Positioned as a dynamic hub where healthcare and community life intertwine, the MedQuarter Regional Medical District (MedQ) stands as a vibrant ecosystem within the Cedar Rapids Metro community. Michelle Jensen leads the charge of the Medical SSMID Commission’s Branding and Marketing Committee, striving to amplify the district’s integral role in community improvement and development. During a recent conversation, Michelle delved into the MedQ’s marketing initiatives, its ongoing efforts and its vision for the future, highlighting the many lessons learned along the way.
Michelle Jensen recalled the beginnings of MedQ’s persistent focus on branding and marketing. “Our initial focus was on reaching out to patients, urging them to consider the MedQ for their healthcare needs and fostering a strong sense of identity associated with our district. Over time, we pivoted to retaining our talented workforce by implementing innovative marketing strategies, but this journey was a learning process.”
Amid their efforts to attract patients, the committee recognized that their initiatives often overlapped with those of area employers, unintentionally diverting resources from their primary mission. Undeterred, they shifted their attention to promoting the MedQ to growing the district’s employee population by aiding local businesses with workforce attraction efforts. Yet, here too, they encountered challenges similar to the ones faced earlier, as it felt like they were still replicating the efforts of area employers. As the committee grappled with these challenges, a new issue unfolded with the onset of the pandemic.
In response to the pandemic, the Branding & Marketing Committee pivoted its 2020 efforts to focus on supporting the high concentration of health care and essential workers in the MedQ by distributing 1,000 Energy Packs in April, conducting a ‘Thank You’ campaign in May, and a ‘Gifts of Gratitude’ campaign in December. Then, in 2021, the group promoted a ‘Meals To Go From the MedQ’ buy-local initiative, and a ‘Scavenger Stroll’ in July. These initiatives were specifically designed to engage front-line workers and others who were working tirelessly to address the global COVID crisis.
Their quest for a more effective approach led them to the realization that making the MedQ an even more attractive place to work was key. The committee redirected its focus toward creating a vibrant environment within the MedQ by introducing engaging events and programs. However, it wasn’t without its challenges, especially considering the demanding schedules of many medical staff within the district, who often found it hard to participate fully. This served as yet another lesson in their ongoing journey, highlighting the importance of aligning their strategies with the unique needs and constraints of the community they served, specifically, health care workers.
Through it all, they recognized that each of these phases were learning processes. Every shift in focus and every strategy attempted were steppingstones that contributed to their growing understanding of what the MedQ community truly needed. These experiences provided invaluable insights that have helped the committee to adapt, evolve and better serve the MedQ community. Their dedicated focus on continual improvement of the MedQ and an empathetic understanding of the ever-changing needs of their community have always been their guiding light.
As Michelle’s narrative unfolded, it became evident that the MedQ’s essence transcended its role as a healthcare district. It symbolized a tapestry where healthcare, business and collaboration intricately wove together, fostering an environment of resilience and shared prosperity. The MedQ, driven by private funding and defined by its distinct identity, continues to stand as a beacon of excellence, guided by its unwavering commitment to innovation, adaptability and community improvement.
- Adaptive Strategies: The MedQ’s journey underscores the importance of adapting strategies to meet the unique needs and constraints of the initiatives employed by the MedQ..
- Learning from Challenges: Each phase of development served as a vital learning process, providing valuable insights that contributed to the continual improvement of marketing efforts in the MedQ.
- Community-Centric Focus: The MedQ’s success stems from its unwavering commitment to understanding and meeting the evolving needs of the community, positioning itself not just as a healthcare district but as a vibrant, collaborative tapestry of resilience and shared prosperity.