Cardiovascular Marketing Strategy

Best Practices for Communicating a Distinct Value Proposition and Securing Market Leadership

Topics: Cardiovascular, Service Lines, Marketing, Business Development, Strategy, Volume Growth

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By reading this study, members will be able to:

  • Understand the primary challenges associated with communicating a unique value proposition and securing physician referrals
  • Create a clear and cohesive brand
  • Increase physician referrals by optimizing deployment of physician liaisons
  • Secure consumer loyalty by refining direct-to-consumer advertising campaigns
  • Enhance their online presence
  • Develop a principled approach to measuring the effectiveness of marketing efforts

Executive Summary

A renewed marketing imperative
After a period of seemingly limitless growth, cardiovascular programs have recently experienced a softening in demand while competition continues to intensify with newly opened programs. Although these forces may manifest differently across regions, programs face a common directive: to communicate their distinct value proposition to physicians and consumers in an effort to attract additional business. Despite widespread investment in promoting cardiovascular services, programs face a number of challenges to maximizing the value of their marketing efforts. As such, the Roundtable has developed comprehensive suite of best practices for perfecting cardiovascular marketing strategy.

A distinct brand is a pre-requisite to marketing success
A hospital or service line brand forms the foundation of all other marketing activities. However, many programs struggle to craft and communicate a resounding brand message. To overcome these challenges, progressive institutions are evaluating current market perception, improving alignment between hospital and service line brands, and ensuring staff deliver the level of service promised through branding campaigns.

Rightsizing investments in physician marketing
Physicians represent the highest-value opportunity to increase volumes as they often serve as the key decision makers for patient referrals. Yet, many hospitals lack dedicated resources for physician marketing. In hopes of capitalizing on the opportunity to secure share by rightsizing investments in physician marketing, best practice institutions are investing in physician liaisons and optimizing their deployment.

Engaging the consumer audience
While physicians remain the primary source of referrals, patients are more involved in deciding where they receive care. Therefore, it is important to tailor marketing efforts to the consumer audience. While the majority of programs have invested in direct-to-consumer marketing, many programs struggle to secure consumer loyalty. Challenges include determining which consumers to target, crafting a compelling message, and selecting the most effective media to communicate with consumers. To assist program leaders in overcoming these hurdles, this study outlines five best practices for engaging the consumer audience.

Perfecting online presence
While the internet is not traditionally viewed as a medium for cardiovascular marketing, upward trends in internet usage suggest hospital websites and social media sites are becoming an increasingly important channel for outreach. To capitalize on this opportunity, progressive institutions have created user-friendly websites and used social media to promote their services.

Improving ROI assessment
Given the potentially substantial costs of pursuing physician and consumer marketing, program leaders should frequently evaluate effectiveness of promotional activities. Instilling discipline in measuring return on investment (ROI) is important for three reasons: assessing ROI helps garner executive buy-in, it supports the petition of future funding, and it can be used to refine future campaigns. As such, progressive institutions have adopted a variety of approaches to measure the value of marketing efforts.

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Cardiovascular Marketing Strategy: A Call to Action