Doctors Overwhelmingly Skeptical About Recovery

I don’t know what your experience is, but the doctors I speak with are overwhelmingly skeptical about the possibility of an impending “economic recovery.” Let me explain:

Because I am a partner in a health care marketing company, I give lots of speeches to health care professionals at venues nationwide, and I also speak with doctors on a daily basis.

After hearing Ben Bernanke claim that the recession is “very likely over,” I began informally polling my clients and audiences to see if they agree.

They were skeptical to say the least.

In fact, at least 95% of the doctors I’ve recently asked said they do not believe that a recovery is anywhere near in sight.

Was I surprised? Nope.

How could I have been? I haven’t heard a peep of optimism from virtually anyone this year.

Talk about a disconnect.

Now granted, my informal polling methods are unscientific. And you could argue that a selection bias exists because people who listen to me speak about marketing may be more likely to “need” more patients.

Fair enough. (I am going to ask you to weigh in on the topic in just a moment, because I want a broader sampling.)

But we also have this little problem of high unemployment. Take a look at an interesting article Peter Cohan wrote yesterday. I’ll bet unemployed and underemployed people aren’t very optimistic either.

This is by far the most denied recession in my memory. Remember, it took a year for the government to even admit we are IN a recession.

Worse, whenever I hear neutral, “smart money” experts talk on the Charlie Rose show (my favorite window into the world of smart people), they say that the fundamental financial problems that got us into this mess remain unabated. Wall Street STILL has the same overzealous culture, and vital regulatory changes have yet to be made.

Frankly, that disgusts me.

So what do YOU think? Do you agree or disagree? Really, I want to know, and I want a larger sampling of people.

Give me your comments below, and also please respond to my Survey Monkey poll.

I’ll report back on my findings in a future post.

By the way, if the recession is hurting your own bottom line, and you don’t think things are going to get better soon, I am going to recommend you follow a counter intuitive strategy, and begin marketing again.

Here are some links that will guide you:

Lessons from the super-rich: invest in your own business or practice, rather than the stock market.

More “Tough Times” Marketing Secrets

17 Healthcare Marketing Secrets to Win New Patients Now, Despite the Recession

So whether you think we are in for smooth sailing or rough seas, I thank you for your input, and wish you the best.

Losing Your Identity As You Grow Larger? How To Shape Your Brand Essence.

Does this dilemma sound familiar to you?

I just spoke with a prospective client whose business has more than quadrupled in recent years, and even the leadership and staff are confused as to what the business stands for.

Funny thing, while leaders are sometimes able to keep the mission and identity of their companies strong as they grow (think Nike and Virgin Atlantic), most companies drift as they grow beyond the “mom-and-pop” stage.

What should my client do?

Well, the first step is to go back to square one and review the organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT analysis). Also review the marketplace and competition so that they can identify their core competencies and eventually come up with a positioning statement.

As a reminder, that’s the one thing we want people to remember about you if they can only remember one thing.

That rational argument will be the beginning of a brand which then needs to be developed.

That doesn’t simply mean coming up with a tagline and logo. It needs to be incorporated into everything the client does.

Oftentimes the essence of the positioning (and brand) is simple. If we position the company or practice as “friendly and fast,” management can constantly remind staff about the mission, and ensure that they are delivering on it.

For more about branding and positioning, see this article