Some people think a brand is a logo, but it’s got much more to do with people and experience.
On Sunday, our Creative Director, Ryan, had to go to the ER because he was suffering severe respiratory distress. He went to a local nonprofit hospital that is [more or less] our community’s go-to healthcare facility. Ryan was taken care of and discharged within a few short hours and we’re happy to report that he is doing much better.
During our Monday morning Production Meeting, we discussed his visit. Since Ryan is fully immersed in our brand-centric office culture and very much involved in developing Pinpoint For Health, he had a few nuanced observations about his visit as a patient. Here are the two big takeaways from our discussion:
“I chose that hospital because I know it well.”
This particular hospital is the hub of a regional healthcare system and it’s got a great reputation for being our community’s community hospital. Patients like Ryan choose this hospital because it’s always top-of-mind. They consistently run media (TV, radio, outdoor, etc.) and they’ve maintained a pretty ubiquitous brand for decades. This basic name recognition and familiarity comes in handy when someone has to choose in a split-second. They’ve done a lot of things right in terms of brand-building and they’re beloved because of it.
“My RN’s logo was peeling off his shirt. But it didn’t bother me like it should have.”
Probably the most enlightening thing Ryan mentioned was his indifference about the branding while he was being treated. You should know that this guy lives and breathes (asthma pun unintended) the ad industry, so it was strange to hear him say that the brand standards didn’t matter to him AT ALL as a patient. He talked about how one of his nurses wore branded scrubs with a faded logo over the chest. Ryan saw this and had a conscious moment of: “This guy is the best representation of the hospital. Not the logo.” He went on to talk about how everyone who cared for him was skilled and thoughtful, and that was the true measure of the hospital’s success. And no one can argue with that.
Ryan’s ER experience is a case study in elements of branding coming to life. He went to that particular hospital because he was familiar with it (thanks to media presence and community reputation), and he was given lifesaving treatment by people who perpetuate the hospital’s good standing. And I think the two pieces of advice are applicable to branding businesses of all kinds:
- You need awareness efforts and a well-maintained reputation to attract patrons.
- You need passionate, hardworking people to provide meaningful experiences.
Download our Branding The Nonprofit Healthcare Organization eBook and learn more about how branding can increase awareness, loyalty, and action.