Social Media and the Healthcare Community: What You Need to Know | Featuring Theresa McNeely, Homology Medicine

EPISODE 5 | PODCAST

You can also find this episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google Podcasts

Show Notes:

On this episode of Pivot Points, we are joined by Theresa McNeely, Chief Communications Officer, and Patient Advocate at Homology Medicines, Inc. Elise Orlowski and Tripp Underwood sit down with Theresa to discuss how social media has impacted healthcare, patient communications, clinical trials, privacy, and patient advocacy. We all know social media has impacted how we share and receive information. However, we may not think about how sharing your personal experience online can negatively affect patients, caregivers, and the medical community at large. Theresa highlights some of the great benefits social media has provided and warns of the pitfalls to avoid that you may not know.

We also discuss with Theresa the challenges and benefits of virtual and hybrid events for patient communities. Although you may never be able to duplicate the in-person experience, Theresa notes the great unforeseen benefit of going virtual for these communities.

Finally, Theresa reveals a common misconception about healthcare companies communicating with patients online. All of this and more on the season finale of Pivot Points!

Transcript:

Elise Orlowski (00:08):

I’m Elise Orlowski, a senior video director here at Cramer.

Tripp Underwood  (00:10):

And I’m Tripp Underwood, a creative director at Cramer.

Elise Orlowski (00:13):

And at Cramer, we work with so many incredibly fascinating people from all over multiple industries.

Tripp Underwood  (00:18):

We have many great conversations, many of them are just too good to keep to ourselves. So now, we’re sharing them with the world.

Elise Orlowski (00:23):

Right here from Cramer studios.

Tripp Underwood  (00:25):

This is Pivot Points.

Elise Orlowski (00:30):

Cut.

Tripp Underwood  (00:37):

Hey.

Elise Orlowski (00:37):

Hi.

Tripp Underwood  (00:38):

Good to see you.

Elise Orlowski (00:39):

Good to see you again.

Tripp Underwood  (00:40):

Back in the studio.

Elise Orlowski (00:40):

Yep.

Tripp Underwood  (00:42):

I’m super excited about today’s episode because it talks…

Elise Orlowski (00:44):

Yeah. What are we talking about?

Tripp Underwood  (00:45):

We’re talking about… We’ll talk about… Who we’re talking to is actually the important part. But today, we have the privilege of talking with Theresa McNeely, who is the chief communications officer and patient advocate at Homology Medicines, an amazing organization, really, at the forefront of developing this kind of new wave of medicines that’s using its growing understanding of disease biology, gene therapy, and gene editing technologies.

Elise Orlowski (01:08):

Oh, cool.

Tripp Underwood  (01:08):

Super advanced stuff.

Elise Orlowski (01:09):

Wow.

Tripp Underwood  (01:09):

And it’s actually helping to treat and potentially cure some of the world’s most challenging and rare genetic diseases.

Tripp Underwood  (01:16):

Theresa herself has decades of experience in the healthcare and patient communications, which is a subject that’s near and dear to my heart because you might not know, but back in the mid-2000s before I got here at Cramer, I was head writer at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Elise Orlowski (01:29):

Right. I remember you telling me about that. Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (01:31):

It was an awesome time, it was a great job, and it really gave me this front row seat to that institution’s first foray into the use of social media, which was very exciting, but also, a very uncertain time because there’s HIPAA things to consider, there’s patient privacy to consider, all the things that social media, you know, putting yourself out there in the world, everything it does well doesn’t always jive with patient privacy.

Elise Orlowski (01:56):

Right.

Tripp Underwood  (01:56):

However…

Elise Orlowski (01:56):

It has to be a lot more strategic.

Tripp Underwood  (01:58):

Exactly. But open lines of communications between patients, between researchers, between caregivers, between advocate groups, that’s super important. So, the crux is how can we capitalize on social media’s ability to connect people while still being very, very thoughtful and careful about things like privacy and factual information, as we all know is not necessarily the best thing about social media.

Elise Orlowski (02:24):

Right. Right.

Tripp Underwood  (02:26):

Theresa knows all this stuff incredibly well, and I’m super excited to pick her brain on that topic.

