HITMC (Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Community) 2016 Award Winners

This is the 2nd year we’ve held the HITMC (Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Community) awards. We were extremely pleased with the number and quality of submissions for each of the categories. A number of the categories were extremely competitive and our panel of judges had a hard time choosing the winner. However, choose we must and choose we did.

Thank you to Shahid Shah and Netspective Media for sponsoring the HITMC Awards.

In case you missed the announcement at the Health IT Marketing and PR conference, here’s the list of winners from the 2nd Annual HITMC Awards:
Agency or Marketing Department of the Year – Aria Marketing

Best Content Marketing Program – Galen Healthcare Solutions

Best Creative – ChartCapture

Best Social Media Program – Kareo

Best Trade Show Theme or Campaign – BridgeHead Software

Marketing or PR Professional of the Year – Beth Friedman

Congrats to all of our winners! They each did some really extraordinary work in healthcare IT marketing and PR and we’re happy to recognize their work. Over the next few months we’ll work on featuring each of these award winners on HITMC.com.
HITMC Awards

Your Audience’s Audience

The following is a guest blog post by Matt Schuchardt, Director of Market Intelligence Solutions Sales at HIMSS Analytics.
B2B marketers reaching a B2C market are in a unique position. Knowing where your audience’s audience is focused can help your messaging cut through the noise in the market place.

The timeliness of your message can make or break its impact. Oreo moments aren’t exclusive to foodstuffs and consumer packaged goods anymore. There is a massive amount of opportunity to cut through the noise of everyday life by identifying what people are talking about and bringing some insight to the conversation based on your organization’s knowledge, skill set, or expertise.

Take security, for example. With a major health system in the nation’s capital crippled by malicious hacking and health system data being held for ransom in the very recent past, your audience, and their audience, are increasingly focused on this hot button issue.

Using big data tools and insights like those powered by HIMSS Analytics® LOGIC™, providing valuable information to people can position you as the most valuable voice in the room on a multitude of topics. For example, did you know that more than 10% of health systems with 50+ hospitals have no security technology in place at 1/3 of their hospitals? The chart below outlines current gaps in hospital security technology. Given the current state of affairs this information is incredibly relevant and impactful.
US Hospitals with No Plans to Deploy Cyber Security Technologies
Digging further into the topic, Are you aware that healthcare organizations were the target of 19% of cyberattacks in 2015 and 25% of cyberattacks in the first 60 days of 2016. With prominent security gaps in healthcare and Personal Health Information 50 times more valuable than banking information we can only expect the volume and intensity of these attacks to increase. The chart below looks at the growth in hacking incidents this decade.
Healthcare - Increasing Risk from Hackers
More than 2.2 million patient records were compromised by hacking incidents at healthcare providers in March of this year alone. The cost to healthcare organizations per compromised record is double that of retail and finance.

Pretty eye opening stuff!

This is just one example of the type of opportunity that healthcare delivery and solutions marketers have to position themselves as thought leaders in the industry. You know your audience and you know your audience’s audience. Be timely, be helpful, and provide a value to the conversations that are going on around you.

There is a need for education and transformation in healthcare and your content will engage your audience if you focus on where their audience is focused.

Matt Schuchardt is the Director of Market Intelligence Solutions Sales at HIMSS Analytics. Matt began his career in market intelligence working with Sheldon Dorenfest at Dorenfest & Associates, the original healthcare technology research firm. He joined HIMSS as part of the Dorenfest acquisition in 2004. With 15 years of experience unlocking the value of data, Matt understands data capture, knows data usage and sees a brighter data-driven future. Prior to entering the healthcare IT field, Matt worked in in the field as a social worker at the Jane Addams Hull House. Matt has a BA in Anthropology from the University of Chicago where he worked as a researcher at the National Opinion Research Center.

