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June 04, 2020

[Webinar Recap] COVID-19 Reopening: How Your Healthcare Brand Can Emerge Stronger from the Crisis

By: Kieran McQuilkin

The digital marketing landscape is evolving every day for healthcare professionals in the wake of COVID-19. How can marketers respond to changing consumer behavior and maintain their brand reputation in the long term as reopening begins? In this webinar, Stewart Gandolf, CEO of integrated marketing firm Healthcare Success, joined Binary Fountain’s Aaron Clifford to discuss ways…

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webinar-covid19-reopeningThe digital marketing landscape is evolving every day for healthcare professionals in the wake of COVID-19. How can marketers respond to changing consumer behavior and maintain their brand reputation in the long term as reopening begins?

In this webinar, Stewart Gandolf, CEO of integrated marketing firm Healthcare Success, joined Binary Fountain’s Aaron Clifford to discuss ways for healthcare marketers to position their organization for success as we start to emerge from the crisis.

They covered trends and data behind the shifting patient journey, content marketing strategies, best practices for promoting telemedicine, ways to improve employer brand, and more.

Click here to watch the on-demand webinar. 

Here are the key takeaways:

Adjusting Creative Strategy for the Current Situation

As it stands, 68% of Americans now expect the COVID-19 pandemic to last six more months or longer before full-scale reopening, and 56% are scared of contracting the coronavirus.

This collective fear and grief will take a heavy toll on consumers, but how people move through the cycle of grief can look very different. Luckily, the vast majority of people are in the dialogue and bargaining stage, and they are talking, reaching out, learning and responding. Healthcare marketers need to support them and help them make their way to acceptance.

It may be time to rethink your personas, as the previous ones may now be irrelevant, and make appropriate changes to your messaging to ensure it resonates with our new normal. Appropriate strategies will vary by location and provider type, but Gandolf suggests that your guiding principles include values, authenticity, transparency and safety.

More than 60% of Americans plan to wait 1-6 months to return to routine healthcare after restrictions are lifted, according to Alpha Health, but a McKinsey study shows that 50% might reschedule earlier if their doctor’s office called them about it. Offices should consider calling patients about rescheduling and explaining the safety measures you have in place, and reinforce that messaging everywhere: your website, social media, directories and advertising.

Marketing departments should consider applying triage principles to outreach: Target high-risk patients first. Use this opportunity to raise awareness of emergency health problems like strokes and heart attacks, then consider high-need consumers (e.g. obesity, diabetes, seniors).

Promoting Telemedicine and Capturing Patient Feedback

Telemedicine can be a bridge that allows patients to confidently and safely reengage with providers during reopening in the wake of COVID-19. Later, you can experiment with positioning it as a low-risk offer to encourage elective services or other care.

Beyond the link on your website, marketers should continuously educate patients and consumers through email, directory listings, social media and online display. Keep in mind that about half of consumers are concerned about receiving low-quality care from a telemedicine appointment, and other top consumer concerns surrounding virtual visits include data security, privacy and needing an in-person clinic anyway.

There’s opportunity for your listings management initiatives to drive the adoption of telemedicine. Both CareDash and Healthgrades have telehealth indicators that you can add to profiles. If you haven’t already, healthcare brands should add “Covid-19 Info Link” and “Virtual Care” attributes to their GMB profiles.

The online nature of telemedicine also gives you increased access to contact information you can leverage. Use it to drive testimonials – both surveys and reviews – and for insight into the virtual patient experience. Add telemedicine-specific questions to surveys and benchmark against in-office patient experience.

Protecting Employer Brand While Reopening

More than one-third of healthcare marketers surveyed by Binary Fountain had team members laid off or at risk of layoffs due to COVID-19, 41% had team members reallocated, and less than one-quarter indicated that nothing had changed. How healthcare organizations manage internal communications during this uncertain time will have a lasting effect on your company’s culture, your reputation and your ability to attract, recruit and retain talent.

A recent study from LinkedIn shows that Coronavirus-related posts are still getting more engagement than other posts — especially those focusing on how companies are helping. Perhaps because people are looking for resources and ways to cope, engagement with company posts about coronavirus is significantly higher than the engagement for an average company post.

The posts with the highest engagement used words about health, helping and support. Messages promoting public health also had high engagement, like references to social distancing, health authorities and healthcare workers. To keep your employer brand strong in this difficult situation for the industry, monitor those trends and shape your marketing communications to match the spirit of the times.

For more insights and advice, click here to watch the on-demand webinar. 

