Americans today are seeking more healthcare knowledge and information outside of the doctor’s office. For example, according to a study by TeleVox and Kelton Research, 83% of Americans don’t follow treatment plans given by their doctors exactly as prescribed and almost half feel they would follow these plans if they received encouragement and coaching between visits. Even when patients are seeking more interaction, 50% of healthcare professionals believe their job begins and ends during regular office visits.
While 2015 is already well on its way, what is the future of patient engagement in healthcare? How can we keep patients engaged with your hospital’s brand when they are not at the doctor’s office?
- Optimize for mobile search. Search volume for hospital search terms only continues to expand – queries grew 9% year-over-year in Q2 2014 and mobile grew nearly 33%.
- Engage young adults. This group may not represent the largest segment of your hospital’s patient population, but they are the patients and caregivers of tomorrow. Start building loyalty and community via social media. In fact, 90% of adults 18-24 say they would trust medical information shared by others in their social networks. Give young adults something worth sharing, because fostering trust at an early age is paramount.
- Create content that matters. Patients trust healthcare content that comes directly from doctors and nurses. But how can you get this busy group to help you write? Increasingly, doctors see social media as an extension of their job (87% under the age of 56), so find those rock stars within the company and continue to curate/recycle the most valuable & relevant content.
- Don’t overlook LinkedIn. Far more than a resume site, LinkedIn is a powerful platform that savvy hospitals are using to connect with thousands of health care professionals across the country. Other hospitals/health systems have joined and started to build an engaged following amongst employees and patients.
Patient engagement is essential to creating brand ambassadors and establishing loyalty. For more information on how to get started with the above tips, check out our new guide on “The Future of Patient Engagement.”