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The Threefold Path to Patient Engagement Part 7
Posted: 4/13/2012 9:44:15 AM
by Amir Kishon, CEO | with 2 comments
This is part 7 and the final chapter in our 7 part blog on the principles for creating engaging patient and consumer destinations. To read parts 1-6, visit the links below:

  

1: Introduction, 2: Right Social, 3: Right Apps, 4: Right Content, 5: Engagement Trinity, 6: Nutrisystem Case Study

    

In the grand culmination of this seven-part blog series, I would like to share our Real Engagement Checklist. This checklist offers a framework of reasonable expectations from engagement projects. It contrasts dramatically with the typical status quo numbers.  This should answer the question, "what should our expected results be if we do it right?"

As we see it, the different parts of engagement consists of:

  • Capturing a large portion of your target customer/patient network
  • Establishing strong ongoing member use of the service
  • Creating high participation
  • Modifying behaviors

We have an expected metric for each element, and I must warn you, we've set the bar quite high. For full transparency, most of the target numbers that we will provide come from the weight loss category given that these companies are usually at the forefront of health-wellness member engagement. We believe that healthcare websites should have participation dynamics similar or close to what weight loss companies and any other high engagement web destinations report.

 

Based on our metrics, to successfully capture your target customer audience you must reach 40% or more of the people that are in your network. Therefore, if you have 1,000,000 patients, the goal is to engage at least 400,000 of those patients. It's ambitious, but as a recent Pew study has shown, over 80% of adults have access to web/mobile channels, so capturing about half of that audience is a reasonable goal. Unfortunately, I've spoken with a fair share of healthcare stakeholders and many healthcare companies report an actual capture rate of 1-5%.
Those are low numbers, making online patient engagement seem more like a pet project rather than a real service. In contrast, comparing healthcare company numbers with the data coming from the diet industry, on average, we see a 50% capture rate or higher. Those are the numbers that healthcare providers should expect to pull in.

 

Getting your members to use your website on a continuous basis is another engagement goal. Our usual target is to get 66% of registered members as "Silver" frequent flyers and 33% as "Gold" frequent flyers. This means having a significant portion of users coming back and using the site again and again. In most cases "Silver" frequent flyers come every week and "Gold" frequent flyers come almost daily. We also aim to get 10% of users to be "Platinum" frequent flyers, also known as brand champions.  These individuals are coming to the site several times a day, significantly contributing to conversations and leading the way for the other members. This 66%, 33% and 10% ratio appears in many of the systems we have created.

 

So now that we've covered engagement, what about active participation? Obviously, the more you get members to actively participate the better. Because outcomes vary depending on the client, condition, etc., we can't provide clear cut numbers here but we have seen participation numbers reach over 50% in many implementations.

 

Now that we've established member activity, this begs the next question: how much can we influence member behavior? For most of our health and wellness clients, the purpose behind creating a community or a portal is to garner a change in behavior. This change could be anything from adherence, weight loss, healthier lifestyle adoption, disease prevention or just increasing product and service purchases.

 

With our Me-We-Info formula, not only are we able to increase engagement among clients, we're able to translate that engagement to an increase in client purchasing and other related behaviors. In general, our clients have seen an increase in CLV (Customer Lifetime Value) for the users that are in the Me-We-Info environment. Typical CLV growth ranges from 60-120%, which usually means higher member retention and brand loyalty, which translates to more orders. Such CLV growth represents a significant return on investment for these environments. For example, if, on average, your clients order 10 products/services in their lifetime and stay on a program for 10 weeks, you should expect your online members to order 16-22 products/services and stay on the program for 16-22 weeks.

  

The following table summarizes our expectations:

  

Parts of Engagement

Target Metrics

Capturing your network, customers and target audience

40% or greater of current customer base

 

Frequent use

66% or greater silver frequent flyers

33% or greater gold frequent flyers

10% or greater platinum frequent flyers

Participation

50% + is desirable

Behavior modification

60-120% increase in desired behaviors

  

Not all environments can deliver such numbers but if we build it "right", in most cases, these are good target numbers. In the end, the Threefold Path offers a faithful roadmap to engagement. Once you get there, such destinations change the dynamics of our clients' online communities and, in turn, change our clients' businesses.

  

I am a Physics major and always looked at E = mc2 with envy. It is such a simple formula, yet it is so powerful and its impact on modern physics is unmatched. Based on our results, we strongly believe that in the world of health behavior modification and patient engagement, our E=(Me+We+Info)offers the simple yet powerful solution to creating exponential engagement.

  

To further discuss Wellness Layers' engagement approach please contact us

comments
Kelly P
I had no idea that capture rates for health sites were so low. As a health professional that worries me. I'm glad this problem is being addressed.
4/16/2012 8:51:52 AM
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Olga Zakharenko, Engagement Analyst
We completely agree, Kelly. Current capture rates are daunting, but we know that with the right approach we can turn it around.
4/18/2012 1:19:38 PM
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