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PROMO2 (with CourseMate, 1 term (6 months) Printed Access Card) (Engaging4LTR Press Titles in Marketing)BOOK DETAILSeries: Engaging 4LTR Press Titles in Marketing Paperback: 368 pages Publisher: Cengage Learning; 2 edition (February9, 2012) Language: English ISBN-10: 1133626173 ISBN-13: 978-1133626176 Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 0.8 x 11 inchesShipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)Book DescriptionCreated by the continuous feedback of a "student-tested, faculty-approved" process, PROMO 2e delivers a visuallyappealing, succinct print component, tear-out review cards for students and instructors and a consistent online offeringwith CourseMate that includes an eBook in addition to a set of interactive digital tools all at a value-based price andproven to increase retention and outcomes. PROMO 2e is written in a concise style with plenty of real-world examples toillustrate the concepts of promotion and give students a glimpse into the industry and the challenges it faces. AttentionCourseMate user: The CourseMate platform is being sunset and will not be sold with this title after December 31st, 2019.Cengage will support existing users of CourseMate through August 1st, 2020.
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Sales promotion offers myriad opportunities for healthcare providers to connect with audiences. While limited in their power to attract broad audiences when used in isolation, sales promotion avenues used in tandem with other marketing communications create helpful engagement synergies which amplify conveyance initiatives. This article presents an overview of sales promotion and notably shares deployment insights and experiences from Willis-Knighton Health System, permitting peer healthcare establishments to view associated pathways, reflect on their own sales promotion efforts, and potentially bolster initiatives with the perspectives supplied herein.
Sales promotion offers healthcare providers a complementary communications avenue, helping to reinforce other elements of the marketing communications mix, affording opportunities to develop better connections with patients. In formulating associated communication plans, health and medical establishments should be reminded of the benefits offered by sales promotion and especially strive to effect creative applications that build interest and attention. By doing so, opportunities to bolster patient volume and increase all-important market share abound.
Health and medical institutions exist to serve [1,2,3], and in doing so, they obviously must proficiently attract and retain patients [4,5,6,7,8,9]. With patient acquisition and retention being vital determinants of success, associated skills must be shaped, honed, and continually developed over the life cycles of healthcare establishments, with communications acumen being one of greatest importance [5, 9,10,11,12,13,14]. Healthcare institutions direct communications toward current and prospective patients in many ways, typically selecting one or more established methods from the discipline of marketing. One of these methods is known as sales promotion, an element of what is known as the marketing communications mix, a 5-component array which also includes advertising, personal selling, public relations, and direct marketing [5, 11, 15]. Sales promotion involves the use of incentives, such as contests and free giveaways, to encourage patronage [5, 15]. Known for its ability to generate interest and attention, sales promotion is a staple of marketing communications in the health services industry, with the component being deployed in a wide variety of fashions [5, 14, 16,17,18].
Sales promotion efforts usefully complement other elements of the marketing communications mix, creating helpful synergies which reinforce the aggregate communicative efforts of institutions [17,18,19, 21]. Communicative avenues making use of sales promotion indeed are heavily traveled by healthcare establishments, placing a premium on developing highly creative applications which foster differentiation, enhance memorability, and elevate interest and attention. Given the broad range of sales promotion possibilities, especially hastened by creative influences, benefits abound whenever opportunities arise to examine the associated efforts of peer healthcare institutions. This article presents one such opportunity, sharing sales promotion insights and experiences from Willis-Knighton Health System, permitting peer healthcare establishments to view associated pathways, reflect on their own sales promotion efforts, and potentially bolster initiatives with the perspectives supplied herein.
The marketing communications mix, as traditionally depicted, contains five principal avenues of communication; namely, advertising (i.e., the paid use of mass media to deliver messages), personal selling (i.e., the use of sales agents to personally deliver messages), sales promotion (i.e., the use of incentives, such as contests and free giveaways, to encourage patronage), public relations (i.e., the use of publicity and other unpaid promotional methods to deliver messages), and direct marketing (i.e., the delivery of messages via mail, the Internet, and similar routes directly to consumers) [5, 11]. Healthcare providers examine each of these communicative avenues, selecting one or more believed to be most capable of reaching target audiences, with the ultimate goal being to encourage patronage or compel some other desired action [5, 15].
