What is Health Tourism Marketing?
What is Health Tourism Marketing?
15 October 2022
İdil Tiber Ersoy

Health tourism is an area where different marketing techniques are applied together, due to its multidisciplinary structure and many factors that can be considered independent of each other. In health tourism marketing, many methods are used together, from B2G marketing to direct marketing to customers through conferences and fairs, and pre-diagnosis centers.

Health is a sector based on trust in general. Entrusting your health to someone in a foreign country or relying on an agent to help you plan your trip or treatment is a worrying process in itself. Health tourism marketing focuses on alleviating this fear. For example, agencies and healthcare organizations introduce themselves to institutions and individuals in the target country by participating in international fairs and conferences. One-on-one promotion improves interaction and increases the likelihood of trust.

Another example is pre-diagnosis centers. Thanks to the pre-diagnosis centers, foreign patients talk about treatment and plan treatment by communicating face-to-face with medical professionals who speak the language they speak in their own country. Of course, this will increase the person's confidence in the treatment and the country they are traveling to as a potential health tourist.

Digital Marketing in Health Tourism

With the popularity of the internet, digital marketing has become one of the most important marketing strategies. Now, before purchasing a service or product, people spend hours exploring the digital world. The situation is no different when it comes to health. People rate doctors, clinics or hospitals, read Google reviews, and carefully research social proof through social media accounts and websites.
In health tourism, digital marketing is more important than local health services. Digital marketing is the most effective way for health institutions, health tourism organizations and countries to provide health and tourism services to the world. So, let's specify what digital marketing needs in health tourism:

  • Social Media
  • SEO
  • Content Marketing
  • Website

Health Tourism Marketing Process

There are many methods that can be used in the marketing of health tourism. But no matter what strategy or method you use, there are some unchanging stages in the marketing process. These stages can be listed as follows:

  • Identification of marketing objectives.
  • Evaluation of previous marketing techniques, if possible.
  • Performing market research (customer segmentation, competitive analysis).
  • Identification of organizational strengths and weaknesses.
  • Identification of target group and analysis improvement.
  • Determining the marketing budget.
  • Revealing marketing strategy decisions based on previous stage results.
  • Determining the marketing strategy implementation calendar.
  • Determining how the implemented strategy will be evaluated.

Things to Consider When Getting Marketing Consultancy for Health Tourism

The marketing of services is not a process that a medical institution or health tourism institution can successfully manage within itself. The main reasons for this are that the marketing process is very complex, strategy discovery requires experience, and the creation of all documents and visual materials used in the marketing process requires a high level of effort and time.

For this reason, health tourism organizations, like many sectors, prefer to work with agencies for marketing activities. However, there are some criteria to consider before stepping into marketing services:

  • You should make sure that the focus of the institution you will work for is health tourism.
  • You should examine the reporting methods of the institution you will cooperate with.
  • You should request preliminary material about your industry.
  • You should request evaluation material related to your own organisation.

Common Mistakes in Health Tourism Marketing

Health tourism marketing is a multidisciplinary and challenging process. Therefore, many errors may occur during the application. We can express frequently made mistakes as follows:

  • Starting marketing activities without narrowing the target audience enough.
  • Ignoring possible differences in patients' psychological makeup.
  • Doing market and competition research incompletely or  not doing it at all
  • Trying to please every possible customer.
  • Not giving the marketing budget the weight it deserves.
  • Not following the results of marketing efforts.

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