Traditional vs. Alternative Marketing Methods in Medicine

Traditional vs. Alternative Marketing
Methods in Medicine
Annie Ha

As society continues to evolve in different ways we provide healthcare for people, so do the ways we reach out to potential clients. Spectrum Health Care, a medical facility focused on tending senior citizens, markets in a way that reflects their company’s audience: traditional and a bit older. While Which Doctor, a platform that acts as a middleman to connect people to various health professionals, advertises their company in a way that is much more creative and “hip.”

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Let’s start with Spectrum Healthcare. The first impressions I got from their website was organized and informative. It was information heavy, straightforward, and all of their social media was listed at the bottom of every page you clicked on. A very basic and typical style for a healthcare organization. I wouldn’t expect anything else. When you reach their Twitter and Facebook, they both contain the same information you would find on their website. All their posts are centered around what services they offer, links to websites/news articles about the current pandemic, and resources for the elderly. The consistency and parallelism in their social media accounts allow them to provide the same information across multiple platforms. Their website and social media are super easy to navigate no matter how old you are, and all of their articles and links get straight to the point.

However, when you look at Which Doctor’s website and social media accounts, you get a completely different picture. Which Doctor alternative health practitioners advocates for alternative medicine; this includes acupuncture, Chinese medicine, naturopathy, etc. It’s interesting to note that Which Doctor doesn’t at all provide any links to their social media accounts. You would probably find out about Spectrum Healthcare through a simple Google search, whereas you’d be taken to Which Doctor from an Instagram or Facebook advertisement. Their marketing strategy is aimed more toward younger generations or anyone who uses social media religiously. Which Doctor is on more social media platforms like Instagram and Tik Tok where many health gurus and alternative medicine practitioners gain the majority of their clients and followers.

Looking at Which Doctor’s social media accounts, it is more aesthetically pleasing to the eye than Spectrum’s. It’s refreshing and more focused on individual stories of self-growth and discovery. This simultaneously shows off their mission and philosophy while advertising what kind of healthcare professionals and methods you will be exposed to when using their website/app.

Image by wei zhu from Pixabay

They have even reached out to a platform called Tik Tok, which has become a beehive for Generation Z and millennials. They use popular trends and sounds to promote their services. Their videos grab the ever-shrinking attention span of younger viewers to inform them of nontraditional therapy and health practices. Spectrum, on the other hand, utilizes YouTube where they’ve recently begun to post videos of their staff workers during the pandemic. It adds wholesomeness and individuality to their company, but not as much as Which Doctor.

Additionally, as younger generations grow more aware and vocal about social issues, their social media accounts accommodate their followers’ values and beliefs. While Spectrum Health Care strictly posts about healthcare, Which Doctor has been vocal about the recent events including the murder of George Floyd, the Black Lives Matter movement, and Pride month. Since Which Doctor prioritizes emotional wellbeing as much as the physical body, it makes sense that they would be talking about social issues that impact a person’s growth and development.

To be clear, I’m not at all critiquing Spectrum’s marketing methods. While it may seem Which Doctor has more creative and unconventional methods of advertisement, I’m not so sure it would be as effective if Spectrum used them. Spectrum’s clientele is mostly comprised of elderly citizens, whereas Which Doctor markets toward a younger audience. As of right now, Spectrum’s marketing methods work for them and their audience. They have an efficient technique of getting the information to the people consistently through all platforms which I’m sure is what their clients expect from them. Which Doctor is much more liberal and unconstrained in their website and social media’s structures, or lack thereof. And that’s perfectly okay. While Which Doctor and Spectrum could aspire to be more organized/creative than the other, there’s really no need to change methods if what they’re using works best for their intended audience. Both have proven effective in their marketing strategies, and they exemplify a need for flexibility in marking towards your audience.