Patient relationship management can sound intimidating to small- and mid-sized hospitals.
After all, if your hospital only has a handful of patients, why do you need a dedicated process or system to keep track of them?
A few spreadsheets and rules of thumb will do just fine for healthcare marketing.
But what happens when the business starts to boom?
At some point, the organization will need to implement a customer/patient contact management system that’s more organized and streamlined than a mass of spreadsheets.
And such a migration could be painful if the decision has been put off a few too many months, or even years.
The same holds good for hospital advertisers/providers too. Delivering high-quality patient care is the number one priority.
To achieve this healthcare providers, have to overcome various challenges of the market like

Same holds good for Healthcare marketers / providers too.  Delivering high quality patient care is the number one priority. To achieve this healthcare providers, have to overcome various challenges of the market like  

  • Fierce Competition
  • Changing Environment
  • High Expectations of customers of Healthcare
  • Customer has varieties of options
  • Excess of supply
We must acknowledge the very fact that “People buy when they are ready to buy” 
Major challenges in healthcare marketing     
  • Patient acquisition: How do I get more patients coming to my facilities?
  • Patient retention or Patient Engagement: How do I get my patients continuing to use my facilities?
  • Patient “win-back”: How do I bring back patients who haven’t used my facilities for some period?
  • New Movers: How do I attract prospective patients in my facility’s footprint?


As per a Microsoft report, when healthcare companies integrated a CRM with their EHR system, patient satisfaction increased by 18%.

The same report also reveals that the healthcare team productivity went up by 28% and return on investment was predicted at about 391% for the next 5 years.

ROI for healthcare with integrated CRM


In addition to providing quality care, healthcare organizations and medical marketing experts continue to search for ways to increase patient satisfaction and assist patients in proactively managing their overall health.
This is one reason why healthcare organizations are looking at how to leverage customer relationship management (CRM) applications to help their patients better plan and manage their healthcare interactions, costs, and benefits. 
Not only do patients want more visibility into their healthcare, but providers need better integration of their systems for administrative and patient interaction to coordinate patient care, services, and delivery. 
Patient Relationship Management (PRM) represents a healthcare version of customer relationship management (CRM). CRM facilitates interaction with current and future customers by leveraging information technology.
It helps hospital advertisers organize, automate, and coordinate sales activities, and supports healthcare marketing customer service, and technical support efforts.

A CRM/PRM tool will put all these platforms into one area — it will help cater to the patient's requirement through a single channel.
Expected growth and forecast for the healthcare industry
The global healthcare CRM market accounted for $7.27 billion in 2017. By 2026, the market is expected to reach $28.89 billion at a compounded annual rate of 16.6 percent as per the Healthcare CRM - Global Market Outlook (2017-2026) report.
In addition, CRM often uses social media to build customer relationships.
For example, many consumer organizations employ Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to track and communicate with customers and permit them to share their opinions and experiences with a company, products, and services.

With medical marketing to use unique digital strategies you can improve brand rankings.
As CRM is relatively new to healthcare providers, organizations must be careful in how they design their PRM programs.
Also, they need to identify clear goals and objectives for their programs and understand the options available to them to respond to patient feedback.
How CRM helps the healthcare sector
As healthcare providers adjust to an era where attracting and retaining patients matters, solidifying those relationships requires a strong feedback loop that links care delivered with patient-perceived value.
Although physicians historically did not focus on PRM or Patient Relationship Management are becoming a more important factor in managing a clinical practice.
Like hospitals, physicians understand that developing and maintaining a positive relationship with patients is critical to patient retention and referrals.

Besides, physicians realize that such positive relationships can impact clinical outcomes through better therapeutic adherence. 
New PRM data collection techniques that expand the size of the data set and reduce reporting bias help build reports that are respected by physicians.
Patient-consumers, trained by other industry CRM efforts to expect a close relationship between a product or service vendor and themselves, are beginning to expect a similar experience with their various healthcare providers. 