Health IT Marketing – How is the Audience Changing? – #HITMC Twitter Chat Topics

We’re excited to share with you the 5 topics we’ll be discussing at our next Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Community (HITMC) Twitter chat. The chat will be held on Tuesday, April 5th at Noon ET (9 AM PT). To participate, follow the #HITMC Twitter stream on your favorite Twitter tool and add #HITMC to all of your tweets.

This chat will focus on “Health IT Marketing – How is the Audience Changing?” and is hosted by 300Brand. In the past, CIOs held the cards. Now there is a broader group of stakeholders making health IT buying decisions. So, what does this mean for marketing and PR programs? Join us to discuss how the health IT target audience is changing, and how marketing messages and strategies are evolving to reach a broader audience and support sweeping change in the healthcare industry.

Now for the 5 topics we’ll be discussing:
1. What important changes have you seen in the health IT-decision-making process and influencers in the past few years?

2. How is Accountable Care changing the IT buying process?

3. How are you changing your marketing strategy to reach a broader group of decision makers/influencers?

4. How influential are non-IT audiences on IT purchasing decisions within healthcare provider orgs?

5. What strategies do you find most successful to reach the expanding health IT buyer/influencer community?

Bonus: What role do you think social media plays in this new game?

We hope you’ll be able to join us for the Health IT Marketing and PR community chat. Be sure to put the full schedule of #HITMC Twitter chats on your calendars.

Making the Transition From TV Reporter to Healthcare PR

In this HITMC video chat we sit down with Marcy Fleisher from Team Fleisher Communications to talk about her transition from TV reporter to owning her own PR agency where she does work in health care PR. She teaches us a lot about how to pitch local reporters and also covers how to pitch health care IT journalists. Plus, we talk about the differences in the two.

If you want to learn more from Marcy Fleisher, be sure to check out her panel on “The Do’s and Don’ts of Sponsored Media” at the Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference.

About Author
John Lynn is the Editor and Founder of HITMC.com, the leading community of healthcare marketing and PR professionals. As editor of HITMC.com, John’s responsible for discovering and sharing the latest happenings in marketing and PR that would work for the healthcare IT marketing and PR communities. John is also the founder of Healthcare Scene where he has written over 5000 articles.

Pay vs. Pitch: Three Considerations for a Kick-Ass Content Strategy

The following is a guest blog post by Beth Friedman, Founder and Chief Content Officer of Agency Ten22.
Agency Ten22 frequently meets with healthcare IT software and service companies. From CEOs to marketing managers, the same question always comes up: “Is it better to pay for content placement or earn opportunities through media relationships?” The answer is both!

Paid placement of your content is a critical component for successful lead generation campaigns. Downloads are tracked and leads are received for long-term nurturing and sales follow-up.

However, research shows that earned interviews and article placements carry more weight with your company’s target audience—healthcare executives and departmental directors. Social sharing and summary blog posts magnify the impact of these earned efforts, typically at less cost than paid placements.

During the upcoming Health IT Marketing Conference, a panel of experts plan to debate this age-old question. I invite you to attend our Sponsored Content Panel session at HITMC16. And in the interim, consider these three steps for building a solid, lasting content strategy.

Step One:  Build Relationships

Healthcare is a people business. Everyone from top industry editors to niche reporters and channel salespeople appreciate time spent building partnerships and trust. These in-person meetings generate a wealth of content ideas and media opportunities. Here are three proven tips:

  • Pitch your targeted editors and sales staff separately. Meet in their offices versus crowded conventions. Food and drink are highly recommended.
  • Suggest new types of paid placement opportunities—get creative.
  • Make meetings perennial. Building trust takes time and repetition.

Step Two: Be Prepared

Both sides of the content house—sales staff and editors—respect industry knowledge. Do your homework. For every publication, know the last article written or piece of downloadable content posted by a competitor. Be fully aware of industry issues and upcoming regulatory changes that impact your key buyers. And finally, spend time reviewing the publication’s website for relevant niche channels, guest blogs or contributed content. Their subpages are important landing pads for content too!

