Let's Give Them Something to Talk About

October 24th, 2011

When it comes to health care, moms are one of the most coveted audiences. And with good reason: they control the majority of health care decisions. According to BabyCenter.com, 93 percent of moms manage the health and wellbeing of the entire household – from their own to their spouse’s, children’s and elderly parents’.

Moms are also among the most wired consumers. They’re adopting smartphone technology at a faster pace than men and are the fastest-growing buyers of iPhones, according to NPD. There are more than 32 million moms online, and more than nine in 10 moms are using Facebook (93 percent) and email (91 percent) to communicate. Thirty six percent of them use Twitter, and 34 percent have a personal blog, as cited in a study by Lucid Marketing. Whether it’s while unwinding with their laptops after the kids are in bed or waiting in the car pool line, moms are engaging online at every opportunity.

That means that health care marketers continue to search for more ways to use technology to leverage this valuable segment of their businesses. Health care organizations are formulating social media strategies, reaching out to mommy bloggers, creating email campaigns with content they hope moms will use and share, and developing ways for moms to share their personal health care experiences with others through videos and photos – all in an effort to create deeper connections with this extremely influential audience.
There are plenty of health care organizations effectively incorporating online tactics. However, the best way to engage moms online might just be through a very offline strategy. If you want moms to share real, compelling information about your brand of health care, you have to give them something to talk about. You have to make their experience something unexpected and amazing.

I’ll give you a recent example. My pediatrician’s office recently rolled out an online portal where parents can access their childrens’ medical records. I can view and print immunization records, check their appointment history and send messages to their pediatrician. While that’s pretty cool in and of itself, what made it even better was that they brought a net book into the room during my daughter’s checkup, explained the system and had me sign up right then and there. I got an automatic email reminding me how to access the service later. I have probably told 20 people about this experience – some online, some in person. They provided something with a level of service that was beyond what I expected, which compelled me to tell others. I’ve since had several friends become patients of
these pediatricians.

It’s not easy to create these experiences. It takes time, training and a commitment from every employee to ensure that the experience is delivered flawlessly and consistently. But it’s worth it when you create something so influential that moms share in a far more impactful and credible way than most marketing efforts could ever do.

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