For many years, many successful clinics have been built on:
- Running television commercials
- Regularly sending direct mail to the local community
- And having their name on the radio.
It has worked, and I speak to many clinics that attribute a lot of their success to these advertising channels.
However, I strongly believe that we’re about to see a big shift in the performance of traditional offline advertising in 2022 and it’s going to become a huge waste of your advertising dollars.
In this article, I’m going to share why I believe this is the case and where I believe the smart advertising dollars will be invested in 2022 and beyond.
Why Will Traditional Advertising Stop Working?
Having developed hundreds of successful marketing campaigns across many different industries, I’ve found that all successful campaigns come down to a framework.
The framework is called “Market, Message, Media.”
- The first step when considering any advertising campaign is to understand who the MARKET is, i.e., who is the audience that you’re looking to reach?
- Once this has been defined, you then consider what MESSAGE you would like to put in front of them.
- Only when you understand WHO you want to target and with WHAT message, can you decide the MEDIA – the HOW you’re going to reach them.
From my experience, many businesses start with the media and then try to work out what message they should use.
They receive a good offer on local radio advertising, or they see a competitor on television and feel obliged to do the same … this is then when they consider the message they should use.
In many cases, it probably worked.
That’s because, traditionally, radio, television, or direct mail was likely the right MEDIA to reach the right MARKET.
- Your market was local people with a hearing challenge
- Your message was that you can help them solve their problem
- And sending direct mail was a direct way to reach your market with your message.
But I believe that is about to CHANGE.
The reason why I believe these traditional channels are no longer going to work is because 2022 is going to result in an almighty shift in this industry, which is going to result in more television, newspaper, billboard, and press aimed at showcasing OTC products from major brands.
We’re already seeing some of their advertising slowly emerging, but it’s nothing compared to what we’ll see in 2022 once regulations have been approved.
That’s because the big brands:
- Have huge budgets ready to be aggressively spent
- Are going to bombard anybody that meets the common patient demographics
- And they have hired some of the best advertising agencies in the world.
It means that their advertising and message is going to reach almost everybody.
That includes the people local to you that have a hearing challenge that traditionally would have walked through your door.
The result of this is that it’s going to CHANGE the conversation that happens for both the patients and their loved ones when they’re considering what they should do about their hearing problem.
It means that your average Joe is no longer asking himself,
“Where should I go to buy hearing aids?”
Instead, he’s asking himself,
“What do I need for my hearing loss, which option is right for me, and how should I buy it?”
This means that running a traditional newspaper, radio, or television advert that promotes your clinic or talks about the latest hearing technology is NO longer the answer.
It’s the wrong message in today’s market.
People are no longer just looking for a local and convenient clinic – their head is in a different place. They’re instead wondering what they should do and which of the many options is right for them.
The conversation about what is required to address a hearing challenge is taking a step away from visiting your local provider and instead focusing on low-cost widgets by trusted household electronic brands.
This is why I believe that continuing to spend money to try to compete with their big budgets, or run messaging that talks about how nice, friendly, and convenient your clinic is, is not the answer and will result in you wasting precious advertising dollars.
It truly is DAVID versus GOLIATH.
It’s why we’re encouraging all of our Inner Circle members to minimize local offline advertising, or at least track it far more effectively and be critical about the returns on their investment.
So, Where Should You Be Investing Your Advertising Dollars?
The answer is that you need to play to your strengths.
The way that DAVID beats GOLIATH is by playing the ace card that only David can play.
What OTC and all this market change is going to do is create a lot of confusion and a lot of questions.
A confused mind cannot make a buying decision and all the noise created by OTC is going to result in many more hearing-related questions being asked on Google.
There’s going to be a thirst for more information.
Your ACE CARD is that you are uniquely qualified to answer all the questions in people’s heads … something that the big OTC brands will not want to do or be qualified to do.
It’s your place to shine, educate, and advise.
In 2022, your marketing and advertising strategy should be to comprehensively answer the big questions that people are asking Google and utilize Google Advertising to buy adverts to be the number one option when these questions are searched.
You will be able to benefit from the increased number of people looking, and the people asking these questions are clearly further down the buying process, resulting in the perfect storm of high return on investments.
“The Second Mouse Gets the Cheese”
The big brands behind OTC are going to be creating so much noise that it results in people questioning whether they should address their hearing challenges, so you have an opportunity to benefit from the noise that they’re creating.
Let them spend the big advertising dollars to drive decision and set yourself up to benefit in the final mile and convert the opportunity toward visiting you.
This approach means that you should be spending a lot less advertising dollars in 2022 but in a far more strategic way that will deliver you better returns on investment.
Co-Founder & Marketing Director
Orange & Gray