Branding & Online Marketing (Mhc Module 4, Slp): Case of Indian health service
Branding from healthcare perspective according to Haimowitz (2011) refers to the process of creating a unique image and name of healthcare services and products in the minds of consumers through advertising, reputation, online presence, and public relations. It is a consistent process that aims at establishing a differentiated and significant presence in the industry in order to attract the target market. The most outstanding and trusted brands in the healthcare sector are those that consistently create value for consumers. Effective brands are defined by the extent to which customers, referring healthcare providers, donors, employees, and patients recommend the brand to others.
The current marketing challenges facing the Indian health service requires the introduction of new visual identity, recruitment of experienced and qualified health providers, repositioning of the existing brand, and strengthening the infrastructure to ensure that the brand retains its high performance. Research techniques and tools of branding should be up to date in order to meet the increasing healthcare needs for Alaska tribes and natives in the U.S. Effective branding strategy will help the Indian health service in gaining a competitive advantage, communicating, and consistently conveying a significant premise (Indian Health Service, 2015). It will ensure that the healthcare remains committed to its core values, heritage, and competencies at all times. Analytical perspective founded on data- driven drivers of brand trust and equity provides the avenue for engaging the healthcare stakeholders and leaders to support the branding strategy. To develop a robust branding strategy that enhances brand management process, the following specific tools should be applied in formulating and strengthening the competitive position of the Indian healthcare service brand;
Brand Trust Model
It is a model that allows for assessment of the current brand performance and benchmarking with other brands in order to search for sources of opportunities and customer value. The model derives the input from potential consumers of health services, employees, donors and referrals. It relies on response from these parties in measuring brand performance and giving equity score from all aspects of brand performance (Paich & Valant, 2004). The model utilizes tables and the standard charts to indicate critical differences in brand performance. In addition, the model represents data visually thus facilitating critical and strategic thinking. The marketing manager of Indian health service should concentrate on areas that lead to the differences in overall satisfaction and brand reputation.
Branding becomes sophisticated as the healthcare system expands into new geographical regions, affiliations or new service line if the organization has no clear branding strategy. Consequently, it is important to develop a branding strategy taking into consideration the relationship between the existing departments. Organized and well-designed brand architecture helps in improving the brand performance because it increases the brand preference and awareness (Haimowitz, 2011). The Management of Indian healthcare services should visually unite points of interaction in order to eliminate confusion and create brand alignment. Developing brand architecture is part of a robust brand strategy that allows the healthcare provider to initiate changes in the organizational structure. Brand architecture will also help in increasing the degree of control over brand performance thus ensuring long-term growth and development of the organization.
Brand Scenario Development
Although the process of brand positioning is data-driven, it requires organizational alignment. For the whole organizational team of Indian healthcare services to draw their conclusions from research findings, they must pass through workshops and brainstorming (Haimowitz, 2011). Workshops and brainstorming sessions allows for evaluating brand scenarios for improving the brand performance. From the discussions, the team is in a position of developing robust strategy for transforming the healthcare. The brand helps in outlining the prescription for the design, brand architecture and messaging for employees, managers and the organizational stakeholders.
Enhancing employee motivation and alignment in the healthcare through message and word of mouth is similar to attracting patients through promotions and advertising. Due to its financial challenges, Indian healthcare services should leverage on word of mouth and messaging to address the declining customer base. The annual budget of $3.8 billion is enough if the marketing manager focuses on building the brand though social networking sites as well as a reliable organizational website Indian (Health Service, 2015). Healthcare employees are critical in brand management since they are the ones who interact face-to-face with customers (Blackett, Robins & Palgrave, 2001). Consequently, employees including the physicians, billing clerks, drivers, and valet are crucial in the delivery of organizational brand promise. Healthcare providers should work collaboratively with the organizational members through the word of mouth in identifying opportunities to improve the brand performance and strengthen brand positioning in the minds of consumers.
Consumer Insights Dashboard
Dashboards are important tools for ensuring there is a continuous measurement system for assessing the brand performance in communication, interactions and other areas of the healthcare environment. Dashboards provide excellent means of understanding and measuring important components for improving brand performance. Consumer insights dashboard allows for integration of research results into a searchable and secure portal. It is an excellent way of reinforcing customer’s voice as well as reducing the time that would otherwise be spent in developing ad hoc reports. To enhance its effectiveness of Indian health services, the customer insights dashboard should have inbuilt search capabilities that allow the user to easily find reports, store reports in logical manner for easy integration, allow for saving of bookmarks and giving of opinions concerning customer insights (Bevolo, 2008). The dashboard also ensures there is consistency in brand communication across the audiences, different service lines and geographical locations where the healthcare has established operations. Incorporating these tools in formulating a branding strategy for Indian health services help the organization boost its client base for long-term success.
Bevolo, C. (2008). A marketer’s guide to brand strategy: Advanced techniques for healthcare organizations. Marblehead, MA: Healthleaders.
Blackett, T., Robins, R., & Palgrave Connect (Online service). (2001). Brand medicine: The role of branding in the pharmaceutical industry. New York: Palgrave
Haimowitz, I. J. (2011). Healthcare relationship marketing: Strategy, design and measurement. Farnham: Ashgate
Indian Health Service. (2015). The Federal Health Program for American Indians and Alaska Natives. Indian Health Services. Retrieved from http://www.ihs.gov/
Paich, M., Peck, C., & Valant, J. J. (2004). Pharmaceutical Product Strategy: Using Dynamic Modeling for Effective Brand Planning. London: Informa Healthcare.