Viewpoint: Strategies for Success

When building marketing strategy, it’s easy to get comfortable with the way things have always been done within your specific industry or sector. Staying in that bubble may be effective to a degree, but looking outside your industry opens up unique opportunities you may not have considered. It’s what Kristen Plunkett, senior consultant at Fahrenheit 212, and Adam Ruben, associate partner and head of idea development at Fahrenheit 212, referred to as “out-of-sector innovations” during their presentation at SHSMD Connections 2019. “What we find is that in the realm of innovation, it is often most helpful to study those things outside of your direct domain. ...
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By: Holly Sullivan Everyone eventually becomes a patient. Ten years ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and endured a complex 12-hour surgery. While recovering in the ICU at one of the best academic medical centers in the country, the nurse encouraged me to use the restroom, which was out in the open so patients could be monitored carefully. A few minutes later, I found myself surrounded by six male doctors and residents who were rounding. They came into the room without regard to my privacy and started discussing my case. I was at my most vulnerable and there was no regard to my basic human dignities. This kind of dehumanizing is all too common in ...
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By The SHSMD Team Social media is becoming a key component of health care marketing. According to Claire Simmons, director of clinical communications at Atrium Health, 40 percent of individuals choose their physician based on social media influence. Yet, many providers and those in senior leadership are reluctant to participate in this type of marketing strategy. “When it comes to health care in particular, to our beloved doctors, it still feels a little bit new and it's not quite as prestigious as some of the other things they have been asked to train and implement,” stated Simmons. “And, let's be real, a lot of times they think, ‘this is something my ...
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As new technologies and platforms are introduced, health care marketing teams have an opportunity to develop them into viable communications channels. Yet, you can’t send your marketing manager out into the field with just a smartphone and expect to get the kind of quality product your audience expects. Rebecca Stewart, senior director of content marketing at Hartford HealthCare, and Nick Dethlefsen, video production manager at Hartford HealthCare, presented at SHSMD Connections 2019 on how marketing teams can capitalize on using Facebook Live and podcasting as marketing tools — but only if it’s done the right way. Audio First, Video Second Health care ...
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By: Kara Rozek, Jorge Cordova and Nate Clarkson Facing mounting pressure to crack down on misinformation campaigns, Google implemented a new policy aimed at misleading health care ads, with evidence-based treatments inadvertently caught in the dragnet. What is the core challenge? Google cast a wide net in implementing a new policy against unproven medical procedures last month. The policy aims “to prohibit advertising for unproven or experimental medical techniques” applying across all ad serving platforms, with particular emphasis on “unproven or experimental medical techniques” including stem cell therapy, cellular (non-stem) therapy and gene therapy. ...
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Health care is increasingly taking place outside the hospital, whether in ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs), retail clinics or the home. As early as 2017, Mark Bertolini, the CEO of Aetna, declared , “If you have to go to the hospital, we have failed you. What if that were the way the system was designed?”  Health care is increasingly taking place outside the hospital, whether in ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs), retail clinics or the home. As early as 2017, Mark Bertolini, the CEO of Aetna, declared, “If you have to go to the hospital, we have failed you. What if that were the way the system was designed?” As often happens, the technology is ahead of ...
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This blog post is adapted from “Transformation and Disruption” by Ian Morrison, PhD, originally published in Futurescan 2020-2025 .   The Society for Health Care Strategy & Market Development ( SHSMD ) and the American College of Health care Executives provide articles about the future of health care, based on interviews with renowned thought leaders or Futurescan 2020–2025: Health Care Trends and Implications . The annual publication helps health care strategists negotiate the path ahead for some of the major factors creating transformation in health care. The key theme is the need to simultaneously evolve the core health care model while responding ...
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This is another one of SHSMD's blogs exploring top trends for 2020. Catch up on the series here . Collaborations and partnerships are a core competency for health care strategists . Hospitals and health systems are collaborating with almost every imaginable kind of organization. These include but certainly are not limited to tech companies, government entities; employers; community service providers; educational organizations; law enforcement, and other health care organizations. Hospitals also continue to collaborate with out of industry organizations like the ride-sharing companies, grocery store chains, and retail spaces to create greater accessibility. ...
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Hospital and health care strategists, whatever their discipline, are increasingly expected to mine and leverage data to derive insights for decision making. Counting likes on a Facebook post, average time spent on a contact center call, number of people who saw a television ad or even the number of new patients in a year are examples of easy but incomplete metrics. Instead, strategists are looking for metrics that evaluate the true impact of their efforts.Hospital and health care strategists, whatever their discipline, are increasingly expected to mine and leverage data to derive insights for decision making. Counting likes on a Facebook post, average time ...
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Medical Marketing & Media’s 33rd Annual Survey Report indicates that the average salary for health marketers (director level and up) has jumped 12 percent. That’s huge. In the last decade, health care is the only U.S. employment sector to have added employees in every month. In that time, pharmaceuticals and health tech have globalized and driven expanded health care, too. MM&M’s Heath Marketer’s Average Salary 2016 : $139,000 2017 : $157,000 2018 : $164,000 2019 : $185,000 The latest average salary is just the start, as nearly 70 percent earned a bonus, which on average was $37,359. And, over half of the respondents rated their ...
