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Texas case a reminder that living wills protect patients, providers

February 12th, 2014

by Jenn Riggle

An advance medical directive, or living will, is a written document that gives instructions about the medical treatment a patient can receive if he or she is terminally ill or unconscious.

However, there are times when hospitals choose to ignore them, such as:

  • When a woman is pregnant
  • When family members disagree with advance directives
  • When a physician or facility objects to an advance directive based on reasons of conscience

John Peter Smith Hospital, a 527-bed hospital in Fort Worth, Texas, was at the epicenter of this discussion when it kept Marlise Munoz, a 33-year-old pregnant woman who was declared brain-dead, on life support against her wishes and those of her family.

=> Read more!

What hospitals can learn from the Thanksgiving Day Parade

November 20th, 2013

by Jenn Riggle

Thanksgiving is a time known for pilgrims, football and eating way too much turkey. It also marks the beginning of the holiday season with the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

While hospitals may not be in the business of selling sweaters and scarves, they can learn some marketing lessons from the grand dame of department stores.

Celebrate your community: The Thanksgiving Day parade is not only a celebration of the holiday season, it also celebrates New York City. Hospitals need to celebrate the communities they serve. It's been said healthcare is local. However, being a local hospital is more than calling yourself a "regional medical center."

It's important to provide services that are relevant to the community you serve. For example, if you're a hospital located in North Carolina, in the heart of tobacco country and the Stroke Belt, you should provide different community outreach programs than a hospital located in Colorado, one of the healthiest states in the country.

=> Read more!

Must-follow healthcare marketing folks on Twitter

September 17th, 2013

by Nancy Cawley Jean

I've been on Twitter for almost five years now. It has become my go-to source for everything: research, breaking news, trends, healthcare marketing information and meeting wonderful people.

Over the years, I've used the list function in Twitter to easily organize the people I follow so I can quickly browse through categories like news outlets, journalists or healthcare marketing folks.

This post highlights some of those on my list because if you are in healthcare social media you should be following them too. Now believe me when I say this list is not all-inclusive. I know there are many folks who deserve to be included, but there's just not enough space in a blog post to single out all the amazing minds sharing healthcare marketing information.

=> Read more!

Hospitals add video to healthcare marketing toolkits

September 3rd, 2013

by Jenn Riggle

"A picture may be worth a thousand words," but to paraphrase a popular credit card commercial, "a video is ... priceless."

Videos have helped hospitals become better storytellers and create an emotional response with viewers, which ultimately, help drive engagement. Hospitals have used videos to humanize their brands, educate consumers, provide virtual tours of their facilities and provide real-time documentation of surgeries.

Each month, YouTube, the videosharing website, has 1 billion unique visitors, who watch more than 6 billion hours of video. It's no surprise YouTube has become the most popular social media platform among healthcare marketers.

And while YouTube may dominate the video space, two new video tools, Vine and Video for Instagram, are gaining in popularity. Since hospital marketing teams have limited resources, it's important for them to prioritize which video initiatives they should pursue.

=> Read more!

Aspirational marketing: Not just for luxury brands

June 18th, 2013

by Jenn Riggle

When people think about aspirational marketing, they think of the glitzy conceptual ads for perfume, foreign cars and other luxury brands. You know the ones I mean--I grew up watching Chanel No. 5's "Share the Fantasy" ad with a woman daydreaming by the pool or Cadillac's "Red Blooded Luxury" that shows the next generation of Cadillac drivers.

Both ads are selling more than perfume or cars--they're selling a dream and way of life.

So how does this apply to hospitals?

Hospitals play an important role in the communities they serve, but no one really wants to have to use their services. It's sort of like having an insurance policy you never want to use.

=> Read more!

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