For organizations to track their performance and adjust nimbly to patient perceptions and needs, they require technology tools to secure actionable, timely information from patient-consumers.
For healthcare providers, the three key elements of CRM/ PRM are: 
  • Capturing data from across the organization and consolidating it into a database
  • Analyzing the database to determine the best marketing opportunities, the best targets for those opportunities, and the best ways to communicate with those targets. This can include marketing to:
  1. Patients
  2. Non-patient consumers
  3. Referring physicians
  4. Non-referring physicians
  • Identifying the return on investment from those campaigns 

 Healthcare and CRM


Benefits of CRM for healthcare marketing

  1. It improves the bottom line

A CRM/PRM program allows you to target your efforts on your most profitable customers (consumers or physicians) and people who "look like" your most profitable customers. 

For example, if you are promoting prostate screenings, CRM will allow you to target men who not only are most likely to need these services but will also be more profitable customers for you. 
CRM also can improve your bottom line by lowering marketing expenses. Since you know the best people to market to, what to market to them, and which communications channels to employ, you don't have to spend money marketing to others.

2. It is quantifiable

CRM allows you to track the return on investment of your programs. By using control groups (people you don't market to, but "look like" the people you do market to), you can measure the impact of the marketing campaign, and counter the objection that "they would have come anyway."

3. CRM acts as a perfect Patient Relationship Management tool (PRM)

It helps your hospital(and your brand) to have a connection with consumers and physicians. Your CRM program will enable you to send the right message to the right people at the right time, thereby allowing them to take better care of their health.
Programs such as these also can boost customer loyalty. This is true for consumers and physicians.
  • For consumers, for example, you can send women turning 40 a reminder to get a mammography. At the same time, you can offer an incentive, such as a discount coupon for multi-vitamin/ calcium tablets.
  • For physicians, you can offer special tours of new facilities, but only invite physicians who meet certain referral criteria.

4. It can help you achieve your mission by improving the health of your community

 This may seem counterintuitive, since you may be reducing the number of people to whom you are marketing. But think about it:

  • Through hospital advertisement & targeting, you are sending your messages to the people who most need the services
  • Improving the bottom line will free up resources for charity care and other initiatives to help you better serve your entire community.

Setting up a successful CRM program

So how do you go about setting up a successful CRM program? Here are the key steps. 

1. Executive endorsement

CRM touches every facet of the organization, not just marketing. IT support is essential. Finance needs to help analyze data to identify opportunities. And the medical staff needs to understand how they will be affected.
None of this is possible without a strong endorsement from the highest levels of the organization.

2. Involve the organization

After the C-suite endorses the initiative, implementing the CRM program should be driven by marketing.
But since the CRM program touches every aspect of the organization, the team that selects the CRM vendor should include the following:
  • Healthcare marketing (to spearhead the process)
  • IT (to deal with the data)
  • Finance (to ensure all assumptions on ROI, etc. are correct)
  • Physician relations (especially if marketing to physicians is a key strategy)
3. Interview CRM vendors

Look at CRM providers that understand healthcare, as opposed to "generalists."  
The CRM provider should offer:
  • A database specifically designed for healthcare
  • Built-in segmentation or modeling that can quickly target the right people for specific campaigns (the ideal target is likely to need the service and be profitable)
  • Reports that can easily answer all your questions, from targeting to tracking ROI
  • The staff that are healthcare CRM experts

4. Make your decision 

There are several excellent providers, but no one provider is the best choice for everybody. Here are the key steps:

Initial presentations at your location, focusing on how their solutions can meet your needs.
  • Compile all features and put together a matrix of all features, including pricing, so you can easily make comparisons. After all, since CRM is marketing based on analysis, the decision on which vendor to use should be based on a thorough analysis.
  • Check references.
  • Visit the finalists. Make sure you meet the person who will be your account manager. And go through a case study from beginning to end.
  • Make your decision. You will have a lot of information to make your decision. Trust your instincts.

5. Embrace HCRM

HCRM or health analytics and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platforms have been around for some time in hospital advertisements. It is both a technology and a strategy. HCRM:
  • Supports precision marketing and pinpoints targeted consumers who are more likely to require the service.
  • Make use of actionable intelligence to deliver personalized experiences
  • Build predictive models based on collected data
HCRM is so much more – it’s both a technology and a strategy. HCRM supports precision marketing by pinpointing the consumers in a market that are likely to need a health system’s services at a procedure level.
CRM is one of those things that once you have it and see what its capabilities are, it is impossible to go back to healthcare marketing. Without CRM, you are almost marketing with blinders on.


Healthcare and CRM

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