A smartphone is not a marketing channel. Just like a desktop or laptop computer, it’s a device – a tool capable of delivering messages.

A channel is the manner in which you deliver your message on one or multiple devices. Channels give the device its purpose.

Just like multi-channel marketing can boost the results of a retail campaign, multi-channel health engagement strategies can supercharge most member or patient outreach strategies. And we promise, it’s not as complex as it seems. Strong multi-channel health engagement requires cohesion, rapid response and branding that is similar, but customized to meet the needs of each channel.

It’s important to remember that simply conducting outreach at the same time in different channels is not enough. We’ve found the idea is to create synergy, and synchronize your efforts. You need to link your strategies and tactics in ways that make each one more powerful than if deployed on its own.

By following the 6 steps below, you can make each channel stronger and more effective by creating synergies, linking channels in ways that proves there’s power in well-connected numbers.

1. Understand Your Members’ Preferences

As we know, it starts with understanding demographic segmentation and not only generational but individual preferences.

The key to choosing the right channels is really knowing behavior, and where your members get their information.

Identifying specific health engagement journeys and personas for unique member types can help in this area. Also, knowing which stage of the member journey you’re trying to influence him or her inis extremely important.

2. Create Integrated Health Engagement Strategies

Strong health engagement strategies can be deployed across multiple messaging channels. We’ve seen that identifying ways to drive the message home with the appropriate frequency can help avoid member abrasion.

Sending your message across multiple channels in a synchronized fashion that maps to the member journey can also decrease abrasion, and increase response.

Be sure that all your contacts and methods are relevant to that member and consistent for the duration of the campaign.

3. Identify a Common Message

In a multi-channel health engagement campaign, familiarity across multiple touch points breeds member response.

That means creating a message that can be translated to meet the needs of different preferred channels, whether it’s by text, email, phone or even a native mobile app.

4. Ensure Synchronization Across All Channels

Just as the message needs to be consistent, the sequence of each outreach method needs to be consistent with member preferences as well.

It’s not enough to be sending messages through multiple channels.

Each outreach needs to be coordinated with the activity occurring in other channels. We have found this helps boost response, and once again reduce member abrasion.

5. Create Strong, Measurable Objectives

Although most campaigns understand the desired end goal, it’s important to have a set of measurable objectives that measure the performance of each channel, as well as the overall performance of the integrated campaign.

This can help determine if you’ve chosen the right outreach methods, and whether your message is impactful across all channels.

6. Develop Specific KPIs to Monitor Ongoing Performance

Key performance indicators (KPIs) can help fine tune the member engagement campaign as it progresses.

KPIs are the building blocks that indicate whether or not your member engagement strategy is working.

Typically, they contain specific activity that appears in successful outreach efforts. We’ve seen firsthand that understanding your health engagement KPIs can build better strategies in the beginning, and ensure success at the end of a healthcare member engagement campaign.

With so many available channels and such wide variation in their adoption by different healthcare market segments, multi-channel engagement strategies are a must.

The prospect of developing one may be challenging but the rewards of greater outreach, better response and less abrasion make it essential.