Branding is everywhere in healthcare. It’s on the back of a discharge form. It’s in the email blast sent to a targeted audience promoting maternity services. It’s even on the lab coats and scrubs that medical professionals wear around their hospitals. There is an abundance of strategies healthcare marketers implement in order to increase brand awareness. Some of these strategies may cost millions of dollars, such as billboards, while others only cost effort, time and consistency. Earned media is one of those cost-conscious efforts that healthcare marketers and publicists all over the country take part in. Wouldn’t you prefer to preserve those millions of dollars too? Well, keep reading to find out how you can use earned media to increase brand awareness for your business too!
What Is Earned Media
Earned media, as described by Hubspot, is “any material written about you or your business that you haven’t paid for or created yourself.” For example, in healthcare, earned media can be an interview with a physician or an interview with a patient on a local or national news station. Earned media is achieved when healthcare marketers pitch stories, topics or experts to different media outlets without offering any monetary compensation for getting the story covered. In addition to being cost-conscious, earned media is also a great way to increase brand awareness.
Increased Brand Awareness
In addition to directly stating or speaking to the brand, there are a number of things healthcare marketers make sure to do in order to maximize their efforts towards increasing brand awareness through earned media relations. Some of these tactics include:
- Ensuring your background has your brand elements incorporated into it somehow. Whether it’s a step-and-repeat banner with your logo on it, or the entrance of your hospital in a wide shot, you should always be mindful of your background when your brand is being interviewed or featured on media.
- Providing the media outlet with accurate, useful information will not only make things easier for the reporter or writer, but it’ll also give you a chance to control the narrative. If you provide the media outlet with the title of your physician, including your hospital name, it’ll give your brand a higher chance of visibility and a higher chance of being included in the text overlay.
- How your subject looks or presents itself is another important way healthcare marketers take advantage of earned media to increase brand awareness. For example, if you have a physician being featured on CNN, you will definitely want to ensure that he/she is wearing a lab coat or ID badge with your hospital’s logo on it.
As you can see, there are several different tactics marketing professionals can implement to increase brand awareness. Earned media is a strategy that gives brands exposure, reach and the opportunity to show up in the brand recall or recognition phase in a consumer’s mind. Understanding the benefits of earned media is important, but knowing how to maximize this opportunity is essential.
Did you enjoy this post? Learn more about why branding is essential in healthcare in my last post.