© 2015. Maria Todd and Mercury Advisory Group. Excerpt from the Ultimate Guide to Medical Tourism Marketing. All international rights reserved.

What are buyer personas?
Buyer personas are the individual and identifiable groups of people who buy your products. For example a healthcare provider has at least two important and very distinct buyer personas. Usually they have a great deal more than two:

  • Those looking for better care than that which is available locally
  • Those who know they want to travel to a specific provider / brand / destination for care

Here are a few ways you will benefit from using buyer personas in your medical tourism marketing.

1. Your messages will be more relevant. You’ll be able to address specific people. When you know your buyer, you can talk to him/her directly.

2. You’ll be able to address specific problems. Talking about a specific problem is more engaging than a general problem. But it only works if you address a problem your buyers have, so you need to know your buyer personas first. In other words, you won’t make the mistake of talking cheaper prices if their concerns are not about the cost.

3. Address specific beliefs. You can create a feeling speaking directly to someone who shares certain beliefs, mores, cultural or religious ideals.

4. Pinpoint accurate placement. Placement is a key to effective marketing. When you understand your buyer personas, you know where they are, and how to reach them and connect at the right time.

5. Showcasing the right price range. If you market a product a buyer cannot afford, they can’t buy it, no matter how good the quality or service or how advanced the technology might be. And they’ll be left with a belief that you’re over-priced for them.

Just remember that understanding your buyer persona is not sufficient to create effective marketing. You must couple this information with the right product strategy and value proposition.

For medical tourism, this is a destination issue as much as it is a medical issue. Tie a unique value proposition to pitch and position so that one or more featured aspects of your product are only available in your destination. Your value proposition is the only reason that people in your target persona groups read your website content, buy your products, reserve rooms in you hotel or spa, or hire you to perform surgery on them.

Marketing is a game where you get points for style and the consumers decide who wins. When your value proposition is compelling to a particular target market persona, you will know:

1. What are the things people want to pay for

2. What people believe to be true, and what they won’t believe

When people visit a website, if what they see isn’t what they need, what they want, or something surprising, they don’t even notice it; their brain decides it’s not worth wasting time on.

To grab your visitors’ interest, give them exactly what they want or hit them in the head with something completely unexpected.

Here’s more help:

Download my buyer persona identification data collection worksheet and begin analyzing your past 100 medical tourism customers. If you need help there are instructions for how to get help from our research team.    Identifying medical tourism buyer personas – Free Worksheet