Sunday, April 14, 2013

Who are the new healthcare paparazzi?

Well, I don't know about you, but it's just a matter of time before the evolving healthcare consumer lets lose the barrage. It can be patients, doctors, employers, payers. Really anyone that has Internet access can participate in Customer Generated Media (CGM). It can be a great unknown. It can be helpful. It can be harmful. It can be your best friend, or your worse nightmare. It has the power to influence thousands, if not millions in this mobile social media aware society we live in. CGM can make your brand the greatest on the earth. It can send you to the ash heap of history.

Anybody can blog.

Anybody can do a video.

Anybody can start an email campaign.

Anybody can create a facebook page, web site or tweet.

And anything they say or do has the chance to go viral.

Sorry to say this, but not everyone thinks you doing the great job that you think you are.

If your marketing department is not monitoring CGM and your patient experience from a brand perspective, then you and your hospital, health system, home health care agency, infusion center, specialty pharmacy, payer, physician practices, or any healthcare organization is at risk. People are no longer afraid any longer to say things publically.

It means that in the age of the Internet, disgruntled consumers and patients, unhappy employees, media, anybody, can opinionate about their experiences, post photos, interviews and show to the world how good or bad you are. And by the time you react the damage is done. Have you seen any of those YouTube computer animated videos that slam hospital pretty hard with humor? They are really easy to do an cheap. All you need is to be able to wrote a legible sentence and away you go. Here's one to look at, An ACO Administrator and Patient Dialogue About Being in an ACO.

Anyone with a computer and Internet connection can create CGM. Doesn’t matter if what is written is true or false. The world doesn’t care. And those who see it, hear it, or read it will believe it.

If you don’t know what your consumers are saying about you or your competition for that matter you are losing control of your brand.

You operate in a virtual marketplace where healthcare consumers know more than about you than you realize.

You lose in a customer/patient driven fast-break. Disgruntled consumer creates Consumer Generated Media, and is picked up by mass media- print and electronic. It goes viral. You won’t even know what hit you.

Monitor CGM like you do your competitors and you can possibly prevent being a victim, limit potential damage and improve the healthcare consumer or patient experience in the process.

Welcome to the age where healthcare consumers and patients are the new paparazzi.

Michael J. Krivich, MHA, FACHE, PCM, is an internationally followed healthcare marketing blogger with over 5,000 monthly pages views read in over 52 countries worldwide on Healthcare Marketing Matters. These views are my own. He is founder of the michael J group, a Fellow, American College of Healthcare Executives and a Professional Certified Marketer, American Marketing Association. Like us on facebook at the michael J group, and connect with me on LinkedIn, Twitter and Pheed.

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