GreyMatters 2018

3 “Musts” for Improved Customer Service in 2018

customer-serviceAs the customer journey becomes more and more intertwined with social media, marketers are working to focus more on customer retention. The 2017-2018 Garner CMO Spend Survey found that marketers will devote more effort on existing customers and that existing customers will soon be the primary focus for marketers.

But not only will marketers be working to serve their current customers, they will also be looking for the best means to measure ROI.

So what should marketers focus on in 2018? Here are three musts:

  • All customer touch points should be owned. Even though marketers are not responsible for all customer touch points, their efforts are affected by all of them. Marketers must not only know all the touch points, but also how the touch points influence customer experience.
  • Existing customers should get your best efforts. Yes, you want new customers, but the things that will attract new customers—personalization, consistency with interactions, prompt attention to customer needs, etc.—are also the things that will help to retain existing customers. Work to create loyalty and advocacy from your existing customer base.
  • Use metrics that matter. You can’t just depend on metrics that look at your entire customer base. You must look at the behavior of individual customers in order to meet their expectations. By assessing individual interactions at every step along the way, you can gather sufficient data to give you a more complete picture of the entire customer journey.

2018 is the year to focus on your existing customers, who can be your organization’s most credible advocates or your most harmful critics.

What Types of Content Do Different Age Groups Prefer?

contentA recent survey provides some insight into the types of content preferred by various age groups. It turns out that there are some significant differences among age groups that marketers need to be aware of.

The survey, conducted by HubSpot, included just over 3,000 consumers from Colombia, Germany, Mexico, and the US. The survey respondents were 18 years old and older. In general, the survey found that younger consumers prefer video content and want more social content, while older consumers prefer email content. This information breaks down as follows:

  • Video: Over half of the respondents 54 years old and younger prefer to see videos from their favorite brands, while 47% of respondents older than 54 want to see more videos.
  • Emails: While 68% of consumers aged 55+ prefer emails from their favorite brands, only 22% of consumers ages 18-24 prefer emails.
  • Social images: The 18-24 year-old age group prefers social images from their favorite brands, as compared with just 20% from those 55+ years.
  • Text vs. video: Older consumers consider text content from their favorite brands to be more memorable than younger consumers, while consumers from all age groups find video content to be the most memorable content format. In addition, 65% of younger consumers (age 18-24) want to see more video content created in the future, while 59% of consumers age 55+ prefer to see more article content created.

When you create content at your organization, do you consider the age groups included in your audience? Do you measure how well your content is received by various age groups?

News Feed Changes From Facebook -- And How You Can Adapt

facebookJust when you think you’ve got your Facebook strategy figured out, they go and make yet another change to the news feed. How will the latest Facebook news feed change affect your organization? And what can you do about it?

In an announcement from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg last month, the social media platform stated a new emphasis on “better,” more meaningful uses of Facebook, brought about by promoting interactions between people, rather than between a person and a Page. For marketers, this means that Page reach is going to go down., because posts from business Pages with be downgraded in user feeds and posts from user friends and families will be boosted.

Facebook has not yet shared how or when this change will occur. But while we wait to see what happens, there are steps you can take to counteract the change.

  • Increase engagement. It is well known that video gets more interaction on Facebook than other types of posts. Using live video can generate increased discussion among Facebook users, and posts with a lot of discussion will show up higher in the news feed. Polls are another way to increase engagement with your page.
  • Ramp up brand ambassador efforts. Do you have friends or family members who volunteer with a nonprofit organization and who frequently share posts from the nonprofit and even generate their own posts about it? Business organizations can use this tack as well. Encourage employees to share posts about special events, new locations/services and other social content from your organization. When you sponsor or participate in an event, such as a health fair, fundraiser or other community event, get photos of your employees participating and share them on social media. Your employees will most likely share these on their pages as well. If you have social influencers that you use, consider working with them to create more social exposure.
  • Increase your social media arsenal. Is your organization on Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn or other platforms? While each of these platforms has a different focus and requires a somewhat different strategy, many organizations use some—or all—of them very effectively to promote their brand.
  • Pay to promote. We all want the most bang for our buck but organic reach will only take you so far. Sponsored posts and display advertising are paid options to consider. Facebook offers tools for targeting audiences, so you can tailor messages for specific campaigns.

