If you're a doctor or you work for a healthcare practitioner, you need to read this. Why? Because chances are you're doing something that is jeopardizing your practice and livelihood.
You're doing your own marketing.
Doing so is a virus running rampant and unchecked in the medical industry. If we had such a thing, I would call it "marketing malpractice." If I could give you a quick prescription that would cure you of it, would you consider it? Let's take a look...
If you're a healthcare professional, chances are your time is literally more valuable than an outsourced marketing professional (unless, of course, we're discussing crisis communication; that's a different article). So, every second you're spending on doing your own marketing, you're losing money.
Moreover, particularly in the smaller practices, there's no plan to proactively and purposely do marketing communications activity, so the work tends to be haphazard and disjointed.
Putting out fires or responding "when you can get to it" is not a smart use of time. There needs to be purpose and organization, and both are a rare luxury as a practitioner.
In addition, perhaps one of the worst time sucks is dealing with all the myriad sales representatives seeking to part you with your hard-earned dollars because you should "advertise in their magazine" or "do this direct mail." Or sponsor this kids' soccer team. Seriously, those are not a good use of time because not only are you investing your time on a possible marketing buy, most likely you don't know what you're looking at or how to evaluate it. The television outlet (or radio outlet or print outlet) will always tell you it is the best choice.