In this transformation, there are best practices in consumer marketing that will better allow you to engage with individual customers.
Here are my top three keys to customer engagement in the new B2C healthcare environment:
1. Provide a great customer experience. Think beyond your website and use all your touch points with customers. Take Zappos: they align all aspects of their business to ensure a powerful customer experience, from their website to their call center. Zappos’ call center operatives are measured on customer satisfaction, not throughput, so they will stay on the phone as long as needed to help customers. Customers will need to have a positive experience with your product/service across all marketing, sales, and support channels.
2. Empower customer advocates. Word of mouth remains the top source of healthcare recommendations; and peers, brokers and physicians are the top three sources for these referrals. A strong customer experience will empower peers to be advocates. But don’t ignore the influence of brokers and physicians—will they always speak favorably of you?
At my most recent physical, I mentioned to my physician that I was working with a certain national insurance carrier; my physician then spent the next ten minutes ranting about the outdated fee schedule and difficulty in working with my client. If I were a typical consumer on the street, would I now select one of their products?
3. Give customers simple options. Putting lots of options in front of healthcare customers will overwhelm and complicate their ability to select the “best fit” plan. To ensure that the insurance decision-making process is a positive customer experience, keep the choices simple and easy to comprehend, limit the number of options, stay away from technical insurance vernacular, and provide guidance and reassurance to support the customer in making the right decision.
We can help you engage with new customers in the B2C world. Celerity’s Healthcare Practice works with organizations to become retail savvy by providing customer engagement strategies and technology solutions that will equip you to be a market leader in the evolving world of healthcare insurance.