How to treat stock photography in healthcare marketing

Transforming universal images to reflect personal moments.

In the healthcare industry, the pendulum between patient and provider has swung far toward the consumer experience. New legislation and sweeping medical trends have driven patients to play an ever-increasing role in their health. As a result, the competition between healthcare brands depends on having impactful marketing.

Here comes the hiccup. Or should we say HIPAA.

When it comes to privacy, there is no question that healthcare is one of the most regulated industries. Strict limitations on patient information drive many companies to repurpose generic stock images or completely forgo imagery. But stock photography doesn’t have to be a dead-end. In fact, choosing the right photos can open an entirely new road to successful branding—and COHN is here to help.

We’ve outlined what to consider when choosing images for your brand that will inevitably influence the greater consumer experience.

  • Relevancy and credibility are key.

Each piece of content you create is a new door for customers to enter. Choosing images that are up-to-date, verified, and reflect your brand’s voice, style, and mood opens a gateway for consumers to build trust and ongoing customer loyalty.

  • Select imagery that articulates the message.

If a picture really is worth a thousand words, what is your’s saying? Avoid choosing photos that require too much additional context, otherwise, you fear losing consumers that don’t have the patience to try connecting with your content.

  • Authenticity wins every time.

While you should expect all stock photography to be staged, there is value in choosing the images that convey ‘candid’. Audiences will reflect the emotions of the subject so make sure people feel natural, not posed.

  • The sum is greater than the parts.

As humans, we look to visual patterns and themes for understanding. Your content is no different. Look for stock images that have consistency- whether that’s color hues, shapes, or framing- these are all helpful in building a connective chain in the mind of the consumer that helps them recognize your business in the saturated market.

If you’re a healthcare company looking for a marketing partner, give COHN a call. We’re a full-service, hospital and healthcare marketing agency that uses brand strategy to drive results for you and your team.



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