  • Review editorial calendars and sync up your strongest subject matter experts and provider customers. Push for contributed articles or confirmations as an interview source.
  • Include color pictures and brief bios of your experts—remember, we are a people business!
  • Don’t see a fit for your product or service on the editorial schedule? Don’t worry. Schedules are only a guideline, not the final word.

Step Three:  Close the Deal

Finally, focus on follow-up! As healthcare marketers are all aware—the devil is in the details. Quickly secure all editorial ideas and subject matter sources before your competitor steals the opportunity.

  • Provide a detailed summary of ideas discussed and ask the editor to confirm in writing, with exact deadlines and word counts.
  • Confirm opportunities with your subject matter experts and provider customers. Obtain all prior approvals and authorizations to participate.
  • Send a thank-you note—always.

Both types of content, sponsored and earned, play an important role in demonstrating your brand’s thought leadership within the healthcare industry. The three steps above provide a practical roadmap for getting started. Agency Ten22 wishes you all the best on your content journey and looks forward to seeing you in our hometown of Atlanta for HITMC16!

Agency Ten22 is a sponsor of the 2016 Health IT Marketing and PR Conference.

Healthcare Marketers’ Manifesto

The following is a guest blog post by Jessica Clifton, Director of Marketing, Billian’s HealthDATA.
Jessica Clifton - Healthcare IT Marketing
In just a few short weeks, some of the brightest minds in the field of healthcare marketing will descend upon Atlanta, Georgia, for the 2016 Healthcare IT Marketing & PR Conference (HITMC).

There’s something refreshing about show-goers’ willingness to enter into intimate arenas with peers and competitors alike for the greater good of the healthcare marketing tribe.

I’m reminded that, while we’ll soon be immersed in insightful sessions covering the many facets of advanced digital marketing practices, it’s important that we do what we can to keep those efforts coupled with the big picture understanding of our role in helping paint the portrait of our industry.

Whether we’re consulting HIT clients on articulating ROI, or penning our next professional blog piece, we’re all threads in the fabric of U.S. healthcare media and communications. As marketers aligned to the field, we bear a certain responsibility for industry perception both within and outside the healthcare market. To varying degrees, we influence the dialogue across hospital boardroom tables and public sentiment for the healthcare industry as a whole in the copy we write and the stories we tell.

Healthcare has many frustrations; I doubt I’m the only one who saw through new eyes after being in the industry a bit. Turn an eye behind the curtain, though, and you’re overwhelmed by the number of nimble minds working to make some very complicated things possible.

Many are burned out, buckling beneath the strain of healthcare’s infrastructure overhaul. We all need an encouraging word.

Thus, let us give voice to the right stories. Let’s move past finger-pointing and give our industry’s wins more air-time. In the dichotomy of positive and negative PR and sentiment, let’s remember that the wolf we feed is the one that thrives.

Let us also not be afraid to professionally address the hard truths things like population health analytics will reveal. Let’s promote public data sets and invite consumer participation. Let’s be willing to pursue progress and supportiveness over salaciousness, and opt for data check-mates over click bait.

Let us advance the push for authenticity in marketing. Let’s be honest about what doesn’t work, and shed even more light on what does. Let’s build digital paths to innovative ideas from small-scale and big players alike.

Let us speak beyond the echo chamber, engage patients who also happen to be consumers, and encourage multi-stakeholder commentary in our journalism and in our business approach.

Let us all acknowledge that we, the collective media, hold sway.

Let’s take the opportunities afforded to us at HITMC and beyond to reignite our passion for what we do and hone our skills to produce inspired marketing that encourages our industry to find and push for growth. We are all patients here.  #encouragehc

Billian’s HealthDATA is a sponsor of the Health IT Marketing and PR Conference and they offer extensive hospital and healthcare business intelligence on over 875k U.S. healthcare organizations. Browse the company’s publically-available healthcare facility profiles, hospital news and RFP feed, and healthcare “Top 10” reports to learn more.

