Growing a MedTech Company During an Economic Downturn

Business people analyzing data

Heading into 2024, the question facing medtech innovators across the country is: how do we stay afloat and hit sales goals despite economic headwinds? While recession may be top of mind for company leaders across all industries, the healthcare sector is traveling down a separate path with diverse economic roadblocks and hidden barriers to growth. Certain industry players, like diagnostics and post-acute care, face slower growth rates while others, namely hospitals and integrated delivery networks, continue to see an upward trend in profit margins.

With such variance in financial performance, the economic story for medtech companies is far more complex than a straight shot to recession. Digging deeper, we find that, rather than a decline in economic opportunity, innovators must adapt to the downstream effects of paradigm industry shifts.

Healthcare CAGR projections recently decreased by 2%.1

As of August 2023, hospital profit margins are 2.3% higher than in November 2022.2

Pulling Back the Curtain on Industry Hurdles

Global financial pressures may play a role in stagnant medtech revenue growth, but, behind the scenes, we see six key industry changes working to stall pipeline activity:

  1. Non-hospital-based care. Payers continue to incentivize care outside of the hospital setting, such as in ambulatory surgery centers or in-office procedures, to lower costs and offer more convenient treatment options for patients.
  2. Staffing shortages. The pandemic magnified existing concerns among healthcare workers, causing one in five to quit their jobs, with 47% planning to leave their roles by 2025.3 This trend is especially prevalent among nurses, many of whom chose to leave their jobs for traveling roles or early retirement.
  3. Physician-organization alignment. Starting in 2010, physicians moved away from independent practice toward health system employment. Likewise, private equity investment into the provider community significantly increased, contributing to the formation of larger group practices.
  4. Complex decision-making. The days of the sole physician decision maker are over. Now, the decision to buy your product or service is made in the boardroom, often with heavy input from the IT team, Operations, and Finance. With so many voices to consider, both clinical and non-clinical, leaders struggle to know how and when to say “yes.”
  5. Financial considerations. Ripple effects from the pandemic force healthcare organizations to focus on protecting the bottom line in addition to patient outcomes. Operating margins are still incredibly low, meaning financial benefits are just as important as clinical improvements.
  6. Reduced rep access. Hospitals have been closing doors to the OR for over a decade now. The pandemic simply accelerated this trend, and medtech companies shouldn’t expect to regain in-person access anytime soon as the industry shifts to digital engagement.

Turning Economic Challenges Into New Sales Opportunities

While the odds seem to be stacked against medtech sales success, there are steps your team can take today to turn the tides back in your favor. Instead of letting economic disruptions work against your bottom line, take advantage of new opportunities to meet your prospects’ needs and connect with them on a different level.

Implement these five strategies to reopen doors to decision-makers and drive sustainable growth:

  • Adapt your value propositions to more effectively address your prospects’ current challenges.
  • Communicate more than just the clinical benefits of your offering — address pain points on financial, operational, and administrative fronts.
  • Grow your prospect pool and broaden your outreach without expanding the size of your team.
  • Align medtech marketing and sales efforts to engage prospects throughout every stage of the sales funnel.
  • Maximize every sales opportunity by penetrating deeper into existing accounts and relationships.

The healthcare market appears to be on the upswing from a record low in 2022, but that doesn’t mean your prospects aren’t out of the woods yet. Capitalize on this need by broadcasting your capabilities and engaging with your audience online at every possible opportunity. With a recession-focused medical device marketing strategy, your team can insulate your bottom line from revenue loss and stand out as a proven partner for business success. Watch the on-demand webinar from Scott Alexander, medtech industry leader and CEO of Jairus Marketing, to learn more about how to leverage industry challenges to drive future-proof growth.


  1. Patel, N. & Singhal, S. (2023. January 9). What to expect in US healthcare in 2023 and beyond. McKinsey & Company.
  2. National Hospital Flash Report: September 2023. (2023). KaufmanHall.
  3. Popowitz, E. (September 2023). Addressing the healthcare staffing shortage. Definitive Healthcare.