 

Read more about COVID-19’s impact on healthcare marketing and patient experience on our COVID-19 Resources page and in these articles:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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June 02, 2020

Google’s New ‘Page Experience’ Ranking Signal, Explained

By: Kieran McQuilkin

When it comes to web browsing, it’s no secret that users prefer sites with a fast, intuitive page experience. Recognizing the growing value of user experience, Google has announced an upcoming search ranking change that incorporates page experience metrics like load time and interactivity. The new page experience ranking signals are planned to deploy in 2021 and will add to recently updated user experience criteria for Google Search, such as mobile…

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google-page-experienceWhen it comes to web browsing, it’s no secret that users prefer sites with a fast, intuitive page experience.

Recognizing the growing value of user experience, Google has announced an upcoming search ranking change that incorporates page experience metrics like load time and interactivity.

The new page experience ranking signals are planned to deploy in 2021 and will add to recently updated user experience criteria for Google Search, such as mobile friendliness. The signals will combine Google’s existing signals for page experience with its newly updated Core Web Vitals, a set of metrics related to speed, responsiveness and visual stability.

In this article, we will break down the upcoming change to Google Search and how page experience metrics might affect your search rankings.

How Does Google Measure Page Experience?

The page experience signal will measure “aspects of how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page,” according to Google. It hopes that businesses will optimize for these factors in an effort to improve web experiences across all browsers and devices, as well as to help sites evolve toward user expectations on mobile.

Core Web Vitals were introduced in April to incorporate user-centered metrics into Google Search that quantify aspects of web usability, such as load time, interactivity and the stability of content as it loads. Those measurements will be combined with the search engine’s existing Search signals for page experience, including mobile-friendliness, safe-browsing, HTTPS security and intrusive interstitial guidelines, to provide a more complete picture of webpage experience.

As it continues to map out key metrics of page experience, Google plans to incorporate more page experience signals annually to align with user expectations and improve the online user experience.

How Page Experience Affects Google Ranking

By adding page experience to its hundreds of search ranking signals, Google aims to “help people more easily access the information and web pages they’re looking for, and support site owners in providing an experience users enjoy.”

The new addition won’t completely change your rankings. Google still plans to prioritize pages with the best information overall, even if some of its page experience metrics are substandard. However, when multiple pages have similar content, page experience will become a much more important factor for ranking high on a SERP for a particular keyword.

google-search-page-experience-explainer
Image credit: Google

To help businesses and their webmasters plan and optimize for the update, Google updated developer tools including Lighthouse and PageSpeed Insights to display Core Web Vitals information and recommendations. Google Search Console also provides a dedicated report for identifying improvement opportunities for site owners.

Mobile Top Stories Update

The mobile Top Stories feature in Google Search currently emphasizes AMP results, which are optimized for a fast, simple page experience. But that will change as the page experience update rolls out.

As part of the update, page experience metrics will factor into ranking criteria for the Top Stories feature on mobile. Meanwhile, Google will remove the AMP requirement for Top Stories eligibility, so it will be open to any page.

 All pages still must meet the Google News content policies to be eligible. And site owners who already publish pages as AMP will see no change in behavior, according to the search engine.

Looking Forward

The page experience ranking changes will not happen before next year, Google says, and it will provide at least six months’ notice before they roll out. There is no need for immediate action, but the company is beginning to provide tools to stay ahead of the update.

As user experiences improve on the web, so will user engagement. Businesses that anticipate these updates to search and optimize for fast, easy web browsing will be the first to capture its benefits.

For more details and to monitor for updates, you can read Google’s announcement here and share these updated developer tools with your web manager.

Check out these other resources related to GMB and online listings:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 27, 2020

Google Adds Health Insurance Information Links to Business Profiles

By: Kieran McQuilkin

A new and vitally important feature is rolling out for healthcare providers’ Google listings: insurance availability. Google My Business updated its page for healthcare providers with a section called “Manage insurance info for your practice,” offering information about displaying insurance options on business profiles. The search engine says business profiles will display health insurance information for merchants whose insurance availability is provided to Google through a third-party database….

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health-insurance-google-searchA new and vitally important feature is rolling out for healthcare providers’ Google listings: insurance availability.

Google My Business updated its page for healthcare providers with a section called “Manage insurance info for your practice,” offering information about displaying insurance options on business profiles.

The search engine says business profiles will display health insurance information for merchants whose insurance availability is provided to Google through a third-party database.

Insurance information is available for “select merchants in the U.S. only,” according to Google, meaning the feature is still rolling out and is not immediately available for all healthcare providers or countries.

Displaying Health Insurance Information in Google Search

For eligible healthcare organizations, a “Check insurance info” link might display on your Business Profile on Google Search, under your business’s hours. The link opens an “Insurance information” page that lists the health insurance providers your business accepts.

Google will automatically include this link if it identifies insurance availability through its third-party provider. There is currently no indication that healthcare organizations can manually add insurance providers to their listings, if not all of them are listed.

There are, however, instructions on how to remove insurance information from GMB profiles.

