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May 22, 2018

What’s Your Hospital’s Digital Front Door Strategy

By: John McFeely

There’s a lot of discussion these days about the Digital Front Door, and how it informs the experience hospitals and medical practices offer healthcare consumers. As you consider ways to improve online patient experience, here are a few big factors to consider: Consumers want the same experience with healthcare companies that they value in non-healthcare…

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There’s a lot of discussion these days about the Digital Front Door, and how it informs the experience hospitals and medical practices offer healthcare consumers.

As you consider ways to improve online patient experience, here are a few big factors to consider:

Consumers want the same experience with healthcare companies that they value in non-healthcare settings

When they arrive at your digital front door, visitors expect convenience, ease of use and accessibility on a par with the best. That doesn’t mean merely being better than your healthcare competition. Consumer expectations for online experience and engagement are now set and constantly raised by mega-retailers like Amazon, as well as banks and other service related industries. As marketers we might focus on the things that differentiate healthcare from leading online and big box commerce sites.  Your visitors care much less about those differences – if they can’t quickly see a path to the answers they seek, you have missed an opportunity to connect and engage.
 
Wanted: Convenience, Clarity and Usability

Just as hospitals are adopting wayfinding solutions to help  people navigate their maze of hallways, hospital web sites need to adapt to healthcare consumers seeking information. Your digital front door must welcome the visitor. Whether finding the right provider for their medical issue, getting hold of test results, or paying a bill, it’s imperative to help them find what they need quickly.

It’s not just the homepage

The Digital Front Door is more than just the hospital home page and search window. Dayton Children’s Hospital, for example, identifies some 80 ‘microments’ in the consumer healthcare journey, progressing from Discovery to Exploration to Evaluation to Engagement and Experience. This analysis brings Nurse Chat, ED and Urgent Care check-ins and patient portal into their front door strategy, along with social media, star ratings and local listings.

Designing a Digital Front Door Strategy

Fairview Health Services of Minneapolis identified critical thresholds along the path to purchase, and considered the impact of influencers from physicians to family members to physical location. The next step was to audit and improve touchpoints around the digital front door, including provider profiles, location directories, and online appointment scheduling, among others. These have a measurable impact on top patient experience priorities like researching, choosing and making an appointment with the right doctor for the patient’s medical need.

Take one bite at a time

Where budget or staffing won’t support a top-to-bottom remodel of your digital front door, it might make sense to carve out a piece of the strategy to concentrate on. Madison, Wisconsin-based Unity Point Health, which operates in 10 cities in Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois, decided a top priority for 2018 is connecting consumers with available providers. UnityPoint leveraged PPC, serving up doctors located nearby the prospective patient who started the search. To provide the immediacy and trust that patients demand, the campaign promotes providers who offer 5-day new patient access, and have a star rating of 4 or higher.

Listen to the webinar

For much more on the digital front door, check out the SHSMD hosted webinar called Defining the New Digital Front Door. You’ll get insight on top-of-the-funnel consumer entry paths like organic and paid search, local listings, and third-party reviews, plus advice on avoiding common pitfalls. Also covered are the very important metrics you need to help measure the progress of your program.

Introduced by Binary Fountain’s own Aaron Clifford, three panelists offer great ideas and real world experience in improving patient engagement:

Chris Boyer, host of the Touchpoint Podcast and
Director, Digital Strategy and Analytics
Fairview Health Services

Blake Long
Director, Marketing Technology and Strategy
UnityPoint Health

Grace Jones
Consumer Brand Manager
Dayton Children’s Hospital

About the Author

John McFeely
Sales Director

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May 10, 2018

Our Thoughts on Mayo Clinic’s Study on Negative Online Physician Reviews

By: Aaron Clifford

Last month, Becker’s Spine Review and several other healthcare news outlets reported on a study of online reviews by the Mayo Clinic. Researchers used Google alerts and searches to track negative online reviews of Mayo Clinic physicians for several months back in late 2014. Next, the researchers compared these doctors’ Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey…

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Last month, Becker’s Spine Review and several other healthcare news outlets reported on a study of online reviews by the Mayo Clinic. Researchers used Google alerts and searches to track negative online reviews of Mayo Clinic physicians for several months back in late 2014. Next, the researchers compared these doctors’ Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey scores with those of other Mayo Clinic physicians who did not receive negative online reviews. The comparison revealed no statistical differences between overall scores or patient communication scores, leading to the conclusion in the Becker’s headline that negative online reviews of doctors do not affect patient satisfaction surveys. The article goes on to describe how a negative review of a physician might be influenced by events beyond the doctor’s control: staff interaction, waiting room time, billing issues and even directions and office parking are underlying factors in some complaints.

We at Binary Fountain welcome this study, and all similar research. It broaches the need for a conversation around the value of the patient voice, whether it’s expressed online or through a survey, and how we can better evaluate their online ratings.

Reading the Mayo study, yes you can say there is a difference between how patient experience survey data and online reviews are captured. Patient satisfaction surveys are delivered in a more formal, structured format where patient feedback is sought out and rigorously analyzed by a provider of patient experience measurement solutions, like Press Ganey.  With online reviews, the feedback is unprompted. The patient or caregiver went out of their way to share their experience. In both cases, the patient believes their experience matters and is worth being voiced. That is powerful and should be taken seriously, no matter through which medium it’s delivered.

