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Readers Write: My Crystal Ball for 2024: PR and Marketing Predictions

January 8, 2024 Readers Write 1 Comment

My Crystal Ball for 2024: PR and Marketing Predictions
By Jodi Amendola

Jodi Amendola is CEO and founder of Amendola Communications of Scottsdale, Ariz.

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2023 will be remembered for a lot of things. Unfortunately, one of them was unpredictable decision-making about investments in HIT solutions and longer sales cycles.

Looking at the year ahead, we may see some continued challenges when it comes to market conditions, but here’s hoping my 2024 public relations (PR) and marketing cheat sheet can help you better navigate uncertain waters.

Bet on LinkedIn

In my predictions for 2023, I shared concerns about the uncertain future of what was then Twitter (now X) when it comes to B2B social media programs. Since then, things have gotten increasingly worse. Under Elon Musk, major advertisers have fled, countless users are deleting their profiles, and even the President of the United States felt compelled to condemn Musk for an anti-Semitic tweet and left X in favor of the emerging social media platform Threads. Companies that remain on X should ask themselves whether the shrinking benefits outweigh the mounting negatives. 

Meanwhile, LinkedIn continues to lead the charge as the business marketing platform to embrace. LinkedIn has strategically added business-friendly features such as product pages, post scheduling, and enhanced content analytics. Businesses that have not embraced LinkedIn for marketing and sales are missing a tremendous opportunity.

To maximize LinkedIn, be authentic and provide relevant information on a consistent basis. No more than 20% of your corporate posts should be about your company. The remainder should focus on third-party content that sparks interesting industry conversations. LinkedIn posts should leverage storytelling for engagement, how-to-guides for interest, and thought leadership for conversations.

Maximizing Conferences: Booths, Networking, and Online Events

In 2022, people flocked back to the big healthcare conferences, eager to gather again in person in the wake of COVID-driven isolation. We saw healthy crowds again in 2023, but many companies are re-thinking this strategy in favor of hosting targeted breakfasts or dinners or attending events for networking purposes only. We will likely see that trend continue in 2024, as many businesses may decide that the cost of sponsorship and exhibiting are too high in a tight economy.

The pandemic forced companies to become creative in marketing through virtual events. At the time, these tactics were driven by safety concerns, but now it’s budget priorities. HIT marketers are realizing that they don’t need an expensive 10×12 booth on a crowded convention floor to get their message across.

If webinars, podcasts, and virtual roundtables are carefully targeted and well marketed, you can even reach more qualified prospects than you can at a live event. Virtual events are not only less expensive, but they can be held more often than in-person happenings. Content from virtual events also can be repurposed for sharing through social media, blog posts, and bylined thought leadership articles that you can place in high-value media outlets.

AI is Here to Stay, But Regs Are Coming (Hopefully!)

After disrupting so many professions in 2023, OpenAI experienced its own chaos and upheaval at the end of the year.

However, that particular situation is resolved and artificial intelligence — whether it’s from OpenAI or a competitor — is too powerful to be stopped by C-suite struggles. AI will continue to disrupt not only health tech, but also marketing and PR.

In 2024, marketing departments and agencies will get a better handle on what they can and should do with this emerging technology. AI, when used correctly in a PR and marketing setting, can be a valuable tool, but it will never be a substitute for human writers and human intelligence. It can be useful for research, ideation, and facilitating the writing and thought process, but not for creating creative, thoughtful, highly targeted content.

I expect 2024 to see greater efforts, both public and private, to regulate the use of AI and require disclosure when it is employed.

Uptick in Rebranding is Here To Stay

The past year was a big one for companies that are rebranding (or doing a brand refresh) and updating messaging. We will likely see more of these efforts ahead.

Sometimes a rebrand is necessary because a company expands, changes its offerings, or decides to enter a new market. In other cases, it’s because the old look and old messaging have gone stale, which can happen without a business even realizing it. While a top-to-bottom rebrand is not something undertaken lightly, it’s a necessary part of most corporate evolutions and can help a company re-position or re-invent itself when appropriate.

Video, Video, and More Videos

Regardless of the platform, video is an increasingly popular choice to provide a welcome alternative to the written word. People often prefer to watch or listen to a video for entertainment, education, or just a needed break from reading. Video on LinkedIn increases linger times and engagement, so the algorithm pushes it to more users. The best part: video doesn’t have to be incredibly high production or sophisticated to be effective. Expect video to assume a larger share of marketing content in 2024.

Shorter, Digestible Content Is Preferred

The days of writing 30-page whitepapers and e-books and expecting your audience to download and actually read them are largely over.

In most cases, audiences don’t have the time or patience for content that long or complex. They want relevant information delivered in shorter format such as issue briefs, LinkedIn articles, blog posts, infographics, and videos.

Key In on Customer Champions

If 2024 proves to be as tumultuous for healthcare as most expect, companies will need PR and marketing more than ever. Staying on brand and on messaging through chaotic times means having a consistent and ongoing share-of-voice to rise above the noise and cut through the chatter. The key is to leverage your customer champions and unique industry data to be relevant and demonstrate your key differentiators over the competition.

Do you agree or disagree with my predictions? Come back in a year and we’ll see how many I got right.

Regardless of your technology, product or service, I hope the New Year provides endless possibilities for growth and success. Here’s to leveraging lessons learned, flawless execution, and advancing healthcare.



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