Tips & Tricks: Using data to amp up your member engagement efforts

By: Keith Lomurray, Data Insights Manager and Marisa O’Brien, Senior Engagement Manager

Engaging health plan members may feel like a constant battle for your health plan. Helping increase health literacy, highlighting plan options, guiding and informing members about the tools and resources you offer…the list is endless. Our research tells us that people want messages that are relevant to them – and that they are more likely to pay attention to those than generic information. Some of the best ways to increase relevance is to segment your member base as well as customize content based on season, demand, or current marketing calendar promotions.

Below are a few ways to do that:

Customize messages based on trending topics and season.
Increasing the relevance of content to the season and reinforcing direct actions a member can take helps provide immediate relevance. For example, highlighting allergy tests or similar content when someone might be experiencing peak allergies makes them that much more likely to click on allergy related content. You could do the same for cold and flu season in the fall.

Segment engagement messages based on member demographics.
Another way to increase relevance is to tap into member demographic information. For example, people approaching 50 could get a message about receiving colonoscopies, but young males might get a message about the importance of a PCP. Sending messages to the entire population when they are applicable to only a specific segment may mean that your audience begins to tune you out.

Your segmenting can go even deeper by leveraging enhanced data including claims information and social determinants (the conditions in which people are born, live, work and age). For example, people who routinely don’t spend their entire deductible, but have a fair amount of imaging services done, could receive messages about the price differences between imaging centers and hospitals, pointing out how this will help them keep more money in their pocket. Even those who have hit their deductible for the year could receive messages about they can leverage the tools to find high-quality, convenient care, de-emphasizing the cost message. Targeting users with the most relevant communications, is most likely to drive the desired behavior.

Communicate based on user behavior.
It can be effective to send follow up messaging to people after they use your website. For our health plan clients who use the HealthSparq Big Data Integration service, they are able to leverage user-level data for members who accessed the HealthSparq portal and what they searched for. Those plans can then recommend related content or cross sell through email, SMS or any other channel.

A few other items to consider when planning your targeted member outreach strategies:

  • Continually optimize. Always track the effectiveness of your campaigns via an analytics tool to learn which messages are working, so that you can focus your efforts on further refining and improving those messages.
  • Optimize your health plan site and calls-to-action. Consider having several targeted calls-to-action available, even if they all lead to the same tool. For example, “Select a PCP”, “Provider finder”, “Find a cost” and “Find urgent care” could all be separate calls- to-action on the health portal. And be sure to make them easy to find from the home page.

If you are a HealthSparq client and want more insights to help you better engage your members, reach out to us today!

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