‘Experiential’ a key growth driver for healthcare brands: Harish Pillai, Indus Health Plus

It is true that engaging with the people by creating informative content has a far more influencing effect. Harish Pillai, COO, Indus Health Plus in conversation with EE shares how health care brands are making use of experiential marketing:


Q- How is that you connect with prospects through marketing?
A- We do not provide curative treatment to patients, we provide only preventive health check-up packages through our hospital delivery partners, and hence we are not directly connected with the patients. However, we do conduct awareness campaigns for creating awareness about the importance of prevention in many metros’, Tier I, Tier II and as well as Tier III cities.

Q- Please share with us the recent marketing campaigns and events for a stronger engagement and spreading awareness?
A- We have been continuously organizing several on - ground activities for stronger engagement and spreading awareness about the importance of prevention through on- ground activities.
Few examples are mentioned below:
• World Heart Day: We conducted back-a-thon in Pune wherein all employees of Indus Health Plus corporate office including JMD and Directors joined for an awareness walk with the message of how to prevent heart diseases and prevent the heart from various ailments. The walk was in the back movement with 400 + employees walking backward with the message of “Pushing back the heart diseases”.
• Breast Cancer Awareness Month: We transformed a regular frisking booth in a mall into a preliminary breast cancer checkup booth that was conducted in 5 malls in Mumbai. These check-ups were conducted in enclosed booth. All women who went through that kiosk were taught about the self- examination of breast and other things related to that. Nearly around 6000 women were examined and 30% of them turned up for further investigation.
• World No Tobacco Day: Two cigarettes shaped mascots were distributing leaflets on how hazardous are the effects of Tobacco consumption and were educating the masses on the same. This activity was conducted in known malls in Indore, Rajkot, Indore, Kolhapur and Goa.

Q- How important is experiential marketing for the health sector?
A- Experiential marketing involves the messaging of the brand that one can touch, feel or view in a physical space. This is definitely growing and is more effective than the traditional promotional expenditures and influencing consumer’s decision making. Experiential marketing acts as a catalyst in the growth of a healthcare brand, ensuring the brand is actively being the part of the consumer’s conversations. In context with Indus Health Plus, lifestyle diseases are on the rise and it’s paramount for anyone to know them and how to prevent them before it arises. We strategize campaigns in such a way which engages consumers and makes them aware about the ailments of such lifestyle diseases with a strong message of prevention before it’s too late, in a very intriguing and engaging manner.

Q- How much from your marketing budget goes into events and experiential marketing?
A- As of now we do not have defined budget as such for such activities, but we conduct a lot of on-ground events and campaigns.

Q- Which is the media that you spend the maximum on?
A- We definitely spend most of our budget on the on-ground campaigns. We generally plan activities which are simultaneously conducted in different metros’ and tier 2 cities. We also engage with the masses through digital medium since this is evolving and is easy to tap.

Q- Tell us about various technologies that you are using? If there was no technology, what would have been your marketing strategy?
A- We are using digital and social media to the maximum to spread the word of prevention. We have an in-house team of experts that make technology to its best use. We also understand that PR is one part of the marketing and have the team that works on the traditional PR that helps us in achieving the marketing objectives. We believe in the power of 360 - degree communication, hence we use the best of all mediums.

Q- For the health care sector, the payoff of experiential marketing is often philosophical. How do you measure the success of your campaigns?
A- The success of any campaign for us is measured through people’s attendance, increase in social media followers, city-specific queries and eagerness to know about the products which may or may not generate sales. It is definitely not about sales, but a motivating use of the services and, by extension, convincing friends to use the services with them. Direct consumer initiatives build a strong, trustworthy and stable brand connect with the consumers. Thus overall customer satisfaction and trust always translates into improved market performance.

Q- Women and youngsters are becoming more and more health conscious. How do you tap and cater to this segment?
A- Through our various mediums including digital, on ground campaigns and PR campaigns, we observe various health days inclusive of women and youngsters. We also share reports on women and youngsters about how a specific disease is on the rise in different cities. Activities on breast cancer awareness month, World Heart day and various other days are conducted keeping in mind women and youngsters in alignment to their consciousness about health.

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