Removing Insurance Providers from Google Business Profiles

To remove these details, send the Google Health team feedback. It may take up to three business days for the team to take action. You can include a screenshot in your feedback.

ebook-covid19-survey-healthcare-marketingOn mobile:

  • Use Google Search to go to your Business Profile.
  • Under your business’s hours, tap “Check insurance info.”
  • At the bottom, tap “Send feedback.”
  • Type your feedback into the form.
  • Tap “Send.”

On desktop:

  • Use Google Search to go to your Business Profile.
  • Under your business’s hours, click “Check insurance info.”
  • At the bottom of the popup window, click “Send feedback.”
  • Type your feedback into the form.
  • Click “Send.”

Healthcare organizations aren’t currently able to opt in or out of this new Google Search feature, so we recommend monitoring listings for all your locations to ensure the insurance provider list – if displayed – is accurate.

Though additional details on the rollout are pending, what’s clear is that the question of, “will you accept my health insurance?” is increasingly important to the patient journey. Google and its users have indicated that insurance availability is valuable to them in the search for care, so healthcare organizations that supply this information can help prospective patients make a quicker decision and win their business.

For more on Google My Business and healthcare listings management, you can visit our COVID-19 Resources Page and browse these resources:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 22, 2020

[Infographic] How the Rise of Telemedicine Will Impact Patient Experience

By: Kieran McQuilkin

The adoption of telemedicine has shifted into hyper-drive over the past few months, with virtual healthcare interactions on pace to top 1 billion by year’s end. Yet, in 2019, only 17% of consumers were aware that their health system or insurance provider offered telemedicine as an alternative to in-person care. To build online visibility for these…

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telemedicine-patient-experience-infographic
Click to view full infographic.

The adoption of telemedicine has shifted into hyper-drive over the past few months, with virtual healthcare interactions on pace to top 1 billion by year’s end. Yet, in 2019, only 17% of consumers were aware that their health system or insurance provider offered telemedicine as an alternative to in-person care.

To build online visibility for these services and improve the quality of virtual care, providers need to understand the impact of telemedicine on patient experience.

In our latest infographic, we’re sharing data on telemedicine surveys and reviews that can shape your marketing and patient experience strategies as the technology becomes ubiquitous.

The surge in telehealth popularity is clear. Teladoc Health says its video appointments surged 50% in a single week in March, and Kaiser Permanente similarly used telemedicine to reduce in-person visits to specialty physicians by 40% in one week.

Consumer comfortability with telemedicine is high as well, and they frequently seek it out as a care option. Four out of five consumers are more likely to select a medical provider who offers telemedicine services over one who does not.

Care quality is the top consumer concern about telemedicine, followed by data security and privacy, but studies show promise in the quality of virtual visits. Massachusetts General Hospital research showed that, when comparing virtual video visits and office visits, most patients and clinicians reported no difference in the overall quality of the visit. Not to mention, nearly 95% of reviews in the study indicated positive emotions.

So, how will the rise of telemedicine impact patient experience at your organization?

View Infographic

 

For more about telemedicine’s impact on reputation management and patient experience, you can visit our COVID-19 Resources Page and browse these resources:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 21, 2020

[Webinar Recap] How a Multi-Specialty Physician Group Leverages Patient Feedback

By: Kieran McQuilkin

As the healthcare consumer journey continues to change, prioritizing patient experience enhancements requires monitoring real-time feedback data across all your services – physical or virtual. In our latest webinar, we brought together Joan Cox, national senior director of patient experience at Steward Medical Group, and Andrew Rainey, Binary Fountain’s executive vice president of strategy and corporate development, to discuss ways to use…

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webinar-steward-patient-feedbackAs the healthcare consumer journey continues to change, prioritizing patient experience enhancements requires monitoring real-time feedback data across all your services – physical or virtual.

In our latest webinar, we brought together Joan Cox, national senior director of patient experience at Steward Medical Group, and Andrew Rainey, Binary Fountain’s executive vice president of strategy and corporate development, to discuss ways to use patient feedback to prioritize patient experience improvements at scale.

We covered how the national physician group uses survey and review data to benchmark provider performance, gain physician adoption for its telemedicine programs, and improve care outcomes.

Click here to watch the on-demand webinar.

Here are the key takeaways:

Leveraging Patient Feedback Data from Surveys and Reviews

To implement process improvement programs at scale, Steward collects and monitors patient feedback daily and distributes reports weekly.

The weekly patient experience reports include the following metrics: Provider Feedback Score (PFS) ratings, the number of completed surveys, and Net Promoter Score (NPS) benchmarking. The organization weighs the feedback differently depending on whether the source is an online review or patient survey. They focus on overall trends across those metrics, as opposed to an individual week’s or month’s rankings.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, review responses and patient communication have become crucial elements of patient experience at Steward. Cox recommends asking for feedback only when you have the time to respond and engage with the patient. This will give you the ability to repair any damage that’s been done by a patient’s negative experience.

