Omnichannel Communication in Medical Tourism - How to Boost Customer Retention and Revenue
In 2020, the shift of consumer behavior towards digital media has been a major business headline. Now, patients expect healthcare providers to associate with them in the same way as their airlines, banks and other business relationships do. What they want is efficient communication through different channels, on their terms, whenever they want,.
The COVID-19 vaccination drive is on full swing around the world. Things are expected to pick up for the healthcare travel sector from where they left off pre-COVID. During the last year, several industries including healthcare have fully accelerated their shift to digital solutions. Consumers have accepted and adapted the digital reality. And now, they expect continual improvement.
Due to this, use of omnichannel platforms to reach patients has extensively increased in the medical tourism industry. Though the concept of “omnichannel” has been there for the last ten years, its usefulness is more prominent now. Healthcare providers must think, plan and invest broadly and more rapidly in their omnichannel capabilities.
Omnichannel Communication Improves patient Experience
Improving patient experience is the key to healthcare provider’s long-term success. When patients interact across various channels the providers must ensure that they are giving consistent experience to them at every interaction. That is why it is important to outline an omnichannel communication strategy to improve the overall patient experience. This also presents an opportunity for healthcare providers to develop long-lasting relationships and loyalty with patients like never before.
Why your Healthcare Marketing needs Omnichannel Communication?
It is more challenging to build long-term loyal relationships with today’s patients than ever before. Remember, that your target audience is always limited and you cannot get success by just building relationships with them. What you need is more loyalty and engagement. This is a common challenge that almost every healthcare marketer goes through.
There are thousands of patients among your target audience and you need to make sure they feel they have a personalized experience with your clinic, hospital or practice. As there are numerous social media channels and healthcare marketing platforms how can you keep your branding and messaging consistent?
Instead of using different platforms to deliver your content, you can use omnichannel marketing in an organized manner. You must focus on optimizing marketing communications for the entire patient journey, across all possible channels. Thus, an omnichannel strategy works toward:
- Developing content considering all touchpoints and channels that add value throughout the patient journey.
- Allowing your brand to speak with one voice no matter when with whom and how the exchange is happening
- Influencing channels to benefits from each other
This ensures that the patients get the benefits and the experience that they are looking for and the providers are happy as they can attract and retain more patients.
Omnichannel Communication helps to Understand Patient Journey
To deliver a consistent experience to your patients, you must understand their journey and lifecycle. According to a study, companies retain 89% of their customers when they maintain consistent quality of service across multiple channels. Nowadays, patients expect flawless transition between channels and contextualized engagement. When providers understand this they can engage patients and deliver a personalized experience.
Omnichannel helps to identify the right communication channels and streamline them under a single platform. This results to meet the needs of the target audience by identifying their preferred channels to reach your clinic or practice. As the interactions and conversations are recorded, it helps to map their journey and take proactive actions to deliver apt customer support using the right channels.
Engage Customers through Various Channels and Tools
In the digital age, customers want control, which means you need to make your service available to them anywhere, anytime and in the manner they want. That is why you need to use the right tools to scale customer support across all channels. If a patient wants to reach out through WhatsApp, you should be able to provide the right support just like you need to have support for the queries generated through your website. If you divert a customer reaching out for support across channels, it will impact your brand reputation and customer experience.
Conversational engagement tools can be configured in omnichannel communications such as text message, Skype, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp or other conversational mediums. It not only helps to automate repetitive and complex tasks but also gives patients the experience of self-servicing, which helps them feel more in control.
Amalgamate Patient Communication in One Place
Using omnichannel communication helps you to amalgamate all your patient conversations in one place. This not only helps to understand the patient journey better but also helps to personalize their experience across all touchpoints by analyzing previous interactions. Thus, Amalgamating patient communication in one place helps to:
- Understand patient journey better
- Access to correct insights helps in quick decision making
- Define strategies to deliver effective support real-time
Improve Interaction with Patients
Resolving an issue with the customers usually takes a lot of conversations and time. With the presence of omnichannel communication, providers can get real-time feedback on patient interactions that are being handled on each channel. This helps in meeting the key metrics such as average response time, missed communication, fast response time and total resolution time, which results in the improvement of performance.
Such insights help providers to understand the patient journey better as there are fewer touchpoints and less complexity. Thus, they can remain focused on delivering personalized solutions constantly across all departments.
This also helps to efficiently manage resources as solving more queries at a lesser time becomes possible. This happens due to the improvement of the first response time, which eventually improves the average response time
Improve Patient Retention
Omnichannel communication helps to connect with patients when, where and how they like and deliver support across all channels consistently. This is one of the key strategies of customer retention where providers make effort to avoid wearing away and engage patients through omnichannel.
Such a strategy empowers patients to connect with the clinic or practice through their preferred channel that allows transition smoothly in the same interaction. This significantly reduces the chances of miscommunication or friction in the experience since patients are guided and provided all the information they need about your practice. So, the biggest takeaways of omnichannel to increase customer retention are:
- Addressing patients’ issues faster using effective strategies and digital tools, which offer faster resolution and increase satisfaction
- Engage with patients in real-time no matter what channel they choose to connect to you
- You can deliver faster responses using a live chat tool and speed up customer service
Invest in Advanced Technology and Tools
Medical providers need to invest in advanced technology, processes and tools. Though it is an expensive affair, it has long-term benefits for the business growth. The omnichannel approach can benefit your service in various ways, such as:
- Improves Patient Response Time- Omnichannel communication helps to understand faster what the patient wants and what is his/her concern. This enables effective solutions in the first go, which reduces the number of touchpoints and increases patient response time.
- Increases Patient Satisfaction- With the power of the right technology and system, it becomes possible to identify what patients want faster and deliver solutions effectively in the first contact. This definitely increases patient satisfaction.
- Increases Patient Loyalty- Omnichannel communication helps providers to understand the pain points of the patients and design solutions according to their expectations. When this happens, it creates an impact on the patient's lifetime value as they become more loyal.
Consistent personalization can be challenging as it involves identifying and engaging patients across different touchpoints. It needs to collect and unify patient data from every digital channel under a single location. When this happens, the providers can view online behavior, intent of booking appointments and support queries of the patients. This further helps them to align their services to match the expectations of the patients by communicating effectively and consistently.
It also leads to creating high-volume communications across every channel by using the right etiquette. This happens while influencing the positive tone, language and patient knowledge that echoes with every recipient.
Create Consistency among Every Channel
The omnichannel strategy helps to centralize communication channels under one roof, which results in consistency and stability. No matter which touchpoint the patients use, the experience remains the same. Thus, it helps you to deliver a unified experience among every channel
Omnichannel communication is a holistic approach that unifies patient data along with the processes of the organization to make faster and better-informed decisions about patients, which results in revenue and retention.
It has now become one of the most efficient ways to direct the customers to the information they need. If you want to deliver a flawless, steady customer experience across digital channels, let PlacidWay help. Being an industry leader in combining the power of innovation and technological advancements in medical tourism, we can assist you to integrate direct provider-patient omnichannel communication and boost your brand.
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