How to Market Medical Supplies & Equipment (the Right Way)

Wondering how to market medical supplies and equipment? Look no further; everything you need to know to launch a medical supply and equipment marketing strategy is right here.
You’ll learn:
  • The difference between medical supplies and medical equipment
  • How to build a data-driven target audience of HCPs
  • How to use engaging ads to boost performance
  • Which metrics you should look at to understand performance
  • How to evolve your campaigns to maximize future ones
Ready? Let’s go.

Medical Supplies vs. Medical Equipment: Explained

HCPs use medical supplies once and then dispose of them — for example, scrubs and masks. Conversely, medical equipment is designed for long-term use — for example, nebulizers, ventilators, and MRI machines.
Given the short lifespan of medical supplies, the hospitals, doctor’s offices, and other healthcare organizations using them generally purchase them more frequently than other items. Their lower price tag also means they generally require fewer marketing touchpoints to generate a conversion. On the other hand, the high price associated with medical equipment almost always translates to longer purchase cycles and the need for more robust medical supply and equipment digital campaigns.

How to Market Medical Supplies & Equipment the Right Way

Despite some obvious differences between medical supplies and medical equipment, the steps you take to market them are similar. Both require you to build smart HCP audiences, tap into engaging ad types, report on meaningful metrics, and evolve them over time to maximize your ad spend.

Build a Target Audience That Aligns with Campaign Goals

How you build your target list of HCPs is the most important step when you’re thinking about how to market medical supplies and equipment. After all, if your ads don’t land on the screens of the HCPs you want to reach, you won’t achieve your campaign goals.
Speaking of goals, start here. What are you trying to accomplish? Awareness? Meetings? Sales? Once you decide on a goal, you can begin sifting through the thousands of HCPs to identify which ones you actually want to reach.

If your goal is to increase the number of meetings and demos of your MRI machine, it’d make more sense to target HCPs who’ll use them, like technicians. Although they likely don’t have purchasing power, their endorsement is critical to convincing those who do. If you’re trying to increase sales, you’d want to target senior-level HCPs and administrators. Finally, if you’re aiming for awareness of a new mask, your best bet would be to target nurses, doctors, and other HCPs in the trenches.

Once you identify which positions align most closely with your goals, you can start building your audience. We recommend using tried-and-true first-party HCP audiences given your relationship with them and their previously proven interest in your medicine supplies or equipment. You can take it a step further by teaming up with medical supplies and equipment digital marketing companies that have access to an up-to-date HCP database. Doing so will ensure you’re actually targeting the right people while also giving you an easy way to cost-efficiently scale.

Use Engagement-Driven Ads

With a goal-aligned audience in hand, it’s time to decide which ad types you’ll use to deliver your medical supply and medical equipment ads. Given the abundance of options from which to choose, deciding which ad type (or types) you should use may seem like a daunting task.

Here’s the trick: Prioritize ad types that can deliver engaging experiences. Nine times out of 10, this will mean video ads or others with rich media elements, both of which give you the ability to add life and excitement to your ads. Not only that, they work. If you’re not convinced, consider the fact that 89% of marketers say video gives them a positive ROI.1 Meanwhile, click-through rates (CTR) for rich media ads outperform standard banner ads by an incredible 267%.2

By giving your ads an edge over the static ads often used by your competitors, you’re increasing the likelihood that you’ll catch the eyes of your target HCP as they swim through a sea of ads online.
Remember: Building a smart target audience only matters if you can deliver your message to them in an engaging way. Video ads and rich media ads do that.

Utilize Messaging That Speaks to HCPs

Once you’ve chosen the right ad types, the next step is creating content that’s relevant and engaging to your audience. Here are some best practices:
  • The key to effective messaging is understanding your audience. Create a persona for each type of HCP you’re trying to reach and then develop your content accordingly. Where are they located? Do they work in hospitals or clinics? What types of content do they consume?
  • If you’re looking to reach hospital executives, ask yourself what they’re interested in. Are they concerned about safety? How about costs and patient experiences?
  • Keep your messaging human. Show real people benefiting from your product, including both HCPs and patients. Using faces in your ads is an easy way to connect with audiences, as we’re instinctively drawn to them for emotional and biological reasons.  
  • Make sure your content is brief and to the point. HCPs are busy. They should understand everything they need to know within the first three to five seconds of seeing your ad.

Report on Meaningful Metrics

Here’s the reality of medical supply and equipment marketing: It’s an evolution and each campaign will leave something to be desired. And that’s ok — as long as you take each campaign as a learning experience and an opportunity to build a solid foundation for future campaigns.

For those future campaigns to be effective, however, it’s imperative that you pull, and report on, the right metrics. We’re talking about engagement metrics, i.e., ones that indicate whether an HCP is actively interested in what you’re selling.

To that end, evaluate metrics such as video views and clicks. Unlike impressions and other vanity metrics, video views and clicks are strong signals of intent. Said another way, if an HCP in your target audience watches one of your video ads or clicks on a CTA in another one, there’s a pretty good chance they’re at least somewhat interested in what you have to say.
Now, this isn’t to say metrics such as impressions aren’t valuable. If you’re after awareness, tracking them is fine. The challenge is that impressions and other “vanity” metrics don’t give you any hints into what an HCP is thinking. Think about the number of ads you scroll by every single day, but don’t notice. These are impressions and advertisers looking at them will see that you “saw” their ad.
Ultimately, the key at this stage of your medical supply and medical equipment digital marketing strategy is that you align your metrics with your goals. If you’re hoping for anything further down the funnel than awareness, engagement metrics should be your proxy for success.

Evolve With Purpose to Maximize Ad Spend

Marketing medical supplies and equipment and perfecting your strategy is a long-term play and something you constantly look to improve upon. At this point, your goal is to evaluate what worked, what didn’t, and what you can do next time to get more HCPs to convert.
As you’re deciding what to do, ask yourself this simple question: Which changes can we make to get more for less? There’s no denying that marketing your medical supplies and equipment online is effective, but you also can’t get around the fact that it can get expensive. Optimization is the key to maximizing your ad spend. Your wallet will thank you.
Here are some examples of what you should be optimizing on your programmatic campaigns:
  • Visuals
  • Copy
  • Landing pages
  • Bids
  • Frequency
  • Placements

Boosting Performance With a Medical Supply & Equipment Marketing Agency

In today’s ultra-competitive medical supply and equipment landscape, “how to market medical supplies and equipment” is the right question to ask. Frankly, anyone not asking that question will fall behind.
But impactful medical supply and equipment digital advertising isn’t as complex as you might think. Sure, there are a lot of moving pieces, but at the core of an effective marketing strategy are four elements: audience building, ad types, reporting, and evolution. If you can do all four of these well, you’ll be in good shape.

Sources

  1. Santora J. Video Marketing Statistics: What You Must Know for 2022. OptinMonster. Published January 7, 2022. Access January 25, 2021.  
  2. Rich Media: Its Evolution and How It Amplifies Your Message. Adobe Experience Cloud. Published May 7, 2018. Accessed January 25, 2022.