In cases where there are less online reviews than patient survey responses for a provider, there is the chance that an online rating may increase or decrease more than a survey’s rating scores.  Our customers are seeing that the more online reviews generated for providers, the closer the online reviews/ratings match the patient experience survey scores. The Mayo study also remarks that online reviews provide an “incomplete depiction of the physician’s reputation and his or her true commitment to and expertise in patient care.” Taking the approach of increasing patient feedback, from both online reviews and surveys, will help provide a more comprehensive picture of physicians.

With all the back and forth about online ratings and reviews, there is one thing to keep in mind: ratings and reviews are not going away. Our own survey, released late last year, reveals that 30 percent of consumers share their healthcare experiences online, via ratings and review sites and social media. 95 percent of our survey respondents regard online ratings and reviews as “somewhat” to “very” reliable, and 75 percent said that online ratings and review sites have influenced their decision when choosing a physician.

With the popularity of online ratings and reviews, it is important for providers and consumers to undertstand “the why” behind a star rating. Online feedback needs to be rigorously analyzed.  That’s one reason why we built Provider Social Index® (PSI), which aggregates online patient feedback about physicians and then uses our proprietary Natural Language Processing (NLP) engine to extract insights and derive a rating related to 10 patient experience metrics. It excludes all non-provider categories like front desk staff, wait time and billing. This makes online reviews useful to providers and patients in the same way that survey results are. On the provider side, the insights helps identify where a physician is doing well, and where improvements can be made. Consumers looking for a new provider benefit from a comprehensive, clearer view into a physician’s reputation.  This is what our industry should be striving to deliver. Binary Fountain works to make online reviews work for all of us.

We are proud of our new partnership with US News & World Report as the provider of physician ratings displayed on US News’ doctor profile pages. One reason US News chooses to work with Binary Fountain is that our NLP’s formula/algorithm is scientifically developed and published in a peer-reviewed journal. Another is that we don’t display ratings if there aren’t enough reviews of a particular physician to be statistically useful. The richness and recency of reviews are also accounted for when analyzing reviews.

The Mayo study emphasizes physicians need to be aware of their reputation both online and in-person and recommends using their patient satisfaction surveys scores to:

“build and manage their online reputation, which in this day and age is crucial for public perception. Physicians could also take this opportunity to use social media to underscore these formal PSS (patient satisfaction surveys) reviews, counteract negative open source reviews, and help ensure a positive online presence. Furthermore, physicians and their institutions in a more appropriate setting can proactively manage any negative formal patient reviews and prevent having physicians’ reputation negatively affected across the World Wide Web.”

We couldn’t agree more. Our solutions take this approach, helping providers manage online reputation and publishing patient experience survey data. Binary Star Rating helps healthcare organizations, like Providence St. Joseph Health, Unity Point and Dayton Children’s Hospital, publish patitent experience survey coments and star ratings to their physician profile pages. Our strategic partnership with Press Ganey provides health systems with the guidance and support they need as they go down this path to taking control of their online reputation. We also provide a centralized healthcare-specific online reputation management platform, Binary Health Analytics, that helps organizations proactively analyze and act on all patient online ratings and reviews as well as patient experience surveys. Many health systems and practices are now engaging with their patients online and gaining insights into how where they can improve the patient experience.

So, let’s encourage more research on how to make the voice of the patient a driving factor in our efforts to improve patient experience, and how to publish online ratings and reviews that are accurate and reliable.

About the Author

Aaron Clifford
SVP of Marketing

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May 07, 2018

National Nurses Week 2018 – Saying Thank You

By: Kenneth Brooks

Every year National Nurses Week begins May 6 and ends May 12, Florence Nightingale‘s birthday. It’s an opportunity to celebrate those whose job – really, it’s a calling – means providing compassionate, exceptional care and a better patient experience. If you or a family member have been a patient at a hospital, you know that nurses…

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Every year National Nurses Week begins May 6 and ends May 12, Florence Nightingale‘s birthday. It’s an opportunity to celebrate those whose job – really, it’s a calling – means providing compassionate, exceptional care and a better patient experience. If you or a family member have been a patient at a hospital, you know that nurses are at the bedside often, checking in on your condition and comfort – you even get to know them by name.  They’re delivering care in many settings: at physician practices, nursing homes, and on the field of battle, for example. In all cases, the common denominator is they go over and beyond because they care. On top of that, nursing is rated as the most honest and ethical profession.

National Nurses Week

We believe it’s important to recognize the work they do and there are organizations that do this. The DAISY FOUNDATION established the DAISY Awards program as a way of saying “thank you” to nurses everywhere. It now honors nurses in over 3,000 healthcare facilities across the US and in 17 countries. The American Nurses Association provides a toolkit of assets that providers can use to say thank you to nurses.

You can also recognize a nurse who’s provided amazing care: post a positive online review about her or him. If you’re a Binary Fountain client, you can analyze patient comments to identify positive feedback about them and share it at the next nurse staff meeting. It will be a morale booster and appreciated. If you have a family member or spouse who’s a nurse, flowers (and making their favorite dinner) are also a good idea. So get in the spirit and thank a nurse!

