Growing your telehealth business can be a constant struggle. Although the technology is improving every day and the need for your company’s services are crucial during the pandemic, demonstrating the importance of telehealth to many hospital administrators and healthcare professionals alike remains a difficult task. There are a variety of different marketing strategies you can use to grow your practice, including video campaigns and education of clients, but an underutilized method for selling telehealth today is an effective and strategic healthcare public relations campaign. Here’s a handy guide for developing and implementing a healthcare public relations strategy to help sell your telehealth business.
Let your story come first
There are many amazing uses for telehealth today. The technology is being used like never before to help areas affected by natural disasters and biological quarantines. These and other hazards make for great stories you can share with clients when you stress the importance of telehealth for their business. Understanding this will help you improve your healthcare public relations results.
It’s not enough to get your business out in front and garner excessive attention; you must also present a story, a narrative that will entice your audience and your consumers to remember, respect, and interact with your company in the long term. The story you tell can be based on fact, outcomes, or data, or related to a larger story or challenge. Your story can even demonstrate your company’s unique value impacts the healthcare industry – as long as you have content worth sharing, people will listen and respond in kind.
Find great spokespeople for healthcare public relations
Along the same lines as having a great story, make sure your company has great outward communicators. Many companies today trod out phony spokesmen who tow the corporate line and give no one information they don’t already have or simply don’t wish to hear. Consumers and the media want to hear from interesting characters and be spun an engaging, intriguing tale from top to bottom.
The best spokespeople are not only interesting, they teach their audience about the field they’re working in, through harrowing stories and education about the tech currently present in the field. Your spokespeople should be knowledgeable, articulate, and passionate, bringing awareness to your company and brand while conveying key messages. Being proactive in acquiring great spokespeople is a crucial step to formulating a winning healthcare public relations strategy and campaign. This is a critical part of your healthcare public relations strategy.
Utilize all channels
In the old days, reporters were mostly isolated, preferring their communications come through e-mail so they didn’t have to deal with the average headlines ordinary companies and days would generate. Today, however, social media lets anyone gain access to many top members of the media through platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Your company should be utilizing these channels to spread your message far and wide, garnering a following by using all of the resources at your disposal. Reporters today are looking for a story, an angel to hook more viewers and improve their own company’s brand. Healthcare is front and center because of the pandemic, so be sure to strike while the iron is hot.
Be aware of deadlines
There may be times when your company simply cannot keep up with the hustle and flow of the average workweek. Don’t be afraid to reschedule interviews or other planned healthcare public relations engagements if the workload becomes too unmanageable, as tiring your team will decrease efficiency and dig the hole deeper. Keep in mind, however, that most rescheduling can be avoided by shifting priorities and moving around other dates. Trust takes time to build and even longer to repair once shattered, so always prioritize reporters and other healthcare professionals. Just like your telehealth workers, you must find the time if the time can be found.
Submit for awards
Healthcare public relations campaigns are all about showing off to your peers and the world outside your industry. If your company qualifies for an award, it’s never a bad idea to apply, as each award you receive will generate additional clout and trust between you and your current and potential clients.
The award may also garner media attention and increase word of mouth, expanding your company’s reach and profit margins. Finally, the juries which hand out many awards in the healthcare industries are also potential clients. Putting your new product or service out there for them to see will instantly net you some fresh eyes even if you don’t win the award.
Build relationships before the pitch
In life, the saying goes, it’s not about what you know, but who you know. In the cutthroat world of healthcare public relations this saying holds absolutely true. Building a relationship with reporters will always enhance your chance of getting positive coverage and having the story be picked up to begin win. Even if your company believes it has a firm relationship with some or many reporters and media currently, there is always room for improve.
Every kind word spoken and generous deed done is another chance to build a relationship that will foster your company’s growth and lead to more pronounced media attention. Remember to stay abreast of your industry as well: always read current headlines within the healthcare industry, share and post appreciative comments on stories, and offer a token of gratitude without expecting any compensation.
Use every platform
In the modern age, everyone gets information from several different sources. Different demographics turn to different platforms to catch up on the news of the day and your company should be present in all of these to ensure maximum views and potential sales. You can repurpose existing material or create new content to shape your presence across a variety of media channels, including television, scientific literature, and the internet. Even social media, e-mail, and newsletters are great for reaching new clients and expanding into channels you never thought possible.
Measure your reach
Once you’ve taken the initiative spread the good name of your company far and wide using all available platforms and media angles, it’s time to measure your results. There are various tools you can use to track placements in publications and on social media, as well as measure the share of voice, reach, and exposure your company has garnered at any given point. You don’t need advanced analytics to tell you where and how you’re succeeding.
The simplest but sometimes most effective metric can be as easy as a coveted healthcare publication’s readership. This measurement is particularly effective when the publication caters to key decision makers and influences within the community.
Telehealth has never been more important in the modern world. Spreading the word about your telehealth company and attracting great healthcare public relations strategy is as easy as building relationships, using all available channels, and taking advantage of every opportunity presented to you.