Here are a couple of examples of physician directory listings that incorporate “about” and “bio” information on individual provider pages:
How Monitoring Your Organization’s Online Reputation Can Improve HCAHPS Scores
HCAHPS has been the barometer for understanding patient experience during hospital stays for the past decade. These surveys are standard, consistent and publicly reported.
However, managing online reviews is another critical aspect of a healthcare marketer’s digital and patient experience strategy—and they shouldn’t be ignored. Online reviews add depth to HCAHPS scores and—when monitored and managed actively—can improve HCAHPS scores and provide competitive advantage.
In a study conducted by Reputation.com, two years of HCAHPS hospital survey data was analyzed from the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) across more than 4,800 hospitals. HCAHPS data was reviewed alongside online reviews and ratings for the same hospitals, and some significant discoveries were made:
- Positive online sentiment leads to higher HCAHPS scores. Reputation.com’s data analysis found a direct correlation between positive online sentiment (in the form of online reviews) and increasing HCAHPS scores. Hospitals with a 4-star HCAHPS rating or higher were twice as likely to have a 4-star rating or higher online. Hospitals whose online sentiment was not as high as their HCAHPS scores indicated had 2.8 times as many complaints about categories that HCAHPS does not cover. What’s more, they were three times as likely to see HCAHPS ratings fall the following year. For all hospitals included in the study, an improvement in online sentiment led to a rise in HCAHPS scores of an average of 17 percent year-over-year.
- Online reviews give early warning to issues that impact patient experience. With insight from online reviews, hospitals can identify and address problem areas before HCAHPS scores decline. HCAHPS surveys are sent several weeks after a patient leaves the hospital, so feedback is inherently delayed. Because online reviews are available immediately, issues surface early, and providers can address negative reviews and resolve issues before they impact responses to HCAHPS.
- HCAHPS do not capture aspects of patient experience seen in online reviews. Nine specific patient experience questions are covered in HCAHPS surveys; however, online reviews provide insight to additional areas of patient experience such as time to appointment, wait times, administrative issues and experiences with billing and insurance. The unstructured data — free text from social media and review sites — can be analyzed using natural language processing. This in-depth analysis of unstructured data makes it possible for hospitals to quickly understand patient sentiment, identify trends and make changes to improve patient care.
HCAHPS data is available on CMS’s Hospital Compare website, however awareness of this resource among consumers is only 13 percent, and only 3 percent of consumers surveyed have visited the site. By contrast, 85% of consumers start their search for a doctor on search engines and online review sites.
Patient Experience Depends On ORM
Online reviews are a critical addition to capturing the entire patient experience and help supplement the important information surfaced in HCAHPS surveys. By implementing an Online Reputation Management (ORM) strategy, healthcare organizations can address negative feedback immediately and early by continually monitoring, managing, responding and requesting online patient reviews. This patient experience data can be critical to a healthcare organization’s long-term success.
Note: This sponsored article was written by Lindsay Neese Burton, who is the Healthcare Marketing Director at Reputation.com. Lindsay spent more than a decade as a healthcare marketer at large Academic Medical Centers in the Southeast focused on developing marketing strategies for consumers and referring physicians. Now as part of the Reputation.com team, Lindsay helps healthcare organizations create digital marketing strategies and leverage online feedback to meet their goals.
Creating More Engaging Marketing Copy
For decades, marketing copywriters performed in “push mode” – writing copy for one-way messaging that was delivered via mass media such as newspapers, magazines, TV and radio. With the advent of the internet, marketing is now a two-way affair, with consumers having the ability to respond directly to marketers/brands.
Despite this interactive state, many marketers are still crafting their messages in push mode. How can you make your messaging more engaging?
- Subtle is better. Let’s face it – most people don’t like advertisements or sales solicitations. And if you’re pushy with your messaging, they really won’t like it. Think of some of the recent campaigns that got people talking lately. In general, those messages have appealed to the senses or sentiment. For example, who doesn’t love the kids from Shriners Hospitals for Children? So, tone it down and find ways to really connect with your audience.
- Talk like your audience talks. While flowery, complex prose has a place in some circumstances, marketing messages are not one of those circumstances. In the healthcare space, messaging can be challenging when clinicians get involved and want to emphasize achievements and results in a format that sounds more like a post-doctoral dissertation. One way to learn how your messaging resonates with your audience is to get feedback from lay people. You can do this informally by using family and friends or you can utilize focus groups in a more formal setting. Bottom line: people don’t like being talked down to or trying to interpret overly complex messages.
- Listen first, then write. Who is your target audience? What are their concerns and priorities? What kind of vocabulary do they use? Some ways to learn how to speak to your intended audience include:
- Reviewing social media interactions - look at how the most frequent and most enthusiastic commenters express themselves.
- Publish surveys that include open-questions. Review the manner in which those questions are answered.
- Solicit questions from your followers on all channels. What are they asking about? How are they asking? What are their priorities and concerns?
- Check your online reviews. See what people are saying about your organization and how they’re saying it.
- Make your audience feel more included by asking questions in the title and body of your content, and by telling stories that are relevant to them.
- Show that you are human by being approachable and authentic. While you strive to be accurate at all times, sometimes a mistake slips through. Own up to your mistakes in an open, honest manner.
What is your organization doing to improve engagement with your audience?