Physician billboards, revisited
Last year, I wrote a post about those annoying billboards with physician faces looking down at you. The idea was to steer healthcare organizations away from posting the faces of their talented, intelligent and sometimes photogenic docs up along the highway. There's simply no evidence that the anonymous physician picture boards do anything worthwhile. Drive volume? No. Create awareness? Meh. Feed egos? (I need to keep my job, so I can't answer that one honestly.)
But this week, I found myself staring down at a proof of a physician billboard with photos of the docs staring up at me. After my futile protests, I was told that we had no choice. Our doctors saw other hospital's doctor billboards up in the area, and felt like they needed their own billboard to compete. Oh, it gets worse: The doctors depicted on our proposed board are no longer in practice together, so they had to be creatively separated on the board, which made for a fragmented design.
I suggested an alternative: Our "Physician Finder" function on our website consistently receives the most monthly hits, by a wide margin. Five years ago, it was revolutionary. But now, it's a hamster wheel trying to power a Hemi, with informational deficiencies that require a full-time employee's attention.
Since billboards are so expensive, why not invest in upgrading the Physician Finder? That's where our consumers go to find physician information. Everyone agreed that this was a much better investment...
The billboard went up yesterday. On to the next battle.