Qualitative segmentation is a vital part of any healthcare organization’s marketing strategy. Segmentation helps healthcare providers identify and understand different groups of patients, and tailor their approach to meet the specific needs of each group. This allows healthcare providers to deliver more effective care, build stronger relationships with patients, and ultimately improve patient outcomes. However, not all segmentation is created equal. Qualitative segmentation is an advanced segmentation technique that requires a more sophisticated approach than traditional quantitative segmentation. We’ll explore the secret to carrying out qualitative segmentation of your patients.
Before moving to a phrase of what is qualitative segmentation, let’s discuss the reality of life. In real life, segmenting a clientele means dividing them up according to specific criteria to then form groups of individuals that are as homogeneous as possible.
Hence, a market segment is a group whose individuals that compose it present similar characteristics and are likely to respond in a relatively similar way to a sales proposal.
The objective of segmentation is to identify the differences (between segments) and similarities (within the same segment) concerning clientele attitude (existing or potential) to making decisions and undertaking marketing actions.
In Healthcare Market Research, we use projective techniques to carry out qualitative segmentation. One of these techniques is to turn prescribers into journalists. Thus, they have to imagine they are standing outside a hospital and are looking for a representative panel of patients for a TV program. Physicians are brought together in Focus Groups and are asked to build up these profiles, perform segmentation and provide arguments.
What is Qualitative Segmentation?
It is a method of dividing patients into groups based on non-numerical data. This approach goes beyond traditional demographic data like age, gender, and income, and focuses on psychographic factors like values, beliefs, and attitudes. This helps healthcare providers understand the underlying motivations and behaviors that drive patient decision-making. This understanding is essential to delivering effective care that meets the needs of each patient.
Qualitative Segmentation Techniques for Your Patients
There are several techniques that healthcare providers can use to carry out qualitative segmentation. Here are some of the most common methods:
1. Patient Surveys:
One of the most effective ways to gather qualitative data is by conducting patient surveys. Surveys can help healthcare providers understand patient preferences, beliefs, and attitudes. Questions can be tailored to specific patient groups to gain insights into their unique needs and motivations.
2. Patient Interviews:
Another way to gather qualitative data is by conducting patient interviews. Interviews can be conducted in person or over the phone and can be used to explore patient attitudes and beliefs in more depth. Interviews can also help healthcare providers understand the patient’s perspective on their care experience.
3. Social Media Monitoring:
Healthcare providers can also use social media monitoring to gather qualitative data. Social media monitoring involves tracking social media conversations to gain insights into patient attitudes and behaviors. This approach can be particularly useful for understanding patient sentiment and identifying emerging trends.
4. Focus Groups:
Focus groups are a structured form of qualitative research that involves bringing together a group of patients to discuss specific topics. Focus groups can be used to explore patient attitudes and beliefs in a more collaborative setting. This approach can be particularly useful for identifying shared beliefs or concerns among patient groups.
Ethnography is a qualitative research method that involves observing patients in their natural environment. This approach can be particularly useful for understanding patient behavior and attitudes in a real-world setting.
The Secret to Carrying Out Qualitative Segmentation
Now that we’ve explored some of the techniques for carrying out qualitative segmentation, let’s discuss the secret to making this approach work. The secret is to focus on the patient experience.
The patient experience is a critical factor in healthcare decision-making. Patients are more likely to choose healthcare providers who understand their needs and provide personalized care. Qualitative segmentation helps healthcare providers understand the unique needs and preferences of each patient group, allowing them to deliver more personalized care. However, to carry out qualitative segmentation effectively, healthcare providers must focus on the patient experience.