Elise Orlowski (02:30):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (02:31):

A couple of different things. So, I think let’s bring her to the show.

Elise Orlowski (02:33):

Yeah. Let’s welcome her.

Tripp Underwood  (02:33):

Theresa, welcome.

Theresa McNeely  (02:33):

Thank you. Thanks Tripp and thanks Elise. Thanks for having me.

Tripp Underwood  (02:40):

And thanks for coming.

Elise Orlowski (02:40):

Yeah. We’re looking forward to it.

Tripp Underwood  (02:41):

Yeah.

Elise Orlowski (02:42):

It sounds like you have a ton of experience. Social media is something, I think, now more than ever, that’s really, really important. Especially for communication. So, we’re excited to pick your brain especially regarding the healthcare field.

Tripp Underwood  (02:52):

Yeah. Just jumping right in, Teresa, as someone that was working in the healthcare and patient communications field during that social media boom of the early to mid-2000s, what were your thoughts at that time about the ways that allowed patients to communicate with a bigger audience, so patients can talk to patients, patients can talk to researchers or clinical professionals. They can learn about potential trial sites, they can get connected to advocacy organizations and so on.

Tripp Underwood  (03:24):

What were your thoughts at that time in terms of this new tool, and any excitement you had, and/or any reservations you had about it?

Theresa McNeely  (03:35):

I would start by saying, for the patient community, it’s been one of the best things that has happened. As you mentioned, it’s an opportunity for them to connect in many instances in ways that they couldn’t before. They didn’t even know people like them were having the same challenges. They were, potentially had the same diseases. So, it was a really powerful tool.

Theresa McNeely  (04:01):

It also gave them comfort in being able to do things they couldn’t do before. For example, educate other patients, form patient advocacy groups, raise money, go to regulators, help them understand what they are dealing with on a daily basis and living with their disease.

Theresa McNeely  (04:25):

So, again, just like… Especially on a global basis, because in rare diseases, there’s so few patients, so finding each other and being able to connect beyond borders was extremely powerful. For healthcare companies, it was a bit scary, to be honest.

Tripp Underwood  (04:47):

Right.

Theresa McNeely  (04:48):

It presented all sorts of challenges, as you mentioned, with HIPAA regulations.

Tripp Underwood  (04:56):

I remember. Yeah.

Theresa McNeely  (04:56):

Yeah. That was difficult. And it, also, for public companies, presented a lot of challenges too. Because in a lot of ways, it was exposing themselves to having to potentially answer questions from patients in a public forum, and that becomes very tricky when you’re trying to maintain confidentiality and so forth.

Tripp Underwood  (05:21):

Right. Right.

Theresa McNeely  (05:22):

I think healthcare companies were late to the game in some ways in adopting this new forum, but I think they’ve come a long way. I know we certainly have, and so has the technology. So, it’s really helped.

Tripp Underwood  (05:38):

Talk to me a little bit about… I understand what it would mean for patients, this idea of finding out you’re not the only person in the world dealing with this. One thing I found incredibly powerful was some of the communications I saw between caregivers. Someone that maybe has a sick partner, a sick parent, a sick child, something at home, the way that caregivers could communicate to other caregivers, I thought, was very powerful.

Tripp Underwood  (06:03):

I’m just curious if you had any thoughts on that, or any examples of seeing that, and how that might help them care for their sick one at home.

Theresa McNeely  (06:12):

It’s been amazing. And in fact, you see a lot of healthcare companies have broadened their social media presence to include caregivers. In a lot of these diseases, the patients themselves are facing challenges, but they may be unaware, for example, of cognitive or mobility challenges. So, being able to, not only healthcare companies connect with caregiver communities and help, but also, the caregivers being able to share tips for how to deal with some of the disease manifestations has been incredibly powerful.

Theresa McNeely  (06:57):

And I would say in many ways, has also helped healthcare companies design clinical trials with caregiver’s perspectives in mind, not just the patient. For a very long time, we focused on the patient, and now, we’ve really broadened that out to patients, their caregivers, including their physicians, their families, their friends. And I think that’s been a real benefit of social media in this regard.

