You Say You Want a Digital Transformation?

(For the file, I promise that is the primary, final, and solely time I’ll paraphrase Beatles’ lyrics in a CMI submit title. OK, shifting on …)

Staying on high of recent shopper learnings, expectations, and preferences is crucial for firms to stay aggressive and responsive in a fast-changing digital panorama. Transformation will not be a straightforward job for any enterprise, however the obstacles can appear virtually herculean to massive enterprises in industries like insurance coverage, finance, and well being care. Not solely do these organizations create communication underneath strict regulatory, authorized, and privateness restrictions, they typically face a deep-seated, institution-wide reluctance to tampering with what’s at all times labored.

But one firm rising to the event on this respect is Aetna. It has begun a vital initiative to streamline its buyer communication whereas enhancing its skill to ship precious, frictionless content material experiences throughout its digital platforms.

In addition to her keynote presentation at ContentTECH Summit 2019, Aetna’s vice chairman of selling expertise and digital expertise, Shiva Mirhosseini, spoke with me about what Aetna’s digital-first imaginative and prescient entails and the way it’s being put it into follow.


Transformations start on the basis

Before starting its transformation, Aetna acknowledged that the complexity of working in a extremely regulated trade made it tough to plan and execute new initiatives throughout the enterprise, not to mention frequently measure and optimize them. Like many enterprise organizations, the corporate’s enterprise models and product classes every had distinct content material methods, priorities, and governance practices. They resulted in fragmented, fatiguing experiences for Aetna’s clients – and missed alternatives for the corporate to impact wholesome habits.

Fragmented digital experiences can imply missed alternatives to have an effect on your clients. @shivamirhoseini #ContentTECH Click To Tweet

To enhance outcomes on each fronts, Shiva’s crew carried out its Customer Communication Transformation program, geared toward enabling omnichannel experiences that may very well be developed extra effectively and scaled extra successfully throughout the corporate’s print and digital touchpoints.

Aetna’s top-line objective was to simplify issues for the client as greatest because it might. “If (consumers) have to go through five or six different websites to gather the information they need, it’s defeating our purpose as a valued service provider,” Shiva says.

Streamlining the corporate’s content material expertise grew to become a high strategic precedence. Shiva explains, “Building frictionless experience starts by putting the customer at the center, right? So, to that end, we are re-examining, refactoring, and reimagining quite a few of our content experiences –– to keep their needs top of mind.”

These sweeping strategic shifts require an ongoing dedication to doing no matter it takes – together with from a content material technique standpoint – to greatest serve the shoppers’ wants. In Aetna’s case, earlier than a single content material resolution may very well be made, the crew addressed foundational constraints that stood in the best way of environment friendly omnichannel content material administration, together with an unwieldy and poorly coordinated communication footprint.


Creating scalability by cutting down

Streamlining Aetna’s buyer expertise includes arduous choices, together with the shutdown of a vital variety of its digital properties. To date, Shiva’s crew has made progress: “Close to 50% of the websites that we initially targeted for transformation across the entire enterprise have been ‘sunset’ or eliminated entirely. And the ones that remain are in the process of being consolidated or completely reimagined,” she says.

To streamline the client expertise, @Aetna shut down a variety of its digital properties, says @shivamirhoseini. Click To Tweet

From right here, Shiva’s crew has taken a two-pronged strategy to rebuilding its communication infrastructure. First, it established a formal digital governance course of that, based on Shiva, included:

  • Implementing new, tech-enabled communication consumption varieties.
  • Developing standardized asset templates.
  • Creating a unified taxonomy to determine and doc the content material stock throughout the enterprise.

The governance course of additionally concerned establishing a set of “customer-obsessed digital guidelines.” Every enterprise unit wants to grasp and adjust to it earlier than receiving entry to advertising and marketing sources for future content material creation and distribution. By standardizing its governance practices throughout all purposeful areas, Aetna anticipates accelerating and enhancing its buyer expertise with higher instruments, processes, and reporting buildings.

The second part of the strategy centered on company-wide coaching and training to advertise ongoing help for the brand new operations. For instance, Shiva’s crew developed a playbook to stipulate its multichannel buyer necessities throughout advertising and marketing, transactional, and interactive communications. The purpose is to align their content material methods underneath a unified imaginative and prescient of worth.

“We painted the overall objective and the goal and proved that it would not only improve the customer experience, but it also would be beneficial for everyone involved in our process. That definitely reduced the resistance. As a result, it created more of a positive and meaningful movement that people could actually be quite proud to be part of. That helped us build a lot more momentum to continue the work,” Shiva says. 

Shifting focus from alignment to empowerment

While securing government and employees acceptance of a new initiative is effective, Shiva and her crew acknowledged that a profitable transformation in the end hinged on extra sensible, public-facing issues, like how effectively the brand new experiences drive desired behavioral and monetary outcomes – similar to diminished medical prices, reductions in name middle site visitors, and elevated use of on-line instruments and providers.

To get a clearer view, Shiva’s crew turned its focus to the shoppers – how various kinds of customers may navigate and have interaction with Aetna’s communication experiences throughout digital, print, and electronic mail channels; what targets did they need to accomplish; and the way might Aetna’s content material empower their success and supply elevated effectivity.

For instance, Aetna just lately produced a self-assessment instrument to assist customers navigate its Medicare-focused web site. As Shiva describes, clients who answered a temporary questionnaire have been placed on the quick observe to the part that instantly targets the client’s acknowledged function. The clients circumvent a lengthy menu of informational merchandise which may have been irrelevant to their wants. “It demystified the process, providing a much cleaner, simpler experience for them,” she says.

Beyond content material creation, this renewed give attention to the client journey extends to Aetna’s plans for evaluating content material efficiency. Moving ahead, all communication must be measured towards the ultimate desired final result, not simply factors of interplay in a particular marketing campaign. While Shiva acknowledges that the crew nonetheless appears carefully at issues like web promoter scores, content material engagement metrics, and behavioral patterns throughout their websites, a conversion is essentially the most definitive indicator of a buyer’s satisfaction with the communication expertise. “The ultimate compliment is if they don’t drop you and go somewhere else,” she says.

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Moving ahead with conviction – and elevated conversions

Embarking on a program of this magnitude is a herculean job that requires self-discipline, dedication, and accountability throughout the enterprise. Even essentially the most devoted organizations are certain to come across their share of teachable moments for which they return and modify: “When we launched that (assessment) tool, it didn’t have very high traffic going to it. (We discovered) it takes a certain type of person who wants to connect and go through a guided selling experience,” Shiva says.

But Aetna’s willingness to experiment is paying off by way of precious shopper insights and outcomes: For instance, underneath the brand new program, the crew rapidly decided that clients who made it by the evaluation instrument expertise transformed at an exponentially increased stage than those who didn’t – constructive reinforcement that the efforts have been heading in the right direction.

As this formidable, multifaceted program progresses, Shiva is assured it can allow Aetna to speed up the event of communication initiatives and equip them with important instruments, processes, and alternatives to extend their effectivity, mitigate threat, and be extra attentive to enterprise wants. But maybe much more importantly, it’s the beginning of the corporate’s ongoing journey towards delivering extra informative, accessible, and satisfying well being care experiences to its clients.

Don’t miss the keynotes and dozens of different presenters at Content Marketing World this September in Cleveland, Ohio. Use the code CMIBLOG100 to save lots of $100. Register at present.

Cover picture by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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