Why the Healthcare Industry Can Benefit From Experiential Marketing

Industry Challenges

Every brand within the healthcare industry faces certain challenges that make marketing more difficult. First, many topics that brands must address in marketing are complex, so it can be difficult to come up with a strategy that simplifies the matter to make it easier for the average consumer to understand. For example, explaining how a new medication can lower blood pressure is challenging, especially when brands are only given 15-30 seconds to do so with television or radio ads. This isn’t nearly enough time to educate the consumer on the new product and convince them that they should talk to their doctor about trying it.

But, quickly educating consumers on complex topics is not the only challenge that marketers face in the healthcare industry. They also have the unenviable task of trying to make uninteresting information more entertaining. So, not only do they have to squeeze a lot of information into a short advertisement, but they also have to do it in a way that grabs consumers’ attention.

Experiential marketing can help the healthcare industry overcome these challenges, which is why every healthcare brand should consider incorporating this tactic into their marketing strategies. Here are some of the ways experiential marketing can help brands in the healthcare industry:

Direct Communication

As previously mentioned, one of the challenges that healthcare brands face is figuring out how to simplify complex information so consumers can understand it. This can be difficult when using traditional forms of marketing because the communication is only one-way. Brands can relay information through TV, print, and radio advertisements, but consumers don’t have the opportunity to respond. Experiential marketing gives consumers the chance to engage in two-way communication with healthcare brands, which leads to a better understanding of the information that is being relayed.

At an experiential marketing event, guests can communicate directly with brand ambassadors about the products or services. If they don’t understand something or need further clarification, they can simply ask for it and immediately get a response.

To reap the rewards of an experiential marketing event, healthcare brands need to invest in hiring and training knowledgeable brand ambassadors. Each brand ambassador should be able to answer guests’ questions with ease, otherwise the brand will miss out on this valuable opportunity to help consumers understand complex information.

Entertain Consumers

Experiential marketing gives healthcare brands the opportunity to relay information to consumers as part of an interactive, entertaining event. Sensodyne, a brand that sells toothpaste for sensitive teeth, used experiential marketing to talk to consumers about oral health in a new and exciting way. The brand hosted an event where guests could play games and experiment with new products before meeting privately with a dentist for a consultation. Guests learned more about their oral health in a fun environment, so Sensodyne was able to overcome the challenge of educating consumers without boring them.

More healthcare brands should take a cue from Sensodyne and host experiential marketing events that aim to inform and entertain. The information will be more appealing to consumers in this setting because it won’t be perceived as boring or bland when it’s presented in the middle of a fun event.

Stronger Social Media Presence

Healthcare brands often have trouble connecting with consumers in the digital world, but experiential marketing can help. A perfect example of how experiential marketing can create a strong social media presence for healthcare brands is the United Healthcare’s “We Dare You” campaign. United Healthcare dared people to make one small change everyday that would help them live healthier lives, and then encouraged them to share photos on social media of themselves doing it using the hashtag #WeDareYou. People began to share photos of themselves taking the stairs instead of the elevator, adding more fruits and vegetables to their plate, or hopping on the treadmill for a quick run. Because each post contained a hashtag that was unique to the campaign, all of these social shares helped increase awareness of United Healthcare.

This type of campaign allows healthcare brands to engage with a large audience and get them more involved with the brand.

Favorable Impressions

Some experiential marketing campaigns can evoke strong emotional responses, which can lead to consumers having a more favorable impression of the brand. For example, OhioHealth asked participants in a 5,000 meter race to stop by the brand’s booth to write and decorate a greeting card for new moms. Participants were encouraged to use a table full of arts and supplies to help them make creative cards. After the race, the greeting cards were then handed out at random to moms who had just given birth at an OhioHealth facility. Even though the words of encouragement came from complete strangers, the cards evoked a strong emotional response in the new moms, who were moved by OhioHealth’s efforts. New moms and their families left OhioHealth with a more favorable impression of the brand, all thanks to their emotionally moving experiential marketing campaign.

Because healthcare is so personal, there are plenty of ways for brands to follow in OhioHealth’s footsteps and plan a campaign that evokes a strong emotional response. As long as the emotional response is positive, this is a huge opportunity for brands to connect with consumers.

If you are in the healthcare industry and interested in learning more about how experiential marketing can help your brand, contact Factory 360 to schedule a free consultation