Assignment Writing Help on Branding in Healthcare

Branding in Healthcare

Introduction

Branding is a marketing strategy that involves the creation of a unique image or name for a business entity as well as its products and services in the mind of potential customers (Barakso, 2010). The main goal of branding is to create awareness about the organization and its products and services as well as establish loyalty with the target customers. Branding is usually done through advertisement and other promotion campaigns. Barakso (2010) argues that if an organization carries out brand advertisement, it creates a certain image and associate certain attributes to its products and services amongst customers.

Despite the extensive use of branding in various sectors, most healthcare organizations have not fully embraced the practice of branding. In the recent years, several arguments have emerged on whether branding should be implemented in healthcare organizations. According to Gapp and Merillees (2006), the use of branding in healthcare organizations can improve service delivery and quality of care to patients. Gapp & Merillees (2006) assert that branding can serve as an interface between healthcare organizations and the public. Barakso (2010) also asserts that branding serves as a means of internal communication between employees in a given healthcare organization since it delivers a common message (Gapp & Merrilees, 2006). Nevertheless, adoption of branding in healthcare organizations can result in unexpected negative consequences. The paper will outline various merits and demerits of adoption of branding in healthcare organizations as well as make conclusions on whether the strategy should be implemented.

Benefits of Branding in Health Care Organizations

Like in every other organization, branding plays a significant role in the healthcare sector. The following are benefits of branding in healthcare organizations.

Increases Customer Awareness

With the changing marketing environment, an organization needs to establish itself to its target customers as an effort to win over the rising competition. As a result, both public and private healthcare organizations use branding as a way to trigger attention in their target customers. Branding helps healthcare providers to create awareness about their products and services to their customers (Basu & Wang, 2009).

Increase Loyalty

As in other industries, the use of branding in the healthcare sector helps in creating loyal customers. A good brand is created through delivery of good services in addition to brand advertisement (Basu & Wang, 2009). Therefore, satisfied patients become loyal to an organization that offers good services. Brand loyalty is essential to an organization since loyal customers also help in word of mouth advertisement by referring their friends.

Improve quality of service delivery

In order for a healthcare organization to create a good image in the mind of the consumers, it must ensure delivery of quality services. Therefore, branding in the healthcare sector has enabled most healthcare organizations to improve the quality of care as well as service delivery to patients.

Increased Revenue

Healthcare organizations with well-established brands earn more revenue than those without such brands. According to Basu and Wang (2009), branding attracts many customers who become loyal to a given brand and organization. With a large customer base, the organization increases its sales revenue as well as profits.

Lowers Marketing Expenses

Although an organization incurs a lot of cost in the creation of a brand, it is easy to maintain an established brand without incurring extra cost (Kotler, Shalowitz & Stevens, 2011). The loyal customers of the organization play a big role in promoting the organization for free with the word of mouth advertisement. As such, a health organization with established brand does not require a lot of marketing effort to attract customers.

Demerits of Branding Healthcare Organizations

As indicated, most of the researchers have argued against branding in healthcare center. They argue that branding should not be encouraged in health care organizations because of the following reasons:

Negative Perceptions

The public can get the wrong perception of a health organization trying to promote its brand. Negative perception can lead to loss of confidence in the organization by its customers.

Unfair Competition

If branding is encouraged in the health care sector, it can result in unfair competition between government organizations and private health organizations. Since the main goal of private health organizations is to make profit, they can engage in aggressive marketing campaigns to promote their brand with the aim of attracting more customers without considering the quality of their services. On the other hand, a government health organization whose main aim is to promote national health has little capacity to carry out the promotion of their brand. As a result, they lose customers to private health organizations (Kotler, Shalowitz & Stevens, 2011).

It is Costly

Health organizations incur huge costs when creating their brand to facilitate advertisement and promotion campaign. The costs are usually borne by customers or the government and as a result may lead to increased prices of services offered by the organization.

Conclusion

From the analysis of merits and demerits of branding, healthcare organizations should focus on branding as a way of creating awareness and maintaining loyalty to its customers. A well-established brand will ensure health care organizations improve their quality of services as well as the quality of care. However, branding in these organizations should be regulated to avoid unfair competition that results in poor services (Kotler, Shalowitz & Stevens, 2011).

References

Barakso, M. (2010). Brand identity and the tactical repertoires of advocacy organizations. Advocacy organizations and collective action, 155-76.

Basu, A., & Wang, J. (2009). The role of branding in public health campaigns. Journal of communication management, 13(1), 77-91.

Gapp, R., & Merrilees, B. (2006). Important factors to consider when using internal branding as a management strategy: A healthcare case study. Journal of Brand Management, 14(1), 162-176.

Kotler, P., Shalowitz, J., & Stevens, R. J. (2011). Strategic marketing for health care organizations: building a customer-driven health system. John Wiley & Sons.

Kotler, P., Shalowitz, J., & Stevens, R. J. (2011). Public health branding: Applying marketing for social change. Oxford University Press.