Elise Orlowski (07:30):

Yeah. It’s so interesting because I feel like… I mean, social media, in general, is just about creating communities, whether it’s, you like to see little French bulldogs to finding a really important community when you’re dealing with a very difficult illness. I just love how that’s a universal thing with social media, it’s really just about creating communities and finding those connections.

Elise Orlowski (07:54):

So, it’s awesome that, I think, for healthcare communities, you guys have been able to utilize that to really help people not feel alone and feel connected…

Tripp Underwood  (08:02):

Right.

Elise Orlowski (08:03):

… with people in the community.

Tripp Underwood  (08:04):

But the downside being…

Elise Orlowski (08:07):

There’s always a downside.

Tripp Underwood  (08:09):

Cynical that I am, increased connections provides incredibly… Not incredible, but it provides opportunity for miscommunication.

Elise Orlowski (08:19):

Oh, okay.

Tripp Underwood  (08:19):

Misinformation.

Elise Orlowski (08:20):

That totally makes sense, yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (08:22):

And we understand. I think also for something that’s very personal, and Theresa can attest this, of what works for one patient, for one caregiver is not going to be a universal… It might not work for others, but that doesn’t always come through in those kind of communications.

Elise Orlowski (08:38):

Sure. Yeah. That makes sense.

Tripp Underwood  (08:39):

So, Theresa, I wonder if you could just shed some light on the downside of these connections, and how you’ve seen in your time in the space, how either healthcare companies themselves or people in the communities are working to stop that misinformation campaigns or anything that where things get lost in translation, we’ll say.

Theresa McNeely  (08:59):

Right. And I think one of the things that contributes to that is the speed at which technology is enabling that to happen. So, not just the speed, but the reach has been particularly challenging. And it’s one of the reasons why we’ve been trying to educate folks about the downside, particularly, in the healthcare space, in not necessarily oversharing, but perhaps, sharing information they shouldn’t. And this has been a concerted effort at Homology, and I know other companies are taking on this charge as well.

Theresa McNeely  (09:42):

And what we’ve found is that it really is just a lack of awareness on the patient’s part, and perhaps, the researchers, the clinical researchers not knowing the downside of the sharing. A good example of that would be a patient posting on how well a particular treatment is working or not working, and companies are having to find an avenue for responding, and that usually is not in a social media forum. So, it’s an interesting conundrum for healthcare companies in that regard.

Theresa McNeely  (10:25):

But once we have the opportunity to tell folks about potentially compromising the integrity of the data of a clinical trial, this is confidential information, as you said, this one patient’s experience may not reflect the larger patient populations, that we need to be really careful, and when they understand that it can be misused, and often, abused by other audiences, then, they realize, and they really do think twice about whether or not something they would have naturally shared with their community. The reason the community was formed was to share and educate each other.

Theresa McNeely  (11:14):

But I think that it opens their eyes, and they’re very receptive because they know that companies are working really hard to bring new treatments to help patients, caregivers, the community at large.

Tripp Underwood  (11:29):

Talk to me a little bit about the power of social media in terms of recruiting for clinical trials. I mean, I imagine this is just casting this wide net, I imagine, just completely innovated that process.

Elise Orlowski (11:43):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (11:44):

And as we know, a good trial is only as good as its data, right? So, the larger the sample size, the better the trial. And I imagine the ability to recruit more people has been huge. So, just curious as to, your thoughts on that, how quickly that’s pushed clinical trial recruitment over, and then, some of the pitfalls that you are dealing with, because as we discussed, a great tool, but not a perfect tool.

Theresa McNeely  (12:10):

Right. It’s been phenomenal in patient recruitment, and just general awareness. And a lot of patients share not only amongst themselves, but the patient advocacy organizations are very involved in recruitment efforts as well. I don’t have to tell you how self-educated patients are today, caregivers are today. So, it enables a forum for them to reach out, get more information about trials, come in to their physician’s office, somewhat, more informed than they would have been in the past. Social media has really facilitated knowledge gathering, and an empowerment for patients, which is one of the best things that social media has brought to the world, actually.

