. And it was a real honor to really be recognized that way.

Stewart Gandolf:
Yeah. So again, Ed is just a delightful guy, super knowledgeable, he's been around the block. So Ed, thank you.

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