The human interest details of moving so many young patients got a lot of attention. Every local TV station covered the move and the LA Times ran a story and moving photo essay. "Move Day," as it was pitched to local reporters, resulted in two local TV affiliates covering the move with live hourly remotes during morning drive time.
The increased media attention certainly helped increase Children's brand awareness, but another way the hospital is tracking its progress is by monitoring its payer mix.
As with most children's hospitals, the patient load leans heavily on Medicaid as a payer. At Children's, it's 70%, but since the brand re-launch and advertising campaign, the proportion of families with private insurance has increased by 2% and the mix is now 70/30.
"Part of what we're doing is increasing awareness among those families [with private insurance]. Each payer mix increase equates to almost a million dollars in additional revenue," says Marshall.
Showing leadership how important strategic marketing is starts with giving them baseline numbers and then following up with useful and valuable metrics. Tracking those metrics may be new to Children's, but Marshall is confident in the strategy it deployed in 2011.
"Moving into a brand new hospital necessitated a new identity, a new way of doing things, and a new look … It was important to respect our former identity and the history that it had, and I think we've done that. It's now about moving forward."
This article appears in the May 2013 issue of Healthcare Marketing Advisor.