Sales promotion is a unique aspect of the marketing communications mix, relying on incentives to encourage patronage [5, 15]. Examples of sales promotion as deployed by health and medical institutions include the following.
Loyalty programs: A hospital offers a patient VIP program, affording access to a range of gratuities, including covered parking, free food in the cafeteria, a monthly newsletter, and more; a dental practice offers patients a free dental cleaning service after every 10 dental cleaning services received.
The expense associated with selected incentives varies, but the items or opportunities tend to be of negligible value in light of benefits received or expected. They very often are intended to serve as small tokens of appreciation awarded for engaging in some desired action (e.g., visiting a clinic, participating in a survey, being a loyal customer), achieving something momentous (e.g., a health or wellness milestone), reaching a celebratory point (e.g., a birthday or anniversary), and the like. At other times, they are deployed to compel those not associated with given healthcare establishments to become patrons. Depending on aims, incentives can be directed toward current or prospective patients (i.e., business-to-consumer applications) or health and medical providers (i.e., business-to-business applications), with an excellent example of the latter being distribution of logo-bearing pens, baked goods, or similar items to patient referral sources in the community, demonstrating appreciation for past referrals or perhaps setting the stage for future referrals. Regardless of form or target, sales promotion applications ultimately seek to stimulate the interest and attention of desired audiences [5, 9,10,11, 17,18,19].
Sales promotion is well known for its ability to stimulate interest and attention, with this often being cited as its greatest strength. Evoking interest and attention sets the stage for the target audiences of sales promotion efforts to extend their patronage, facilitating the all-important marketing goal of exchange, leading to the capture of market share. Of course, the nature of sales promotion campaigns will dramatically impact the degree of interest and attention generated, making deployment characteristics (e.g., selection of incentives, timing of promotions, methods of presentation) very important [5, 9,10,11, 17, 18].
Sales promotion serves as an excellent complement to other forms of marketing communication. When used in tandem with other methods, synergies are created that extend the communicative impact of given promotions. In the examples presented in the preceding paragraph (i.e., the eye clinic, the sports medicine clinic, the heart institute), inclusion of sales promotion incentives in the given communications (i.e., the advertisements, the direct mail piece) likely will generate much greater attentiveness toward those communications. In some respects, inclusion of a sales promotion incentive can help to paint a bullseye on advertisements, direct mail pieces, and other forms of communication, drawing eyes that would otherwise be disinterested or perhaps too occupied to notice given conveyances. In such cases, incorporating sales promotion incentives into other forms of communication magnifies the value of those particular overtures [16,17,18,19,20,21].
Of course, care must be taken not to overutilize sales promotion as a communicative mechanism, as doing so can diminish the special nature of given promotions, making them common and expected, negatively impacting its primary attribute of generating interest and attention. In some circumstances, such as that of couponing, overuse can stall patronage whenever these promotions are withdrawn, as potential patients will simply wait for given coupons to appear again before pursuing services. That said, sales promotions should be considered as special offers available for a limited time after which they are withdrawn for undefined periods, ensuring that they indeed remain special and retain their compelling effects.
Options abound with sales promotion, courtesy of many different forms (e.g., free gifts, coupons, discounts, contests), conveyance partners (e.g., other elements of the marketing communications mix), circulation plans (e.g., timing and length of promotion), and other deployment aspects. Typical applications can be observed across most any market, but healthcare institutions certainly should not feel limited to such. Sales promotion permits extreme latitude, as it essentially entails the assembly of incentives viewed to be attractive and compelling to target audiences. The possibilities for such are endless, limited only by the creative imagination and, of course, budgetary constraints [5, 9,10,11, 14, 17,18,19,20,21].