Health Alliance: A lesson in healthcare brand marketing & media
Case Study
Results

# 1
Private HMO/POS in Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska (Source: National Committee for Quality Assurance Private Health Plan Rankings 2014-2015)
# 1
Medicare HMO plan in Illinois and Nebraska (Source: National Committee for Quality Assurance Medicare Plan Rankings 2014-2015)
$$
AE Marketing Group was so efficient in planning and management, a 2% refund was issued to Health Alliance

“AE Marketing Group was a steadfast partner during a time of uncertainty and their expertise allowed us to focus on emerging markets.”

Jane Hayes
Senior Vice President at Health Alliance

INDUSTRY CHAOS

For Health Alliance and the health insurance industry, health care reform, emerging technology and the empowerment of consumers has wreaked havoc on the status quo. One Illinois health plan experienced all of these challenges firsthand when its largest customer decided to make a shift amidst the market chaos. In a flash, more than one third of Health Alliance’s business was suddenly in jeopardy with millions of dollars in lost revenue and potential staff cuts looming.

Often in such moments of business crisis, companies will attempt to stop the bleeding by cutting their marketing along with many other expenses. However, at Health Alliance Senior Vice President Jane Hayes said, “It was an unprecedented moment of uncertainty for our company, yet AE Marketing Group was a steadfast partner.”

 

EMERGING MARKETS

In order for Health Alliance to seize opportunity from the flux, a new marketing strategy was crafted, with AE Marketing Group CEO Brian Walker explaining that, “I don’t know many brands that cut their way to revenue growth.”

AE Marketing Group helped Health Alliance recognize that if consumers wouldn’t engage with the brand, then the brand would instead engage with them. In turn, Health Alliance’s traditional media was turned on its head and micro-targeting, new media platforms and markets were examined for growth potential. Additionally, expansion to both to the south and the west provided new consumer opportunities.

Lastly, strong financial stewardship ensured there would be little waste of precious resources, while audience and messaging were tightly woven for maximum impact.

 

HEALTH ALLIANCE EMBRACING THE CHANGE

With these changes, the Health Alliance brand moved into uncharted territory and said Hayes, “Knowing the marketing plan was in experienced hands and executed under budget was most helpful as our management team could focus attention elsewhere.”

Walker, meanwhile, noted that, “Health Alliance could have retreated, but instead they embraced the change and have emerged far stronger then ever before.”

Just a few short years later, not only has Health Alliance been able to absorb market shock, the brand is now the largest managed care provider in downstate Illinois and has gone on to take leadership positions in its new markets, including:

#1 Private HMO/POS in Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska (Source: National Committee for Quality Assurance Private Health Plan Rankings 2014-2015)

#1 Medicare HMO plan in Illinois and Nebraska (Source: National Committee for Quality Assurance Medicare Plan Rankings 2014-2015)

AE Marketing Group was so efficient in planning and management, a 2% refund was issued to Health Alliance

Summary

Health care reform, emerging technology and the empowerment of consumers wreaked havoc on the status quo of healthcare. Understand how AE Marketing Group helped Health Alliance embrace chaos and recognize that if consumers wouldn’t engage with the healthcare brand, then the brand would pivot and find new markets and consumers.

Assignment
Develop a marketing and media strategy that maximizes precious resources during a time of industry uncertainty.
Key Challenge
How can Health Alliance adapt to seismic market shifts and thrive?
Customer
Health Alliance sold its first health insurance plan in 1980 and is now the largest managed care provider in downstate Illinois, serving nearly 300,000 customers in four states. To learn more visit Healthalliance.org.