The Rise of Consumerism in American Healthcare

There was a time in America when most physicians opened private practices after residency. But today, due to market forces and shifting attitudes, more than half of new doctors are opting to work for hospitals and large managed health systems, instead. Society, personal habits and patient expectations have also changed in recent years, and that has led to a dramatic rise in healthcare consumerism…

Today, powerful market and economic forces, the PPACA, new technology and the Internet have led to a dramatic rise in healthcare consumerism. More than 80 percent of American adults now routinely search for health information and care providers on the Internet. More healthcare consumers read and write reviews and comparison-shop services, delivery and price models on their computers, tablets and mobile smartphones.

The Art of Winning Over Healthcare Consumers

A dramatically altered healthcare landscape and heightened consumer awareness have merged to create an unprecedented opportunity for America’s 685,000* non-government practicing physicians (*AMA estimate) to gain market share – new patients – while giving their current patients a vastly superior healthcare experience.

The main problem is that most physician-owned private practices have not effectively marketed their advantages, differentiators and benefits because most simply have too many other issues and administrative responsibilities to focus on and little or no healthcare marketing support.

Ask Yourself These Critical Questions

Where are your patients coming from now? Does your practice have a good reputation online and a strong online presence? Are you attracting the referrals and case types you want? Are you and your physician colleagues doing as well financially and professionally as they want? Is your staff consistently delivering excellent customer service?

The Rise of Consumerism in American Healthcare

With the right marketing support, you can boost your new patient growth, referrals, preferred case types, case volume and profits. The right healthcare marketing tools can help you win over consumers and precisely those new patients you want. Determining which tools and healthcare marketing strategies are best for your practice begins with a holistic analysis of your brand, market strengths, advantages, patient benefits and differentiators.

Branding and Differentiation Distinguish Your Practice

In its simplest terms, branding is having a consistent look and feel to your patient education, communications and healthcare marketing materials and the way you represent your practice to the world – from your local community to the Internet community. Differentiation is the combination of your brand and unique messaging that helps a healthcare consumer clearly distinguish your practice from competitors. That’s key to successful marketing in healthcare.

Your Online Presence is Your New Patient Portal

Does your website represent your brand and differentiation? Is it patient-friendly, mobile-ready and fully optimized so patients can find you easily online? How are you managing your online reputation? Are you leveraging your patient satisfaction and making effective use of patient testimonials and positive reviews in print messaging and online videos? Do you engage potential new patients through social media or blogs?

Is Your Staff Trained to Enhance Patient Satisfaction?

Patient satisfaction is also critical under PPACA. Does your staff understand their role in creating happy patients by consistently delivering excellent customer service? Do you have a trained physician liaison representing your practice out in the field to both current and new referral sources?

With so much to consider and so many marketing questions to answer, savvy practitioners turn to a trusted advisor for proper guidance. Your Practice Builders healthcare marketing consultant will be happy to recommend the most effective marketing strategies and tactics and help you put your practice on the path to greater success with today’s new breed of wired healthcare consumers.

The Rise of Consumerism in American Healthcare

Talk to a healthcare marketing consultant at Practice Builders to discover how we can help you build and maintain your practice and achieve your marketing goals. Just call 800.679.1200 or email and ask to speak with a marketing consultant.

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