Why healthcare organizations are shifting from referral-based to consumer-direct marketing
Healthcare organizations have been using referral-based marketing programs for decades to bring in new patients and to strengthen the loyalty of existing ones. This approach has proven successful because of its reliance on trusted word-of-mouth recommendations, 低成本, high-quality leads and the ability to keep patients within an organization's health system. Studies show most consumers consider a referral an important part of their decision-making process. 然而, with health systems becoming more vertically integrated and the healthcare industry overall becoming more competitive, providers must consider innovative ways to stay ahead of the competition.
而基于转诊的营销在医疗保健领域仍然占有一席之地, relying exclusively on referrals may no longer be as effective as it once was in generating patient volume.
Consumers are increasingly asserting their right to choose their providers, and prior referral sources may no longer be reliable or willing to refer outside their own organizations. Health system mergers and consolidations lead to more in-house referrals, often leaving patients unaware of their choices and the differences between providers.
结果是, some healthcare organizations are shifting to a consumer-direct marketing model to speak directly to consumers and inform them of their options.
It’s a strategy we successfully implemented for the largest network of rehabilitation hospitals in the country.
这个组织在美国有140个分支机构.S. 是医疗专业人士信赖的选择, yet there was a lack of awareness and understanding about inpatient rehabilitation hospitals among consumers. 因此，消费者依赖于医生的推荐. The client required a forward-thinking marketing strategy to reach consumers directly to educate them about their right to choose providers and the differences in care. They sought to increase patient volume, promote brand awareness and beat former benchmarks.
The strategy for this campaign required a backwards brainstorming approach. We flipped the messaging model and began by getting in the headspace of the target consumer first—patients and their families as well as gatekeepers such as providers, 社会工作者和个案管理人员.
- Beginning from the consumer headspace allows us to consider their current perceptions, 需要, 首选项, 偏见和障碍.
- We determine what we can provide to help them move forward in their decision-making; do they need information, 教育, 奖状, 排名, 访问, 网上旅游?
- Finally, we craft the messaging based on the call to action determined.
We knew it was crucial to educate patients about their right to choose and empower them to make informed decisions. One of the biggest benefits of a consumer-direct approach is the ability to control the messaging.
使用A/B测试, we measured the efficacy of different messages and placed them in the most likely locations to intersect with our target audience. We selected channels based on their ability to build brand awareness, 讲故事，最终提高病人数量:
Tracking the effectiveness of the media plan and optimizing results were just as important as developing the right messaging and marketing strategy. 以下是我们衡量的指标:
运动的结果令人印象深刻. Pilot hospital admissions increased in all participating hospitals and outpaced the rest of the health system.
We have since rolled out consumer-direct marketing to additional regions for this rehabilitation hospital system. The pilot program results helped us establish benchmarks as the campaign continues to be rolled out.
Making the transition from referral-based healthcare marketing to consumer-direct can be challenging, but a necessary one as competition in healthcare becomes more intense. It can be used to complement your referral-based marketing strategy or as a proactive response to a strategic shift. By embracing this new approach and developing a comprehensive marketing strategy, 医疗保健提供者可以接触到更广泛的受众, differentiate their brand and achieve greater success in a constantly changing market.