Wrapping up this morning’s Silverlink seminar….
Stan Nowak, Silverlink CEO, says we’re all part of an experiment in response rate from credit card marketing departments (previous speaker Fred Jubitz had talked lots about that!). It’s not cheap to do, but the best companies in consumer marketing are doing it because those experiments (sending out all those letters) can offer a small percentage lift. And they’re good at predicting who will do what based on these segments.
But in health care those same metrics don’t apply. What determines
health behaviors are not the same thing as what determines other
decisions. That makes it much more complex. Adaptive HealthComm Science
is Silverlink’s tag line for using analytics to change the message, the
time, the voice used, (Tony Soprano for a collections call?) etc, etc,
to see what results work better. Years ago they actually found that
using a southern accent for calls in the south did 40 percent better
than using a regular “voice.” So they’re using the analytics and then
as Stan says are in the business of doing something about it (trying to
reach people and change their behaviors).
And then continual measurement, testing and re-testing is the key.
Stan says that health care (including SIlverlink) is very early in
figuring out what drives behaviors (even though they have pretty good
However there’s no question it’s really, really hard, and it’s not
clear that health plans can make the jump to focus on this. Liz Boehm
quoted Yoda — “Don’t try, do or not do.”
Outside in the corridor Liz also mentioned to me that the problem of
getting people to change their health behaviors has never been done by
anyone (I mentioned Nazi Germany’s Strength through Joy
recreation & exercise program, but Liz pointed out that that type
of “encouragement” might not go down too well in the American health
care market!). So as health plans get into this, while changing health
behaviors is something that should be done, it’s still not certain that
it can be done in a way that will really change population health.
And that indeed is the biggest challenge of all.