About the Author

Kenneth Brooks

Kenneth Brooks serves as Binary Fountain’s senior director of marketing. He brings more than 15 years of high-tech marketing experience, including 7 years in healthcare technology, to the company. In his role, he manages brand awareness and demand generation programs.

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April 26, 2018

Patient Experience Week – 2018

By: Brian Williams

April 23 through 27 is Patient Experience week, described by the Beryl Institute as “a focused time for organizations to celebrate accomplishments, reenergize efforts and honor the people who impact patient experience every day.” Many providers are recognizing staff and physicians who personify putting patients first. With the patient voice growing in importance, we’d like…

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April 23 through 27 is Patient Experience week, described by the Beryl Institute as “a focused time for organizations to celebrate accomplishments, reenergize efforts and honor the people who impact patient experience every day.” Many providers are recognizing staff and physicians who personify putting patients first.

With the patient voice growing in importance, we’d like to call out some healthcare providers who put the ‘every day’ into their own efforts and use patient feedback as a catalyst to create a better patient experience.

At Florida Orthopaedic Institute, patient experience is informed by a hospitality-inspired program instituted by Director of Marketing & Customer Service Donna Bossuyt and Marketing & Customer Service Manager Kim Mott. They’re helping FOI move from a physician-centric culture to a patient-centric one. You can learn more about it here and here.

KureSmart Pain Management has worked to improve engagement and listen more closely to patient voices by sharing patient feedback with physicians, and inspiring their medical staff to take an active role in engagement. As a result KureSmart’s overall patient experience score increased by 68 percent and patient loyalty increased by 52 percent. Learn more about their program here.

Providence St. Joseph Health are helping patients make a more informed decision when selecting their next physician by publishing star ratings and patient comments from CAHPS surveys to their provider profile pages. You can learn more about it here.

Spartanburg Regional Healthcare places a high priority on patient engagement. They take it so seriously that patient engagement and service recovery are a part of the day one onboarding experience for every newly hired physician. “We hammer home to the physicians how important it is that our patients have good experiences,” says Mary Reid, RN, Senior Physician Development Consultant. Learn more about Spartanburg’s patient-focused onboarding session here.

Have you done something special to celebrate patients and honor staff members who stand out for putting patient engagement first? Tell us all about it!

About the Author

Brian Williams
Engagement Manager

Brian helps healthcare organizations better understand their healthcare consumer challenges and needs, in order to efficiently manage and improve patient satisfaction.

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April 16, 2018

SXSW Recap 2018

By: Kenneth Brooks

Aaron Clifford, Binary Fountain’s Senior Vice President of Marketing, attends many conferences, and South by Southwest is one his favorites. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the panels and keynotes Aaron found informative and inspiring. Overview: AI and Trust in the era of purloined data, and real fake news One of last year’s hottest…

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Aaron Clifford, Binary Fountain’s Senior Vice President of Marketing, attends many conferences, and South by Southwest is one his favorites. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the panels and keynotes Aaron found informative and inspiring.

Overview: AI and Trust in the era of purloined data, and real fake news

SXSW

One of last year’s hottest topics, Artificial Intelligence was just as prominent in 2018, because consumers are becoming accustomed to – if not exactly embracing – applications that have come into wider use. Do they like them? Maybe.  Do they trust them? Maybe not. Trust was also a recurring topic in many panel sessions. In this year of data use and abuse, and real stories of fake news, discussion focused on a study that places trust high on the list of challenges among respondents.

More Data, More Problems: Transparency in 2018
Panelists:
Toby McKenna, business and revenue growth, Bazaarvoice
Price Glomski, Executive Vice President at digital agency PMG
Atul Singh, Dell Global Ad-Tech
Jennifer Sugarman, Sony Electronics consumer marketing team leader

This panel was not focused strictly on health care, but it covered familiar territory. Campaign performance data, targeting segments are now based on complex combinations of data points; this can lead the users of the data astray. Atul Singh described ’good data’ very simply, as “data that does what it says it will do.” The panelists agreed that brands, data providers and agencies must cooperate to make sure the right data is being used, in the right way to reach the desired consumers. Listen here

Making Healthcare Price Transparency Actionable
Panelists:
Chris Moriates, Assistant Dean for Healthcare Value at Dell Medical School, TX Austin
Vineet Arora, Assistant Dean for Scholarship & Discovery at University of Chicago
Dr. Neel Shah, Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School and founder of Costs of Care
David Vivero, co-founder and CEO at Amino, a healthcare transparency company

The intro to this panel notes that “93% of Americans are ‘personally worried’ about healthcare affordability.” The panelists described the work of Costs of Care and Amino on bringing clarity in healthcare pricing out of the realm of Google searches and into the doctor’s office.  I was moved to tweet from the audience, “Pricing is a mess in healthcare. Comments and ratings from patients regarding their bill and costs of healthcare are rarely positive.” It’s reassuring to know that there are companies working to solve this problem. Listen here

Austin

Lessons in Innovation from Silicon Valley Elite
This session featured Ann Hiatt, who has been an Executive Business Partner to Marissa Mayer (former CEO of Yahoo), Jeff Bezos (CEO of Amazon.com) and currently Eric Schmidt (former Executive Chairman at Google).  The topic was how to cultivate an atmosphere in your organization that enables it to hire with vision, breed creativity and inspire ambition.

