Welcome to Mobile Marketing in the Drug Addiction Treatment Industry. The NAATP conference is fast approaching and I look forward to seeing many of you in San Antonio. Some of us have met and others, I look forward to meeting. By adding your mobile phone information, we will be able to connect together while in San Antonio.

  • Mary Shirley, Senior Account Manager, Health/Treatment, Google
  • Jim Peake, Internet Marketing Consultant, Addiction-Rep
  • Gary Fisher, CEO, Cirque Lodge (NAATP member)
  • Velvet Mangan, CEO, Safe Harbor for Women (NAATP member)
  • Bob Ferguson, CEO, Jaywalker Lodge – moderator (NAATP member)

Internet Advertising Ethics and Standards for NAATP Members

Here are some topical discussion starters for the panel to consider:

  • Is the addiction treatment sector becoming a breeding ground for all sorts of unethical business practices? In an unregulated market space where consumers in crisis are frequently subject to misleading, unsubstantiated or incomplete claims made by competing treatment providers. What – if any – are the guidelines and standards our membership needs to consider in order to restore faith and trust in the treatment industry as a whole?
  • As an industry, treatment providers have debated for years a variety of standard benchmarks for addiction treatment – i.e.: How do we define “success” in addiction treatment? Or how do we differentiate the various levels of care within our industry? In terms of the internet – are there any basic standards providers need to adhere to in terms of self-disclosure on their websites (i.e.: photos of the staff and their facility)? Efficacy and outcome measures such as percentage of clients who complete the program? Pricing for our services and refund policies for those clients who do NOT complete the program?
  • Lately, we have seen marketing strategies online which blur the lines between credibility for our field and a consumer-directed call to action. For instance, online searches will direct internet consumers to various websites, which represent themselves as online directories, but are in fact treatment centers selling to consumers. We have all seen programs whose hyper-optimized websites prominently feature an attractive model with a telephone headset, as well as an 800 number and a fast talking closer on the other end of the line. Those websites provide no actual information about where the program is located, what the program modality is and who their staff members are, etc. In this competitive environment, what are some strategies for treatment providers seeking to compete effectively on the internet without compromising their adherence to basic principals of ethical disclosure and fair play in the marketplace?