Has your organization reconsidered its Facebook strategy in light of the upcoming changes? 

Introducing Greystone Strategic Partnerships

partnershipIn an effort to work and partner with vendors continuously throughout the year, Greystone is excited to begin offering our Strategic Partnership Program. This program will provide Healthcare vendors opportunities to increase business exposure to healthcare provider organizations, enhance business placement and showcase products and services year-round to a broad audience and not only on the exhibit hall floor.

Through this Strategic Partnership Program, various options to vendors include:

  • Ads in the HCIC Conference Brochure and the monthly GreyMatters e-newsletter
  • Sponsoring and presenting a Backstage Pass Webinar
  • Providing an article for the monthly GreyMatters e-newsletter
  • Bonus points towards HCIC exhibitor booth placement
  • Discounts on HCIC registration fee
  • Partnership in a white paper, case study or industry-specific survey

Currently there are four packages offering different levels of participation. However, if a package doesn’t quite fit what you’re looking for, please contact us as substitutions are available. For more information, please visit our website. You may also call us at 770-405-7670 or email Farrah Hunt Thompson at

Online Healthcare Reviews and HIPAA

reviewsEver since the University of Utah Health system paved the way with online physician reviews several years ago, more hospitals and health systems have seen the value of such a transparency effort and have initiated their own online reviews. Even if organizations do not offer reviews on their own sites, there are other options for online reviews. While other industries have been using online reviews for quite some time, such reviews are an entirely different matter in healthcare—due to HIPAA.

So how does a healthcare organization better serve its patients with online reviews while also adhering to HIPAA requirements?

  • Active reputation management is vital. Even if you aren’t currently using your own online reviews, people are still reviewing your organization elsewhere—social media, Healthgrades, Yelp and many others—so you should already be using a reputation management tool to look for negative reviews. If you don’t currently employ such a tool, look into it soon. The sooner you are aware of negative reviews and can address them appropriately, the better.
  • Encourage sharing of positive patient experiences. Whenever you are told of a positive patient experience, ask the person if he/she would be willing to share the experience online. They can do so anonymously. Such requests can be done programmatically with the Get Five Stars tool.
  • Handle negative reviews appropriately. You cannot acknowledge publicly that the complainant is/was a patient, nor can you give out any details of a specific incident publicly without violating HIPAA regulations.
    • If a negative review is posted, your initial response to the complainant should be via a private mode. Any public response should be something on the order of “Please contact us at [insert contact info] so that we can get more details about this.”
    • Carefully review the negative post to determine the poster’s intention.
      • Is the review of a mildly negative nature, with no real frustration or upset indicated?
      • Is the reviewer expressing real frustration or upset, but not threatening any action?
      • Is the reviewer angry and threatening legal action?

      In the first two instances, consider reaching out to the reviewer offline. However, it is best to avoid the third type without legal advice.

    • Investigate the incident internally. Talk with the staff members who were involved in the patient’s care. Review the medical record. Gather all the facts to determine what actually happened.
    • If the negative review was posted on an outside site, ask to have the negative review removed, especially if:
      • The reviewer was not the person involved but posted on behalf of someone else.
      • The reviewer did not use your services but is posting based on something else.
      • There were personal attacks on the staff, with derogatory or defamatory language or other personal attacks.
    • If you are able or willing to try to remedy the issue, reach out to the person offline.
    • If at all possible, have the physician involved reach out to the patient. This indicates that you are taking the person’s feedback seriously. Listen to what the person has to say.

How does your organization handle negative online reviews?

Speaking of HIPAA – Did You Know? 

For some time now, we’ve been hearing speculation about Amazon entering the healthcare industry in some manner. A recent development may be an indication that the online retail giant is indeed healthcare-bound.

Amazon recently posted a job listing on its website for a HIPAA Compliance Lead position. Posting details reveal that Amazon is looking for an “experienced HIPAA professional who will own and operate the security and compliance elements of a new initiative.” 

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