As the industry transforms, every smart healthcare provider is redefining itself and its value to the people it employs and serves. Meanwhile, innovative companies seek to gain traction, grow and improve healthcare through all the noise.
Our team of former healthcare journalists and marketing executives has 150+ years of experience in savvy positioning for healthcare providers. We have a track record of guiding providers to find their voice, tell a compelling story, earn trust and advance their market position.
Our work in strategic positioning ranges from launching or pivoting brands to targeted thought-leadership and reputation-building programs. With Jarrard, healthcare organizations:
- Become respected, well-known thought leaders
- Attract the talent, financing and sales they need to grow
- Earn or restore trust and build or rebuild reputation
- Capture opportunity to change healthcare
Insight into industry trends, healthcare venture capital news and communications best practices. Written from the perspective of our advisers, who work with healthcare leaders making high-stakes decisions every day.
Strategic Positioning Case Studies
A 10-year-old hospitalist company that had pioneered the industry sector felt pressure from investors to hit growth targets. The market was becoming saturated with hospitalist staffing companies, making it harder to cut through the noise and connect with health system buyers and physician recruits. With a new CEO at the helm, it was imperative to chart a course that allowed the company to stand out and expand quickly.
First, we listened. Over 60 days, we conducted a thorough audit that answered key questions about the company’s current market position, business goals for the future, how it stacked up against competitors and what it would take to be the preferred choice for certain health systems and physicians.
We found that while the company charged a premium for its services relative to competitors, its quality and efficiency justified the pricing. Plus, the company’s integral pioneering spirit was attractive to employees and physicians alike – both wanted to be a part of a culture devoted to relentless innovation and leadership in a hot sector. Through our work, leaders were armed with a sharp message and a clear strategy to showcase the company’s strengths. Together, we evolved the culture, brand, materials, sales and recruiting efforts and thought leadership strategy.
The company established itself nationally and in peer circles as the quality leader in the field, leading to 80% topline revenue growth over the three years we worked together to amplify its positioning.
Ultimately, the client achieved its growth goals and merged with a peer competitor to form the nation’s largest private hospitalist company.
A physician-led company focused on outpatient opioid addiction treatment had been growing, steadily and successfully, for six years, when the demand for its unique treatment approach and business model skyrocketed, seemingly overnight. The company, backed by a powerful team of investors, was recapitalized and needed to meet ambitious growth and expansion goals. Faced with a challenging regulatory environment and emerging competition, leadership wanted a solid brand strategy and communications plan to drive its trajectory and outcompete others in the market.
First, we conducted an audit of the current brand and market position and worked with leadership to understand where they aimed to take the company. Working alongside the CEO and through conversations with key stakeholders and research on the industry and competitors, we built a roadmap to evolve the culture, brand, marketing and sales efforts and internal communications infrastructure.
Critical to this roadmap was a clear, sophisticated evolution of the company’s brand. Leadership adopted a strong – even edgy – mission, vision and values to serve as a foundation for the larger brand, capturing the spirit of its caregivers and the fight against the disease.
Together we laser-focused resources on the company’s growth drivers – payer contracts, physician recruiting and community partnerships.
At the outset of our work, the company had six facilities in two states. Within 18 months, it opened its 40th center, operated in eight states, completed 110 payer contracts and hit a key milestone of 25,000 patients treated.
The client is on track to be the go-to national player and has achieved its goals while staying true to its core mission.
Leaders at a national hospital company learned that a “60 Minutes” investigative reporter was calling physicians and questioning its admission procedures. Leadership was torn about the best way to move forward. On the one hand, they knew that engaging the reporter risked calling attention to a non-issue if the story never aired. On the other, refusing to comment could give off the appearance that the company had something to hide.
First, we assessed the threat. We quickly learned from a variety of sources that the story would likely run and that we needed to get ahead of it.
We immediately convened stakeholders from the company’s communications, operations and legal teams to coordinate our crisis response plan. Together, we deployed the right team members to out-report the “60 Minutes” crew, making sure that we had all of the information they did. We hired an outside analytics firm to review the company’s admissions data – and the research showed the hospital’s admissions reporting procedures were unproblematic.
Armed with those findings, we engaged reporters and producers to determine the scope of the story. We learned what was likely to run and when.
We then pursued a “pre-sponse” strategy, providing that information, along with data from the outside firm’s analysis, to our own employees and Wall Street analysts, scooping the “60 Minutes” piece and ensuring that key audiences were prepared.
The “60 Minutes” story aired, but did not impact the share price or create an engagement problem with employees. The week following the broadcast, most reports from Wall Street analysts referred to the data from our independent analysis. With a coordinated team stacked with our advisers and hospital company leaders, we turned what could have been a major media mishap into a barely noticeable blip.