Create Magic: 6 Experiential Storytelling Secrets
Panelists:
Cynthia Jones, GM for Innovation Experiences at the Henry Ford Museum
Christian Lachel of of BRC Imagination Arts
Claire Tolan, of Jameson Distillery, Ireland

This panel explored creativity and engagement in customer experience. Discussion included ways to use six secrets of experiential storytelling to engage, entertain and inspire audiences, and to learn how to create an experience that forges an emotional connection, deepens engagement and inspires life-long loyalty. Listen here

Balancing Brand Building vs Performance
Panelists:
Mary Corcoran, President, Twist Mktg/W2O Group
Ty Shay, SVP and CMO for Symantec’s Consumer Business Unit
Mark Stouse, CEO, founder Proof Analytics
Marissa Tarleton, CMO of RetailMeNot, Inc

Building a likable brand lubricates the wheels of performance marketing, but accountability is more vital than ever. This panel gathered CMOs and CCOs of major brands to discuss how they balance building brand equity with maximizing performance metrics, and to explore how analytics can help define the right mix. Listen here

Trust: The Currency of the Sharing Economy
Panelists:
Juliette Kayyem, CEO of Zemcar, and a homeland security expert
Nick Shapiro, Global Head of Trust and Risk Management at Airbnb, and former Deputy Chief of Staff at the CIA
Arun Sundararajan, professor at NYU  Stern School of Business, teaching tech entrepreneurship, the digital economy, and more

The description for this panel notes that recent studies show society experiences an unprecedented crisis of trust. At the same time, millions of people book lodging through Airbnb, and don’t hesitate to hop into an Uber or Lyft car. The discussion explored the reasons for mistrust, and the enthusiasm that some sharing economy companies inspire in their customers. This is relevant in healthcare customer engagement, because our industry encounters similar peaks and valleys of confidence and mistrust. Listen here

Quantum computing: on the horizon but approaching fast

Still in the far distance for most people in healthcare is the advent of quantum computing. With both panel and keynote events on the subject, SXSW made it clear that this hard-to-grasp next wave of computing is approaching at warp speed. The presentations helped to address the question: “What problems will be solved with this quantum leap in computing power that cannot be solved today with the world’s most powerful supercomputers?” Listen here and here.

About the Author

Kenneth Brooks

Kenneth Brooks serves as Binary Fountain’s senior director of marketing. He brings more than 15 years of high-tech marketing experience, including 7 years in healthcare technology, to the company. In his role, he manages brand awareness and demand generation programs.

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April 10, 2018

Binary Fountain Powers Patient Experience Ratings for US News & World Report Doctor Profiles

By: Kenneth Brooks

U.S. News & World Report, the world authority in hospital rankings and civic journalism, has begun a new collaboration with Binary Fountain that adds patient experience ratings to U.S. News Doctor Finder physician profiles. By analyzing online physician reviews, Binary Fountain’s Provider Social Index® delivers exceptional patient experience insights, empowering consumers to compare other people’s…

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U.S. News & World Report, the world authority in hospital rankings and civic journalism, has begun a new collaboration with Binary Fountain that adds patient experience ratings to U.S. News Doctor Finder physician profiles. By analyzing online physician reviews, Binary Fountain’s Provider Social Index® delivers exceptional patient experience insights, empowering consumers to compare other people’s doctor experiences and make informed healthcare choices.

“It’s the quality of Binary Fountain’s patient experience data that makes this a valuable addition to the U.S. News profiles,” says Aaron Clifford, Binary Fountain’s Senior Vice President of Marketing. “People who visit the doctor profiles  will find summarized patient review ratings that they can trust.”

Chad Smolinski, chief product officer for U.S. News, explains that, “In the age of healthcare consumerism, patient experience information has become a crucial piece of information for patients and families when choosing a physician.” He adds that this partnership “allows U.S. News to expand the breadth and depth of relevant, trusted data we can provide to patients,” as they search for a new doctor.

“We are excited to partner with U.S. News to further enhance their doctor profile pages with patient experience ratings, delivering industry-leading insights, data and analytics on thousands of doctors across the country,” says Ramu Potarazu, Binary Fountain’s president and CEO.

Recent survey data shows that 95 percent of respondents regard online ratings as “somewhat” to “very” reliable, and 75 percent say online ratings and review sites have influenced their decision when choosing a physician.

Provider Social Index’s Natural Language Processing engine extracts insights from online reviews based on 10 physician-related patient experience metrics and derives an overall patient experience rating for each physician profile . The different metrics include:

  • the thoroughness of the examination
  • the doctor’s ability to answer questions
  • the clarity of instructions to the patient
  • the amount of time spent with patients
  • the provider’s attitude; the provider’s past success
  • the provider’s attitude, and more

The ratings do not assess medical quality, but offer a reflection – scored from “fair” to “excellent” – of patients’ overall experience with the physician. Beginning with Family Medicine doctors, Binary Fountain-powered patient experience data will be added to U.S. News profiles of practitioners in a wide range of specialties in coming months.

About the Author

Kenneth Brooks

Kenneth Brooks serves as Binary Fountain’s senior director of marketing. He brings more than 15 years of high-tech marketing experience, including 7 years in healthcare technology, to the company. In his role, he manages brand awareness and demand generation programs.

