Valuable Health Care Marketing Lessons From a State-Based Insurance Exchange

June 22, 2016
Andrea Ravitz, Director of Marketing for Access Health CT

Andrea Ravitz, Director of Marketing for Access Health CT

Health care marketers often look to their peers for examples to help guide their efforts to bring people in to access their programs or services.

But when Access Health CT (Connecticut’s state-run health exchange) came into being in 2012 to serve as a statewide exchange making affordable health care accessible for qualified individuals and businesses through Obamacare, it was leading the way in uncharted territory. With no clear path to follow, the organization had to make things up as it went along.

Now with three years of enrollments under its belt, Access Health CT is being hailed by many experts as an exceptional model of how to get things done right. It has signed up record numbers of individuals on private insurance (providers include Anthem, ConnectiCare Benefits Inc., UnitedHealthcare, and HealthyCT) and it has also been able to transition from the federal grants initially provided to launch the operations to become fully self-sufficient through insurance plan assessments that are passed on to consumers.

In fact, with so much to celebrate in the Constitution State, others can learn from how Access Health CT approaches the tasks of attracting new members and also retaining existing ones.

“People always ask us what our secret is for being so successful,” says Andrea Ravitz, the Director of Marketing for Access Health CT. “It was and has always been our staff and how committed they are to making a difference in people’s lives.”

She explains that when she took on the marketing director position close to a year ago, they had enough member data to make better decisions in all of their functional areas.

“I tell people that part of our success is that we had a website that worked from the beginning,” she says, adding that the federal website and some of the other state websites had problems initially that made it difficult for people to get information or enroll. Making a significant investment in a strong system platform really set Connecticut apart right from the onset.

Partnering is also key for Access Health CT. “Amazing external partners,” she says, help to attract a diverse audience and spread the message more broadly. In addition, using brokers to help enroll participants improves efficiency. The organization was able to work with hundreds of certified insurance brokers around the state that were responsible for 40 percent of the enrollees in 2016.

For more on the secrets to Access Health CT’s success—including the size of the initial marketing budget and clever ways the organization has managed to think outside the box with its advertising and customer support strategies—read the full article now: Covering New Ground: How Access Health CT Carved Inroads in Uncharted Territory.

Best regards,
Matt Humphrey

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