Health Care Marketing Series – Marketing Effectiveness and Efficiency – Warheads and Missiles

We have previously discussed the research needed to create a marketing strategy that identifies a target demographic. The purpose of this research is to allow us to compare our relative strengths and weaknesses verses our direct competitors strength and weaknesses within the marketplace. Once our relative position in the competitive marketplace has been researched, a strategy that pits our strength against our competitor’s weaknesses can be formulated. This process is called marketing strategy.

Part of the marketing strategy is to formulate headlines and ad copy based on our relative position in the marketplace. We want our marketing to highlight our relative strengths against the relative weakness of our direct competition. All of this positioning must be crafted within the context of the solution to a specific problem that exists in a coveted demographic within our marketplace. The ultimate goal is to create a perception within the collective minds of our demographic that we have the best answer to solve their specific problem. This well researched, well crafted message is our marketing warhead.

The more congruent our message is with the wants and desires of our coveted market demographic, the bigger bang we will receive from our marketing efforts. This “bang” is measured as our response rate. This process of marketing strategy sends us into battle (contention for potential patients) under advantageous conditions. The process we have just described is the definition of marketing strategy. The better the marketing strategy, more effective the headline and ad copy. Notice that we stated the better the strategy the more effective the headline and copy will be. We didn’t say the more effective the marketing campaign will be. This is because there is one more major consideration that helps to determine how effective or ineffective a marketing campaign will be. The other piece of the puzzle is your delivery systems.

If the strategy and the headlines and ad copy are the warhead of your marketing campaigns, the next step in successful marketing is the missile or delivery system.

The variables for marketing success are the quality of your research, the art and science of your strategy development, the alignment of your headline and ad copy with your marketing strategy and finally the efficiency and cost effectiveness of your delivery systems.

You can have a nuclear warhead when it comes to knowledgeable strategy, headline and ad copy, but will obtain mediocre results if you choose a weak delivery system. Conversely you may have the best most effective delivery system and obtain marginal marketing results if your strategy, headline and copy are weak.

Optimizing all three components and constantly testing and perfecting these aspects of your marketing campaign is the key to effective, efficient and profitable marketing that produces a handsome return on investment.

We have discussed the intricacies of developing marketing strategy in another paper. The marketing metrics required to evaluate the return on investment (which is another way to say the marketing efficiency) has been discussed in a previous paper. This paper will integrate marketing strategy and research with marketing metrics to create a framework with which to evaluate marketing delivery systems. This process is a real world method for first determining and then improving both marketing effectiveness and marketing efficiency.

Before we can evaluate our marketing effectiveness and efficiency we must first define marketing effectiveness and efficacy.

Marketing effectiveness is how well a campaign or the action steps within a campaign’s execution produce a favorable response. What is a favorable response and how do we know if we got one? Well despite what marketing aficionados might tell you, marketing execution can be measured. There are several tangible measurements that matter and they are new (or repeat) business depending on your strategy, revenue increase and profit

Your marketing strategy can be judged to be effective if 1. It produces new business, 2. It increases revenues and 3. It increases profit.

It has nothing to do with image, branding, awareness or intangible returns.

In the context of marketing a professional practice, new business would be “kept” new patient appointments. Revenue is the gross collections increase from previous months and profits means your return on investments, also expresses as increased revenue minus the cost of your marketing effort.

By themselves these measures can give you a good handle on the effectiveness or not of your marketing execution. The next step is to eliminate marketing action steps that are not effective and to optimize those marketing activities that are proven to be effective. Once marketing effectiveness and marketing efficiency are optimized you merely repeat the most effective and efficient action steps. Again and again.

This process is impossible without marketing metrics and return on investment measurement. In fact according to the Harvard Business School no marketing action plan is complete without steps to measure and evaluate the implementation of a campaign. (1)

(1) Harvard Business Essentials

Marketer’s Toolkit

Harvard Business School Press 2006

Let’s look at an example at how all this works. Let’s compare giveaway coffee mugs with a full color print on demand booklet. Online print on demand printers can produce a 6.5 x 9 inch full color saddle stitch booklet at a cost of $6.50 per unit. Let’s compare this against a custom imprinted coffee mug, available for an average cost for mugs of about $1.50

At first glance the mugs seem like a much better marketing investment.

But are they? Let’s say our coveted marketing demographic is women ages 35 to 55 and we have found through are research that this market segment has a health problem: menopause or perimenopause.

First let’s look at headline opportunities.

With the coffee mug you are severely limited by space. You’ll need to try to create a slick trendy and catchy headline. Something like:

“Got Hormones?”

There is not much room on a mug to do much else. What are our options with the print on demand booklet? With the booklet, space constraints are not an issue.

