Why Hospitals Need Smarter Patient Acquisition and Retention

This is the first post in a three-part series discussing healthcare landscape challenges and the need to engage patients across their healthcare journey (not just within the four walls of the system), extend patient lifetime value, and increase patient acquisition and retention.

patient and physician relationshipWhen we meet with healthcare leaders across the country, many convey a sense of urgency and need for transformation, digital and otherwise. Their organizations face new challenges and consumers have more purchasing power and higher expectations.

Single-tactic, traditional marketing efforts they’ve relied on for years no longer are enough; they need to develop more effective, targeted multi-channel campaigns to maximize budget and drive business results.

In order to successfully compete, they are adopting a data-driven approach to growth and gaining new visibility into marketing performance and provider network utilization.

Let’s evaluate what’s driving hospitals to innovate their growth strategies and what smarter patient acquisition and retention looks like:

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4 Tips for Onboarding a Physician Relationship Management Solution

The role of the physician liaison team is often understated, despite the fact that physician referral practices can greatly impact a health system’s overall performance and profitability.

To optimize growth in a competitive market, health organizations and liaison teams must work to develop and nurture relationships with physicians and providers.

Until recently, healthcare organizations have been challenged to quantify and categorize liaison efforts, which is part of the reason their role has been underestimated. For this reason, many health systems have implemented a physician relationship management (PRM) solution. As a centralized hub for physician engagement efforts, a PRM solution allows organizations to leverage existing data sets, develop actionable insights, and gain visibility into their liaison team practices.

As with any technology implementation, there are going to be challenges and hurdles along the way to overcome. We’ve outlined four strategies to ease the PRM transition process for the liaison team and the organization:

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How Engagement Center and HCRM Support Outbound Calling

“Cold calling” is a marketing tactic that’s been around for a long time and tends to get a bad rap – for a good reason; it’s not very effective. A Baylor University study found only about 1 percent of cold calls ultimately convert.

With today’s technology, outbound initiatives look much different – they are data-enabled, targeted, and personalized, all of which increases effectiveness and drives results.

This type of outbound calling doesn’t simply cast a wide net; it’s about engaging with the right person at the right time with the right information.

It’s made possible with a combination of healthcare CRM and a proactive call center. With these technologies, healthcare marketers are able to view relevant information and have more effective customer interactions across multiple channels, including outbound calls.

Let’s take a look at some examples of how engagement center and healthcare CRM tools can work together to support three key marketing objectives: patient acquisition, engagement, and retention.
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How Comprehensive Caller Profiles Benefit Patient Engagement Centers

Calling a healthcare organization can be a bit of a gamble; perhaps the call center agent who picks up knows how to help you, or perhaps you’re transferred repeatedly until someone maybe gives you the great service you were looking for.

This is because the call center tends to be siloed, reactionary, and blind to any information about the caller. Additionally, if any valuable information is gathered during a call center interaction, once the call is over, that data is lost. Clearly, call centers can do better. Enter the engagement center.

An engagement center integrates with healthcare CRM data to centralize all call center activities and consolidate patient and provider information.

Unlike traditional call centers, engagement centers can handle cross-channel inquiries and deliver personalized interactions to callers. Additionally, since engagement center agents are connected to the greater health system’s data, they are prepared to handle many different inquiries.

Some of the most valuable aspects of an engagement center system are comprehensive caller profiles. Let’s look at caller profiles and how they produce beneficial outcomes for healthcare organizations.
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How to Extract Smarter Data from Physician Relationship Campaigns

Consider this statistic: Referral leakage for a health system can average anywhere from 55 to 65 percent. To put this in perspective, for a hospital with 100 affiliated providers, total referral leakage costs the health system between $78 million to $97 million per year.

That’s a big number, and one that illustrates the importance of building strong physician relationships within the provider community: Successful physician relationship campaigns can bring significant revenue back into the organization. As competition for referrals increases, incorporating a data-driven approach to physician alignment and engagement can reap dividends for an organization.

Integration of a Physician Relationship Management (PRM) solution is a start. It gives physician liaison teams a centralized system for tracking engagement activities. More than that, it provides liaisons with the ability to approach their outreach and campaigns strategically – and align them with organization-wide initiatives.

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