“Please Tell Me It’s Not Another Report”: What a Clinical Discussion Taught Me about PR

Nov 13, 2019

We work in a niche part of PR healthcare with a heavy focus on technology so as you can imagine we have extremely nuanced discussions about the work that our clients do. This includes how their technology, service or offering impacts the world, what differentiates it from competitors and why providers, payers or employers need this technology.

We spend hours meticulously parsing through the language that accurately, yet simply, conveys what the technology or service our client provides so that our target audience can understand.

Recently though, I have realized that we in marketing and comms tend to turn around and play back the results of our work in the exact same manner but in our own jargon impressions, hits, tonality.

Just a few weeks ago, I was discussing messaging with a client for a new product, and they relayed a point to me that struck a chord for the work we do on both sides of the business. The team said that the clinicians do not want another report that they have to weed through. They want technology, partners and leaders who don’t just shove another report down their throats. They want digestible information that helps them in their day-to-day workflows.

That, of course got me to thinking. I write reports regularly. Reports of media coverage garnered, work done that month or quarter or year, reports on what we anticipate the outcome will be. But am I oversaturating my main audience like healthcare technology vendors are oversaturating clinical teams?

The answer is simple yes.

PR is perceived as the silver bullet that can fix all of a company’s issues. But there are two issues:

1. It is not a silver bullet and there is a lot of work that is needed operationally to turn around an organization, and

2. It is really, really hard to measure.

What do we as PR professionals do? We flood our market with reports we show how many impressions we may have secured, how one tool shows how the tone of the discussion changed and more.

But what we are not consistently giving is digestible advice on what this means for their day-to-day workflows how should they implement changes, what changes need to be implemented, where can we improve?

While I don’t have all the answers, I am working to improve my reports to provide that quick advice on what needs to be changed or considered to make all our activities more impactful.

How have you altered reporting to make sure your clients get the most of your partnership?

Megan Smith

Megan Smith has more than a decade of public relations and marketing experience. Throughout her career, she has focused on business-to-business marketing with an emphasis on healthcare and technology. She began her career at Dodge Communications, where she held a variety of account management positions. In these roles, she provided strategic counsel to clients about holistic communications programs to ensure that a cohesive brand and message was conveyed to the market. She oversaw all content created for clients, created and executed social media campaigns, and managed advertising purchases. Megan also worked at Edelman on the corporate team in the Atlanta office. During her time there, she was responsible for developing and executing integrated communications marketing plans for B2B and technology clients. Most recently, Megan served as the director of client services and as e-commerce consultant for EYStudios, a specialty web design and development firm. In this role, she helped build relationships with clients and provided counsel on how to grow their business through increasing traffic and improving conversions as well as content marketing. Megan earned her MBA in Marketing from Georgia State University and her bachelor's degree in Public Relations from the University of Georgia.