Align your pharmacy brand with your patient offering and leverage your competitive advantages.
Align your pharmacy brand with your patient offering and leverage your competitive advantages, including:
Community pharmacy is highly trusted by patients and consumers, so identifying products and services that can leverage the competitive advantages of this trusted 'brand' makes strategic sense. In isolation, this pathway may not have a transformational impact on community pharmacy. It can, however, be pursued in tandem with other pathways, such as the establishment of health hubs, the provision of health services and reviewing retail products.
The first step is to understand the competitive advantages that stand your pharmacy apart and develop a brand that leverages your strengths.
Creating own-brand products or expanding the use of the trusted Gold Cross brand may not generate additional revenue but will contribute to a 'brand presence' and help maintain margins. Own-brand products can be sourced cost-effectively from white label manufacturers with investment in marketing to promote customer awareness. Key risks include narrow profit margins with care required in determining which segments have most potential.
Market research shows that consumers see value in pharmacy services but have little overall awareness of them. This provides an opportunity for pharmacies to brand and market their patient services as a key differentiator.
If community pharmacy does not entrench and effectively promote its trusted caring brand, others will fill the void, including existing competitors and prospective new entrants such as online retailers which may leverage the Amazon platform. A deterioration in the overall strength of the community pharmacy 'brand,' will make it more difficult to successfully introduce and promote new pharmacy products and services.
You are not alone – champion story
Catherine Bronger – Chemistworks, Wetherill Park, NSW
The Gold Cross forms a core part of the independent Chemistworks brand..
Marketing on radio, social media and online is budgeted for and utilised effectively to ensure that the community is aware of the professional services such as vaccinations and pain management that are provided in the pharmacy.
Catherine's group also makes sure to leverage the differentiators of some of its pharmacies, for example Wetherill Park is open 24-hours, 365 days a year, so they make sure to highlight that in their marketing and branding.
“On average, pharmacies are two and a half kilometres apart. To differentiate themselves in the community, a standard of excellence and care must always be at the forefront of any branding and marketing."
Public perception of community pharmacy, measured on a scale from 0 to 10 where 10 is highly positive, stands at 7.2 overall and does not materially vary between those who use discount pharmacies (7.2), large banners (7.3), medium banners (7.3), and local independent pharmacies (7.3). This indicates that patients do not greatly differentiate between 'brands' of community pharmacy based on size. Individual community pharmacies can succeed based on both the high level of patient satisfaction for the entire network, and by further differentiating their unique offerings.
Orima Market Research Report - September 2018 (members only)
Request feedback from your staff and patients on the perceived brand of your pharmacy, focusing on why they prefer your pharmacy to others and what you do that is most valued.