Theresa McNeely  (13:06):

I guess you mentioned what would be the downsides. Again, we go to… Personal patient’s experiences in a trial could potentially discourage other people from participating and their experience may not even be related to the treatment that’s being evaluated. We’ve seen patient postings about their experiences, and it’s turned out either they’re not on treatment, or it’s due to other circumstances, rather than the treatment itself.

Theresa McNeely  (13:43):

So, that gets a bit complicated when that information gets shared, and not in the proper context of the totality of data being generated from a clinical trial.

Tripp Underwood  (13:56):

Which is definitely a problem, but it’s also not really unique to this particular industry. I think that’s the one thing to know about social… I mean, look at Yelp. I had a terrible time here at… and I think because we’re all-

Theresa McNeely  (14:07):

I think it pushed up the [list 00:14:08].

Tripp Underwood  (14:08):

But I think as a society, as we all become just more comfortable and used to social media just being ubiquitous everywhere in our life, I feel like… I don’t know, this is not a clinical trial discussion, I have no data to back this up. I just feel like people are becoming a little bit more savvy about understanding that one person’s experience isn’t necessarily going to be reflective of their own. So-

Elise Orlowski (14:31):

Yeah. And combing through it too, because I feel like… Like to the Yelp example, I’ll read one bad review, but then, I’ll try to counterweight it with, okay, this person had a good experience. Like meet in the middle. It makes me do more research than just looking at one thing. [inaudible 00:14:46]

Tripp Underwood  (14:45):

Right. And we’re talking about something as potentially serious as clinical trials, or if you’re exploring drugs, a much more educated search than if you’re looking for a good place for brunch…

Elise Orlowski (14:59):

Correct.

Tripp Underwood  (14:59):

… which is the kind of pithy analogy I’ve made. But I…

Theresa McNeely  (15:03):

I think to pick up on your example, though, with Yelp, I mean, that’s usually tens of thousands of people…

Tripp Underwood  (15:12):

Right.

Theresa McNeely  (15:13):

… in clinical trials, it’s so few numbers. And then, when you think of who might actually post, it could be so few that you actually don’t have that big list to scroll down and figure out, is this real? Is it not? And so, I think it becomes more difficult. And you can take that to a whole other level when you’re talking about rare disease communities, because there’s even fewer patients.

Theresa McNeely  (15:41):

So, that one post can just hang out there, and that’s all you see. And whether or not it’s in the right context, the power of that, both good and potentially not so good takes it to a whole other level in healthcare.

Tripp Underwood  (15:59):

So how do you… I don’t want to use the term combat that because you’re not trying…

Elise Orlowski (16:03):

What’s the right…

Tripp Underwood  (16:03):

… to silence people. Yeah. But what is your role as a communications professional in that field to try to remedy that information that is out there that is not applicable to everybody?

Theresa McNeely  (16:17):

Yeah. I think what we found, and other companies have found as well is that being proactive from the beginning. Even before you start a trial like when you’re doing initial… Recruiting sites even, or even as soon as your first site visit, so companies will go and meet with the study coordinators and the principal investigators. That becomes an opportunity. Even though the informed consents now have evolved as social media, that’s what a patient signs when they agree to participate in a clinical trial, there now is language in there that speaks to the confidential nature of the trial from a social media standpoint, and that asking patients not to share their personal experiences on social media…

Theresa McNeely  (17:17):

A lot happens at initial site visits, so, we found what helps in that education process is to come in behind the clinical folks. So, communications folks, patient advocacy folks in our organization, we’re a team, and we come in and have a conversation with them. Educate them on the pitfalls, give them some examples of what hasn’t worked well, and the ramifications of that. And it’s been so eye-opening.

Theresa McNeely  (17:52):

You know, it’s funny. I’ve had some research coordinators, when I give examples, say, “People really… They do that?” Because they can’t always go to the dark side of somebody using that kind of information in a not beneficial way. So, we found that’s really powerful, and sets the stage from the get go. So that everyone sort of has those goalposts because what we’re trying to do is really hard, and patients need it. And so, we don’t want anything to happen to jeopardize the mission.

