In the era of health reform and ongoing financial challenges, marketing teams face increased demands to demonstrate results from their expenditures. Though the debate continues as to the validity of different evaluation models, the method used by Houston-based MD Anderson Cancer Center for justifying its annual advertising budget and spend seems to be working. More than simple revenue calculations, success appears to lie in linking the actual patient experience into the marketing equation.
At each step of the patient journey, the goal of marketing is to play a continuing role in influencing attitudes and behaviors. From setting expectations with health care consumers to reinforcing communications with former patients, the marketing professionals at MD Anderson strive to demonstrate the impact of their marketing communications investments.
MD Anderson and other academic medical centers such as Barnes-Jewish Hospital and University of Michigan Health System have used this approach to uncover messaging, develop authentic patient testimonials, align communications to manage expectations and drive operational improvements.