How Healthcare IT can Increase Member Engagement
When using the term healthcare IT, you’re typically discussing how IT affects healthcare. This includes biotechnology, clinical research, healthcare provider systems, health insurance and other healthcare organizations. In this article, however, we’re focusing primarily on healthcare organizations. That is non-governmental organizations, insurers and healthcare providers. The benefits of healthcare IT, in this case, are huge. They improve things for patients, providers, the organization’s employees as well as for the healthcare organization implementing such IT systems.
How IT affects healthcare organizations
Insurers and healthcare organizations across the globe are starting to recognize the massive potential of information technology. Not just insurers and healthcare providers, but all kinds of healthcare-related companies and non-profit organizations.
While “Healthcare IT” can refer to any implantation of IT in a healthcare setting, we’re using the term in a limited sense here. When we talk about IT in healthcare organizations, we’re primarily discussing three major aspects of utilizing IT to improve your organization.
Firstly, Healthcare IT can be about utilizing technology in the organizational aspects
This means using IT to better manage employees, tasks, and business. When your organization is better managed it ultimately benefits your patients or partners.
Secondly, Healthcare IT can be about improving member engagement through better tracking
The primary way of using technology to improve member engagement is by organizing patient, provider or partner data and information.
This can include implementing great CRM-like systems to track patient or partner information. You can also use this kind of software to schedule meetings or events. With a good system, you can keep a tab on all the communication channels preferred by your members.
This includes keeping track of their phone numbers, emails, cellphones and more. But it also includes understanding if they prefer communication over a text message or as an announcement over a customer portal
All of this is true whether you’re an organization that has practitioners as “members”, or an insurer and the patients are your “members”. Whatever your scenario, good software solutions can help you with improving member engagement in this way.
Thirdly and increasingly, Healthcare IT is about creating member engagement through information accessibility
Healthcare organizations should be aware that information accessibility shouldn’t be a luxury. Access to information should be a basic commodity. Even information technology itself is nowadays considered a basic commodity as well.
In fact, information technology can be your primary fuel for attaining your goals. Most of your existing and potential members are already using IT, so half the job is already done. It’s your turn to jump on the bandwagon and engage with your members, both existing and potential ones.
Member engagement and maintaining an online brand
The business domain in which organizations or businesses operate doesn’t make a big difference. It’s a fact that all serious organizations are aware of the significance of online presence. An especially relevant factor in building and sustaining your online presence is your brand personality.
Online presence can be achieved by setting up a quality website linked to relevant social media channels. However, your brand personality represents the human characteristics behind your brand. Therefore, online presence and brand personality have a huge impact on how your audience recognizes and relates to your brand.
Content and information pool
Any healthcare provider can benefit from producing, publishing and sharing content with their audience. The content can range from information about a particular product, service details or just general information.
As long as it’s relevant to the domain in which you operate, it’s valuable. Quality content largely contributes to building an online presence, too. Any interesting and informative article is likely to engage your audience and be shared over and over again.
Engagement via education
Your content should provide strong guidance for your audience. IT provides a myriad of ways for healthcare organizations to increase member engagement via education. Healthcare IT has many ways to stimulate engagement simply by educating your audience. Online tests, quizzes, polls or even sharing updates on relevant scientific research can help.
Building a community
The information age offers a wide range of ways to engage with your audience by building a community. A virtual community is a platform where people can interact and share their experiences online. Even your social media pages can be considered a community. Additionally, you can even create an online forum or message board on your website. Promoting your seminars and live events online can also contribute towards building a community.
Fostering ongoing engagement
Communication is the absolute best way to increase member engagement and create strong relationships. It’s not only about presenting your organization’s point of view, but interacting with the audience too. You have to show your members that you care by being present, supplying information and addressing their concerns. Make sure that your audience sees your respect and recognition for your members.
The relationship between customer engagement and loyalty is the key to your success. Elevated engagement rates help create mutually valuable, long-standing relationships. Member engagement helps cultivate loyalty. And loyalty is crucial for any organization in the healthcare industry. Besides, you should never underestimate the fact that loyal and content members can easily bring you more members through referrals.
Qualities of an effective member engagement plan
A modern it-based member engagement plan offers many benefits. Healthcare organizations that maintain an online presence have more member engagement opportunities. These organizations see better results than those who cling to traditional promotional methods.
All organizations involved in healthcare should be aware that they’re operating in a field that can particularly benefit from online member engagement. It doesn’t matter if it’s insurance plans, general healthcare or a particular problem people might want to know about. When it comes to a sensitive subject such as health, most people nowadays would rather inquire about it online.
An effective IT-based member engagement can do a lot for your organization. There are countless benefits of implementing such a strategy, regardless of whether you’re a newbie or a pioneer in your area. A solid it-based member engagement plan will help generate more members and spread the word about your organization.
Again, in this case, “the members” might be your patients, insurance holders, providers, or partners. Depending on the type of healthcare organization that you’re running.
These are the main qualities to focus on
Raise awareness – Your member engagement plan will help get the word out about your organization.
Trigger interest – Investing in member engagement will definitely trigger your audience’s interest. You will see a rise in the number of people interested in the products and services you offer.
Inform and educate – A good member engagement plan will help you show your audience that you’re here to answer any questions they might have.
Procure interest and consideration – Over time, member engagement will result in increased interest. It won’t be long before people express a real consideration towards using your products.
Enlist and enroll members – Once you make the effort to engage your audience, it will be a lot easier to enlist new members.
Retain new members – Member engagement doesn’t work only towards gaining new members. Keeping existing members enrolled in your organization’s plans is just as important.
Introduce quality IT implementations in your healthcare organization
If you still haven’t introduced a quality healthcare IT strategy, the time to do so is now. IT can positively contribute to your healthcare organization in countless ways. It doesn’t make any difference if you operate a clinic or sell medical insurance plans. Healthcare IT can do wonders for member engagement.
You may introduce IT solutions as a way of improving your productivity, or as a way to improve member engagement. If you’re smart you will probably do both. We can help you achieve both.