Marketing VP, meet our CIO…

by Tim Hanners - 02/13/14

Healthcare marketers have been disconnected from legitimate, usable data for far too many years. Sure, we get a copy of the 2-year-old statewide numbers for market share and an occasional glimpse at service line revenues and patient satisfaction results. But I’m talking about the really valuable information: The Big Data.

Big Data on Multicolor Puzzle on White Background.

In 2014, we should witness a shift in that trend and actually see marketers locking arms with data and leveraging information, not only to inform their marketing plans but also to get real-time insights on campaign performance and to prove ROI.

Communication strategy is imperative for population health management, but how can you form those strategies without knowing who is using your ER? You need legitimate, usable data, and those awesome data-powered digital marketing platforms don’t just grow on trees. If marketers want to harness this power, they’re going to have to get to know the people who are responsible for technology and data analytics. In most cases, that starts with IT. 

In collaboration with IT, healthcare marketers can now access the kind of information that would turn retail marketers green with envy. Of course you have to remain HIPAA compliant, but you can, for example, generate reports that show which of the 100 services within cardiology are most profitable, what demo is the most profitable for outpatient GI, and which people are coming to the ER for primary care.  

So to get started, buy a cup of coffee for your head of IT and ask him or her these three questions:

  1. Can we have real-time visibility into who is using our ER?
  2. Can we connect the dots between our messaging and the impact it has on inpatient and outpatient services?
  3. Can we drill down into service line DRG codes to determine what really drives profitability?

A cup of joe and a few questions directed at the right person can start you on the road to using data to inform a smart, integrated strategy.

If you would like to find out more about the role data analytics can play in your marketing plan, contact Chief Healthcare Strategist Tim Hanners at 423.490.9962 or

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