Here are several options:

- “A doctor’s guide to choosing the best treatment options for your perimenopausal symptoms”
- “Tired all the time, irritable, depressed, gaining weight? These are symptoms of perimenopause” “Learn about modern treatment options.”
- “What every women should know about perimenopause and how she can feel good again.”

Really with the space the booklet provides the headline can be extremely specific. You can use subtitles and even an excerpt from the content on the cover. So in terms of our warhead, which one do you think produces a bigger bang?

“Got Hormones?” or “Tired all the time, irritable, depressed, gaining weight? These are symptoms of pre menopause” “Learn about modern treatment options.”

With the coffee cup the story ends here. Because of space restrictions you can’t really get much more detailed. You might put your name on the mug, but you would be hard pressed to add much more information. The catchy headline “Got Hormones?” hopefully will start conversations about you and your services. The downside of this is obvious however. If you give your coffee cups to a patient or the owner of a trendy salon and if one of her customers sees the mug and asks the proprietor about hormone replacement, what are the odds that layperson can represent you and your services in a dramatic, appealing and informative way? Patients rarely remember to take their medications yet alone the reasons why they should and all available options you discussed with them.

In other words, the coffee cup doesn’t allow you to give enough information to sell your service to a prospect. It relies on third party information. The coffee cup hits a dead end rather quickly.

So in terms of a marketing warhead the coffee cup is more fizzle than bang. There is simply not enough space on the cup to allow you to create a headline that is in alignment with your target markets’ problem, yet alone enough space to educate her on how you have the solution to that problem. In other words, there is no way, using a coffee cup, to position you and your service in the mind of a prospective patient. Unless of course you sell coffee.

In terms of effectiveness, the coffee cup while seemingly relatively inexpensive is of dubious effectiveness. It doesn’t matter how cheep the mugs are, if they are not effective they are expensive.

Let’s go back to our full color booklet.

It’s full color so you can use appealing photos and graphics. There is plenty of room on the cover to place a well thought out headline that will stimulate your target to read the copy. Then there is the copy. With 15 pages you have plenty of time and space to sell yourself as the answer to your prospect’s problem.

You should always include a section that details your education and experience. This has been termed your unique selling proposition (USP) or your exceptional value statement (EVS). It is your chance to toot your own horn and you should toot it loudly. The purpose of the EVS is to position you in the prospect’s mind as the “go to” doctor. Your EVS must be powerful enough to motivate the prospective patient to drive by hundreds of other doctors on the way to your office. So spend some time on it and if you don’t feel comfortable talking about yourself, have someone read your CV and write your exceptional value statement for you.

Next let’s consider the body of your ad copy. This is where your research and marketing strategy comes into play. In your booklet you are going to list the basic approach of all your competitors. This may seem counter intuitive but remember you will be highlighting their weaknesses as you go. You are going to offer up alternatives to your own treatment approach, but frame them in a way that showcases their (your direct competitor’s) specific weaknesses. You slowly introduce your answer to the prospect’s problems. If your copy writer is talented, he or she should be able to bring the prospect along so by the end of your information booklet, the only logical conclusion for the reader is that you have the best answer to their problem. Never bash your competition, only frame your comparison highlighting the strengths of your approach compared with the relative weaknesses of your competition.

This shouldn’t be too difficult if you have developed marketing strategy as we discussed in previous papers.

Now within the booklet you should always include multiple ways for your readers to respond. Of course your office address and phone number, but also your web address and email. Perhaps an invitation to take an on line survey and of course your innovative Ask-the-Doctor program. How about a detachable postcard?

All of these methods of response should be interspersed throughout the text of your booklet. Not hidden at the very end.

The most important thing to remember is that your booklet should include valuable information. Don’t worry that you might be giving something away for free. If your information helps the patient they will consider you an expert. They will consult with you when they need help. They will already know that you can help them, because you already have.

Consumers are deluged with advertising offers. Research shows they are more likely to read marketing material if it contains valuable information that will likely benefit them. If your booklet is valuable it will have staying power. It may also be copied and passed around. It might be a good time to mention that you should waive the copyright and tell the reader to feel free to make copies and pass the booklet around.

So after reading this article do you still think that coffee mugs are an effective way to market? Are they efficient? They may cost less than a full color booklet, but do you think they are more cost effective?

Consumer Direct Inc – MLM Health and Wellness at Its Finest

Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw have for years been extremely popular folks. These 2 are renowned nutritive analysts and writers, who’ve single handedly been credited for launching today’s anti-aging revolution, after the successful release of their highly-popular and best-selling book, Life Extension: A Practical scientific Approach, in 1982. Today, Durk Pearson and Sand Shaw continue to be fertile and successful diet and wellness product marketers, and own / manage a company called Consumer Direct Inc.

What Have Durk And Sandy Been Doing These Years?

Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw co-wrote the highly-popular book Life Extension: A Practical Scientific Approach in 1982. They also co-wrote The Life Extension Weight Loss Manual, as well as the Freedom of Informed Choice: FDA vs Nutrient Supplements in 1993.

These two savvy nutritional researchers and authors have also wrote numerous articles in cognitive enhancement, life extension, anti aging, weight loss and other nutrition topics and concerns. These two eminent fellows also have appeared in over three hundred television programs, from several appearances on CNN’s Larry King Live, to a number of documentaries on aging and wellness on such favored international TV networks like BBC, Canadian Broadcasting concern and on Japanese television.

The pair released the Life Extension Video in 1988. The video was made to completely explain a big selection of ideas and information, which were taken from their top selling works on weight loss, nutrition and anti-aging.

What Are The Products Of Consumer Direct Inc.?

Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw’s Consumer Direct Inc. produces and markets a wide array of leading edge health and wellbeing and anti aging products and additions. Their products go from the Direct Health product line, Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw Designer Foods, and the Direct Health Junior product line for kids.

The majority of the company’s nutritional formulations contain precise nutrient co-factors, which act together with the product’s principal nutrient. The corporation’s health, well-being and age-defying products do not contain synthetic fillers, corn, soy, yeast, synthesised colours, pollen, glucose, sucrose, artificial sweeteners and wheat, which may cause allergic responses

Selling Revolutionary Health and Wellbeing Products Through MLM

Because Durk and Sandy have in depth experience in formulating nutritive supplements and in studying body metabolism, they have designed nutrient supplement formulations, without getting any reference from the usual complicated biochemical charts. Durk and Sandy, as well as the company itself, are absolutely committed to revolutionizing the market place, by introducing a new wave of nutritive and wellness products.

Consumer Direct Inc. is completely committed to manufacturing high-quality but cheap nutritional products, while at the same time permitting customers to support one another and achieve independence and wealth. The company markets its nutritive products though internet promotion or M.L.M.

Durk and Sandy note that if you use the products and achieve the desired results, all that you need to do is tell your success story to everybody, and the results will. Sell the products. The sole investment you want here is to sign up for automated cargo of your product orders, and effectively lure others to join your business too.

Profit in Any Market

You can make money when markets are going up. You can also make money when markets are falling. And believe it or not, there are ways of making money when the market is moving sideways or doing nothing at all.

The catch?

You need to have a view on where the market is headed.

How can you determine market direction?

Here I’ll show you my top three trading tools to help give you some ideas.

Trading tools I use

Now, the way I chose to trade isn’t for everyone. I prefer to trade quality companies which are trading at cheap multiples, showing signs on the charts that there is strong demand.

I like to look at economic conditions, fundamentals of the stock as well as using technical analysis or charting.

So what should you look for?

Economic conditions

I’m going to start by looking at economic conditions because it is the one thing that many traders overlook.

Low interest rates are one of the most beneficial conditions for the sharemarket. It encourages movement from cash to more risky investments. If the cost of borrowing is lower it encourages growth. This impacts valuations because the risk-free rate is lower.

Conversely, rising interest rates make it more difficult for companies to grow.

There are other indicators to look at as well. The economy moves in cycles and the troughs and peaks (highs and lows) are often defined by the unemployment rate. This is a lagging indicator but has the benefit of helping you define the highs and lows.

So it’s useful to understand where we are in the economic cycle using unemployment rates.

For almost 30 years you can see that, generally, falling unemployment is good for the market.

Sounds basic I know, but it’s amazing how the basics are often overlooked for more complicated, difficult and often less meaningful concepts.

Fundamentals of the stock

It’s important to know what a company does and what profit it makes as well as how much its profit grows.

If you think about the sharemarket as a market full of businesses, you can see that some businesses are great and some are simply dreadful. If someone knocked on your door and asked you to invest $20000 into their business, there would be many questions that you’d probably ask before you opened up your wallet.

Yet when it comes to the sharemarket, often investment decisions are made without more than a couple of minutes thought or on the back of a tip.

So it’s important to answer a few important questions, like ‘what’s the underlying business’ and ‘why is it a good investment?’

Charting

Finally, there are psychological aspects to the sharemarket. You might not know what moves the market but you can see how the market moves.

This area is called charting or technical analysis.

Being able to read the charts helps you read the optimism or pessimism of the markets.

This is important, because if the dominant market vibe is optimistic, then a rising tide tends to lift all ships and almost all stocks tend to rise. That optimism or pessimism is often also called greed and fear.

At the moment, the Australian sharemarket looks like it has gone past a significant psychological barrier of 4350. The key here is that we’ve seen a definite break of that level and now we need to watch and see if that holds.

Volumes have been improving which is a positive sign. The pain may not be over but in the short-term, things are looking good.

So, if you can determine market direction using strategies or tools like the ones I’ve outlined, you might just be able to profit no matter what the sharemarket is doing.