Now that the deadline has passed for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, many people are wondering, “What’s going to happen next?” Individuals, families, employers and those who work within the healthcare industry are greatly affected by this legislative change. Perhaps, those who are affected most are the insurance companies. This change will affect all aspects of the business, but most importantly the ACA will have the greatest impact on the marketing strategies.
For years, marketing health insurance was solely a Business to Business endeavor. Now that American citizens are buying their own coverage, insurance companies will have to change their marketing tactics and communicate directly with consumers. This marketing initiative will be prove to be a challenging task because of the Medical Loss Ratio or the so called 80/20 rule. This rule states that 80% of premium dollars collected by an insurance company must be spent on care. That leaves 20% for things like administrative costs and marketing. This means insurance companies will have fewer resources while building an entire new B2C strategy.
Winger Marketing, a full service PR and marketing agency, has developed a few ideas on how insurance companies and those in the healthcare industry can be more efficient with their budgets, communicate clearly with patients and attract new customers.
With the rapid changes, press releases are one of the best tool health care organizations can use to control messaging. Press releases can be written in a voice for consumers and then distributed to channels that are in direct contact with them. Whether it be newspapers, radio stations, news programs, online news outlets or blogs, press release distribution will reach every medium and in turn reach consumers.
Now that insurers and health care organizations are no longer focusing solely on B2B communication, they need to learn the ropes of B2C communication. Developing a strategy to communicate with this new audience is not a small project. A public relations program needs to leverage tactics that will delivery outcomes and achieve the largest return on investment (ROI) when communicating with consumers. Understanding which media to target and how to engage prospective clients should be at the heart of every tactic that is launched.
Customers are actively looking for their own insurance options by using the Internet and search engines are their primary source for information. Insurance companies should make sure their websites are SEO optimized by using keyword rich language and that their Meta tags are directing consumers towards their website. This will set companies apart from their competition and keep them front of mind when consumers are shopping.