PR Strategies that Drive Success and Help Achieve Optimum Results – #HITMC Twitter Chat Topics

We’re excited to share with you the 5 topics we’ll be discussing at our next Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Community (HITMC) Twitter chat. The chat will be held on Tuesday, March 22nd at Noon ET (9 AM PT). To participate, follow the #HITMC Twitter stream on your favorite Twitter tool and add #HITMC to all of your tweets.

This chat will focus on a “PR Strategies that Drive Success and Help Achieve Optimum Results” and is hosted by Dodge Communications. PR can be a powerful tool for promoting your company. Join us to talk about the PR strategies that work for you and your company and learn from others.

Now for the 5 topics we’ll be discussing:
1. What B2C trends are you incorporating into your B2B efforts?

2. How does social media fit into your PR strategy?

3. How does your organization strategically leverage PR?

4. How do you gain buy-in from senior leaders in PR?

5. What trends do you think will dominate the healthcare PR industry this year?

Bonus: Name the coolest Healthcare IT PR campaign of 2015.

We hope you’ll be able to join us for the Health IT Marketing and PR community chat. Be sure to put the full schedule of #HITMC Twitter chats on your calendars.

1 day left to register for the Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference!

#HIMSS16 Wrap-Up: Moving Past the Echo Chamber

The conversations happening at HIMSS were very encouraging, but they’ll only mean something if we continue them now that the conference is over. We need to take the innovation and interoperability that is happening in health IT and broadcast that story to providers and patient communities.

Innovate or die

There may not have been a single topic at this year’s HIMSS that emerged as a theme, but plenty of vendors still had a lot to say about precision medicine, population health, and surprisingly to some, patient engagement and interoperability (surprising because many feel that these should be part of what we do everyday, not just trending topics). John Halamka summed up this year’s conference by saying, “buzzwords are dead;” the mantra for providers and vendors is to “innovate or die!” Many of you know and live and breathe it every day.

The health IT marketing community was well represented, with the #HITMC meetup on Monday, #healthITchicks on Tuesday, #HIMSS16 social media ambassadors on Wednesday, and #HITSM panel discussion Thursday. Thought leaders in each of these meetups told the story of innovation.

Not quite a “drop the mic” moment

The #HITSM panel was standing-room only. Corepoint Health’s Chad Johnson introduced the distinguished panel, Mandi Bishop facilitated, and panelists Dr. Rasu Shrestha, Lygeia Ricciardi, David Chou and Drex Deford gave great answers about innovations that would move health IT forward. Answers included universal patient ID, smart sensors, semantic language and natural language processing, IoT, evolving government incentives and other “technologies that liberate the data.” Chuck Webster periscoped the event and even fielded a question for the panel from a viewer in New Zealand.

I saved my own question for the end of the panel, and I was told later it could have been a “drop the mic” moment, as they say. I don’t know about that, but I asked the question, “How will we take the story of innovation in health IT and share it outside of HIMSS?” We were great at nodding our heads in agreement during the panel, but how will we tell this story to our providers, vendors and patient communities? Time constraints prevented the panelists from answering during the event, so I pose the question to you.

The world outside the walls of HIMSS doesn’t necessarily think that this much innovation exists in health IT. They need help deciphering the hope from the hype. They say they are waiting on better tools. But vendors are starting to get it. I was pleasantly surprised when I got a few minutes with one of the VPs at Cerner, and he proceeded to describe how their population health platform is EHR-agnostic. Knowing we only had a brief time to talk, he chose to focus on how their tools connect with others.

We haven’t always been able to say that, but innovation is happening. Open API’s are powering connections. Early adopter clinicians are embracing technology and piloting programs with wearables, smart sensors and mobile everything. Do our stakeholders know that?

For instance,

  • Do elderly caregivers know that a Samsung smartwatch and Reemo software platform allows seniors to operate lights, locks, thermostats, televisions and other appliances with a flick of the wrist, thus reducing falls and allowing staff to provide care based on real-time biometrics and behavioral data?
  • Do oncologists know about the progress of Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong’s Cancer Moonshot 2020 program and the promise of proteomics that renders much of current cancer treatment irrelevant?

