case study: rural health strategy

Image of the exterior entrance to the Jefferson Community Health & Life Health Center


small health center, big ideas

As a rural health center and critical access hospital, Jefferson Community Health & Life has long been known for high-quality inpatient care. Their goals, however, are much more ambitious: They want to keep people healthy for a lifetime by going beyond the traditional hospital scope of illness/injury care.


new commitment to health

Local consumer and community health research underscored the opportunity for Jefferson Community Health & Life to enhance market strength by becoming an integral part of creating a healthier community. Success would mean increased consumer utilization, a stronger brand, greater market share and potentially higher reimbursements based on better quality outcomes.

Image of people in a yoga class
Image of a pediatrician high-fiving a young patient in the exam room


adopting a new care model

Like most rural health providers, Jefferson Community Health & Life faces uniquely “rural” market factors that, in the absence of a new rural health strategy, would continue to limit their impact on local population health. To become a catalyst for better health in the community, they needed an actionable plan to adapt their brand to a new model of care.


dhmstudio+, strategy-first marketing for rural hospitals

Through our dhmstudio+ division, we worked closely with their leadership to:

Define a data-driven brand strategy to establish a competitive market position that resonates with the local market.

Develop a new value proposition and brand promise aligned with what the health center could authentically deliver.

Engage their board and executive leadership in adopting, promoting and delivering on the new brand promise.

Chart strategies for elevating health in their local community, accounting for their unique rural market challenges.

Communicate the value of local care, reducing outmigration and keeping care close to home for optimal outcomes.

During this process, a competitive and sustainable new purpose emerged: Inspiring healthy lives to take root in the local community. We supported every effort to bring the new purpose to life by connecting first with employees and then with the community, as illustrated in these select samples:

Logo for the newly rebranded Jefferson Community Health & Life organization

New Name for a New Brand Promise
The hospital changed its name from Jefferson Community Health Center. We designed a new logo to symbolize healthy lives taking root (the core of their new value proposition).

Image from the cover of the brand implementatio

Full Brand Implementation Support
We developed a brand strategy playbook, complete with a comprehensive communication plan and a wide range of supporting launch materials for internal and external audiences.

Brand Adoption & Affinity
We produced a brand anthem video to depict the new vision and illustrate how they are planting the seeds for healthy lives to take root in their local community.

Enhanced Online Experience
We redesigned the website – their virtual front door – to align with their new look and communicate their new commitment to health for site visitors.

Wellness Support for Everyone
We assisted with launching My Wellness Dashboard, an online tool that personalizes health information, connects to other portals and syncs health apps together in one place.

Community-wide Engagement
At a community-wide event in which the Mayor formally proclaimed May 6 as the town’s “Health & Life Day,” consumers were very engaged in pledging to live a healthy life.


an engaged, health-focused community

Since launching its new, forward-thinking rural health strategy, leaders at Jefferson Community Health & Life have reported these and other gains in the health center’s efforts to create a healthier community:

Combating Disease
Nearly 600 people with diabetes are now monitored by Health Coaches (16% of the local population).

Infusing Innovation
Hundreds of people — nearly 10% of the local population — are now using My Wellness Dashboard.

Getting Fit
Total monthly visits to the health center’s onsite Burkley Fitness Center have increased by 20%.

Connecting Online
Facebook following grew 54%, with a 246% increase in engagement. Twitter following grew 154%.

Nurturing Health
New Women’s Health Fair, kids cooking classes and more continue to increase community engagement.

Dobies Health Marketing has been an excellent partner. They provided their expertise and resources for our rebranding and assistance on marketing strategy and marketing materials. Love the quality staff who understand healthcare! I appreciate their understanding that each area has special needs and challenges.

— Lana Likens, Director of Public Relations, Marketing and Development, Jefferson Community Health & Life

take your first step to a healthier brand

To learn more about what dhmstudio+ can do for your rural health strategy, complete the form below or call 816.753.3336.