Campbell Clinic's Marketing Coup

Dec 18, 2013

Credit Campbell Clinic /

First comes marketing, then comes advertising: they are not the same.

It’s always a thrill to spot a solid example of really smart brand marketing. To see a brand demonstrate the difference between marketing and advertising, and how to use each successfully.

Just to remind you, marketing is the decisions you make in your business, and the actions you take to make the best use of the business assets. It’s not advertising or promotional activity or selling. Marketing doesn’t just come before advertising and selling. It’s the marketing decision itself that often should be the content of the advertising.

A current example is Campbell Clinic. Campbell Clinic is over a hundred years old; the best-known orthopedics brand in the market.

Well, it maximized that tremendous brand awareness asset by expanding to four locations. That was a smart marketing decision. A marketing success. Then more recently it enhanced the assets of two of these locations by keeping them open until 8 p.m. four nights a week. Now those locations are branded, after-hours alternatives to hospital emergency rooms.

Maximizing a high-cost, medical office asset by keeping it open for an extra twelve hours a week was a brilliant marketing decision. Then advertising followed to make people aware of the extra hours.

No advertising is more powerful than advertising that features a genuine marketing coup. 

Remember: first, the marketing, then the advertising: they are not the same.

John Malmo is a Memphis marketing consultant who advises companies on their marketing and advertising. To ask Mr. Malmo your own question, visit