Healthcare Marketing, The Patient Journey As An Element

Make The Patient Journey An Element Of Your Healthcare Marketing

By Geoffrey Cooling

Healthcare Marketing, Patient Retention, Patient Journey,I think that by now most readers are au fait with my ideas around Patients as Advocates. With that central tenet in mind I believe that the Patient journey can be fashioned to be a leading element. By that I mean that the Patient journey can be planned and deployed in such a way that it leads to advocacy for your brand. Simply you need to consider the Patient experience when planning each visit. In this way, the patient journey can become a central part of your healthcare marketing strategy.

In order to do this you have to consider the objective of each visit. From both your point of view and the Patient’s. Your objective and the Patient’s need to be un-aligned in that what you are trying to do exceeds that which the Patient expects. By that I mean, the Patient’s objective may be to have a check up. That covers their whole term of reference for the appointment. They do not necessarily understand what that means, but at the least they have some expectations.

You need to consider what their expectations may be in order that you can over deliver on them. Over delivery is the key to surprise, amazement even, those are the emotions that ensure advocacy. In order to do this you need to very carefully consider what you are going to do at each appointment. Remember you want each appointment to e framed as part of your healthcare marketing strategy. So what are the questions we need to ask?

What type of appointment is it?

What will your Patient expect from the appointment?

What is the objective of the appointment?

What process can you put in place to amaze?

For instance, the appointment is a yearly check up, the Patient expects some sort of service to the instrument. Your objective is to meet that need, but it is also to deliver on the continuing Patient experience. So, what’s the process you put in place? Break the visit down, set out a clear process that delivers on the Patient experience. Consider the elements that you can introduce to ensure they leave happy with their care. In fact go for amazement at the process delivered. What elements are there to consider?

  • The greeting
  • Discussion around ongoing success
  • Physical inspection and cleaning of the instrument, re-tubing if necessary
  • Scan test of hearing thresholds
  • Fine tuning of instruments and check of the data logs
  • End of appointment, to include free gifts and generation of new appointment

Consider how you can deliver these elements, consider how you will physically undertake these elements? The cleaning and inspection of the instrument alone can be delivered in many ways. A cursory glance and a wipe of a cleansing wipe, or a careful inspection, removal of mic covers, brushing of the mics, cleaning of the battery compartment, soaking of a physical mould in solution. Seems like a lot of work, but is it really? set up the process, have all of the tools close to hand and it is something that is undertaken while discussing ongoing experience.

When you think carefully about each of the visits on the Patient journey in this manner. You can set out processes that you know will amaze your Patient. Amaze your Patient and they will be advocates, advocacy is central to your healthcare marketing strategy.

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About Geoffrey Cooling

my name is Geoffrey Cooling and I am the author here at Just Audiology Stuff. I have been involved in the Hearing Healthcare Profession for several years now. I initially worked as a Hearing Healthcare Professional for a large national retailer in Ireland.

After several years in Practice I was approached to work for a manufacturer, where I was employed for five years. I am now the Co Founder of a business called Audiology Engine. We design websites, undertake content marketing and generally look after everything digital for audiological practices. I am also a contributor to many hearing profession periodicals and websites.

I have written two commercially available books, The Little Book of Hearing Aids which is written for hearing aid consumers and Audiology Marketing in a Digital World which is written for Audiology Practice Owners. They are both available in Paperback and Kindle versions on Amazon. I also write for consumers on the website Hearing Aid Know, which is a website with the mission of demystifying hearing aids, their types and their technology.

I have a great interest in commercial strategy as it applies to Healthcare in general and specifically to Hearing Healthcare. I also have a great interest in the psychology of sales and human interaction. I have been involved with social media for some time, both personally and professionally. I find the engagement and discourse on some social media channels fascinating.

I instituted social media strategy for the company I worked for as an experiment. That experiment soon spread throughout the company and I am proud to say that the company is probably one of the most active in the industry. I would like to point out that all views, opinions and thoughts here are mine own. Unless of course they have been planted by the pod people, you just can’t take your eyes off the pod people. Those views do not necessarily reflect upon any views or opinions held by my employer, if I ever get another one.

I think that our industry is in the middle of a time of huge change, I think that the change will be forced by both internal and external pressure. I think that private Independent Healthcare Practices will have to be smart and lithe of feet in order to meet these changes. I hope that some of my blatherings are of benefit to those Practices, Independent Hearing Healthcare Practices need to survive. I believe that if that occurs it will be of real benefit to Patients.

I hope that I, and my writings will play a small part in their continued success.

Let me know what you think