To engage your employees, Steward highlights positive patient feedback in a monthly newsletter and hosts the feedback on an employee engagement SharePoint page.

“Positive comments are the backbone of employee engagement, and negative comments are the focus for patient engagement,” Cox says.

Benchmarking and Gaining Provider Buy-In

Internally, Steward is using patient feedback to benchmark practices and gain provider buy-in for initiatives like their telemedicine programs. Starting with survey and review data, the organization benchmarks patient experience ratings at both the provider and practice levels, which helps to identify where to focus on improvements across their locations.

Steward focuses mostly on practices that have significant survey volume, so there is a complete picture of its performance. The patient experience priorities are centered around its major areas of concern, as well – feedback about providers or employee engagement will receive more attention than feedback about facilities.

Positive patient feedback has helped support provider adoption for Steward’s telemedicine program, which is not mandatory for their physicians. Cox uses positive comments from Binary Fountain’s platform to share around the organization, nudging hesitant physicians toward using the technology.

Reporting Patient Experience Successes

Connecting patient experience directly to business objectives is never easy, but internal benchmarking based on patient feedback is helping Steward improve across several performance categories. Success is celebrated more than negative trends in reports, Cox says, but Steward “doesn’t shy away from showing who’s at top and bottom.”

One notable success was how Steward used feedback data from before and after piloting a primary care call center to show its impact on patient experience, leading to the approval and budget to expand it nationally. Its “practice champion” initiative also gained approval using survey metrics as a foundation – growing from 10 to 275 participants in less than three years.

Another major piece of validation for the organization was comparing PFS from before and after implementing patient experience measurements based on feedback data. Steward has reported a year-over-year improvement in risk contracting and in its patient engagement, which now is measured right alongside organization-wide revenue numbers.

For more insights and advice, click here to watch the on-demand webinar. 

Read more about customer feedback data and patient experience:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 19, 2020

The Impact of Telemedicine on Patient Experience

By: Kieran McQuilkin

As telemedicine takes center stage in the wake of COVID-19, healthcare organizations need to understand and adjust to its impact on patient experience. New questions about the technology’s effects on patient satisfaction are arising as both patients and providers adjust to a new normal, including one key inquiry: How will the rise of telehealth visits impact patient experience for healthcare consumers and caregivers? In short, on-demand, virtual care is a powerful tool for those…

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telemedicine-patient-experienceAs telemedicine takes center stage in the wake of COVID-19, healthcare organizations need to understand and adjust to its impact on patient experience.

New questions about the technology’s effects on patient satisfaction are arising as both patients and providers adjust to a new normal, including one key inquiry:

How will the rise of telehealth visits impact patient experience for healthcare consumers and caregivers?

In short, on-demand, virtual care is a powerful tool for those in charge of improving patient satisfaction. Consumers across specialties are rating telemedicine as equal to or better than in-person consultations.

In this article, you will learn which top factors are influencing the perception of telemedicine, the main patient care experience benefits derived from virtual services, and the impact of telemedicine on care quality.

Convenience and Time Savings from Telemedicine

Convenience, time savings, access to care and financial savings are the most frequently cited reasons for patients’ preference for telemedicine. Highlighting those benefits, and easing concerns about facetime and technological issues, are key to improving patient experience for virtual visits.

Telemedicine allows patients to bypass travel and waiting room experiences — major sources of negative feedback – giving their interactions with providers a higher baseline level of satisfaction. That benefit of convenience is reflected in several studies of telehealth.

2019 study of the telemedicine impact on patient experience found improvements in all the domains recommended by the National Quality Forum: access (time spent in evaluation), experience (patient satisfaction) and effectiveness (case cancellation rate). The telemedicine group spent less time in pre-admission testing (PAT) by an average of 24 minutes and had no cancellations, while several of the in-person visits were cancelled.

Telemedicine shines when it comes to follow-up consultations. In a study by Massachusetts General Hospital, clinicians said telehealth was instrumental in offering convenient and timely follow-up visits. Seventy percent said the technology helped them see patients in a timely manner and 50% said telehealth was efficient.

Due to convenience and time savings, the consumer appreciation for virtual visits is also reflected in a telemedicine study of radiation oncology patients. Most patients preferred virtual visits for future consultations, about one-third desired a mix of telemedicine and in-person visits, and only one patient preferred in-person visits only.

Access to Virtual Care and Financial Savings

Payers and providers are starting to realize how much telemedicine can help control costs, as well.

The lack of access to care negatively affects patient engagement and follow-through, according to research from telehealth provider Teladoc. In many cases, prompt and accessible health services help avoid the need for more complex and expensive treatment.