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April 05, 2018

The Internet Wants to be in Your Clothes: A Conversation with the Hosts of the Touchpoint Podcast – Part 2

By: Kenneth Brooks

In this post, we continue the conversation with Chris Boyer and Reed Smith, hosts of the Touchpoint Podcast, two people who really understand and know how to articulate today’s challenges and opportunities in healthcare marketing and patient engagement, and really love to talk about it. Joined by Kenneth Brooks, Binary Fountain’s Senior Director of Marketing, they…

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In this post, we continue the conversation with Chris Boyer and Reed Smith, hosts of the Touchpoint Podcast, two people who really understand and know how to articulate today’s challenges and opportunities in healthcare marketing and patient engagement, and really love to talk about it. Joined by Kenneth Brooks, Binary Fountain’s Senior Director of Marketing, they dig into the challenges and trends affecting healthcare marketers. If you haven’t yet, you can read part one to catch up on the the beginning of the conversation.

KB: When I hear “doing more with less” I think usually that means that certain things get cut out. Is there anything you’ve seen going by the wayside, or getting less spending, because what you’re talking about here is what can we do to spend ten percent less, or be more efficient in terms of our keyword buys. Is there more focus on digital and less on the offline stuff? What have you seen?

Chris: Well billboards are going away, for sure – just kidding! I have this perverse thought that I will die by a billboard falling on me – an ironic death! People are still doing traditional things, and I don’t think we’re ever going to remove that from the lexicon of marketing in hospitals, but certainly there’s more focus on how we measure the success of that. At least we’re starting to have that conversation. I was looking today at industry benchmarks which had metrics for all the digital pieces, but when it came to billboards, and radio spots and tv spots, it was mysteriously blank. So I’m not sure what that means – blank is probably accurate for what they can measure from it right now, but what’s weird is that it never fell off the list. Honestly if we would stop doing it that would be awesome. I believe multi-channel is the way to go. What do you think Reed?

Reed: I don’t think we’ll see the traditional marketing avenues go away, and I don’t think they should. But I think we’ve got to be realistic about their role is within the plan. This may be a little simplistic, but the idea of putting a physician on a billboard… that’s probably not overly advantageous but as long as everybody is intellectually honest about why we’re doing it, I’m fine with that, as long as we’re being honest about it. But the problem comes when we’re doing things, around the wrong expectation. We end up expecting more out of a medium than we really can glean or measure. So if you have a new brand, or you’re doing a branding campaign and you want to have billboards in the market, or it’s a hyper-competitive market or something like that, and you feel like brand awareness, top of mind is important and you can make the case for that I think that’s fine. But I think we need to understand why we’re doing things.

Chris: I think a lot of times people are talking digital as the way forward. This really means to prioritize digital as tactics. The other channels need to be there. It’s just more like instead of becoming digital only, we become digital first, because that’s actually going to get you a lot closer to where the conversion occurs. It’s going to get you a lot closer to understanding how people are consuming your various touch points.  But I like the way you said it Reed, it’s fine as long as we’re being honest about what traditional can actually do. Actually someone asked me about a billboard today, and that’s how I’m going to come back to him. So, I like that Reed, thanks!

Reed: So what else? Mobile first – that just means a responsive web site, right?

Chris: We need an app!

Reed: Right, we need an app!

responsive designChris: Really, it’s more than just an app. Mobile is misunderstood, but it’s important. People do think mobile first is, like what Reed said, that responsive web site or an app. It’s simply realizing that the Internet is spreading off of the computer, into multiple devices. The one in your pocket is one, the one on your night stand, the tablet that you’re using, but it also is now getting into your watch, your little Alexa device. The Internet of Things, that’s what mobile is. It’s getting into your clothes!

Reed: That’s the headline!

KB: We’re seeing how things are being questioned, in terms of how everything is being invested in terms of marketing efforts, billboards are always in question, just being honest about it. What are you seeing? If there are a few more dollars being put into a certain initiative or channel, what do you see that money going to right now?

Reed: What should it go to, or what is it going to?

KB: You guys can riff on that both ways . . .

Reed: Hospitals are never going to be the first ones to market around something new and cutting edge, because what’s the upside? They’re going to let some of the organizations even some of the other verticals run out in front and see what works and doesn’t work. We’re still seeing things that may be considered a little old hat, where there’s a little less noise, that work pretty well. Internet radio for example – Pandora, iHeart Radio, things like that where people are able to advertise. I would say hospitals are just now starting to look at Instagram and maybe things like SnapChat, asking “How should we be using this,” where they were just a place to park some photographs. Where I think they’ll start going, and Chris I’ll let you chime in on this, is probably the voice first components that we’ve seen Mayo and others do.

Chris: Absolutely, I think you’re right, Reed. It’s really about the Internet of Things, voice first, Alexa, Google, those kind of things. It’s designed to make it more easy to access, so we’re seeing a lot of organizations that are adopting that technology into their work streams. It could be for marketing. For example one hospital has enabled not only being able to find out where your nearest urgent care center is by asking their Alexa device, but then because they

smart watch

have Uber connected to it, they can order an Uber to take them to that urgent care center just by asking their device. That’s kind of a cool technology that marries the experience together. That’s not only happening with voice first; I see a lot of organizations are using Fitbits and Apple watches, and connecting that data into the patient record. That’s happening  more frequently. What you’re doing is basically taking Internet connected devices, to make the experience more seamless and easy. I think that’s where we’re seeing a lot of cool investments and experimentation in, and we’re seeing a lot of outside companies come in.  Reed I’m surprised we haven’t talked about artificial intelligence or anything like that.

