Two Compelling Arguments to Use When They Ask For a Billboard

Apr 25, 2023 | Amy Ferguson - Doximity Senior Client Success Manager

My daughter and I recently attended a birthday party for a little girl in her class. In between visits to the potty and minor meltdowns, I started chatting with one of the other mothers, and I quickly learned that she is a marketer for a local hospital and BOOM! Instant connection. If you know, you know. We shared an “Oh my gosh, you understand my world” type moment, which was just so lovely and refreshing. I was giddy as we discussed the various nuances of hospital marketing, excited to have met someone else who gets it.

I went on to share that I moved on from my former role several years ago after becoming burned out by a variety of things: bureaucratic red tape, the never-ending requests for branded tchotchkes no one ever claimed, the investment in optical marketing tactics that were never going to move the needle like elevator wraps and…billboards. 

Her eyes lit up. The very word is triggering. “YES! The billboards. Like, no, no, no!”  

We bonded over our shared professional disdain for billboards and both agreed: when challenged with increasing patient volume and generating new referrals, billboards can be an illogical tactic with a steep price tag, yet they always seem to pop up in conversations with key stakeholders.

I get it. They are an easy win and loudly, proudly display efforts to market a specific service line or doctor. And, for sure there is a time and place, especially for top-of-the-funnel and brand awareness-type messages. However, if your job is to reach specific physicians and generate revenue, it’s likely not happening through a billboard.

Here are two powerful, insightful responses to use the next time your executives, administrators or physicians call for a billboard.

  1.   Emphasize the importance of data-driven decisions.

In today’s modern marketing landscape, it’s all about the data. The insights uncovered from marketing analytic tools can paint a very colorful, detailed picture of your audience. Those who partner with Doximity receive incredibly valuable and specific reports. With this info in their back pocket, our partners are empowered with the knowledge of what resonates with which audience, which in turn, gives them the keys to more successful campaigns in the future.

An outdoor billboard, by nature, just can’t do that. 

  1.   Explain what you know about physician preferences.

With busy clinical schedules and an abundance of medical information and news to keep up with, the importance of digital, mobile-friendly content continues to grow among physicians. In Doximity’s Physician Learning Report, conducted in Fall 2022, 85% of physicians surveyed reported conducting “most” or “all” of their engagement with medical news or information online, including via a smartphone.

And with such little time on their hands, physicians are seeking out meaningful and practice-specific content experiences on their phones, which can include information on: 

    • Clinical trial recruitment
    • Research updates
    • Local educational events
    • New treatment options

By design, a billboard physically cannot deliver these types of practice-specific, in-depth messages.

There is power in the excellence of care provided by the physicians at your facility. Ensure the knowledge of that power is in front of the right physicians at the right time with the right tactics.