Physicians can greatly benefit through media relations for many reasons. Most patients and consumers get information concerning recent medical breakthroughs, studies or news via traditional media. The physicians often portrayed in the media are deemed to be trusted experts. They have a high likelihood of being sought after by potential patients and consumers. Public relations (PR) as a field that is not essentially marketing, but rather an effective strategy of educating and informing the general public. Two keys to a clearly a successful media campaign are information and education. Press coverage not only gets seen by the target market; it attracts patients and promotes the credibility and validation of the physician.
"The medical marketing technique that has proven time and time again to be highly effective in building credibility and trust is PR. While traditional advertising has been successful in marketing medical practice, there are some risks associated with the approach. There is no single patient who enjoys the feeling of being sold. Patients are more comfortable and readily willing to see a physician they can fully trust. They want to rely on someone they think has the best medical skills to help them to attain optimal health and well-being. Appearing in media platforms evidently builds trust and validation," said Jim Sebesta, spokesperson for MN Occupational Health: DOT Physical Exams.
Physicians introducing novel treatments or procedures rely on their relationship with the media. The media serves as the perfect platform for delivering the message of trust, safety, success and expertise. It is important to establish credibility and validation factors. Formulating decisions that concern medical treatments and health care can be terrifying for many consumers and patients. For this reason, they always hesitate to be subjects for trying a newly introduced medical procedure. Targeted public relations can play a vital role in establishing a sense of trust. Greater trust should be established for more sensitive or newer medical procedures. PR will therefore be crucial in establishing the trust in question.
As mentioned above, an effective campaign for medical PR does not solely entail marketing. It also involves conveying useful information and sensitizing the public. Effective media relations campaigns inform and educate people. It is fundamental for physicians to view and carry themselves as mentors. To establish themselves as medical field experts, physicians can use media to showcase their skills and communicate their stories. The stories or skills presented will eventually reach the target market and build a thriving medical practice.