Skip to main content

Dumb Clients? Clueless Agencies? Pick One...Or Both.

The mind reels and the eyes spin after a 1,000 mile cross-country drive.  Why?

Not for the traffic jams caused by Illinois' mind-numbingly stupid decision to waste "stimulus" dollars repaving an already perfectly-smooth I-55 from St. Louis to Joliet.  You expect idiocy from Illinois politicians.  And the paving contractor is probably some pol's brother-in-law.

No, my allergic reaction stems more from the astounding numbers of bad, really, truly, horribly, miserably, wretched billboards devoted to hospital marketing messages.  C'mon people.  What are you THINKING?

Dumb clients?  Clueless agencies?  One has to wonder.

Copy that rambles on...and on...and on.   Can't ANYBODY get to the POINT in 6 words or less?

Colors that wash out in the sun...and under sodium vapor lights...and at dawn...and dusk.  Isn't someone paying for these things DRIVING THE BOARD once in a while?

Acronyms and buzzwords. Do you REALLY think a billboard is the place to be telling the masses about your smashing new EMR or your performance improvement activities?  Really?  Sorry, at 75 mph, when I see "PI" I think Magnum, not readmission rates.

Confusing names. "The Blah-Blah Institute at South MegaPlex Hospital & Medical Center's North Main Street Pavilion."  All I get is "..Blah-Blah..."  All I care about is...well, I don't care.  I passed caring 10 miles ago.

What's that you say?  Cross-country drivers aren't really your intended audience?  You're going after the locals?  Yeah, maybe, but you're paying for BOTH.  And you're reaching neither.

Next time I'm flying.  Whatever's in American Airlines' seat-back pockets has to be easier on my eyes than what adjoins our interstate highways, though undoubtedly less rant-worthy.  On second thought, who am I kidding?


Chris Bevolo said…
Great rant, Steve. I linked to your post on my blog so others can share in the pain.

One funny note: when I came back to your blog, I saw this in your GoogleAds:

"Billboard Advertising
Find billboards anywhere in the USA with a no-charge proposal."

Maybe that's what's behind all the crappy outdoor!

: )

Popular posts from this blog

Being Disrupted Ain't Fun. Deal With It.

Articles about disrupting healthcare, particularly those analogizing, say, Tesla's example with healthcare's current state, are frequently met with a chorus of (paraphrasing here) "Irrelevant! Cars are easy, healthcare is hard." You know, patients and doctors as examples of "information asymmetry" and all that. Well, let me ask you this: assuming you drive a car with a traditional internal combustion engine, how much do you know about the metallurgy in your car's engine block? I'll bet the answer is: virtually nothing. In fact it's probably less than you know about your own body's GI tract. Yet somehow, every day, us (allegedly) ignorant people buy and drive cars without help from a cadre of experts. Most of us do so and live happily ever after (at least until the warranty expires. Warranties...another thing healthcare could learn from Tesla.) Now, us free range dummies - impatient with information asymmetry - are storming healthcar…

Becoming Consumer Friendly In Five Easy Steps...Or Not

An article at offers hospitals 5 steps to becoming more consumer friendly.

If you still think there's a secret sauce to your hospital becoming more "consumer friendly," these 5 steps are as good a place to start as any.  Unfortunately, it's a little like that old Steve Martin comedy bit where he says he'll teach you how to be rich. The first step is to go find a million dollars.

Step 1 from the article is realizing that "...a Medicare beneficiary with chronic conditions is different from a young mom who brings her kids in for an annual check-up." This is market segmentation for beginners, and, yes, one size decidedly does not fit all. I'm sure your marketing team's been saying this for a while.

Steps 2-5: have a strategy, metrics, a champion and resources. OK. Hard to argue with any of those.

But those things, alone or together, won't overcome culture. They're important components to be sure, but insufficient without a …

Behind Every Resume Is A Potential Customer...and Karma.

I recently heard from an executive colleague who, thanks to a merger, found herself looking for her next opportunity. Her story, probably depressingly familiar to many of you, was all about the big black hole of rudeness and non-responsiveness that so often sums up employers' attitudes toward candidates.

This colleague, thinking she'd see the healthcare world from a new vantage point, pursued opportunities with consultants, IT vendors, architects and other suppliers who, far from appreciating her solid resume, were like the 3 Stooges of clueless.

So back to a senior health system role she went, WHERE SHE NOW INITIATES AND MANAGES RFPs FOR SOME OF THE VERY SAME COMPANIES who wouldn't talk to her as a candidate, but profess their LOVE for her now that she's got money to spend on their services.

Not gonna happen. Any guesses who's off the RFP list?

I smiled when I heard her story, imagining the BusDev people working hard to grow the revenue pipeline, all the while b…