Going mobile: Do’s and don’ts for health plans

Deb JorgeIn today’s digital world, health plans are challenged by tech-savvy consumers who expect personalized, retail-style experiences delivered when they want it and how they want it. In this second part of our blog series on digital marketing, we take a look at two communication channels that consumers interact with on a daily basis — mobile and text.

4B people can’t be wrong
If you’re still not fully on board with mobile marketing, you might be missing opportunities to connect with your members. According to a Forrester 2015 report, 4.8 billion people globally will use mobile phones this year alone. The first step to a successful mobile marketing strategy is ensuring that your website is optimized for mobile. Regardless of the device used — smart phone, tablet or personal computer — your website will need to be formatted to ensure optimal viewing and navigation.

There are distinct “do’s and don’ts” when it comes to mobile marketing, and they both pertain to how your website is designed:

  • Do design your site to be mobile-friendly. Stat
  • Do streamline your website’s layout.
  • Do remember that content is key.
  • Do minimize text entry.
  • Do pay attention to page speed.
  • Do optimize titles and meta descriptions.
  • Do use Schema.org structured data.
  • Do optimize for local search.
  • Do provide visitors access to your full site.
  • Don’t block CSS, JavaScript or images.
  • Don’t use Flash.
  • Don’t use pop-ups.

We provide more commentary on these mobile optimization do’s and don’ts in our white paper, which you can download here.

The value in personalized texting
Consumers are mobile, and texting is a part of their daily interactions. While health care organizations are engaging consumers through this channel more today than in the past, they are doing it cautiously in light of privacy and HIPAA compliance concerns.

Many general campaigns use texting with great success:

  • National health observances — “October is breast cancer awareness month.”
  • Benefit awareness — “Tips for using your HSA.”
  • Health alerts — “Remember to get your flu vaccine.”

Personalization can increase the success of texting campaigns, but health care organizations need to tread lightly here, compared to other industries such as retail. While many major carriers have developed secure platforms specifically for health care communications, it is important to consult with legal and regulatory teams on texting strategies to ensure compliance.

Follow these tips to ensure text messaging and text campaigns are successful:

  • Again, content is key.
  • Be creative, yet compliant.
  • Include a call-to-action.
  • Dedicate staff to responding.
  • Identify measureable key performance indicators (KPIs), collect feedback and conduct usability testing.
  • Identify an appropriate carrier, plan and budget.

Download our white paper, “Digital marketing optimization: Strategies for engaging health care consumers online,” for a more in-depth look at today’s digital consumers and digital marketing optimization. We cover the top reasons exchange consumers choose a plan, resources that drive consumer self-service, search engine optimization (SEO) and social media strategies.

You can find part one of this blog series here.

2 Forrester 2015.

About the Author:

Deb Jorge is the Vice President of Strategic Marketing & Sales Consulting. Deb brings more than 20 years of marketing and sales experience. Prior to joining Optum, she served as Director of Marketing for UnitedHealthcare, where she managed a team responsible for member and B2B marketing and communications, including print, mobile, social, email marketing and broker and member portals, as well as product marketing and sales support.

She has extensive experience in the development of go-to-market strategies and helped launch new products and programs for UnitedHealth Group, including Rally, myHCE and Advocate4Me. Prior to joining UnitedHealth Group, Deb was VP of Marketing for ING and MassMutual and directed global public relations for three Citigroup businesses.

Deb earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing Communications from the University of Massachusetts and a Certificate in Database Marketing from DePaul University. She is Six Sigma certified

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