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The changing face of marketing to the NHS - PharmaTimes March 2012

As we go through a period of NHS reform we are exposed to new structures and policies as well as shrinking budgets. But what impact have these changes had on NHS marketing plans?

Although the primary focus for respondents to a survey conducted by Binley's remain GPs, hospital doctors, NHS managers and primary care organisations, companies are reaching out to a wider audience when it comes to marketing to the NHS, says marketing manager Sarah Eglington. "Change often brings opportunity and when your traditional audience gets turned on its head, ie. by going through NHS reform, it gives you the chance to see who else is a potential customer.We've noticed an increase in the number of organisations looking to test responses from other healthcare professionals that they might not have targeted previously.

Traditional methods of marketing such as mailings still very much have a place in NHS marketing plans (69% of respondents) whilst e-communications continue to grow (72%). Interestingly, other digital marketing solutions seem to be the biggest area of growth with the use of Apps, eDetails and interactive online modules to communicate with healthcare professionals on the increase. Of the various social media channels, LinkedIn is the most used, by 21% of respondents, Facebook by 16% and Twitter by 15%.

Budgets may have been cut (the majority of organisations who responded have less than £50k) but marketing to the NHS still delivers results, notes Eglington. Smart organisations understand that the NHS still has a job to do, patient care doesn't stop for reform or restructure, and there are still opportunities out there to communicate, engage and build successful relationships with the NHS.

Binley's Marketing to the NHS workshops are run throughout the year. For more information - E: or W:

Press contact:
Marketing Department E: T: 01268 495600

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