Free Weekly Ezine

Each week we email a tip or news that we are covering in Strategic Health Care Marketing. You can view the archives of this weekly ezine below.

Content + Swag Keeps Employees Engaged and Informed

Donna DeMarco, co-founder and vice president at Viddler, Inc.

If you’re a big, distributed health network with multiple locations and thousands of employees, how do you make sure your employees keep you top of mind when they’re out in the community? “We’re a large 10-hospital network — soon to be 12 — with over 15,500 employees,” says Mary Beth Golab, director of internal communications Read More

The Surprising Success of a Health Care Spokes-Puppet

Ely Thurmond, Patient Plus director of strategic initiatives

“You can do terrible things to a puppet for popular amusement that aren’t funny when they happen to real people,” says veteran copywriter and SHCM contributor Peter Hochstein. “You can make him horribly ill. You can afflict him with a swarm of bees. You can break off his leg, or worse. Almost no matter what Read More

Looking at Population Health Through a Marketing Lens

Susan Dubuque, principal at NDP Agency

“Population health is a hot topic in our industry,” says Susan Dubuque of ndp. “But let’s be honest. As health care marketing professionals, we may have a difficult time getting our heads around this complex, multifaceted concept. There is lack of clarity about even the most basic issues like: What is population health? Who is Read More

Health Care Organizations Succeeding with Medicare Advantage Plans

John Lovelace, president of government programs at UPMC Health Plan

Hospital and physician-owned Medicare Advantage (MA) plans have seen double-digit growth since 2015. Axios, which tracks membership data from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), reports that the largest organization in this category, Kaiser Permanente, grew 23 percent from 2015 to 2018, to almost 1.6 million members. The other 40 or so hospital- and Read More

NYC Transgender Program Offers Comprehensive, Customized Care

Joshua D. Safer, MD, FACP, an endocrinologist and the executive director of the Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery at Mount Sinai Health System

Approximately 0.6 percent (about 1.4 million) of American adults identify as transgender, according to a report from the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. Like all people, transgender individuals — people who have a gender identity or expression that differs from their assigned sex at birth — need access to health care. Many Read More

Ascension’s Nick Ragone Supports the Community at All Levels

Health care organizations play an important role in their communities that goes beyond providing health care services within the four walls of a hospital, clinic, or urgent care center. Outreach and community-based programs target specific populations to improve health and quality of life with a goal of keeping people out of the hospital. At Ascension, Read More

Alexa Is Now HIPAA-Compliant. It’s a Game-Changer.

Charles Gaddy, director of mHealth at Atrium Health

“Alexa, what is rotator cuff tendinitis?” “Alexa, where’s the nearest urgent care center?” “Alexa, what’s my glucose level?” Amazon’s voice assistant can now answer all these questions through the new HIPAA-compliant Alexa Skills Kit for developers. The new kit enables developers at medical organizations to build Alexa skills capable of transferring and receiving protected health Read More

A Physician Communication System Doctors Actually Like — and Use

Hackensack Meridian Health Logo

Your communications team works hard to produce content that engages physicians. The problem is that your clinicians may completely ignore it. How do you get them to pay attention? Recruiting, retaining, and communicating effectively with your attending physicians affects everything from patient satisfaction and operating costs to hospital reputation and safety. As health care networks Read More

The One Vital Element Your Messaging Must Include

Ross K. Goldberg is president of Kevin/Ross Public Relations

“Many of the people practicing health care public relations or marketing communications owe their educational roots to journalism school where they were taught, in no uncertain terms, that the elements of a good story are found in the five W’s,” says Ross K. Goldberg, president of Kevin/Ross Public Relations and a member of the SHCM Read More

A New Advertising Twist: What the Patients Do for Us

Joshua Cowen, vice president for strategy and communications, Adventist Health

“[A]s part of an ongoing rebranding effort, Adventist Health in Roseville, California has found a powerful technique for getting across a message of caring,” writes SHCM contributor and veteran copywriter Peter Hochstein. “Notably, the subject of the advertising is neither the hospital, nor the technology, nor what the doctors and staff do for the patients. Instead, Read More

The “Retailization” of Health Care: Patients Take Charge

Lindsay Resnick

“With today’s constant stream of digital health tools, it’s never been easier or faster for customers to take charge,” says Lindsay Resnick, executive vice president of Wunderman Thompson Health. “They’re following a path to care where they feel important and are treated well — and they’ll avoid hospitals that fall short.” Here’s an excerpt from Read More

Population Health: Fighting Misinformation About Vaccines

Charlotte Moser, research scientist, Children’s Hospital of Phildelphia

Measles cases are on the rise. All six regions of the World Health Organization (WHO) are experiencing large outbreaks of measles. In the U.S., health officials recorded 1,109 new cases of measles in 30 states in the first six months of 2019, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s the greatest number Read More