Reed: Yes, AI, chatbots, even the VR and AR stuff is starting to kind of bleed in there.  But predominately, that’s probably the next wave, when you’re looking at things like voice first is hospitals’ investment in both AI and chatbots.

Chris: Another thing I see having worked with hospitals for the last couple of years, they are starting to dedicate moneys to infrastructure to measure more effectively. Whatever that is, CRM, marketing automation, whatever it may be on the back end, there’s a strong desire. They may not know where to spend that now, because the solutions are a little sub-par right now for hospitals and health systems, but they’re still really looking at how they can do that better, and they’re starting to invest time, people and resources and also technology to make that back end measurement more effective.

Reed: I think that’s one thing that we shouldn’t gloss over is the investment in people. So, what we’re really looking at from an analytics and measurement standpoint is not just the technology but the human power side of the equation, of making sure we have people in there with the right skill sets, that can actually manage and take advantage of the technologies we’re investing in.

About the Author

Kenneth Brooks

Kenneth Brooks serves as Binary Fountain’s senior director of marketing. He brings more than 15 years of high-tech marketing experience, including 7 years in healthcare technology, to the company. In his role, he manages brand awareness and demand generation programs.

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March 29, 2018

The Internet Wants to be in Your Clothes: A Conversation with the Hosts of the Touchpoint Podcast – Part 1

By: Kenneth Brooks

We had a lively conversation with two people who really understand and know how to articulate today’s challenges and opportunities in healthcare marketing and patient engagement, and really love to talk about it. Chris Boyer and Reed Smith, hosts of the Touchpoint Podcast, joined Kenneth Brooks, Binary Fountain’s Senior Director of Marketing, for a conversation…

Read Full Story

We had a lively conversation with two people who really understand and know how to articulate today’s challenges and opportunities in healthcare marketing and patient engagement, and really love to talk about it. Chris Boyer and Reed Smith, hosts of the Touchpoint Podcast, joined Kenneth Brooks, Binary Fountain’s Senior Director of Marketing, for a conversation on the challenges and trends affecting healthcare marketers. Binary Fountain is proud to sponsor this podcast – read on to learn why.

KB: What are the top trends and concerns you hear these days from healthcare marketers?

Reed: Do more with less – people’s budgets not going up year over year. They’re steady if they’re lucky  – if they’re not rolling backwards, so they must make the best use of dollars and staff time.

Chris: Reed is right – budgets are flattened or have gone down. How do we approach that? How do we do more? It’s really important to measure the effectiveness of current spending on advertising and on marketing. Which channels work properly. Are we investing in the right keywords. How do we throttle down expense without sacrificing results? These are good questions that should be asked, so it’s more important now than ever.

new mindset new results

Reed: It’s a pretty broad area, to do more with less.

Chris: At my new job at Fairview, we’ve been discussing this. How do you and your team work, and how can you be more efficient. Lean practices – fewer, more productive meetings, looking at ways to prioritize work with a static staff. It’s a discipline that’s challenging for hospitals to do, to function in cross-functional cooperation. My company has daily huddles for choosing what issues to escalate. This can go through teams all the way to the CEO. This breaks down roadblocks and delivers real results.

Reed: Multi-disciplinary teams are common in the clinical environment, but new to marketing and communication. IT&S is an easy one, where you can see some blurring of the line between marketing and quality as more organizations work through the Baldrige process. As Chris mentioned, looking for efficiencies. And reputation management, thematically what is happening online – how your brand is talked about, and what people are needing and wanting online – kind of flows into the quality side of the equation as well, much like grievances would in the hospital environment, or somebody mailing a letter. Digital is becoming a way that consumers expect to interface with your organization. Through that, Marketing communication seems to own that equation a little bit so they’re becoming part of conversations that they have not been historically.

Chris: What we’re really saying here, is that hospitals, which are traditionally seen as kind of these big, siloed organizations, they’re really trying to break that mold down and become more agile, become more effective – to break down those silos. That is a huge trend that’s happening. It’s not really being seen from the outside in, but it’s going on and will probably continue throughout this year and into future years.

Reed: Along those lines, that’s why you’re starting to see things like chief experience officer or someone who’s over that patient experience because they need someone to wrangle this whole scenario. You’re used to seeing something like that in organizations like the Cleveland Clinic, but now you’re starting to see this – I’ve seen it here in Texas in what I’d consider a rural hospital having a chief experience officer. It’s something you would not have seen earlier. They’re very in line and integrated with patient access as well as marketing, as well as quality and IT&S. That’s interesting.

Chris: I want to underscore something about that piece, which Reed alluded to earlier. Digital has caused an acceleration to the end of silos. It has blurred the lines between departments almost before people are ready to have them blurred. Reed and I were talking to hospitals five, six years ago, about the fact that the experience of people going through our web site intersects with the Patient Portal and things like that.  Digital has kind of blurred those lines for us, right? But now people are really operationalizing that. Without sounding like we’re patting ourselves on the back, digital has driven that, and that’s a good thing for organizations.