Patients seeking treatment via telemedicine encounter fewer barriers to prompt care delivery, which in turn leads to better outcomes and higher patient satisfaction.

In the Massachusetts General Hospital study, 79% of patients said it was easier to schedule an appointment for a virtual follow-up visit than for a clinic visit, and 66% said they had strong personal connections to their telemedicine provider. Patients perceived significant added convenience, saved travel time, and expressed willingness to pay co-payments for this visit option.

Particularly in rural areas, the time saved commuting to care centers is highly valuable. According to a Harvard Medical School study, patients spend an average of $43 in lost time for a typical doctor’s appointment – a cost they will appreciate being alleviated by virtual services.

How Telemedicine Impacts Quality of Care

According to Texas State University research, the factors listed most often connecting telehealth to patient satisfaction were improved outcomes (20%), preferred modality (10%), ease of use (9%), low cost (8%), improved communication (8%), and decreased travel time (7%).

And those factors are so far receiving high marks: 95% of patients report being satisfied with their telehealth experience, according to eVisit. A 2019 study concerning PAT echoes that statistic, finding that using telemedicine for PAT had benefits in terms of access, patient experience and effectiveness for both patients and providers.

webinar-covid-19-telemedicineWhen comparing virtual visits and office visits, MGH found that many patients and clinicians reported no difference in “the overall quality of the visit.” It additionally found that:

  • 62% said the quality of care via telehealth was the same as an in-person visit
  • 21% said the quality of care via telehealth was better than an in-person visit
  •  68% rated their visit a nine or a 10 on a 10-point satisfaction scale

Note that when a patient rated lower than a nine, according to the study, it was usually due to a technical difficulty that MGH said was resolved before the visit was completed.

These are just small samplings of the many types of care primed to take advantage of telemedicine services, like pregnancy, rehabilitation and chronic conditions. With so many care factors benefiting from the technology, your healthcare organization can confidently prepare to use virtual services to boost patient experience for the long term.

For more on how to market telemedicine, browse these related posts:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 15, 2020

Tracking Coronavirus Search Trends on Google – May 2020

By: Kieran McQuilkin

Amid dramatic changes in consumer behavior brought on by COVID-19, healthcare marketers are diving into Google searches to understand their wants and needs. People are spending more time at home than ever, so search trends give us a genuine picture of the thoughts, problems, questions and fears that enterprise businesses must address in their listings and communications. In this article, we break down current data and trends from Google to understand what types of information healthcare…

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coronavirus-search-trendsAmid dramatic changes in consumer behavior brought on by COVID-19, healthcare marketers are diving into Google searches to understand their wants and needs.

People are spending more time at home than ever, so search trends give us a genuine picture of the thoughts, problems, questions and fears that enterprise businesses must address in their listings and communications.

In this article, we break down current data and trends from Google to understand what types of information healthcare consumers are looking for. Here are coronavirus search trends that marketing teams should monitor.

Overall Google Trends for Coronavirus

 COVID-19 has consistently dominated search queries in the past few months, as most types of Google searches steeply decreased before beginning to recover in May.

According to Binary Fountain client data, total searches for healthcare organizations dipped more than 60% in March before climbing back up, now at 13% fewer weekly searches than in February. Similarly, clicks on healthcare companies’ GMB profiles were down 4% between February 24 and May 3, having reached a low point in April at about half their usual search volume.

For a full picture of the search landscape, Google Trends has daily updates for the top 100 places searching for coronavirus and the top related queries – what people type when searching for the virus.

On May 12, trending coronavirus queries on Google were “coronavirus cases,” “coronavirus update,” “coronavirus US,” “coronavirus USA,” “coronavirus news,” “coronavirus deaths,” “coronavirus map” and “coronavirus symptoms,” followed by searches for individual state information.

The search engine also keeps track of trending questions, which on May 12 were:

  1. Where did the coronavirus come from?
  2. How many coronavirus deaths?
  3. Is headache a symptom of coronavirus?
  4. Which state has the most coronavirus cases?
  5. Is the coronavirus slowing down in the US?

Aside from answering frequent questions in your listings and marketing communications, healthcare marketers should monitor changes brought on by Google’s core update in early May. Though its full effects aren’t yet clear, SEMRush data shows the industries most impacted by the update were travel, real estate and health.

Searches for Symptoms and Treatment

Millions of people type their health symptoms into Google every day, making it a key indicator for healthcare organizations looking to optimize their COVID-19 information.

For example, when an area doesn’t have many cases, there more informational searches like, “What is coronavirus?” When cases become widespread, queries like, “What are the symptoms of coronavirus?” begin to appear more frequently, according to Google data editor Simon Rogers.

