For the first time, Hanover’s Healthcare Barometer questioned senior business leaders on their PR and Communications activities. A conclusive 98% of respondents recognised PR and communications as an important part of their marketing mix. In a market as competitive as the UAE, it’s hard to disagree.
So, in such a competitive market, how do you make sure your message gets traction with the right audiences?
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Our team did a deep dive into the UAE healthcare communications landscape, looking not only at the stories that resonate with media and audiences, but also considering where our audiences are consuming their content. From crafting a powerful point of view on key issues shaping the healthcare system in the UAE, to offering new data or perspectives on diseases and therapy areas, journalists are desperately searching for powerful stories from the industry, as healthcare remains a sure marker of universal interest and importance.
Beyond this, it’s essential that healthcare organizations embrace the role of digital communications to connect with specific people, groups and audiences. Digital channels are a powerful form of connection, because, through this medium, we are able to enter a space where the desired audience is already active and engaged. Globally, despite cultural, regulatory and social differences, the healthcare sector is increasingly adapting and growing in line with overall social trends, all while responding to the importance of digital channel use.
Whilst there will be country and cultural differences at play as well, overarching channel trends influence the way that stakeholders, including patients and KOLs, are engaging with social media. When it comes to content, healthcare organisations should remember that patients, KOLs and clinicians are all consumers of social media outside of their condition and profession. Therefore, overarching content trends still apply: focusing on video (remembering that many users watch without sound), ensuring high-quality content at all times and trusting the use of third-party partners or experts, where possible, for authenticity. For most disease awareness or condition focused campaigns, patient-led content will be vital to authenticity and delivering the right messaging to the target audiences.
Looking further beyond content, we also recognise that as healthcare communicators we must play within the regulatory guidelines. While these may be more clearly defined in other markets, we spoke to representatives from the Ministry of Health and Prevention to get their insight on what to consider when crafting content in the UAE.