Acsys Interactive’s 1st Annual Crowdsourced Survey On Emerging Marketing
Hospital Marketers Get Ready for A Very Digital Future
From OMG to BIO (Bring it On)
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Hospital Marketers Get Ready for a Very Digital Future So Many Channels, But Where to Invest? Not Just Brand and Demand... More Platforms Too A New Trajectory, But Without A Map The Never-ending Resource and Measurement Challenge Preparing for Change – Not Business as Usual What's Next? Appendix
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Introduction - Mike Stutman, SVP, Strategy and Innovation
In mid-2010, Acsys asked Hospital Marketers around the country what emerging marketing topic they wanted to hear about from their colleagues. Over 100 peer questions were collected (“crowdsourced”) here. The questions were synthesized by Acsys Interactive in consultation with research partner Equation Research and input from industry thought leaders. The survey was then administered online from August – October, 2010. 101 respondents completed the survey from a variety of hospitals and healthcare systems including many of the nation’s most renowned organizations. Respondents were provided with a preview of results in Q4, 2010. We would like to thank the survey participants for their time and input to make this first survey a great success. We hope you will gain value from the results and insights in the pages ahead and we welcome your suggestions and questions.
The tectonic shift about to happen in hospital marketing and steps you can take to lead the way in the digital world
IF THE LAST FEW YEARS
have seemed like an exciting ride for hospital marketers, it looks like the pedal will really be to the metal in the next few years ahead. The digital and experiential transformation of marketing — already being achieved in consumer markets — appears as if it will finally come to the forefront of hospital marketing budgets and efforts in the near future. By 2013, hospital marketers predict that traditional and digital marketing channels will flip-flop in terms of importance. This long-awaited, but fast-moving shift is the result of a confluence of trends: 1. The rapid proliferation of digital channels, such as social, video and mobile, in hospital marketing. 2. Increased demand for marketing to step outside of their traditional role and improve the customer experience on other platforms, including those that have longlanguished, such as the intranet and patient portal. 3. A desire for more marketing productivity including the use of integrated marketing and more meaningful, business-resultsfocused measurement.
As hospital marketers are being challenged to handle more channels, platforms and programs in a more integrated fashion and to produce better business results, there are some clear roadblocks that must be overcome, including lack of a clear roadmap for how to evolve to a more digital future and enough people with the right experience and skill set. These insights, among many others, were gathered from hospital marketers across the country who took part in the 2010 Crowdsourced Survey of Hospital Marketers (CSHM). Participants were invited to submit questions or topics of interest to us (to our knowledge, the first time crowdsourcing has been used in the hospital industry) and the survey was publicized on our own website, in press releases and via social media channels to generate interest and participation. In total, we received more than 100 questions and based on that input, we created a survey in partnership with Equation Research.
So what did we learn and how can you prepare?
GET READY FROM A VERY DIGITAL FUTURE
There is a significant gap between today’s hospital marketing landscape and that predicted for 2013. Marketers responding to our survey expect that digital will move from a ‘tag-along’ role (in comparison to traditional marketing) to a leadership role. Among those surveyed, 66.3 percent said traditional channels, such as print, direct mail and radio, accounted for the core of their integrated marketing budgets today, compared to 9.9 percent who said online
channels such as search engine marketing (SEM), display advertising and social media were the core. By 2013, that balance is expected to dramatically shift, with 36.6 percent saying online channels will be the core and another 49.5 percent saying emphasis would be spread equally between online and offline. Only 11.9 percent said they expect offline to be the core of their overall marketing approach in 2013. This dramatic change was echoed by hospitals both small and large.
SO MANY CHANNELS,
BUT WHERE TO INVEST?
As digital steps up to a more central role in the marketing mix, hospital marketers expect to invest in an increasingly wide array of digital channels in order to achieve their traditional ‘Brand Development and Demand Generation’ (e.g. “Brand and Demand”) objectives. 70 percent of respondents say they will ‘definitely’ use more channels to reach their target. In addition to continuing investment in all of today’s established digital channels, such from online display advertising to email, hospital marketers will increase investment in emerging channels and platforms such as web video, social media and patient portals. More than half of all respondents expect to significantly increase resources in web video and social media, while more than 40 percent expect to significantly increase resources in a patient portal. Survey participants also said they expect to invest more in SEO, paid search, public websites, mobile, physician portals and web content.
As these channels proliferate, more integration of marketing efforts can be expected with 83.2 percent of hospital marketers saying that in the next one to two years,
they will ‘definitely’ become more involved in tying offline and online channels in a strategic manner.
NOT JUST BRAND AND DEMAND...
MORE PLATFORMS TOO
Beyond the proliferation of “brand and demand” channels that are well-integrated, many survey respondents also envision a future where marketing’s role spans across more digital platforms (66.3 percent), such as the intranet, patient portal and physician portal, as well as across the broader end-to-end customer experience (39.6 percent) from awareness to pre-visit to in-hospital and post-visit.
This expanded role is likely correlated with marketers’ perception that the experience on many of these core digital platforms is poor or mediocre at best. Given the importance that the industry at large has placed on the “patient experience” and the
“employee experience,” it was surprising to see almost universal sentiment that the key digital platforms which enable these experiences, such as the patient portal and employee intranet, are severely lagging in their sophistication and quality.
A NEW TRAJECTORY,
BUT WITHOUT A MAP
While it is clear that marketing will need to reshape itself to handle the increasing number of channels and platforms, there are some key areas that are lacking plans. Surprisingly few hospitals have a plan in place for increasingly important aspects of the patient experience such as mobile and patient portals.