Google search, in some cases, might shed light on widespread symptoms before media reporting or local government responses, according to SEMrush. A study by the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto found that searches for “I can’t smell” were elevated in Italy days before the news reported the symptom.

Monitoring such trends could also aid the prioritization of medical supplies to the hardest-hit areas and guide public health guidelines. More specific search trends, such as testing, can also be analyzed as a predictor of local healthcare consumer needs.

Finding Positive Coronavirus Searches

It’s easy to forget that not all coronavirus search trends are negative. Marketers – especially in healthcare – should remember that people search for how they can help in disaster scenarios.

Searches for “how can I help” spiked in late March and early April of 2020, according to the Washington Post, surpassing the search volume after Hurricane Harvey flooded Houston. That search, along with food donation, helping the community and how to volunteer, are higher than ever before, Google’s Simon Rogers said. Healthcare brands should answer these questions with content – on Google and otherwise – about how to support local providers.

ebook-covid-19-healthcare-marketersGoogle recommends the following methods of using its platform to help consumers and support healthcare workers:

  • Let people know that solutions are available whenever, wherever.
  • Assess when people need you most, whether through your own first-party data or Google Trends.
  • Frequently update or publish content that informs, entertains, connects and promotes wellness.
  • Consider who the heroes are among your employees, your customers or your local community.
  • Consider whether your technology, your operational rigor or your equipment can be highlighted as a contributor to the cause.

Other Related Google Trends

The other side of Google search worth monitoring is fallout from the virus, such as psychological problems and other sophisticated issues from living in lockdown.

The search engine has reported a spike in “loneliness,” “having trouble sleeping” and “boredom,” and Google searches for “quarantine fatigue meaning” doubled between May 4 and May 11. Even seemingly simple queries are worth addressing in healthcare listings and marketing: Searches for the “right way to wash hands” has increased 1,350% in the past month worldwide.

With retailers adjusting operations, schools and buildings closing, and workers staying home, consumers are also searching more for how-to content, like “How do I cut my own hair?” or “How do I bake bread?” or “How do I keep the kids entertained?” Understanding those search trends, along with trends for symptoms, testing and other COVID-19-related questions, will allow your marketing team to anticipate consumer concerns and supply answers through this uncertain time.

For more content on managing your brand during COVID-19, you can visit our COVID-19 Resources Page and browse these resources:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 13, 2020

New Reviews and Response Capabilities Return to Google My Business

By: Kieran McQuilkin

New reviews have returned to Google, along with the ability to respond to Google reviews, after being suspended during the COVID-19 outbreak. The Binary Fountain team confirmed that businesses in several industries, including healthcare, can once again display new Google reviews and publish review responses through their Google My Business dashboards. Google Reviews and Google Q&A…

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New reviews have returned to Google, along with google-review-responsesthe ability to respond to Google reviews, after being suspended during the COVID-19 outbreak. The Binary Fountain team confirmed that businesses in several industries, including healthcare, can once again display new Google reviews and publish review responses through their Google My Business dashboards.

Google Reviews and Google Q&A stopped publishing on March 20, with review responses coming to a halt shortly after. Existing Google reviews, responses and Q&A were still displayed. New review responses began appearing April 7.

The Binary Fountain team confirmed that new reviews are displaying for most healthcare, apartment, dining and retail listings. Net new reviews and review responses are now live, and it appears that Google Q&A is coming back online. Reviews left during the suspension will start to populate GMB profiles once new reviews are rolled out.

The search engine had suspended the these functionalities to reduce staffers coming into their offices and focus efforts on Google Maps and local search capabilities. Google said at the time it would prioritize reviewing all edits for critical health-related businesses. It is also prioritizing reviewing open and closed states, special hours, temporary closures, business descriptions and business attributes edits for other verified businesses.

Google – among other listing platforms – has changed and added several features in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. These updates to Google My Business and Google Search include:

For more on reputation management during the coronavirus health crisis, you can visit our COVID-19 Resources Page and read these articles:

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 13, 2020

Reputation Management KPIs: Tracking Key Metrics of Your Online Presence

By: Kieran McQuilkin

In today’s digital world, what consumers think, say and share about your company matters, regardless of what industry you are in. Warren Buffet famously said, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” If you’ve put work into managing your…

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reputation-management-kpiIn today’s digital world, what consumers think, say and share about your company matters, regardless of what industry you are in.

Warren Buffet famously said, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

If you’ve put work into managing your online reputation, chances are you know just how true that quote is. Building a stellar business listing online takes time, dedication and a strategy to put your best foot forward for customer acquisition.

But how do you know if all your work is having the desired impact? What KPIs should you be measuring for your reputation management program?

Understanding the right way to choose and measure KPIs is critical to determining your campaign’s return on investment (ROI). Measuring the right things and not just vanity metrics will help you build the brand you want to online, helping you attract new customers and retaining the ones you currently have.

