Video: 3 Key Insights on Modern Healthcare Marketing with Ramon Soto of Northwell Health

by | Jun 4, 2021 | Healthcare Industry Insights | 0 comments

In this interview for our “3 Key Insights” video series, Northwell Health Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Ramon Soto shares his perspective on how healthcare marketing is evolving and what the largest health system in the metro New York market is doing to advance the discipline.

Northwell Health CMO Ramon SotoRamon Soto embod­ies the con­cept of mod­ern health­care mar­ket­ing, as a lead­ing voice for the 23-hos­pi­tal sys­tem that “runs towards the flames to keep New York­ers safe.” He actu­al­ly came up with the name when the sys­tem rebrand­ed six years ago.

In this overview of our con­ver­sa­tion for the “3 Key Insights” video series , find out how Ramon and his team lever­age mod­ern mar­ket­ing prin­ci­ples to engage the com­mu­ni­ty and dri­ve growth for the organization.

Key Insight #1: Modern healthcare marketing is patient‑centric.

From a brand­ing stand­point, North­well has real­ly tried to posi­tion itself as a des­ti­na­tion health­care part­ner for that long jour­ney. To do that means tak­ing a lit­tle bit of a dif­fer­ent per­spec­tive on the relationship.

Most health sys­tems think about the rela­tion­ship in terms of episodes of care. You see it in their adver­tis­ing that fea­tures won­der­ful tes­ti­mo­ni­als: “I got injured … I got ill … I went to this great place to see this fab­u­lous doc­tor … insert logo here.”

The oppor­tu­ni­ty is to reori­ent the rela­tion­ship and think over that entire jour­ney. That requires a dif­fer­ent per­spec­tive, it requires dif­fer­ent access to data and ana­lyt­ics, it requires a dif­fer­ent mind­set in terms of how we present our val­ue propo­si­tion in the marketplace.

That real­ly is the guid­ing prin­ci­ple in terms of how North­well tries to estab­lish rela­tion­ships with con­sumers well before the health event. That way, I’m not fight­ing for mind­share when you’re going through the health event and helps cre­ate a pre­dis­po­si­tion to use our services.

Key Insight #2: Modern healthcare marketing leverages technology.

Dur­ing COVID, neces­si­ty real­ly was the moth­er of all inven­tion. We need­ed to real­ly under­stand ear­ly warn­ing sys­tems to pre­dict vol­ume as at the peak of wave one, we had about 3,500 patients in beds — a mam­moth num­ber. We almost went over the top, quite frankly. It got kind of scary.

The health sys­tem went about build­ing ear­ly warn­ing sys­tems and as part of that process, we found that con­sumer behav­ior was chang­ing pret­ty dras­ti­cal­ly. Like with all things health­care, con­sumers were going to Dr. Google to self-edu­cate them­selves. We built a COVID dig­i­tal resource cen­ter that saw tremen­dous traf­fic as con­sumers were try­ing to fig­ure out: What’s hap­pen­ing to me? What’s hap­pen­ing to my fam­i­ly? Where am I going to go? It turns out that that search pat­tern of behav­ior pre­ced­ed actu­al inpa­tient utilization.

We built an AI-enabled algo­rithm to do two things: 1) opti­mize what con­sumers were search­ing for, build per­son­al­iza­tion and put the most per­ti­nent infor­ma­tion upfront as it was chang­ing in real-time and 2) on the back end, use the search behav­ior to actu­al­ly antic­i­pate inpa­tient volume.

We used that to give us about a two-week win­dow into the trend­ing of cas­es. It became invalu­able to pre­pare as a sys­tem. We also offered the code up for free to any health sys­tem that want­ed to uti­lize it across the country.

This is impor­tant because it illus­trates what con­sumers do, gives won­der­ful insights into how you can take the jour­ney with them and pro­vide more val­ue to them at real­ly impor­tant points in their health­care con­sump­tion. It’s also an exam­ple of the phi­los­o­phy we have on the impor­tance of data and tech­nol­o­gy to enable those journeys.

Key Insight #3: Modern healthcare marketing is data-driven.

Health­care needs to be a stu­dent of oth­er con­sumer-cen­tric indus­tries and how they nav­i­gate inter­ac­tions with consumers—and I use the con­sumer word very purposefully.

For exam­ple, if you were a dig­i­tal retail­er, and some­one comes on your site and puts a prod­uct in their cart but did not buy, there’s a lot of infor­ma­tion there. In the same way, if a con­sumer comes to your web­site and search­es a health­care cat­e­go­ry and sees a list­ing of physi­cians and clicks on one and doesn’t call you, there’s a lot of infor­ma­tion there.

A dig­i­tal-ori­ent­ed firm like Ama­zon would have a whole series of inter­ac­tions with you to get you to purchase—as you have now exhib­it­ed the high­est form of pur­chase intent. Health­care doesn’t do that. How do you close that gap? I think you close the gap by tak­ing a lit­tle bit more of a con­ver­sion mind­set to that inter­ac­tion. It requires dif­fer­ent tools and a dif­fer­ent approach to how you present the infor­ma­tion and pull con­sumers in.

I also think it’s a won­der­ful oppor­tu­ni­ty to make that search process much more tai­lored and more personalized.

Watch the full interview

Get more insights to inspire your mar­ket­ing strat­e­gy in our 15-minute con­ver­sa­tion with North­well Health Chief Mar­ket­ing and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Offi­cer Ramon Soto.

Let’s Modernize Your Healthcare Marketing Plan

Our team of health­care mar­ket­ing experts under­stands how to engage con­sumers and dri­ve growth for your ser­vice lines. 

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