Marketing Research and Segmentation Problem
The dynamic nature of the health care industry requires diligent consideration to the preferences and opinions of the consumer. In an effort to provide a health service driven by consumer preferences, marketing research must occur. Marketing research gathers and studies the complex needs and concerns of the consumer to develop a strategy that meets the demands of the consumer. Research might predict demand and increase market share in a time when a marketing dollars need to have high impact on the audience. One way to narrow the market is through market segmentation. Market segmentation allows organizations to target consumers who will value a particular service based on common characteristics.
The marketing director of Jones Memorial Hospital can use target marketing and market segmentation to determine and meet the needs of the consumers. The marketing segmentation process divides the total market into separate and distinct groups based on demographics, socio-economics, psychographics, and behavioral bases. Research and data collection are vital to the segmentation concepts and process. Market segmentation can effectively develop marketing plans for specific groups and focus on subgroups of prospects that have the greatest potential to become customers.
Jones Memorial Hospital (JMH) is a 70-bed facility that provides a full range of services to the small town of Wellsville, one of the greater population concentrations of the county, and several surrounding rural communities. JMH is the only full service hospital in Allegany County. The hospital is small in comparison to many hospitals; however, it is the third largest employer in Allegany County (Jones Memorial Hospital, 2007).