Last week, Binary Fountain hosted a healthcare webinar, “Marketing Strategies for Patient Engagement and Acquisition.” The webinar featured three industry experts: Elizabeth Davis, Manager of Online Reputation at HCA,Carrie Liken, Head of Industry, Healthcare at Yext, and Aaron Clifford, SVP of Marketing at Binary Fountain.
The healthcare patient experience provides an opportunity for marketers to learn from their patients and leverage that information to engage and acquire them. A positive patient experience leads to increased revenue, and with the competitive healthcare environment and decreasing hospital margins, revenue is all the more important and patient experience is highly monitored. Although there is no typical patient journey, there are important patient touchpoints. Marketers must adapt their strategies to focus on reaching patients during the 4 steps of the patient experience:
- Discovery – the patient researches symptoms online and decides whether to see a provider and what type of provider to see
- Selection – the patient consults search engines, hospital provider directories, and reviews sites to compare providers and ultimately make a provider selection
- Point of Care – the patient pays attention to aspects of experience, like physician bedside manner, office staff, wait time, billing, etc.
- Feedback – the patient visits an online review site to leave feedback, which ultimately affects the discovery and selection process of future patients
The patient journey can be broken at any point, leading to a frustrated or lost patient. Incorrect provider phone numbers, wrong provider office addresses, and bad reviews are examples of breaking points within the patient journey. If at any point this patient journey is broken, the health system may miss out on potential revenue.
HCA revamped its marketing strategies to enhance the patient experience. In 2012, HCA was manually managing their online reviews as well as its healthcare data across all publishers – an incredibly time consuming and expensive process. HCA manages 174 hospitals, 119 surgical centers and 37k physicians. If HCA had continued to manually manage its reviews and data in today’s digital landscape, it would have required 25 full-time employees. Realizing the need for a more efficient process, HCA sought out best-in-class healthcare-focused platforms to help manage location data and patient feedback seamlessly throughout the patient journey.
In 2014, HCA partnered with Yext, the digital knowledge management pioneer, and Binary Fountain, a provider of patient experience and healthcare reputation management solutions. Leveraging Yext and Binary Fountain, HCA was able to clean up and manage physician listings, add accurate location data, and analyze and engage with online patient reviews. Ultimately, these partners provide HCA’s Reputation Management Team with a scaleable approach to push out accurate and consistent data and manage online reviews that can affect patient acquisition and loyalty — as well as save time and effort in managing it all. With accurate data and a reputation management solution, HCA is now poised for the future of intelligent search.
And the future of intelligent search is rapidly taking shape today. According to Liken, patients will soon get to a point when they can ask digital assistants to carry out multi-step and complex tasks. For example, “Alexa, find a doctor with at least 4 stars near me, book an appointment, and add the appointment to my calendar.” Health systems’ existing data needs to be accurate and consistent so that it can power these future intelligent searches.
In order for health systems to be prepared for this intelligent future, the experts recommend the following:
- Manage and access one source of truth for all digital knowledge
- Clean up provider data online
- Encourage customers to leave feedback
- Analyze and act on reviews
- Add ratings and reviews to your site
To learn more about the patient experience and to view the full webinar, click here.