Healthcare in the No Normal Era
(Focused on CEO, CFO, COO audiences)
Since COVID-19 shuffled all the deck chairs in our lives, we’ve all been wondering one of two things: when will things go back to normal? Or, what will the new normal look like? Yet neither are on the immediate horizon. We are in the “No Normal,” and we should expect to stay in this No Normal period for some time. Five months, five years — we just don’t know. But we know what the No Normal means for us right now.
The No Normal began with challenges and will continue to require tough business decisions.
- In the No Normal, we watch hospitals struggle financially while payors reap the rewards of billions of dollars in deferred or avoided care.
- In the No Normal, hospitals scramble to fill their ORs, and the “missing domino” of patients avoiding doctors’ appointments and diagnostics will make those schedules even lighter 45 to 60 days later.
- In the No Normal, once-thriving physician practices operate at reduced capacity and look for partners to stave off bankruptcy.
But the No Normal also means change — which if we harness it right, could be for the better.
- In the No Normal, the healthcare system is no longer designed around physicians, refocusing wholly on patients and their protection.
- In the No Normal, telehealth is normalized, creating new access points and advancing our system in consumer experience and digital sophistication.
- And most importantly, in the No Normal, we talk openly about racial disparities in healthcare access and treatment approaches. We will no longer tolerate the inequities of the past.
The leaders will take the reins by considering several key fronts:
- First, health systems must take a hard look at what they want to stand for — and revisit messaging and brand voice accordingly (internally and externally).
- Second, health systems must consider their payor relations strategy and how contract renewals will be different now, including new terms around telehealth.
- Third, health systems must consider their M&A strategy — are they buyers or sellers? The market will undoubtedly continue to consolidate during the No Normal and beyond.
The session will share data, research, and insights that bolster these concepts and help bring them to life. We will also explore the strategies we’re seeing from current and future competitors – health plans, retail health players, and emerging competitors such as Wal-Mart, Amazon, and others. And we will spend some focused time on the latest negotiation and network strategies by the largest payors across the nation, since forewarned is forearmed.
The Healthcare Marketing Food Fight in the No Normal Era
(Focused on Chief Marketing Officers, Chief Strategy Officers, and Chief Transformation Officers)
Marketing clinical services have gotten a whole lot more complicated. Though it was never easy, there were some dependable factors that at least played in our favor as marketers. First, at some point in time, your competition was someone like you. They were health systems or medical groups. Second, they provided services similar to yours. Sure, maybe they were bigger or smaller. Or had different service line strengths and different footprints. But fundamentally, we knew the job to be done, and we were on a known — if not equal — playing field.
Then came along a proliferation of urgent care companies. And virtual care. And pharmacy clinics. We adjusted.
But what about today? Care delivery is as carved up as the food and restaurant industry. Everyone is fighting for the consumer meal in different ways — think grocery stores with takeout and curbside pickup, subscription services, restaurants via dine-in or new delivery companies like GrubHub or Postmates. Consumers have all kinds of choices to cater to their preferences, and the competitive lines are blurry at best. Which brings us back to care delivery and marketing clinical services.
Who is delivering the care? How are they delivering it? What type of care are they delivering? And who are they delivering it to? The answers to those questions today are much different from what they were not too long ago. And the deck of cards gets shuffled with each answer. The possibilities are staggering. Whether you’re a large health system, a standalone hospital, or a specialized care provider, it’s time to assess the situation. Here are three critical elements to consider:
1. Dissect the competition.
Be thorough and detailed. Examine what others are doing today and what they are likely to be doing tomorrow. Consider all the players who are trying to capture your patients’ attention around similar services, regardless of backing or size.
2. Build a new picture of your consumer.
The world has changed, there is No Normal, and most companies have a segmented view of their consumer based on demographics. (Folks, we can do better). But that’s not enough anymore. You’ve got to know how your targets differ from each other beyond their age, race, or gender so you can genuinely deliver on the promise of personalized marketing.
3. Rethink your product.
Are you meeting consumer expectations for convenience, experience, and quality when compared to the new competitive field? Are there ancillary services you need to add to your offering?
The session will share data, research, and insights that bolster these concepts and help bring them to life. We will spend some focused time on what the largest payors across the nation are doing since forewarned is forearmed.