Last month I attended a Healthcare Marketing Summit in Chicago. During the event, Melody Smith Jones, Manager of Connected Health at Perficient discussed how hospitals should be taking the best practice marketing ideas and approaches from the retail industry and applying them to healthcare.
Setting the stage for applying A Retail Strategy for Healthcare Melody discussed the five marketing imperatives (drivers) of the retail industry in dealing with the connected consumer:
- Relentless competition
- Price transparency
- Pervasive technology
- A Shoppers journey
- Consumer is in control
She also discussed the retail industry response to these imperatives:
- Enhancing the customer experience
- Omni-channel synchronization
- Leveraging data
- Digital transformation
With this as introduction, Melody then laid out the Five Steps to implement a 360 degree marketing strategy:
Step 1: Analyze
Begin by establishing a data analytics mindset. Identify sources of internal and external data that are relevant to your target consumers. Look for opportunities to mine data (the entire process of mining data brings additional insight on what is available and how it can become valuable if used in the right way).
Identify and implement a strategy to segment your targets based on your insights of consumer patterns. Create a parameter drive model that segments your consumers so that over time you can improve the model and use it to segment consumers who come into your sphere of control. Finally, optimize your offers to establish a progression from engagement, to appreciation, to conversation and finally to relationship.
Step 2: Strategize
Alignment between organizational strategy and digital strategy must be seamless. From the organization’s mission and vision comes an organizational strategy that guides the development of the marketing, IT and service line strategies. The digital strategy is comprised of strategies for content, social, mobile and loyalty. The more an enterprise can align these strategies, the more cohesive and attractive they appear to consumers.
Step 3: Execute
Implement tactics that enable a consumer to discover and engage with your organization, appreciate what you have to offer, begin a conversation with your organization and eventually establish a relationship with your organization. Drive consumers who are searching for information to pages that provide relevant and timely information. Content is king! But a majority of content is never accessed. Through an understanding of what consumers search for, develop and present content to meet the needs of the consumer. Provide compelling conversion opportunities that enable a consumer to establish the relationship on their terms, meeting their needs.
Step 4: Monitor
Each marketing activity must be monitored for effectiveness and efficiency. Clicks and opens are important. In addition, monitor by consumer segment and tie activities back to campaigns and content. Use this information as a primary feedback loop for improving your marketing efforts.
Step 5: Respond
When the opportunity presents itself to engage with an unknown consumer or a partially known web visitor (i.e. they consistently return to your website), respond to their needs to encourage further engagement and where possible – conversation. A consumer will come to your content in their “moment of need”, if you fail to meet their need at that point in time, they will move on to another site that better meets their need. Remember, consumers binge on content. When someone consumes your content respond to their need.
These five steps, when taken together focuses an organization, and especially the marketing group, on:
- Establishing a baseline that becomes a firm foundation for improvement
- Defining metrics that provide insight and innovation to achieve goals
- Developing content that meets the consumer at their point of need
- Implementing engagement models where the right interaction can drive a relationship
The competitive healthcare landscape requires organizations to engage and empower their consumers. Those that can leverage retail marketing strategies to establish a 360-degree view of their consumers will have a competitive advantage.