Physician Strategies Summit: February 19 – 21, 2012

Beginning Sunday of this week, I will be attending the Physician Strategies Summit in Orlando, Florida. I’m really looking forward to this event. Not only have they invited me to speak on the topic of physician recruitment, but my presentation directly follows a keynote by Wendy Sue Swanson, M.D., aka Seattle Mama Doc. Dr. Swanson is a pediatrician who blogs for Seattle Children’s Hospital. I am a huge fan of Dr. Swanson’s. We both speak at a lot of conference, but this is the first time we’ve appeared on the same agenda. If you’ve never heard Dr. Swanson speak, I strongly recommend you find a way to attend the Summit. You’ll leave the presentation wishing every physician felt the way she does about social media and patient engagement. When Dr. Swanson spoke at the Mayo Ragan Social Media Summit last year, I made sure I was in the front row. She gave a stirring talk. The audience was blown away.

After Seattle Mama Doc’s presentation, I’ll try to sustain the energy and passion when I present with my colleague Kevin Robinson of Southwestern Vermont Medical Center. We’re going to talk about the importance of communicating values and organizational culture through all brand touchpoints in the physician recruitment process. We’ll discuss how brand experience extends to your hospital’s public relations efforts, website copy, and social media. Kevin has a remarkable story to tell about Southwestern Vermont Medical Center’s recruitment efforts in the face of a serious crisis: they had 25 physician openings for a staff of 140, with 10 positions vacant for more than 12 months. They created a new online strategy in conjunction with their offline branding campaign to recruit new physicians, specifically millennial doctors who’d graduated or completed residency after 2000, who would appreciate the lifestyle and sense of community offered at SVMC. The campaign differentiated SVMC by showcasing not only its top-quality care and sane pace of life, but by devising ways for prospective applicants to experience the culture inside the hospital via the web (brand experience). It combined social networking concepts, YouTube-like videos, and a strong sense of whimsy to target upcoming medical school graduates. Additionally, it provided applicants easy access to information on local housing, schools and outdoor activities as well as links to restaurants, weekend getaways and hiking. The Results: After launching, SVMC applicant pool jumped more than 1300%. I’ll let Kevin tell you the rest of the story…

Another presentation I’m looking forward to attending is being given by Dean Berg and Russell Faust, M.D. on Physician Communication and Social Media. I’m doing a similar presentation at the AAMC Professional Development Conference in March (Palm Springs), so I’m really curious to hear how Russell and Dean approach the subject matter. So few organizations are using social media to target employed and referring physician, it represents a great opportunity and a new frontier in physician marketing. It is something I’m passionate about. This promises to be a terrific presentation.

Below are a couple of additional presentations I recommend attending. The first features my friend and colleague Gabrielle DeTora, one of the smartest marketers and strategists I know. The second features Linda MacCracken of Thomson Reuters, an equally brilliant thinker with an analytical mind that makes my head spin. These are two really smart healthcare marketers. Even better, they both have extremely experience co-presenters sharing the stage.

I hope to see you at the Physician Strategies Summit! If you see me in the crowd, please come up and say hello.

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