By Mark Macias
Personality helps in life, but don’t rely on a bubbly personality to secure healthcare or health tech media placements. When it comes to stories of substance, a deep understanding of media strategy leads to medical coverage.
Earlier this morning, I spoke with a dermatologist who told me she spent “a lot of money” on her last PR firm and “they delivered nothing.” She went on to tell me how her PR firm couldn’t get her skin services publicity with TV or print.
Why Experience Matters with Health Tech and Healthcare PR
When it comes to securing stories with the media, medical stories are always a harder sell than traditional news stories because they are more complicated and have larger ramifications. It’s one thing to get a new dating app or restaurant app in the news because those stories likely won’t destroy the health of a person. But with medical and health tech stories, the potential for harm is a factor with editorial.
For example, we led a media campaign last year for a prominent healthcare center, Burke Rehabilitation Center, that published a study on how a lack of Vitamin B shows up in Alzheimer’s patients. Even though the study was published by a reputable organization, it was not yet peer-reviewed and as a result, the news organizations were slower and more cautious to pursue the story.
As one medical reporter told me, we don’t want to give false hope to people suffering from Alzheimer’s that Vitamin D will save them. As I was pitching this medical reporter, I used his concern to pivot to how Vitamin D can help younger people now and reinforced the story sell with the hospital’s distinguished record and long history. For the record, we did end up securing several stories and video segments on that study, including a big story with the Wall Street Journal.
A Great Personality Doesn’t Secure News Stories with Healthcare Reporters
But we didn’t use a bubbly personality or smiling face to get that story on the news. It was a serious conversation that involved substance. We secured the big media placements by selling these medical reporters on the details from the study and by communicating its impact on society.
So the next time you meet with a PR firm over your healthcare or health tech PR needs, make sure you aren’t seduced by personality or looks.
Macias PR was named the 2016 “Financial PR Firm of the Year – USA” and the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” by Finance Monthly. We have launched and led media campaigns for clients in healthcare, finance, tech and the nonprofit sectors. The founder of Macias PR – Mark Macias – is a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. He is also a PR contributor with CNBC, providing media analysis, insight and crisis advice on timely business topics.