I've written a few blogs on the subject of the 'Healthcare' providers challenges, especially when it comes to transitioning from the analog world of intrusive advertising and marketing, to the digital world of social media engagement.

So, it wasn't surprising to find an interview for 'Marketing Week' (link below) with 'Blake Cahill' SVP Digital and Social at Philips on the subject of 'content marketing', and in particular how 'Philips' see it as a way of cutting through the diminishing traditional media sector, due in the main to ad skipping, continued rise in ad blockers, ad fraud, along with tighter controls around data and privacy.

The interview itself covers off some salient points, and Blake handles himself very well, he even defends content marketing as a key strategy against 'Mark Ritsons' view that its all 'crap'.

Here's an edited snip from the article;

A great example is a recent content-driven campaign we executed for World Sleep Day which immediately generated multiple sales of our sleep apnea solutions even though the content was focused on awareness and education around the issue.

These examples demonstrate that consumers are more likely to buy from a brand they like and trust. In a world with so much marketing and corporate chatter, content marketing is one differentiator in making you the brand that consumers like and trust.

He goes on to say that as a strategy content marketing is an investment over the long term, something we agree on, it's definitely more a marathon than a sprint.

However, and in my opinion, its all a bit too, well, corporate, it lacks authenticity, and it definitely lacks evidence of anyone 'listening' to the consumer from all that polished corporate blurb on social media.

From what I can evidence, Philips haven't quite made the leap from the old 'broadcast/advertise' mentality when it comes to social media, I have genuinely struggled to find any real reason why anyone would 'follow' them, let alone engage with the content, and why is this you might ask?

They don't seem to want to encourage a conversation from you and me, there's no sense of engagement, listening, or even sparking debate.

Pity really, as a brand they are doing some amazing things, however as they transition from selling  TVs, radios and lightbulbs to a global player in the healthcare space, they really need to have a re-think about what social media really is.