Tripp Underwood  (18:32):

Right. I mean, it’s like anything else in healthcare, informed patients. The more informed a patient is for the care they’re getting, the better. The more informed a patient is in a clinical trial, the better. I mean, it’s certainly not a new topic in healthcare, but I think with the onset of just constant communication, patients are just getting more informed about those kind of things, and I think this is just an extension of that. That’s right.

Elise Orlowski (18:58):

Yeah. And it sounds like, for the most part, I think, they’re not skeptical towards that viewpoint. They’re like, “Okay. Oh, I see how this could impact the trial,” et cetera, et cetera, and kind of give responses like, “Oh, people would actually do that.” It’s good that you can, through education, bring people to your side and see like, it’s not that we don’t want you to say things, we know that a clinical trial is going to be a range of symptoms, et cetera, but ultimately, it’s going to hurt the whole mission, rather than just really saying what’s going on with your particular case.

Elise Orlowski (19:32):

So, it’s good. I mean, education is key, right? If you educate someone, I think they’re more likely to come to your side, and ultimately, understand the bigger goal.

Tripp Underwood  (19:41):

Like I tell my children, there’s a big difference between don’t do this and don’t do this because…

Elise Orlowski (19:45):

Yes. Yes.

Tripp Underwood  (19:47):

Once you add that because, people can process the information and say, “You got it”, as opposed to just automatically saying, “You can’t tell me what to do.” I think it’s important in all walks of life.

Tripp Underwood  (19:58):

Shifting gears a little bit. So, talking about patient communities, and how they relate to research trials. That’s always had a big in-person component, obviously, and for the past 18 months, in person components have been a huge no-no, which we understand. We’re kind of starting to come out of that now, and we’re starting to see in-person connection starting to happen again. But in-person connections, though great for large elements of the rare disease community, not always accessible to everyone.

Tripp Underwood  (20:31):

So, I think some of the technology that we’re taking, some of the improved video conferencing, and those kind of things that the pandemic has spurned are actually going to be a boon for these patient communities…

Elise Orlowski (20:43):

That’s right.

Tripp Underwood  (20:43):

… for which travel and in-person was never really an option. Theresa, just love to hear your thoughts on that and how you think that that’s going to evolve those communities now that we’ve all gotten so better at knowing where the camera button on our laptops are, and remembering to unmute ourselves.

Elise Orlowski (20:59):

Unmute. Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (20:59):

Exactly.

Theresa McNeely  (21:01):

Yeah. It’s been interesting. I would say from the dawn the technology, enabling these communities to come together online, they’ve been used to that for a long time, particularly because patient group… Communities are spread so far apart, particularly, in rare diseases. You find your counterpart halfway across the world dealing with the same things you are.

Theresa McNeely  (21:31):

So, in that regard, I think connecting online is not a new concept. Particularly, for disease areas where patients are unable to travel, as you said.

Tripp Underwood  (21:43):

Right.

Theresa McNeely  (21:43):

Whether it’s their condition or it’s just too much. I think what’s happened in this past year is that that has come to a whole other level in their connecting in that their events for those that could travel, and many of these patient advocacy organizations do have annual events, whether it’s family days or summer camps, or you know, the in-person connection, you can never discount.

Theresa McNeely  (22:25):

And so, I think… I’ve had patients and patient advocacy groups say, “You know, I can’t believe I wait all year for this one event, and I haven’t been able to go this year.”

Elise Orlowski (22:37):

Yeah. I can imagine.

Theresa McNeely  (22:40):

Some of the organizations have tried to do a virtual live event, if you will. And those have worked well. But I think that this hybrid approach is here to stay, particularly, in healthcare. So, I think it’s been great.

Elise Orlowski (23:01):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (23:02):

I was just going to ask, what are some things… Elisa and I are on the production side of that for this kinds of events, what are things that she and I and our colleagues here at Cramer need to be aware of? Like how is, or is it maybe hosting a virtual or a hybrid event for a patient community different at all from what we do for some of our corporate clients per se? I’m just curious if there’s anything we need to be aware of, stuff we can do better.

Elise Orlowski (23:26):

Yeah. It’s definitely a different landscape just in terms of everything, especially the goal. So, yeah, that’d be great to know.