We are going to look at some of the most important reputation management KPIs and how to measure the success of your program.

Volume and Quality of Online Reviews

Monitoring the effectiveness of your reputation management campaign starts with making sure you see an increase in the number of customer reviews and a higher average rating than before.

Reviews are social proof that potential customers use to determine if your business will meet their needs. Most customers are looking for a high volume of reviews because it makes your business look credible, experienced and like a vital part of the local community.

If you are seeing an improvement in the number and quality of your online reviews, you are on the right track.

Here are some other key metrics to measure your online presence:

  • Overall customer sentiment
  • Referrals or leads from review sites
  • Website traffic from organic search and social media platforms

Remember, while online reviews can greatly help attract new customers, they’re also a positive indicator that you will retain the business of current customers. Take special care to respond to both positive and negative reviews to encourage customer interaction and learn how to improve the customer experience.

Turning Fans into Advocates

Beyond just looking at reviews online, one of the goals of any reputation management program should be building a lifelong relationship with your customer. Growing a business isn’t just about acquiring new customers: It’s about taking the customers you have now and making them advocates for your brand.

metrics-reputation-managementIf you are focusing on the customer experience and meeting their expectations, chances are you already have strong support from your community. If you are struggling to satisfy your current customer base, you need to be measuring loyalty and advocacy.

To do this, make sure you are measuring the current impact of your brand advocates and identifying highly satisfied customers who are perfect candidates for sharing information about your business on social media platforms.

Your KPIs for turning your customers into advocates include:

  • Volume of customer testimonials shared on social media
  • Customer engagement metrics on your website and social media channels
  • Number of brand advocates (social listening metrics)
  • Positive comments on public, third-party directories

Don’t Forget to Monitor Offline KPIs

While measuring your impact online may be straightforward, there are plenty of offline KPIs to track in order to measure the true ROI of your reputation management program. Reducing customer churn or increasing patient retention, for example, are far more important to your business than how many reviews you have on your social media profiles.

As a customer experience manager or marketer, you always want to make sure your efforts have the downstream impact that you intended and that you aren’t just measuring vanity metrics.

When evaluating the impact of a reputation management campaign, be sure to look at these metrics to determine if you are getting the results you expect:

  • Customer lifetime value (CLV)
  • Customer satisfaction surveys (both quality and number of responses)
  • Word-of-mouth customer referrals
  • Estimated market share
  • Net promoter score

Seeing improvements in these offline KPIs will lead to the business growth you need from a reputation management program.

Get the Most Out of Your Reputation Management Campaign

Nothing is more important than delivering as much bottom-line value as possible to your customers and to your business.

Using these KPIs will help you identify areas where you can improve the customer experience and simultaneously attract new business leads. By focusing on the right KPIs for your reputation management campaign, you will ensure that your investment is worth the time and money for both your business and your customers.

Binary Fountain’s reputation management software is designed to give your business actionable insights that will improve your business operations and better meet your customers’ expectations. Thanks to our proprietary natural language processing (NLP) technology and data analysis, we create customized online reputation management solutions for businesses just like yours.

If you want to learn more about how to measure the value of reputation management, check out this free webinar or you can schedule a demo of our review management software.

About the Author

Kieran McQuilkin
Content Marketing Specialist

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May 11, 2020

Quick Guide on How to Market Telemedicine on Your Website

By: Erik Fessler

In a recent survey, Binary Fountain discovered that half of all marketing departments are planning to focus on telemedicine initiatives once they emerge from COVID-19. Competition to promote telemedicine is only likely to increase in the coming months and years. Learning how to market telemedicine now could give you an advantage in this rapidly changing…

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Ihow-to-market-telemedicine n a recent survey, Binary Fountain discovered that half of all marketing departments are planning to focus on telemedicine initiatives once they emerge from COVID-19. Competition to promote telemedicine is only likely to increase in the coming months and years. Learning how to market telemedicine now could give you an advantage in this rapidly changing field.

This guide will teach you how to utilize your website to promote your telemedicine offerings. We’ll show you how to optimize your pages and the tools you can use to increase your rankings in search engine results (SERPS).

1. Create Effective Messaging to Market Telemedicine

The first tip in our how to market telemedicine guide is to start by determining who your telemedicine customers are. Then adapt the messaging on your page to meet their concerns. For example, if you typically treat chronically ill patients, write messaging that highlights how your service allows them to avoid inconvenient travel, saves them the cost of a travel attendant, and other travel expenses, and avoids unnecessary readmission. Tech-savvy patients will respond well to the on-demand nature of telemedicine. Rural patients will appreciate not having to drive for long distances to receive care.

