Millennials Beginning to Drive Health Care Marketing

Reputation Management More Important Than Ever

Last week’s blog discussed the growing influence of Millennials on health care marketing and the importance of having a mobile-optimized site that delivers lightning-quick consumer interactions. This week we’ll delve into another aspect of consumer interactions that requires lightning quickness—management of your brand’s reputation.

Whether due to heavy online social media use or a lack of trust for health care websites, young adults are driven by collecting as much data as possible before making their health care decisions. Hospital and clinic websites just aren’t enough for this information-obsessed demographic. This generation demands information that’s shared by its peers and those with similar experiences. Gauging a brand’s reputation and experiences of real patients is an integral part of the decision-making process. The importance of peer-review sites (Rate MDs, Vitals, Healthgrades, etc.), is not news for the industry, nor is it exclusive to Millennials, but managing these sites and other reputation outlets is more important than ever. Millennials rely heavily on them. Dedicating staff to monitor online discussion forums, health systems’ social media pages and blogs plays a major role in understanding these patients’ conversations and the ins and outs of the brand’s reputation.

It’s also crucial for hospitals and clinics to provide easy access to their own metrics and physician reviews. Whether these are posted on their websites or on a different, easily-accessible space online, transparency encourages a level of trust, while helping the target obtain as much information as possible. Making those metrics and reviews easy-to-share is all the better and allows the peer-to-peer information-sharing to come full circle.

Given their size and spending influence, few consumer industries can ignore Millennials and their current and future impact. The health care industry is no different. As young adults grow, start their own families and become an even larger influence on the consumer landscape, they will drive health care organization’s business strategies. We must work to understand them, partner with them, and make the changes they need to build long-term relationships with their health care providers.