More than half of respondents had no plan in place for mobile, while more than four in 10 lack a plan for a patient portal. Contrast this with the nearly 80 percent of hospitals who expect to invest in mobile in the next two or three years. The danger is of course, that hospitals will invest money in emerging channels without clear objectives in place.
Related to the lack of mobile planning, we were also surprised to see that many basic mobile tactics were not yet implemented or on the radar of respondents. For example,
even in large (401+ bed) hospitals, 45 percent of respondents have no plans in place to implement even the most fundamental mobile tactic; a mobile website.
And the relatively low numbers of smaller hospitals that have implemented mobile solutions for their organization points
to a widening “mobile divide” between large and small hospitals.
half of all respondents expect to significantly increase resources in web video and social media
RESOURCE & MANAGEMENT CHALLENGE
If it was surprising to learn that many hospitals lacked plans for emerging channels, it was more predictable that hospitals appear unprepared from a human resource perspective. Today, the majority of hospitals, large or small, are limited to one staff person dedicated to digital. And nearly 10 percent of larger hospitals (401+ beds) and 27 percent of smaller hospitals (fewer than 401 beds) do not even have a single dedicated FTE focused on web/online activities. With resources at this low level, it is not surprising that marketing departments feel overtaxed. Clearly, the resource gap will only become more pronounced. In the immediate future, the greatest challenge for most hospitals will continue to be staffing and educating personnel to respond to increased demands for digital communication.
According to the 2010 CSHM survey, large hospitals have a resource advantage when it comes to digital. Roughly 20 percent of large hospitals have five or more FTEs dedicated to web or online activities. In contrast, more than one in four (27 percent) of smaller hospitals have nobody dedicated to web or online activities. Potentially contributing to the lack of resources is difficulty tying marketing expenditures to meaningful business metrics that would inspire additional investment. Marketers are dissatisfied with their ability to tie digital activities to the businessoriented metrics they deemed most important, such as doctor appointments and patient revenue.
With few resources dedicated to digital efforts and without compelling measurement to enact change, understaffed teams can barely keep the lights on, let alone foster innovation, integration, deeper measurement and planning across a wider array of channels and platforms.
The good news, of course, is that the digital world lends itself well to robust analytics. Hospitals just need to be willing to make the investment in the tools and resources necessary to provide the data and insights that will help to move their organization forward in the digital world.
PREPARING FOR CHANGE NOT BUSINESS AS USUAL
SO MUCH OPPORTUNITY
SO LITTLE RESOURCES
WHAT IS A HOSPITAL MARKETER TO DO?
The upcoming challenges are manageable, but hospitals must prepare now. In the short term, hospitals must demonstrate “brand and demand” value. Focus on areas that drive the most value and those that offer the biggest opportunity for differentiation (such as mobile). Develop a clear game plan and rapidly execute against that plan. More to the point, allocate resources and budget to drive deeper, more meaningful and business results-focused measurement. Clicks are interesting, appointments are better, revenue is king. Make more granular measurement a top priority. To get leadership on board, create an offsite to educate and brainstorm around this topic. To expand their impact of limited budgets, partner with departments that have like-minded goals (and budgets) to pilot projects — not just traditional marketing projects, but those across the customer experience. In the mid-term, hospitals should realign their budgeting processes to focus on digital rather than treating it as an afterthought. Develop a plan for 2012 and beyond. In the longer-term, hospitals ought to realign their marketing and web team organization, ideally considering roles such as: • Chief Experience Officer and/or E-Business Leader to oversee the digital experience across platforms and throughout the organization and, of course • A digitally-savvy Chief Marketing Officer, with the vision and capacity to influence the executive team and integrate increasingly complex efforts across channels • Digital and Emerging Marketing experts with experience in social, mobile and video • Digital Analytics Lead who can take measurement to the next level, moving from interesting metrics to business metrics
But more than anything, hospital marketers need to demonstrate passion. Far and away, this was identified by respondents as the single most effective tactic at influencing their organization to embrace social media. According to the 2010 CSHM, 40 percent of respondents felt that personal evangelism about digital had a major
impact on their organization. Engage a management team leader to advocate for change and help educate the leadership team about what digital means to your business by providing examples of what innovative competitors are doing to leverage digital across their customer experience.
SO YOUR PEERS HAVE SPOKEN.
The hospital marketing function appears poised to truly transform in the next two years, beyond a purely “Brand and Demand” focus, beyond Offline Channels owning the marketing mix and beyond established digital channels. Your peers and competitors will be leading this change. How prepared are you? Do you have the knowledge to lead this transition? Do you have the team and resources required? Do you have the advocacy of senior leadership? Do you have a roadmap in place? Do you have passion? If not,
TO PUT THE PEDAL TO THE METAL
2011 IS CLEARLY THE TIME
Comments and Feedback See commentary on the survey here Provide feedback or ask questions here Share with your colleagues
Questions and Additional Data Requests Request additional data and analysis of the 2010 CSHM data Submit questions and topics for the 2011 CHSM Connect with Acsys Mike Stutman, SVP, Strategy and Innovation Craig Kallin, SVP, Marketing Services
Survey Methodology • The survey was administered online from August – October, 2010 • 101 respondents completed the survey • Survey design, tabulation and analysis were conducted by Acsys Interactive with support from Equation Research
© 2011 Acsys inc.