3 Priorities for Every 2017 Hospital Marketing Budget

SOURCE: Healthcare Informatics Society of Ireland

As leaves change and temps fall, healthcare organizations that begin their fiscal year in January are finalizing budgets for 2017. With most hospitals grappling with flat or declining admissions, it’s now more important than ever for marketers to select the most impactful budget priorities. Fear not – PadillaCRT has outlined three priorities that should be on the radar of every hospital marketer.

1. Deliver ROI with Your Digital Strategy

Only 14 percent of 2015 healthcare marketing budgets were allocated to digital activities – significantly lower than almost any other industry. There isn’t necessarily a good reason for this, other than the fact that hospitals tend to be late adopters. Search engine marketing, social media, and geofencing are some of the most efficient, nimble and measurable marketing approaches.

We know that more than 72 percent of U.S. healthcare consumers have gone online for health information in the past year. Ensure that your organization is top of mind by being in the right place at the right time. The right place might be choosing the right keyword to promote or sharing a patient story on the right social channel or promoting the right service while they are surfing on their mobile

Digital Marketing

3 Ways the Health Industry is Making Moves in 2016

Let’s face it, not everyone is itching to talk about the latest ventures in health care, but that’s changing in 2016. As the industry itself expands, out-of-the-box approaches have as well, breaking many traditional molds in health communications. With big changes come big ideas – and health care marketers have delivered in 2016 – producing brilliant campaigns, products and technology. Below are just a few examples of how the industry is owning 2016.

1. CVS’s product innovation: Keurig lovers meet medicine pods

You read that right; just in time for all of you seasonal allergy sufferers, salvation has arrived. Most coffee lovers already think of their Keurig as a life saver, but this relationship is about to be taken to the next level. In late August, CVS released daytime and nighttime flu medicine pods that are compatible with Keurig, ultimately injecting the soothing powers of flu medicine into a warm, cozy drink.

Credit: Huffington Post

Credit: Huffington Post

2. AddictAide creates faux Instagram celeb to raise alcoholism awareness

As Instagram has grown, so has the age of social influencers. We see strangers all over social media who suddenly…


Defenders of the healthcare brand


How healthcare communication professionals can drive the top line while protecting the bottom line.

For healthcare PR and marketing professionals, intentional communications has never been more important to the brand. Unprecedented consolidation in the industry continues as providers shift their business models from being rooted in volume to driving value. What’s more, technology has changed the way consumers, patients and even employees communicate, seek information and define “the news.”

For healthcare communicators, these changes will fundamentally impact the way people perceive and experience your brand. Not to mention creating new risks to manage. The way you communicate can make or break your brand. In fact, according to a report published by Harvard Business Review, based on a global survey of nearly 600 executives across health and other industries, effective communications was identified as one of the top three factors most likely to bring success. And it’s worth noting that it ranked second only to delivering a high level of customer service.

The good news is that most healthcare providers already are focusing on delivering a higher level of service, primarily through patient experience initiatives. The bad news is that most are not investing in enhancing communications. So while healthcare communicators have traditionally been thought of as promoters of the top line, today’s healthcare market requires them to be equally adept at protecting the bottom line.

Building reputation through change
If there’s

Crisis Management

#EpiGate: How Mylan is handling criticism over increased EpiPen pricing

crisisaheadOver the last several months the heat around #EpiGate has been building. Mylan, the pharmaceutical company that owns the EpiPen emergency allergy treatment, has had to defend its price increases on the life-saving drug, which means the company’s crisis communications team has been spending a lot of time in the war room.

Since 2004, the price of a pack of two EpiPens has risen from $100 to more than $600 today — a price that poses a significant barrier for patients whose insurance won’t cover the treatment. This issue is compounded by the fact that there are very few alternate solutions for patients. Mylan controls nearly 90 percent of the market for epinephrine injectors. Some patients have resorted to asking physicians to fill syringes with epinephrine and teach them how to administer them without the EpiPen technology. This alternative only costs around $20, adding further fuel to the fire around why EpiPens are so expensive.

At the same time that the cost of the EpiPen rose, so did Mylan CEO Heather Bresch’s salary — from $2.4 million in 2007 when Mylan acquired the EpiPen to nearly $19 million in 2015 — further adding to the…


The Internet vs. Your Doctor: Who to Trust

At a recent doctor’s appointment, my physician told me a story about a woman who needed treatment, but left in the middle of the appointment, proclaiming, “That’s not what the Internet said!”

Because we live in an age where consumers can find almost anything they’d like online, sometimes it’s hard to determine who to trust. I was recently reminded of this when the news came out that The American Academy of Pediatrics strengthened its warnings about prescribing codeine for children because of reports of deaths and risks for dangerous side effects including breathing problems. Even though the dangers have been presented, studies suggest it is still commonly prescribed by doctors and dentists despite the risks and lack of evidence that it works to relieve coughs.

Sgty_cough_syrup_mm_160112_12x5_1600o when a doctor prescribes your child a medication that you’ve read several warnings about, what do you do?

One colleague told me that she has no problem talking with her physician about issues like this. It helps build trust and makes her want to continue
going back to the same doctor. And in an instance like this, there are several alternatives for children.

