Despite automation and artificial intelligence, marketing isn’t an activity that can be placed on auto-pilot. A successful, sustainable strategy takes serious collaboration between your internal team and the healthcare marketing agency you decide to hire. On average, these partnerships last over three years. In Kuno Creative’s case, even longer. The point is, you’re about to see, talk to and work with these people a lot.
In Part 1 of Hiring a Healthcare Marketing Agency: How to Find “The One,” we talked about the different ways to dig up tangible proof that an agency is as skilled and experienced as it claims to be. Let’s say you have your list of candidates narrowed down to at least two options. Their stories check out. Their portfolios are comparable. Now what? Before you rock-paper-scissors for the winner, think about compatibility between people, not just needs and services.
Over 80% of Fortune 500 companies use some variation of personality assessment to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of their employees.
And for a good reason! Matching individuals at random might occasionally produce a mashup of people who work shockingly well together. But the better approach is to use data points to amass a well-balanced workforce with compatible strengths. Since you barely know your new acquaintances at a healthcare marketing agency, the best place to start looking for usable data is within.
We all have a role to play in life and at work. Before you can find the complementary supporting roles for your cast of characters, you need to know who they are. I’m not talking about their hobbies; I'm talking about the inherent traits that drive them to do things the way they do. Ready to have some fun?
Ask the members of your immediate team (including you) to participate in an online strength-finder or personality test, like 16Personalities. This one is free and takes less than 12 minutes to draw interesting insights into how you:
Are you the:
The results may surprise you.
Compare findings with your internal team and take inventory. Is there a particular role missing from your repertoire? Is your team dense in some areas and light in others? Ideally, you want a healthy mixture of strengths. For example, let’s say online assessments reveal that your crew tends to be more observant (i.e., detail-oriented and in touch with what’s happening right now). Adding some “intuitives” (i.e., people focused on new ideas and possibilities) would create a counterbalance of strengths. Once you have some data points about what your internal team needs, strike up a targeted conversation with each potential healthcare marketing agency to find out if they complement your team.
In addition to balancing role types between new and existing team members, look for professionals who have their own unique balance of strengths, such as:
Passionate but Objective
We are experts in branding, marketing, and advertising. You are experts on your products, services and target markets. Collectively, we have much to learn from one another. In other words, a healthcare marketing agency should be able to accept feedback just as well as they lead discussions and provide creative direction.
Conservative but Rebellious
Healthcare marketing is easily one of the most competitive business landscapes in existence. Only the bold thrive here, but you have to know the rules before you can break them. Make sure your agency partners know how to take calculated risks, especially in marketing — timing and execution are everything. Just ask the Corona beer company, which boldly launched a new product line just as they had become the unofficial beer of the coronavirus. Sales were up in early March, but an ill-timed social media ad that ominously stated, “coming ashore soon” received serious backlash that lost the company popularity points.
In many ways, the partnership you build with a healthcare marketing agency is like any other relationship. It takes work, commitment, and understanding. But it also requires some chemistry, like-mindedness and a balance of strengths. You’ll know you’ve found “the one” when your team is just as inspired by the new agency as the agency is by your team and company mission.