As the traditional limits of healthcare marketing expand into the digital space, there are more opportunities to be creative and engaging. That’s what makes an event like the recent two-day New England Society for Healthcare Communications (NESHCo) conference so important for our industry.

Exchanging trends and sharing results in a time when more ideas are being embraced and marketing investment outcomes are more measureable will continue moving the industry forward. Here are three timely presentations that really resonated with us.

1. Making Every Moment Matter When Delivering Customer Experience

There are numerous “little moments” of care in the delivery of healthcare. To improve employee engagement and the patient experience, Hartford HealthCare launched “Every Moment Matters”, an internal employee campaign aimed at making moments like these come to life. The campaign integrated digital tactics and large-format graphics into internal communications to make employees feel recognized and let patients know there are caring, compassionate staff members at every turn.

Consider these facts when evaluating the importance of this initiative:

  • 82% of healthcare consumers expect an exceptional experience.
  • Patient satisfaction starts with an engaged workforce.
  • It takes 12 positive experiences to make up for one bad one.
  • The lifetime value of a patient is $1,400,000.

The five critical steps of implementing an internal employee program include:

  • Conduct input sessions, interviews and surveys with stakeholders from leadership, HR and marketing to ensure a shared vision.
  • Conduct an audit of all internal messaging through focus groups, surveys and “listening tours” to evaluate needs and opportunities.
  • Discover what is true about your organization, evaluate what attributes are relevant to your audience and determine what is unique in the marketplace.
  • Execute your campaign by developing a nomination process and leveraging all possible channels.
  • Evolve from “campaign” to culture.

Presented by Amanda Nappi (Hartford HealthCare) and Reem Nouh (Adams & Knight)

2. Jumpstart Your Physician Communications to Drive Relationships and Referrals

With the right content, media mix and frequency, hospitals can create effective physician communications that strengthen relationships, drive more referrals and retain talent. Develop your physician content strategy by conducting your own physician research to learn what types of content, delivery and frequency work with each of your physician audiences.

Start by understanding the information that providers most value, including:

  • CME information
  • Case studies
  • New programs and capabilities
  • Patient stories
  • Resources for referring providers

Here are the channels of communication medical staff prefer for system provider-focused publications:

  • 75% prefer email and 25% prefer print.
  • A strong majority prefer consistent monthly frequency; a smaller segment prefer quarterly distribution.
  • They are less likely than other staff to check the hospital’s intranet on a daily basis for new information.

Here are the channels of communication referring physicians prefer for system provider-focused publications:

  • They respond best to multi-faceted communication approaches, including introductory visits to their offices by specialists, on-site CME programs, peer networking and new technology updates.
  • They value regularly-scheduled newsletters sent via email and/or printed publication.
  • They prefer that messaging be combined in a single publication rather than be sent piecemeal.
  • The majority prefer a publication on a quarterly basis, with the remaining physicians equally spilt between 6x and 3x frequencies.

Presented by Emily Cittadine (GLC)

3. Learn from These Healthcare Website Redesign Tips

Website redesigns are a hot topic. Sixty-eight percent of hospitals surveyed either just completed a web design in the last year, are currently in progress or are in the planning stages.

The results can be striking. After their new website launched, Sturdy Memorial’s annual organic search traffic increased by 199%, their web traffic increased by 116% and their mobile traffic increased by 220%.

With digital marketing and technology moving at such a fast pace, expectations for web experience are now set outside healthcare.

The most common goals cited for a website redesign are:

  • Increase consumer engagement and patient recruitment
  • Improve patient satisfaction
  • Highlight providers
  • Need for responsive design
  • Enable content management
  • Microsite consolidation
  • Improve navigation


  • Establish and document your strategic goals in advance. Use your current metrics in this process.
  • Everything starts with content. It’s the “secret sauce”.
  • Position providers as experts. One approach that works is to find service line clinical studies and then get doctors to make comments.
  • Look at what other hospitals are doing and call them. Explore general website trends.
  • Make the website redesign the #1 marketing priority.
  • Engage key stakeholders for input.
  • Keep the internal web development team small.

Presented by Ben Dillon (Geonetric), Patrick Kane (Cape Cod Healthcare), Rowan Muelling-Auer (Rutland Regional Medical Center) and Chelsey Boyle (Sturdy Memorial Hospital)