This month we’re discussing leadership in healthcare, from the motivating women we’ve recognized as driving forces in the industry to the up-and-coming generation taking the helm of the hottest healthcare IT initiatives. These groups of professionals fall into our rock star category and are taking health engagement by storm.

How do you achieve the coveted rock star status? As we work toward a future that includes greater interoperability, data driven healthcare, and a focus on healthcare consumers, two things are certain. First, personalized healthcare engagement will be the key to unlock this new vision. Second, we’re going to be breaking new ground and that means in order to thrive, the best healthcare leaders will embrace a “test and learn” attitude.

At Icario, we’re lucky to know a lot of rock stars in the healthcare space. We’ve identified three key viewpoints of those with a test and learn attitude that drive stronger healthcare engagement and support data driven healthcare.

#1—Healthcare Consumer Segmentation is Evolutionary

Grouping individuals who share characteristics is the common definition of segmentation, but it’s also important to realize that demographics, lifestyle and behaviors, and even preferences are shifting constantly and at times, dramatically.

The Generation Factor is not the only reason for these changes. As technology like AI, wearables, and sensors continue to evolve and emerge, digital health itself is modifying the behaviors of healthcare consumers. Healthcare engagement relies on using the right message, at the right time, and in the right way. Member and patient segmentation strategies need to be constantly updated to map to the right touchpoint preferences, especially as they change due to shifts in technology, aging populations, and other factors.

Data driven healthcare can provide the key to monitoring and improving healthcare engagement strategies and tactics. Real-time data that reveals how individuals are interacting with messages and messaging channels can anchor not only the refinement of existing programs, but the development of new tactics that tests assumptions based on that data. In other words, when the health engagement platform provides a robust, easily managed view of current data, we can develop actionable insights to help test, learn, and improve with every new touchpoint or message.

#2Personalization Needs to be Progressive

Segmentation provides general guidelines for the methods and channels that are components of an underlying healthcare engagement strategy. But there’s another aspect of data driven healthcare to consider. Not only does data give us a broad view of the characteristics within each segmentation, it provides a deep dive into the unique preferences of each individual healthcare consumer.

This is an important element of the test and learn concept, as the more interaction between plan and member, the more we know about that unique person’s characteristics and behavior. Once again, real-time data gives us a holistic view of each member or patient by providing data that is extremely detailed to each unique member journey.

In a strong data driven environment we know when, how, and evenwhy healthcare consumers respond the way they do. And with each touchpoint we can personalize messages and methods even more narrowly, mapping to each person’s unique actions and reactions in terms of how they engage.

This might mean taking some chances to test new approaches based on analyzing current patterns. This can be really important when it comes to understanding the emotions that drive certain behaviors as well, as these are not always as easy to derive.

#3Metrics Must Advance as New Data is Uncovered

Data driven healthcare requires setting quantifiable measurements and often qualitative goals when it comes to emotional motivations. Most importantly, metrics have to be meaningful.They must contribute to the overall objectives of the healthcare engagement campaign. When faced with both new technology and new healthcare consumer behavior, important metrics may be uncovered as engagement progresses.

Data helps identify patterns that lead to desired behavior, so the attitude of test and learn is even more critical when determining measurements. In some cases, old statistics may even lose their validity as behaviors change.

If the health engagement platform is robust, new indicators should emerge frequently. An example we can all relate to is website analytics. As those tools became more powerful we learned more and more about how visitors engage and move through various pages on a website. As a result, we’ve derived new metrics that measure the most important steps in that journey. Another example would be the use of wearables within a wellness campaign.

As we gain more information about how individuals engage with a particular device and understand more about the resulting data, new measurements can be defined within that experience to help lead to stronger overall health engagement and ultimately, better health outcomes.

In an industry that prides itself on precision, it may not be easy to understand that getting things right requires a certain amount of getting things wrong when it comes to healthcare engagement. Although “failing forward” is a term commonly used in this scenario, test and learn is a much more accurate description of the methods used within data driven healthcare to accelerate healthcare engagement and develop increasingly successful strategies and tactics.

Healthcare leadership needs to understand that this is an evolving practice and continuous improvement is the goal. To achieve rock star status requires a perspective that embraces testing and learning at every step of the way.

Want to learn more ways to leverage test and learn in your healthcare engagement programs?