You’ve been on top of your HCAHPS scores since 2008. But are you paying attention to your reviews on Yelp? Often used to find restaurants, delivery or takeout, Yelp is a mobile phone app that posts crowd sourced reviews of many types of service organizations including hospitals. In fact there are 254 reviews of hospitals in the greater Indianapolis area. Highlights of information from medicare.gov such as Average ER Wait Time, Doctor Communication and Quiet Rooms may also be included in the Yelp postings.
So who is posting reviews? Looking over reviewer photos, Millennials, Baby Boomers, Gen X. They are posting about their own experience and of their parents and other family members. What was their path into the reviewed hospital? Most times, it was through the ER, but reviewers also commented on mammograms, maternity, and outpatient experiences. Why should this matter to you? Reviews are definitely a big part of consumer decision making, but are reviews important to your target users? It depends on the patient. World War II generation patients may not care about reviews on Yelp because they tend to use the hospital where their doctor has privileges. However, younger patients often rely heavily on reviews by peers.
So, do you know who your typical patients are?
Census information can give you information about who lives in your neighborhood. Chart reviews can reveal demographics of current or past users in specific departments. This information is valuable but does not point to the motivations of patients who are seeking care.
What are their attitudes towards their health?
Knowing more about your current and ideal patients can help in marketing efforts. You can target your promotion and health education materials with messages that appeal to these different types of consumers. More importantly, you can better serve your patient’s needs, be more patient-centered in your care.
It starts with research. You gather all the quantitative information you already have—patient satisfaction surveys, demographics, census data. The next step is actual patient conversations. From the patient point of view, what was their journey like?
Who are the persons taking the journey? Do they sort out into any groups? By health attitudes? Computer use? Age? Frequency of care? These groups are called personas. Do patients questions and needs vary with the different groups?
Once you map out the people and their characteristics, you can better understand their behavior, goals, and motivations for seeking care. Journey maps can be used for many purposes in efforts to provide the most compassionate patient experience:
At Collabo Creative we can help you research your initial patient’s journey, then train your team in on-going efforts to create a "Wow" customer experience.
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