As a physician, PR, specifically media relations, is the most impactful type of marketing that you can utilize. It is the only form of marketing that reaches your target market, establishes you as an expert, and offers you the validation and credibility of being featured as a news story.
Public relations can help build your practice, establish your credibility by being featured in the news, and enhance any other form of marketing or outreach including your SEO efforts.
Over twenty-five years, we’ve worked with hundreds of physicians. We’ve also represented hospitals and medical centers. Depending on their needs and objectives we’ve helped physicians grow their practice, build their brand, establish themselves locally and nationally, and land publishing and media opportunities.
But for your public relations efforts to be truly effective, you need to know the basics and understand the media’s needs. The following are PR secrets every physician needs to know in order to launch and implement an effective and impactful media campaign.
- Remember that Effective PR is effective storytelling. You are not selling but telling. Producers, editors and journalists are looking for compelling stories to share with their readers, viewers and listeners. If you’re working with a PR consultant or public relations team, work with them to develop compelling newsworthy stories. If not, review potential stories with your staff. Keep the media in mind. Don’t simply focus on what you think is interesting focus on what you think the media and the public will find interesting.
- Stay Timely and Relevant. Every month is dedicated to a number of different health oriented issues. There is a month dedicated to heart healthcare, breast healthcare, prostate, as well as cancer, diabetes, you get the picture. The Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development publishes an annual guide that lists the focus on the various months. Study the list and come up with relevant and creative ways to appropriate pitch your stories so they coincide with these observances.
- Realize the importance of local media coverage. Local and regional PR can be invaluable. Not only can that type of coverage reach your target market and help to build your practice, it also helps you establish yourself as an expert and build your brand so that you can position yourself in a way to pitch yourself to the national media. It is a cumulative process, media begets media. But to land local media, localize your pitch and your approach. Develop stories that speak to your city or community.
- Understand the importance of national PR. Yes, local media is important, but so is national. This is not an either/or discussion. Think of both types of media having an integral part in your overall public relations campaign. As mentioned above, local and regional media is extremely important, but national coverage can be vital. Besides, all national coverage has a local component to it. We’ve had clients on the Today Show and the Doctors, as well as in USA Today, Allure, Men’s Health and Time. Yes, those are all national outlets, but each of those have viewers or readers in your specific region or locale. And the credibility factor that comes with being featured in a national outlet can’t be minimized. You can then use that on your website, blog and other marketing material. Also, we’ve had clients who have been able to develop a national or international clientele that was driven by national media coverage. Here you want to use a different approach. Develop stories that aren’t tied to your city or region, present yourself as an expert who can address a media issue that has national implications.
Although there are definitely more PR tips and secrets to review, which I will in upcoming blogs, follow these and you’ll be well on your way to a creating a successful media campaign.
Medical PR | Savvy Healthcare PR