KB: One thing I’ve noticed that goes with your point about digital breaking down silos, is the connection now between marketing and patient experience departments.  Patients’ experiences are now captured online – it’s no longer just CAHPs surveys. Now, patient experience professionals and marketing people who never really talked, are now being introduced for the first time. And to your point Reed, what you said before about marketing and the IT department working more closely together:  So there’s the convergence that digital is causing. Do you think this is causing some of the push to do more with less?

Reed: That’s a fair point. A lot of the do more with less push is driven by uncertainty in healthcare right now, specifically around reimbursements. What revenue’s going to look like moving forward. So organizations are not as willing to make those big investments from a technology or manpower standpoint, in what has historically been considered a cost center. That’s the hard part. I think digital is a double-edged sword – there’s that many more things we can do, but there’s also now the responsibility because we can do it, to tie that back to the financial metrics.

Chris: It is a double-edged sword. Because it gives you the insight into the measurement of that, but it draws you into that uncomfortable conversation – are we measuring effectively, are we gaining the right insights from these digital tools? People don’t like it, using digital as a way to save costs, but it can also highlight areas where maybe things aren’t working as effectively. Traditionally in healthcare, hospitals are not very good at reporting out bad news. Sometimes your measurement strategies tied to some of these digital things, come back with “Oh, this isn’t working so well.” And then, what do you do?

analytics

Reed: It’s kind of that old adage “Don’t ask the question if you’re not going to like the answer.” It’s kind of like we may have patted prematurely ourselves on the back on some of our big ideas and campaigns or other initiatives. Now we’ve got the opportunity to see, is that really the case?

Chris: Now you’ll have to become more sophisticated with measurement and analytics. We were just talking about this in the Touchpoint podcast.  Are you measuring things in a way that will actually give you the insights you really need so that you can move forward and optimize. It presents a whole new set of challenges which honestly as an industry we should be talking this way, but for many healthcare marketers it’s a little bit challenging.

Reed: I think the reason it’s challenging is because the people that run hospitals where that be administratively, or in the marketing and communications world,  have always run hospitals. So you don’t very often hear “Where’d your new CEO come from?” “Oh, He came from Samsung.” That doesn’t happen. So that’s why when we’re making these dramatic shifts, around like say measurement, those are skill sets that folks just have, and historically have not have had to foster.

About the Author

Kenneth Brooks

Kenneth Brooks serves as Binary Fountain’s senior director of marketing. He brings more than 15 years of high-tech marketing experience, including 7 years in healthcare technology, to the company. In his role, he manages brand awareness and demand generation programs.

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March 12, 2018

Webinar Report – Creating a Hospitality-Influenced Reputation Management Strategy in Healthcare

By: John McFeely

On February 21, we attended a very detailed and useful webinar hosted by Greystone.net, which featured two leaders from Florida Orthopaedic Institute’s marketing team, along with Binary Fountain’s own Senior Vice President of Marketing, Aaron Clifford. Healthcare consumer trends and reputation management During Aaron’s introduction, he offered supporting data points on why online consumerism is…

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On February 21, we attended a very detailed and useful webinar hosted by Greystone.net, which featured two leaders from Florida Orthopaedic Institute’s marketing team, along with Binary Fountain’s own Senior Vice President of Marketing, Aaron Clifford.

Healthcare consumer trends and reputation management

During Aaron’s introduction, he offered supporting data points on why online consumerism is making managing online reputation a must:

  • According to a McKinsey study, consumers want the same qualities in healthcare companies that they value in other companies
  • 77% of people search online before making an appointment with a healthcare provider
  • 85% of respondents will trust an online review as much as a personal recommendation, according to a 2017 BrightLocal consumer survey

Reinforcing that top health organizations recognize the impact of reputation on revenue, Aaron cited surveys showing that a difference of one star in business ratings can impact revenue by 5 to 9% (Yelp, 2011), and that higher percentages of positive reviews can increase average monthly patient volume by 13 to 17% (HCA Physician Group, 2015).

Creating a hospitality-influenced reputation management program

Next we heard from two marketers who implemented a highly responsive and very successful reputation management strategy for Florida Orthopaedic Institute.  Donna Bossuyt is their Director of Marketing & Customer Service, and Kim Mott serves as Marketing & Customer Service Manager. Florida Orthpaedics Institute has 10 locations across the Tampa Bay region, employing 43 providers and 600 professional staff members. Annual patient visits are nearly 200,000, and in 2017 the Institute recorded more than 54,000 new patients and over 20,000 surgeries.

Five star rating customer service

Donna and Kim described how they built a reputation management program that took important cues from the hospitality industry. Drawing in part on her experience in hospitality with Starwood Hotel and Resorts, Donna created a program that takes customer service to a higher level by delivering consistent, exceptional service at every patient touchpoint. Emphasizing “WOW factors” in training and in practice, they’re helping Florida Orthopaedic Institute move from a physician-centric culture to a patient-centric one.

