Sunday, March 30, 2008

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

March theme: What motivates customers?

I've thought about behavior change a lot... for most of my adult life and certainly off and on in my various jobs. Marketing is behavior change... so is conservation psychology... and many types of education. So this month I'll present a couple of ideas that might be helpful for you when considering how to influence, persuade, or otherwise motivate your audience.

Because it's not really about the popcorn or peanuts... is it?

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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sunday's Signpost

Spotted at San Diego's Fashion Valley mall.

What they mean to say is, don't hold your breath.

For more like these, visit the blog of unnecessary quotation marks.
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Sunday, March 09, 2008

Sunday's Signpost

This great wayfinding sign is near Philadelphia's Academy of Natural Sciences. Here's everything right about this sign:
  1. It's oriented the way the viewer is standing.
  2. It has a circle designating what's within a five-minute walk.
  3. The you-are-here star has a corresponding key: You are here. The direction you are facing is at the top of this map.
  4. They created colored zones to help make the city more understandable to visitors.
  5. It uses universal icons to explain services offered at each numbered location.
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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Client spotlight: Personalized Primary Care

This month's client spotlight is a doctor's office I worked with over a year ago. At that time the practice was simply named for the doctor: Daniel J. Bressler, M.D.

I did an 8-step business review, which includes all staff members using their own checklists to rate the patient experience. We sat down to discuss what their perceptions of the patient experience were, what they'd like to see improved, and what my suggestions were. They also received a report to use as a working document to make changes.

One of the biggest changes I noticed on my return was the new name and the branded printed materials, something I had recommended. Dr. Bressler said that the long process of changing the name (it's complicated for doctors to do) was well worth it, as it has created a feeling of cohesion in the office, now that they all work for the corporation, including him.

The branded print pieces create a feeling of quality, setting up a team approach to healthcare that has been beneficial for both the staff and patients, as patients can become comfortable seeing someone from "the team" instead of only one person. This allows for more flexibility with scheduling, helping both patients and the staff.

The waiting room before and after showed some nice changes. It was a pretty room before, with comfortable chairs and a small fountain. One thing I noticed was that the magazines were old and not very interesting (things like a nutrition newsletter) and didn't necessarily relate to the holistic medical care offered in the office. They've added a wonderful range of magazines that support their mission, like Men's Health and Real Simple.

Since patients do wait while filling out paperwork, they added a water and tea station, with natural sweetener packets (stevia) and a great selection of teas, as well as raisins and almond packets.

They added artwork to many treatment rooms and put in a sound system, which the patient is able to turn up or down in their room, offering some control over the experience.

I asked Dr. Bressler what results he's seen. He said the staff is happier and they have a much stronger team feeling. They all worked hard to create a policies and procedures manual, which cleared up communication issues and helped streamline the patient experience.

He also said, "It was a lot more fun than I thought it would be. It taps into a different kind of creativity. You were a catalyst for us, you don't give the answers, but you have fresh eyes and suggest how to do things differently. You planted a lot of seeds. Change didn't happen overnight but we're very pleased with how it's gone."

As I know patients in their practice, I've checked in with them as well. While they've always loved the doctor, they have really noticed how much faster their appointments are, down from as long as 2.5 hours to around 45 minutes.

I was thrilled to help this wonderful doctor and his team achieve a better patient experience.

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Sunday, March 02, 2008

Sunday's Signpost

What a great way to advertise this "artreach" program at the San Diego Museum of Art.
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