Pulse Nightclub Shooting: Orlando Health’s Lessons Learned

Kena Lewis, APR, director, public affairs and media relations, Orlando Health

In the wake of three shootings in Texas and Ohio in August and September, Strategic Health Care Marketing reached out to Kena Lewis, APR, director, public affairs and media relations at Orlando Health in Orlando, Florida. Lewis managed communications after the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting that killed 49 and wounded more than 50. We asked Read More

Think Like a Hacker To Outsmart Your Competition


“Faced with competitors who may have bigger marketing budgets and more resources, many health care marketers feel powerless in the battle for market growth,” says Jessica Walker, founder and CEO of Care Sherpa. “Thinking like a hacker may help you outsmart the competition. Five proven hacks for market share growth require little to no money Read More

Kaiser Permanente Launches New Social Health Network

Loel Solomon, PhD, vice president of community health at Kaiser Permanente

Treating illness is important, but that is only a part of overall health. Social determinants of health (SDoH) — the conditions under which people are born, live, and work — are increasingly recognized as strong influences on health. Conditions like poverty, education level, and lack of social support contribute to more than half of premature Read More

Telemedicine Can Solve Access Issues and Boost Market Share

Are your providers losing patients because of access issues? A robust telemedicine program that offers convenient care for patients is one way to protect market share. Our new article by Marcia Simon, APR, explores how telemedicine brings subspecialties to outlying communities. Here’s an excerpt: Most of Gundersen Health System’s patients live at least 25 miles Read More

How To Attract and Retain Top Nursing Talent

Kathy Selker, President, Northlich

Facing a nursing shortage projected to increase in coming years, hospitals need to know how to hire and retain top talent — and marketing has a key role in this critical objective. Here’s an excerpt from Kathy Selker‘s new article for us on this topic; Selker is the president and CEO of Northlich. Health care needs Read More

Optimal Marketing Enables the Right Provider Match

“Marketers charged with leading their health systems into the new era of consumerism understand the hard truth about regional markets: They are a zero-sum game,” says Tom White, CEO of Phynd Technologies. Here’s an excerpt from White’s new article for Strategic Health Care Marketing: Marketers and business teams must create and market new networks to Read More

Case Study: How One Hospital Survived a Ransomware Attack

The evening of January 11, 2018, Steve Long, president and CEO of Hancock Health and Hancock Regional Hospital, got a call he’s not likely to soon forget. “Our administrator on call had received a call from the lab. They said there is something wrong with our computers,” says Long. Not long after, the nursing staff Read More

High-Tech Care Delivery Plus High-Touch Human Interaction

Ed Rafalski, senior vice president and chief strategy and marketing officer at BayCare Health System

Consumerism is driving all industries to innovate, and health care is no exception. The ideal state is a digitally enabled, frictionless consumer experience. But in a highly complex industry like health care that has traditionally operated with a command-and-control vs. consumer-centric mindset, it’s a massive change. Adding to the cultural challenges, the pain points on Read More

Consumerism: 9 Factors Reshaping the Health Care Landscape

“Health consumerism continues to revolutionize the health care industry,” says Ken Robbins, founder and president of Response Mine Interactive (RMI). “The days when patients blindly followed their doctors’ recommendations — often without a single question asked — are long gone. Today, physicians and health care organizations face a much more engaged and empowered population. Patients are playing Read More

A High-Touch Health Care Marketing Success Story

Terri Hanlon-Bremer, vice president of employer solutions, TriHealth

“In the occupational medicine business, quality service delivery is the differentiator,” says Terri Hanlon-Bremer, vice president of employer solutions at TriHealth in Cincinnati. “If a company is not happy with your service, they will quickly change to another provider.” Health care marketers are always looking for new ways to reach consumers through social media platforms, Read More

How To Stand Out in a Crowded Subspecialty

Mark Kriegsman, senior director of marketing communications and strategy, Orthopaedic Institute for Children

Pediatric hospitals and other facilities that treat children face a number of marketing challenges that health providers treating adults do not face. The two most significant barriers health care marketers must overcome are that they are marketing to parents, not the actual potential patient, and that parents do not want to think about children being Read More

How To Land Top Talent in a Hot Job Market

Marc Cenedella, founder and CEO of Ladders

When Strategic Health Care Marketing caught up with Marc Cenedella, founder and CEO of Ladders, a popular high-end career website, he reiterated what we first heard last spring: “It’s the greatest market in 50 years.” “Job candidates don’t have the time of day,” he says. “They’re very busy. People have three or four conversations going, Read More

Edward M. Rafalski and Kathy Selker Join Editorial Advisory Board of Strategic Health Care Marketing

Ed Rafalski and Kathy Selker

The Strategic Health Care Marketing Editorial Advisory Board is made up of leaders in the health care marketing field who are committed to shaping the future of the industry. They offer ongoing feedback on our editorial coverage, write occasional articles, and point us to developments and people SHCM members like you should know about. I am very pleased to announce that Edward M. Rafalski, Ph.D., MPH, FACHE, and Kathy Selker have joined this elite group.

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