Another colleague chooses to


How to Succeed in the (Competitive) Business of Smiling

They’re like the great “Oz” of the dental industry: the tireless dental laboratory, working behind the curtain, crafting the beautiful smiles of everyone from celebrities and pro athletes to (relatively) average Joes like you and me.  A good smile conveys good health, confidence, competence, and attractiveness. Who doesn’t want that? So you’d think there’d be more than enough work to keep dental labs in business. But check any issue of Dental Economics (a good read, by the way) it’s a very competitive and complex industry. Quality is what can set you apart, but quantity is what makes you money. Hand crafting each tooth is a differentiator, but you also need the latest technology for things like case planning, diagnostics, and milling. Dentists can be very loyal when they find a great lab, but then they won’t refer you because they don’t want their competitors in on their secret. Add this to a more discerning and cost-conscious customers (dentists and their patients) and the “business of smiling” is a “grit-your-teeth” kind of industry. That’s why Valley Dental Arts (VDA), one of the premier cosmetic and restorative dental laboratories in the country, decided it needed an agency partner to help identify and grow its competitive edge. In 2014, they selected PadillaCRT to help map their path


Saving Lives Through Storytelling

Did you know that every three minutes someone is diagnosed with blood cancer? Yet, many people don’t know that they can be the cure for patients with blood cancers like leukemia, lymphoma and other life-threatening diseases. The best part? To register as a potential marrow donor, it’s as simple as a cheek swab.

Today marks the first day of National Blood Cancer Awareness Month, giving us yet another reason to raise awareness for critically ill patients in need of a life-saving marrow or umbilical cord blood transplant.

btmwr15Be The Match® is the world’s leading nonprofit organization focused on saving lives through marrow and cord blood transplantation. The organization works to register committed potential marrow donors to the Be The Match Registry® every day, because 70 percent of patients do not have a fully matched donor in their family.

At PadillaCRT, we are passionate about our work with Be The Match. We help them raise awareness of the need for more potential donors to join the registry. Throughout this work, our message can vary to highlight the need for people of color, committed donors and even young, male donors. However, there is one thing


Gen Z: Five Key Insights for Healthcare Brands

Source: Phenomena

Raise your hand if you’re tired of hearing about the Millennials.

Employers have been trying to figure out how to deal with Millennials since they entered the work force about 15 years ago and healthcare has been bracing for the changes that they might bring as consumers.  Now, it’s time to start preparing for the next generation, who will comprise 40% of all consumers by 2020: Generation Z.

Members of Gen Z were born between 1995 and 2015 and have been parented by Gen X’ers and the older Millennials. They are digital natives, born after the internet was popularized and raised on smart phones.  With the youngest members of Gen Z celebrating their first birthday this year, it will be quite some time until we feel the full impact of this generation.  However, extensive research has already been done to reveal the attitudes and behaviors of the older half of Gen Z (who go up to 21 years old), many of whom are in or approaching college or about to enter the workforce.

While Gen Z won’t dominate healthcare use in the near future, smart brands are taking notice and thinking about engagement strategies now, especially as


Full Speed Ahead: Medical Device Trends through 2017

Medical devices: where the speed of innovation meets the molasses of FDA approval!  Despite that fact, the medical device health care sector consistently brings science and invention to life.  2016 has been a year of mergers & acquisitions, new products and pioneering technologies. This piece looks at the rest of 2016.  Specifically, what trends are still gaining steam and what developments will become mainstays in 2017 – we found five – four-and-a-half actually, because the last one is a gimme.

Health caBlue Belt Technologies Navio Surgical Systemre’s new manifest destiny: robotic surgery.

It’s nearly a two decade old innovation but a bit of “land grab” right now because EVERYONE’S getting in on it.  Starting in 2000 with da Vinci Surgery, to the 2015 joint venture between Johnson & Johnson and Google’s Verily Verb Surgical, and Smith and Nephew’s acquisition of Blue Belt Technologies and its Navio Surgical System– medical device manufacturers are looking for the edge that allows them to increase operating room efficiency and revolutionize the surgical experience for their customers.  Looking ahead, device manufacturers that combine machine learning, advanced imagery, and use an open-source technology will own


Olympians – They’re Just Like Us

If you’ve been watching this year’s Olympics (or just reading the news), you’ve likely seen a few athletes with dark red/purple spots on their bodies. Earlier this week, superstar-Olympian Michael Phelps entered the pool with those large, dark circles on his shoulders and back; and so, the questions began. It’s called cupping. But what is it, and how much do we really know about what seems to be the latest trend?

Cupping is an ancient therapy that dates back nearly 2,000 years and has mostly been used in Middle Eastern and Asian countries. Many people have never heard of it before, and now it’s got us all in a frenzy trying to figure it out. Athletes use it as a healing therapy that consists of having round glass suction cups placed on the sore parts of their body. The cup creates a partial vacuum, which is believed to stimulate muscles and blood flow, while relieving pain.

Most of the world saw Phelps’ cupping marks for the first time this week, but turns out he’s actually been practicing the treatment for at least a year. So does it hurt? Here’s a quick look at Phelps’