While the healthcare sector continues to flourish globally and the outlook for healthcare startups appears positive at first glance, the latter do face several struggles with institutional policies, data privacy and hierarchical systems that discourage innovation. Building a good PR strategy in place can get potential VCs interested while also allowing doctors, communities and even governments to see the world of good that your startup can offer. Here are four ways healthcare startups can leverage PR to improve their reach.

  1.   Create Awareness – Use consumer-facing marketing to tell the world what you do. The right PR agency can help formulate narratives and elaborate on your innovation and ethical practices when it comes to customers. An example would be to use catchy Twitter hashtags like Carilion Clinic did with #YESMAMM or use inspiring videos that can be used on the website or app. Digital marketing and PR helps get the word out that your startup doesn’t just offer healthcare solutions but also cares for people.
  2.   Tell stories – Stories are a powerful way of conveying to the audience about human interest issues while patient success stories can create a positive feel-good buzz that builds audience engagement. Several established healthcare organizations use short videos on their platforms using patients themselves to tell their stories. Startups may not have the same level of resources but nevertheless, every effort counts and this can be achieved with the right use of social media and blogs.
  3.   Empower Patients through Technology – Healthcare organisations continue to use legacy software that’s slow and leaves patients and doctors frustrated. Healthcare startups on the other hand can bring a unified consumer-grade technology platform that’s faster. While Digital clinics help patients navigate through the often confusing world of healthcare, guiding them through to recovery, wearable devices feature in the preventive sphere. The underlying intent of these and several other healthcare startups is to ensure patient empowerment. This is another aspect of the story that needs to be told.
  4.   Stand out from the crowd – According to healthcare investment firm Startup Health, digital healthcare companies are receiving 14 times more funding than eight years ago, when they began tracking investments. With investors willing to plug in money for AI, blockchain and machine learning technology, it’s imperative for healthcare startups to cut out the noise and stand out from the crowd. This can be achieved with a carefully implemented PR strategy that focuses on the brand and those behind it, thus crafting a comprehensive narrative about the startup.

An aspect about healthcare startups that often worries consumers is that their health data might be at a privacy risk. With medical data being readily available thanks to medical-grade devices that constantly monitor and record data, there’s a certain negativity that’s associated with healthcare startups as patients don’t want to part with their medical histories. PR can be used to allay these fears and subsequently inspire trust with outreach programs, assuring consumers that their data is safe and used only for the purposes it was collected.

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