marketing decisions from fighter pilots

The military loves it, and it's fun to say, but how can something called the OODA loop help you make decisions for your medical marketing?

The OODA loop is an acronym (of course) that stands for the cycle of observe–orient–decide–act, developed by U.S. Air Force Colonel John Boyd in the 1950s. The technique is used everywhere, from behind the stick in the cockpit level up to the operational level during military campaigns. When pilots use it, they constantly scan the skies, orienting to their position and the environment to make decisions and then act accordingly, continuously looping back to the beginning of the loop.

This technique can be applied in medical marketing, as well.

Observe what's happening in the marketplace, what the competition is doing, and how it compares to the product or service you're offering. Be brutal in your assessment; this is not the time for magical thinking, but cold hard facts.

Orient. Develop your strategy. Is your medical device the best-in-field (with the price tag to prove it?) Are you a fast follower, bringing out new technology on the heels of a larger company, with perhaps a slightly better price point? Is your exemplary service the key to your success? What marketing channels are available and make the most sense?

Now Decide which is the best strategy based on the gathered information and develop your marketing plan accordingly. What does your sales collateral look like? What channels will you employ to market your product? What social media channels will you engage? Digital ads? Print ads? Giant honking billboards? Based on your analyses of the marketplace and your competition,

Act. Implement your marketing.

So that's the OODA part. Now here's the loop. Just like a fighter pilot constantly scans the skies for the enemy, you must continuously monitor the marketplace as well, restarting the OODA loop, again and again, noting what's working and what isn't, what's changing in the market, and how your product is faring. Then you make adjustments based on what you observe.

Then start observing the effects again. And again. And again. Because, you know, it's a loop.

If you'd like an assist in marketing your medical device or service, drop us a line. We've been on this battlefield for a long time and can help you win a decisive victory!

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