Theresa McNeely  (23:33):

Yeah. So, it is different. And as I mentioned, you really have to take a patient-centric view of the event, right? What are their language barriers, because you’re bringing people together globally. And I know that relates to other industries as well. But there’s also potential cognitive challenges. So, their ability to participate , you know, is the event too long? Are they going to lose-

Elise Orlowski (24:09):

[inaudible 00:24:09] possibility.

Theresa McNeely  (24:09):

Right. I know our attention spans in general today are quite short, but I think in some of these disease areas, they’re not even aware of that. So, you need to be aware of that. You need to talk to caregivers to understand what the challenges are even before you do the event. I think there’s also mobility challenges. So, you know, is there… And connectivity challenges, all of those things.

Theresa McNeely  (24:41):

So when contemplating a hybrid event, how do you make it the experience as good… for those that are able to attend live as good as, or in some instances, maybe even better experience for those that can’t be in person. And I would say the other thing is being able to keep them connected before, during and after the event. I know Cramer actually done that quite well across industries, but it’s particularly a challenge in the healthcare space.

Tripp Underwood  (25:24):

So, a big part of the value of social media is this kind of immediate back and forth you can get with companies or institutions that were traditionally not available to us. I can write Coca-Cola and say, “I love Coca Cola” and they can write back or I hate Co… And you get… It’s obviously not necessarily the CEO of the company, but you feel like you have some kind of connection to the brands that you’re associated with online…

Elise Orlowski (25:51):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (25:51):

… and I think that’s very helpful for both customer and producer. Not always so easy to do in social media…

Elise Orlowski (25:59):

Yeah, sure.

Tripp Underwood  (26:00):

… when it comes to healthcare. So, Teresa, I’m curious, what is it like when people are throwing very personal questions or very broad statements out there in the internet and how do companies like Homology respond to that? Or are you even able to respond to that? What does that back and forth look like in this industry?

Theresa McNeely  (26:20):

I’m so glad you asked that question, because it is really frustrating for companies in this space. You know, we talked a bit about the HIPAA regulations, patient confidentiality… Companies can’t even say whether or not that’s a patient, that’s not a patient. First of all, in many instances, we don’t really know, because the social media is not always who you think it is that is actually posting.

Tripp Underwood  (26:56):

So, someone could be posing as a patient when they are truly not a patient… For whatever reason. Yeah, just stirring the pot, as it is. Wow. Okay. Of course. Of course.

Theresa McNeely  (27:04):

That absolutely happens. It happens among competitive therapeutic areas, companies buying for the same therapy and development. So, it becomes a, sometimes, misused tool. But I think once people… And I put all people in that, patients, caregivers, principal investigators, reporters, investors, you name it, once they understand that the company cannot respond, I think, then, it’s a real eye-opener. It’s not that we don’t want to, it’s not that we… We’re just unable to. There’s regulations in place that prohibit our responding, particularly in a forum like social media.

Elise Orlowski (28:01):

That’s super eye-opening to me. And that totally makes sense because you can’t track if that person is a part of et cetera, et cetera. But I think from the public standpoint or the reverse, I can see how a lot of big public thing-

Tripp Underwood  (28:14):

It seems like the companies uncaring when it’s actually…

Elise Orlowski (28:15):

Correct. Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (28:16):

… we care too much to comment because we can’t jeopardize what we’re doing.

Elise Orlowski (28:19):

Which is such a switch usually because… Usually, people have to make statements, but yeah, that’s super eye-opening and a good thing to know.

Theresa McNeely  (28:28):

I think the other thing that patients and families sometimes think is that, oh, well, this is my private group. This is just the patients like me. I’m just sharing it with these small people. Well, I’m not small people, that’s the wrong word, but this small group…

Tripp Underwood  (28:48):

Small group.

Theresa McNeely  (28:48):

… of people. Right. And it then… They don’t realize that I can see sometimes people on groups that I know aren’t who they say they are. So, that’s eye-opening too, wait, somebody’s in my group that, or somebody in my group is then taking this information and just emailing it, or putting it on the internet. It no longer is contained within the community at which they’re trying to help.