Shahid Shah stated during the HITMC meetup that there is no interoperability crisis in health IT. But in many cases there is still a disconnect with clinicians. We tend to agree that clinicians are risk-averse and often wait until they have little choice to adopt new technologies. So let’s accelerate their progress with a little storytelling about those that are.

Biggest takeaway

My takeaway from HIMSS16 is the need to plug into the communities that are clamoring for innovation and let them know it is happening now. Leave the hype at home, be authentic, and use our influence as a community to tell the story of what’s going on in health IT.

Not everyone will listen. We know that. But for the providers who still try to point to the lack of health IT tools, we can show them what’s being developed, who’s using it, and what outcomes they are seeing. And that can lead to further incremental improvement. Wouldn’t it be great if we were talking next year in Orlando about clinicians who finally get what we’re doing? Now that would be innovation.

#HIMSS16 Press and PR Debrief – #HITMC Twitter Chat Topics

We’re excited to share with you the 5 topics we’ll be discussing at our next Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Community (HITMC) Twitter chat. The chat will be held on Tuesday, March 8th at Noon ET (9 AM PT). To participate, follow the #HITMC Twitter stream on your favorite Twitter tool and add #HITMC to all of your tweets.

This chat will focus on a “#HIMSS16 Press and PR Debrief” and is hosted by Agency Ten22. The HIMSS Annual conference is the major event for many healthcare IT companies. In this chat we’ll talk about the things that worked and things that didn’t work with your media efforts at HIMSS 2016. We’ll talk about press releases and how effective (or ineffective) they were. Plus, we’ll talk about some tips for measuring the effectiveness of your press releases and if we should abandon the press release. Even if you weren’t at HIMSS or don’t care about that conference, no doubt you’ll still get many ideas that will help your PR and media efforts.

Now for the 5 topics we’ll be discussing:
1. How were your HIMSS media meetings? What worked, what didn’t work?

2. Specific editors—any specific tips for some of healthcare’s most notable editors?

3. Is the wall between sales teams and editorial teams still standing? What’s happening for your relationships these days? Any changes or trends?

4. Did you send out any press releases during HIMSS? What makes for a good HIMSS release? Tips for rising above the noise? Or avoiding the rush all together?

5. How do you analyze your press release results? Tips for measuring effectiveness? Should we abandon the press release?

Bonus: What was the best/most effective evening social event you attended at #HIMSS16?

We hope you’ll be able to join us for the Health IT Marketing and PR community chat. Be sure to put the full schedule of #HITMC Twitter chats on your calendars.

10 days left to register for the Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference!

Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference Preliminary Schedule

We’re getting really close to announcing the full Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference (HITMC) schedule, but while we finalize a few sessions and confirm the session times with all the speakers we thought we’d share the preliminary schedule for the conference with the community (click on the image to see the larger version on the HITMC conference website):
We think you’ll be really impressed by the wide variety of topics we’ll be covering over the 2 days of conference programming. Plus, we have an extraordinary group of speakers preparing to present at the conference. You can see almost all of their speaker profiles on the Health IT Marketing and PR Conference speaker page. We really appreciate all the time and effort these professionals put into making the event so great.

We’re just over a month away from the event. Registration for the conference is still open, but it will close on March 17, 2016. So, register now and join hundreds of your healthcare PR and marketing colleagues in Atlanta.

Welcome to HITMC!

We're glad you found the Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Community (or as we affectionately call it...HITMC). This blog is a place for healthcare IT marketing and PR professionals to come together and share their insights, skills, expertise with other people trying to make healthcare better through the use of technology. This blog grew out of the Healthcare IT Marketing and PR Conference which is held annually. We look forward to connecting and learning from you. Please feel free to reach out to us on our contact us page if you have any questions.

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