Improve Health by Marketing Health

All companies know that in order to succeed marketing must take place.  After all, how do you expect anyone to know you exist if you don’t tell them about who you are and what you do? When it comes to public health professionals, however, they do not always have the same mindset.  Marketing is not as well understood or known in the public health community.  One of the reasons for this is because it is not taught in medical schools. Regardless of how this came to be, it is important for public healthcare professionals to begin marketing health in order to improve health.

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This will be done as knowledge will provide consumers information on how to promote their health as well as information on various health protection interventions.

The American Marketing Association defines marketing as follows:

“creating, communicating, and delivering value to customers and for managing customer relationships in ways that benefit the organization and its stakeholders” (emphasis added).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has taken this information and used it to form a definition of healthcare marketing:

“creating, communicating, and delivering health information and interventions using consumer-centered and science-based strategies to protect and promote the health of diverse populations.”

Marketing can play a huge role in public health by using core marketing activities. Some of these activities are conducting customer research, building sustainable distribution channels, and improving accessibility to easily adopted programs.  By using these core marketing activities, public health professionals can improve the likelihood of patients to adopt and implement specific health behaviors and practices.  There are many evidence-based prevention strategies that consumers simply will not know about unless the information is adequately marketed to them in a way they can understand.  By giving off these messages to the public, healthcare marketing can help to close the gap that currently exists between everyday practice and public health research.

Healthcare marketers have a common end goal: provide accurate, relevant, and accessible health information to the public.  This information will help people to protect and promote their health as well as the health of their families and those around them.

In conclusion, it is important to recognize the usefulness of healthcare marketing.  With more and more providers implementing it within their own practices, it will only advance the field of public health and knowledge on specific treatments and outcomes.

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