Why customer relationships should be at the heart of healthcare marketing

Technology introduces new ways to market to customers all the time, but one rule never changes: customers want to be treated as individuals. Customer relationships are the engine that powers every successful business.

LiveIntent’s Chief Business Officer, Jason Oates, recently connected with Moda Health’s Chief Marketing Officer, Mehdi Tabrizi, to talk about how to grow your audience by catering to your customers. Mehdi shared lessons that will boost your business and improve your customer experience, regardless of the field you work in.

Here are five takeaways from the pair’s fireside chat from Brand Innovators @ Cannes.

The story matters more than the production

At the end of Q1 2020, many marketers found that the ads they produced pre-COVID-19 were no longer relevant. Brands scrambled to alter their advertising spends and quickly put together new creative with teams who were distributed because of lockdowns.

However, Mehdi says many rediscovered a fundamental truth about advertising: It isn’t the production value that customers care about — it’s the content.

“At the end of the day, it’s the story,” he says. “How do you connect with the hearts and minds of people? What is the story you’re trying to tell?” A strong storyline trumps Hollywood-level production value every time.

Mixing up your media helps reach more people

Another marketing lesson from Mehdi is that you have to mix up your media if you want to connect with a large cross-section of customers. Customers want to be treated as individuals, and that includes the way they’re reached.

Omnichannel marketing is more critical to advertising strategies than ever. Moda Health’s marketing mix includes direct mail, out of home, radio, TV, programmatic email marketing, search, social marketing, and more.

“We look at the customer and ask, ‘Where do we reach them? What’s the most effective way?'” Mehdi says. “Direct mail is still very effective. Hugely effective, especially in the context of healthcare. And radio and outdoor can be very effective in non-urban areas.”

Make sure you’re communicating the same thing to your audience, regardless of where they’re engaging with your message. And, make it simple for audiences to take the next step to engage with your brand with clear contact information and a call to action.

Sensitive times call for empathy and simplicity

In healthcare, you’re often engaging with customers during difficult times. You may also find that you’re not only marketing to the patient but to caregivers as well. It’s critical to keep these two realities top of mind and increase empathy accordingly.

Every member on the team must be aligned in the mission to make things as clear as possible for customers during every interaction.

First-party data can help you find more of your ideal customers

Thanks to HIPPA-compliant publishers, it’s possible to use first-party data to target cross sections of customers who closely resemble your existing customers.

Again, the key here is remembering that customers appreciate being treated as individuals, so you’ll want to carefully craft messages for each persona your brand is trying to reach.

Engagement and retention are driven by the value created

“At the end of the day, you want to make meaningful interactions,” Mehdi says. “The biggest question is, ‘How do we create value [for every prospect and customer]?’ Every engagement is about creating value for them. We’re always trying to understand the intersection between us and them.”

By keeping customer relationships at the heart of your marketing, you’ll drive real value and increase both your engagement and your retention.

For more wonderful insights from Mehdi Tabrizi and Jason Oates, watch their entire fireside chat from Brand Innovators @ Cannes here.