Tuesday, March 18, 2008 - 11:25 AM

Adapting Mainstream Marketing Techniques for Difficult to Recruit Providers

Letty D. Cherry Kreger, Immunization Registry Program, Riverside County Department of Public Health, 10370 Hemet Street, Ste 100, Riverside, CA, USA

Learning Objectives for this Presentation:
By the end of the presentation, participants will be able to describe how marketing techniques increase participation among difficult-to-recruit providers.

Employing marketing techniques, primarily during the IIS demonstration, have allowed Riverside County VaxTrack staff to achieve a 60% private provider participation rate. Some provider offices, however, are more difficult to recruit. Since the basic marketing techniques (overcoming objections, reviewing features and benefits, etc.) were not successful with this group, a more structured, step-by-step marketing approach was tested.

Riverside County, CA

Difficult-to-recruit private provider offices were contacted by phone with the goal of scheduling a VaxTrack demonstration.

Project Description:
Difficult-to-recruit (DTR) providers are defined as those providers who are consistently resistant to any effort to introduce them to the registry. Because the staff at these offices are ready with a “no” answer when they are on the phone with registry staff, VaxTrack began testing a different marketing approach with these providers. This approach has been used in the direct sales, insurance and home-based business industries with a 33% success rate (1 “yes” for every 3 “asks”). There are seven steps in this process. Each step must be completed before moving to the next and must incorporate specific words and/or phrases. Because people are programmed to say no, this marketing approach seeks to disarm the contact by generating “yes” responses. VaxTrack adapted this technique for registry use and began to apply it whenever contacting DTR providers.

Results/Lessons Learned:
With the “Seven Step” approach, VaxTrack experienced a 57% percent increase in the number of DTR providers who responded positively to VaxTrack marketing by scheduling an in-office demonstration. Out of those scheduling appointments, three out of four attempts were successful before all seven steps were completed. These results demonstrate that mainstream marketing techniques can enhance provider participation in the local IIS when they are properly applied.