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The health care field reaches approximately $3.65 trillion in the United States, larger than the entire GDP of many countries. In addition, private equity is purchasing medical practices at record rates. Some analysts have even tied the increase in surprise billing at least in part to these investments. It’s no surprise, then, that new organizations are seeking to enter this potentially lucrative market and that existing organizations are pivoting into health care.  Hospitals and health systems face the choices between competing, collaborating or combining with them in an atmosphere of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity (VUCA). The wrong ...
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This is another one of SHSMD's blogs exploring top trends for 2020. Our first posting in the series featured trends in consumerism and patient experience . Personalization can take place anywhere and at any time during the customer journey. Ryan Younger, vice president of marketing at Virtua Health, notes that some of the common touchpoints for personalization in health care are: Marketing and advertising. Community outreach. Social media engagement. Digital channels. Selecting a physician. Communications. Patient portals. Making a first appointment. Walking in the door and being greeted. ...
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Recently, SHSMD asked a small group of senior executives and young professionals in health care strategy what they think are the most important trends for 2020. The top results, which varied by discipline, included: Partnerships and collaborations. Metrics and analytics. Patient experience as a new discipline. Next-level personalization. New entrants to health care. Distributed health care (outside of traditional health care settings).  Over the coming weeks we’ll explore these trends in blog posts and other resources. Each blog post will highlight one or more trends, featuring commentary from hospital and health system ...
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One of the greatest challenges health care marketing professionals face is meeting the expectations of leadership. Many times, the requests that flow into the marketing department require marketers to stray from already-formed – and already-budgeted – strategies. One way to get back to basics, according to Jennifer Horton, vice president of strategy at Ten Adams, is to return to the four core purposes of marketing, which they abbreviate as BERG: Brand awareness. Engagement. Reputation management. Growth. “As health care marketers, I think one of our big challenges is we get reactionary and spend all of our time fighting fires, ...
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Population health is a term widely used in health care, but not everyone employs the same definition. Often its meaning depends on who is being asked. Health administrators may have different answers than those in academia. From a health care marketing perspective, population health encompasses a number of different factors. The challenge is balancing them all to ensure population health management succeeds — a topic discussed at the SHSMD Connections 2019 session "Population Health Defined and Explored," led by Susan Dubuque, principle of NDP Agency. Clearing the Confusion of Population Health The goal of Dubuque's session was to interactively gather ...
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Primary and preventative care is ripe for disruption and several new organizations, such as Oak Street Health and ChenMed, are moving into the growing area of primary care for older adults. Traditional providers face a variety of options to respond to these disruptors. They can ignore the disruptors, adopt new business models that take advantage of their scale and history, imitate the disruptors' strategies or collaborate. The wisest solution depends on the business environment and nature of the organizations but when two organizations have compatible missions and business goals, collaboration offers unique rewards. ChenMed's model is to serve moderate-to ...
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Marketing Measurement for Impact The marketing department at UC health in Cincinnati developed a process and dashboard that defines and displays its impact metrics. “This has drastically changed the conversation for us,” said Allison Neikirk, consumer insights and marketing manager for UC Health. “Leaders are realizing that marketing does not just ‘do billboards’ or make things ‘look pretty’.” While the dashboard is almost self-explanatory, the journey to that simplicity wasn’t always a smooth one. UC Health collaborated with Cincinnati-based health care marketing expert Mimi Rasor to implement a seven-step process for developing a dashboard: ...
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Ethnography, or behavioral research, is one of the most powerful market research tools. Unlike focus groups and surveys, it investigates how people behave rather than what they say about their beliefs or actions. Digital ethnography tracks how consumers behave online, giving insights into the decisions they make and why. In a Business of Healthcare/SHSMD collaborative video and podcast, Jeff T. House, vice president of strategic marketing for Arkansas Children’s Hospital and Dean Browell, executive vice president and co-founder of Feedback, shared how they used digital ethnography to better understand how parents make decisions. House described the role ...
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By The SHSMD Team One of the greatest assets a marketer has is data. Analytics not only provide insights about audience demographics, they also reveal behaviors and preferences that are necessary to guide marketing strategy. With mobile applications becoming a standard in every industry, analytics surrounding app users is critical for shaping both the app itself and who it is marketed to. Charlotte Wilson, director of digital marketing and analytics at OSU Wexner Medical Center, presented at SHSMD Connections 2019 on how data informs marketing decisions in both app and service line promotion. Using Data to Leverage Your Investment Last year, ...
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If there's one thing marketers, directors, and C-suite members know they have to do, it's  present. Getting your ideas across to decision makers is a routine element of health care marketing —but that doesn't mean it's easy. Kenny Nguyen, CEO and co-founder of ThreeSixtyEight, an agency based out of Baton Rouge, said one of the biggest problems with today's presentations is lack of urgency. Nguyen and his partners operate Big Fish Presentations, a service line focused on "ridding the world of boring presentations." At SHSMD Connections 2019, Nguyen shared tips for creating presentations that deliver.  Replace Takeaways with To-Dos All presentations ...
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