Two common concerns about Telemedicine are that it’s more prone to misdiagnosis and doesn’t offer as good quality of care. While these concerns appear to be dropping with time, it would be wise to address them. Explain how your online care offers the same accuracy and quality of care as in-person visits.

2. Have a Telemedicine Webpage That Features an FAQ

Telemedicine is just now breaking into the mainstream, so many of your patients and future patients will have questions. A crucial part of your telemedicine promotion will need to be answering those questions to put patients at ease. While you could make telemedicine additions to an existing general FAQ, it would be wise to feature common questions and answers on your telemedicine’s main webpage.

how-to-market-telemedicineSome universal questions you may want to answer are:

  • Are you seeing new patients or just existing patients via telemedicine?
  • What specific health issues can you help with?
  • What is the cost of this service?
  • What insurance do you accept?
  • What is the process?
  • Are patients immediately connected with a provider?
  • Do patients fill out a form and then hear back?
  • What days and hours are you available?

The UNC Medical Center’s Virtual Urgent Care page is an excellent example of a FAQ page. It answers many common consumer questions before the patient even has to ask.

3. Homepage Banners, Pop-Ups, and Other CTAs

You’ve honed your messaging and created an FAQ page that answers consumer questions regarding your telemedicine offering. Now you need to drive internal web traffic to your telemedicine web pages.

A homepage banner is a natural place to start. Generally, a homepage banner is a great way to drive patients to a new service.

The Billings Clinic’s homepage banner accomplishes this with bright colors and large, easy-to-read text. It’s an effective way to direct traffic in the “lobby” of your website.

how-to-market-telemedicineHomepage pop-ups are another option you could consider. Advanced ENT has instituted a pop-up that displays automatically over the homepage banner when users open their homepage. While pop-ups generally aren’t thought of as something web users enjoy, pop-ups that offer users something of value and aren’t challenging to close do get positive results.

You may want to consider using pop-ups on other high traffic pages as well, along with telemedicine call to action (CTA) buttons and text.

Not all of your website visitors begin their visit on your homepage. Current patients might skip your homepage and go directly to a page they’ve previously visited.

In response, you should also draw attention to telemedicine on your topmost visited webpages to ensure all patients are aware of your telemedicine services. If you have an appointment scheduling page, we highly encourage you to advertise telemedicine on this page. Sites with chatbots should also consider using this tool to inform patients about telemedicine.

4. Help Patients Decide If Telemedicine Is Right for Them on Your Appointment Scheduling Page

how-to-market-telemedicineAppointment scheduling is one of the most crucial points in the customer journey for telemedicine promotion. It’s imperative that patients consider telemedicine while setting up an appointment.

Cone Health’s appointment scheduling page is a powerful example of how a website can guide patients to the ideal appointment type for their condition and budget. While your organization may not offer the same number of service offerings, your patients will appreciate your guidance on the appointment type that is best suited for their needs.

Readers should also take note of the way COVID-19 instructions are built into this webpage. If you are seeking to use telemedicine as a tool to shield your providers, be sure to direct your online traffic to book online care when they go to schedule appointments.

5. Make Sure Telemedicine Marketing is Part of Your SEO Strategy

Now that you’ve taken some steps to integrate telemedicine onto the face of your website, you’re ready for the last step in this how-to market telemedicine guide. The final goal is to ensure that the SEO on the backend of your site is set up with telemedicine promotion in mind.

Updating your meta information is a great place to start. Be sure to use keywords and phrases for your telemedicine service in the meta descriptions of all applicable webpages. When appropriate, you may even use a telemedicine call to action phrase. This could entice higher click-through rates for viewers who find your webpages through search engines, and indirectly lead to higher search rankings. These keywords should also be used in the meta title of your telemedicine specific webpages.

Once this is done, ensure that all of your telemedicine webpages have been indexed. If your site has duplicate versions of the same content, such as a .pdf that has the same content as a webpage, use canonical tags on both assets to instruct Google as to which asset to display in search.

Structuring your FAQ data to be displayed in Google is another great SEO best practice that may allow your questions and answers to appear in zero click searches. Adding the correct data structuring will allow your questions and answers to appear in the Q&A formatted snippets carousel. This guide from Google explains the concept further. You may need to consult your web team to institute this. However, this guide explains how to use structure data if you have a basic understanding of HTML and JSON syntax. Structuring your FAQ data for Google Search could help you increase your SERPS, which makes it an optimization that could pay off quickly.

For more on how to market telemedicine, browse these related posts:

[Blog] The Numbers Behind Telemedicine: What Healthcare Marketers Should Know
[Webinar] COVID-19, Telemedicine and Your Online Presence
[Blog] Telemedicine Marketing: How to Manage Listings for Virtual Care

About the Author

Erik Fessler
Marketing Coordinator

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