They made their case to the company from board to physicians to staff, that customer service and reputation management play a measurable role in attracting new patients, and building revenue based on satisfaction ratings. These are the four objectives of their plan:

 

  • Increase positive reviews
  • Deliver high-touch service recovery
  • Improve service based on patient insights
  • Bring awareness of feedback to Institute leadership

The challenges they described in implementing the plan will be familiar to most people working in customer care:

  • Inefficient processes
  • Paper surveys – difficult to collect insights
  • Online reviews – managed manually, it’s like herding cats
  • No organized response procedures
  • Small reputation management team

Needing a central point for managing online reviews and patient surveys, an efficient workflow for responding to reviews, and a way to create and share reports with physicians and staff, they chose Binary Health Analytics.

Binary Fountain’s solution helped them capture and analyze patient feedback, uncover actionable insights, engage patients and increase the volume of positive reviews and comments, and report to staff, physicians and C-suite executives.

online feedbackThis helped Donna and Kim place a high priority on responding to patient concerns with a high-touch approach. They were able to dynamically assign the correct staff for follow-up on negative comments and ratings from surveys, setting a target of responding within 24 hours of a negative review alert. Online review follow-up was facilitated by Kim, who would work with the appropriate staff to deliver service recovery.

Donna and Kim described the initial concerns of their physicians, who are perfectionists and data-driven. They were anxious about negative reviews and reacted with a “take this down” response. Using Binary Fountain to analyze data and generate reports, they educated the physicians on their patients’ feedback and helped motivate them to embrace their role in improving their online reputation.

Similarly, they encouraged staff engagement by sharing positive comments, and using patient insight reporting to spot areas in need of additional training and coaching.

Finally, Kim and Donna reviewed data on how the program improved scores on surveys and ratings sites and how they documented their outcomes for C-Suite executives, and described lessons learned in the process. They offered advice on communicating and gaining buy-in to the culture-changes on the way to effective reputation management, and offered their insight on improvements to come.

A lively question and answer section followed, addressing more than 15 questions from webinar attendees.

If you’d like to listen to the webinar recording, click here.

About the Author

John McFeely
Sales Director

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February 20, 2018

Physician Practices Making a Difference in Patient Experience and Patient Loyalty

By: Brian Williams

Lately, two articles in trade publications have featured Binary Fountain customers who have achieved notable gains in patient experience and patient loyalty. We’re always proud to celebrate success, so here’s more on our partners in the news, KureSmart Pain Management and Florida Orthopaedic Institute: KureSmart Pain Management improves physician and patient loyalty ratings Healthcare IT…

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Lately, two articles in trade publications have featured Binary Fountain customers who have achieved notable gains in patient experience and patient loyalty. We’re always proud to celebrate success, so here’s more on our partners in the news, KureSmart Pain Management and Florida Orthopaedic Institute:

doctors office waiting areaKureSmart Pain Management improves physician and patient loyalty ratings

Healthcare IT News talked with Nick LaRosa, Director of Sales and Marketing for KureSmart Pain Management. The interview showed how the Mid-Atlantic’s leading pain management practice uses Binary Fountain to help manage patient experience and gain actionable insight into its online reputation.

Binary Fountain’s platform gives KureSmart the tools to benchmark performance across a range of patient experience categories, and saves time by aggregating all feedback into a single view, said LaRosa. “We could even drill down into the data to get to the heart of a patient’s concern – or compliment.”

After sharing patient feedback with physicians, KureSmart’s overall patient experience score increased by 68 percent and patient loyalty increased by 52 percent.

Nick LaRosa reported that ratings on bedside manner rose by 150 percent. “We also saw an increase in the number of positive online reviews by 52 percent. Between 2016 and 2017, KureSmart saw a 4 percent increase in utilization rate and achieved a 29 percent growth rate that nearly doubled our number of new patients,” he said.

For more on KureSmart Pain Management and the ways we work together to improve customer response and reputation management, see Sabrina Egan’s blog post. Also, have a look at this case study to learn how KureSmart uses digital patient surveys to improve online reviews and scores.

Florida Orthopaedic Institute manages online provider reviews to improve patient retention

Patient Engagement Hit published an article on Florida Orthopaedic Institute, and how they work with Binary Fountain to manage online provider reviews, address patient satisfaction issues and support patient retention efforts.

Marketing and Customer Service Director Donna Bossuyt and Kim Mott, Marketing and Customer Service Manager, use Binary Fountain tools to track online provider reviews and compare them with hard data from satisfaction and experience surveys collected at its 10 locations in the Tampa region. Patients are very comfortable with posting reviews online, says Kim Mott. “It’s a place for them to really state their opinion on how they really feel.”

Doctors, however, sometimes regard negative reviews as exaggerated. Kim says attitudes changed when her team demonstrated that in-house surveys and online rating sites reveal exactly the same concerns with communication and physician wait times. Today, using Binary Fountain alerts, Florida Orthopaedics responds to negative online reviews within 24 hours. Sometimes, physicians reach out by phone to further explain a treatment plan or diagnosis. In the story, Kim Mott says that by responding right away, “We’ve seen patients completely remove reviews or leave a comment on the review, saying, ‘Oh, they got to me right away and handled the issue,’ or change their star rating.”

You can learn more from Kim Mott and Donna Bossuyt when they join us for a webinar entitled “Creating a Hospitality-Influenced Reputation Management Strategy in Healthcare,” learn more and reserve your place here.

About the Author

Brian Williams
Engagement Manager

Brian helps healthcare organizations better understand their healthcare consumer challenges and needs, in order to efficiently manage and improve patient satisfaction.

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