In 2004, High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP) came into being as an employer sponsored alternative to more traditional health plans. Since the passage of the Patient Protection and Accountable Care Act in 2010, there has been in increase in the volume of HDHP enrollments. At present, roughly 29% of the U.S. population is enrolled in a HDHP. These plans require employees to setup health savings accounts (HSA), which are pre-taxed dollars set aside to cover allowable healthcare-related expenses. In order for a HDHP to be considered a qualifying plan, there must be a minimum annual deductible and an out-of-pocket maximum. These amounts are typically adjusted upward by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to account for inflation.

Since the enrollees are taking on more of the financial risk through the higher deductibles, the monthly premiums tend to be lower than are typically associated with more traditional health plans. Since consumers are having to pay more out of their pockets to cover healthcare costs, they are becoming more price sensitive and inclined to shop around for best pricing from providers and provider organizations.

On January 1, 2019, the Inpatient Prospective Payment System rule went into effect, which requires hospitals receiving reimbursement from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to post their standard procedure prices online. President Trump implemented this rule in an attempt to create a society of informed health care consumers. Now that consumers are becoming more cost conscious and expecting the best possible value for their dollar spent, providers and provider organizations need to reexamine their marketing strategies.

Memorial Hermann, the largest healthcare system in Southeast Texas, believes it’s time to audit their marketing strategy and propose specific marketing strategies that the System can employ to expand their overall work share. This graded activity is designed to familiarize you with concepts typically associated with strategic marketing to include, but necessarily limited to: target marketing, brand management, advertising and promotion management, social media, website and search engine marketing/search engine optimization, Internet marketing, and marketing research to include analytics and qualitative analysis.

According to their website, Memorial Hermann states that:

“At Memorial Hermann, we’re all about advancing health. Yours. It begins by redefining healthcare. That means bringing together all aspects of the health system – care delivery, physicians and health solutions to create a truly integrated health system. Our 5,500 affiliated physicians and 24,000 employees practice evidence-based medicine with a relentless focus on quality and patient safety. Our efforts continue to result in national awards and recognition, including being ranked one of the nation’s Top 5 large health systems by Truven Health for patient safety and quality. The largest not-for-profit health system in Southeast Texas, Memorial Hermann has 14 hospitals and numerous specialty programs and services conveniently located throughout the Greater Houston area. Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center is one of the Nation’s busiest Level I trauma centers and the primary teaching hospital for McGovern Medical School at UTHealth. We offer leading-edge diagnostic technologies and treatment techniques as well as Houston’s first health information exchange that shares vital patient data among care providers, helping to ensure patients receive the right care at the right time. Our Memorial Hermann Physician Network, MHMD, comprises physicians from Memorial Hermann Medical Group, UTHealth and private physicians and specialists. Memorial Hermann Health Solutions’ subsidiaries offer comprehensive, integrated health solutions that deliver quality benefits while helping to contain costs. We’ve proudly served this community for more than 108 years, and contribute some $438 million annually through school-based health centers and other programs.”

Unit Learning Outcomes

ULO 3: Recommend marketing strategies based on the application of marketing analytics and qualitative research.

ULO 4: Critique organizational social media and Internet marketing strategies to ascertain alignment with a firm’s directional strategy.

ULO 5: Evaluate the benefits and consequences of content and search engine marketing as tools to engaging customers and creating value.


Initial Posting

To aid you in successfully completing this assignment, you might consider using scholarly and credible sources to lookup topics related to brand management, advertising and promotion management, digital marketing platforms, and Internet marketing.

Additionally, you may want to consider topics associated with the strategic importance of brand and its’ management; representation import of branding to consumers; consumer behaviors; and activities involved in managing an advertising campaign. This is neither intended nor to be construed as an “all inclusive” listing of topics related to this assignment, but may serve as a good starting point for your review of the existing literature.

You are a member of the Memorial Hermann Health System’s Marketing Department, located in Houston, Texas. The Department Director has asked you to propose specific marketing strategies that the System can employ to expand their overall market share. You will be asked to prepare a brief presentation, not to exceed 15 minutes, to members of your marketing team. In preparation for your presentation, you are expected to prepare a PowerPoint slide deck with voice over.