Tripp Underwood  (29:22):

Yeah. It’s a sad commentary, but I think an important one to remember is that nothing on the internet is ever truly private no matter…

Theresa McNeely  (29:28):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (29:29):

… how much you like it to be, or you think you can trust. I think there is that golden rule. What is it? Don’t don’t put anything online you wouldn’t say to your grandmother, I think…

Elise Orlowski (29:37):

Or that you wouldn’t want to be there forever.

Tripp Underwood  (29:39):

Yes.

Theresa McNeely  (29:41):

Or as we say in communications or on a billboard on the interstate.

Tripp Underwood  (29:48):

Yeah. I think for me, and this is not relevant specifically to healthcare, but I think it is more so relevant in that kind of trying to shift the mindset of this is our singular event, it happens in June, it happens on this date, that’s our event.

Tripp Underwood  (30:06):

And for me now, the idea is you’re still having that event in June, but the event itself is now going to start three months prior, and extend two months afterwards, because you’re just sharing all that different content. Thinking of events more in the lines of a communication continuum as opposed to a tent pole.

Tripp Underwood  (30:27):

And I think for communities like this where interacting with each other is so vitally important, that’s just going to actually enrich that experience even more than another industry.

Elise Orlowski (30:36):

Oh, yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (30:38):

As the end users become more comfortable with consuming content that way, companies or healthcare organizations become more comfortable distributing information that way, and then, production companies such as us get better at finding more efficient ways to do that. It’s all going to come together in a really great convergence, I believe. I’m hopeful that way.

Elise Orlowski (30:57):

Yeah. And things just coming together because I think… I think something that Tripp and I have been talking a lot about is, it’s not just, like you said, your event, it’s the content that you’re posting before to help people understand leading up and post…

Elise Orlowski (31:10):

And I think you said that as well, Theresa, so it’s really great, I think, especially in terms of this audience, like that information and that curve and being able to like extend and lead up to everything is vital. It’s not just a good strategy. It’s actually really vital for these communities.

Tripp Underwood  (31:29):

It gives you more time to do it too.

Elise Orlowski (31:30):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (31:31):

You know, the old ways of this is our themes… It’s kind of compressed in a short amount of time. If you have time to say, well, this is our vibe for this event, and it kind of evolves organically and naturally over time, it becomes a better value to the people using it. So, I think that it just allows growth and expansion in a way that you did not get when things were on a set day or weekends.

Elise Orlowski (31:53):

Correct.

Tripp Underwood  (31:54):

Great. That’s great. Well, Theresa, we’re not going to take up any more of your time. This has been a fascinating conversation. Appreciate you educating us…

Elise Orlowski (32:01):

Oh, yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (32:02):

… and our listeners. Thank you so much for giving us all this info.

Theresa McNeely  (32:09):

I’m happy to be here, and I appreciate the invitation and being able to educate folks on a much wider scale through this effort. So, thank you very much, Tripp and Elise. I appreciate it.

Tripp Underwood  (32:22):

It’s great information. We’re glad to get it out there. Take care.

Elise Orlowski (32:26):

Take care.

Theresa McNeely  (32:27):

Bye-bye.

Tripp Underwood  (32:27):

That was great.

Elise Orlowski (32:29):

That was great. As someone who doesn’t work in the healthcare community a lot, that was really educational. Because I think, for us, it’s often like how are we going to get these people to pay attention? How are we going to get these audiences to engage? But it sounds like specifically to healthcare, even just having that buy-in of like these people want to be here, they’re really engaged, so, it’s just like, now, let’s give them a good experience. It’s just a very different, I think, way.

Tripp Underwood  (32:56):

It’s different barriers to entry.

Elise Orlowski (32:58):

For sure.

Tripp Underwood  (32:59):

In some of the events that we do, the idea is how can we get people to pay attention, how can we get them to care enough to log on?

Elise Orlowski (33:05):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (33:06):

And then, once they log on, how can we change things fast enough to deal with their attention span? All that, valid problems, but problems that are specific. This industry, it’s much…

Elise Orlowski (33:15):

It’s like a flip.

Tripp Underwood  (33:16):

It’s a flip.

Elise Orlowski (33:17):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (33:17):

How can we make sure we’re reaching the right people? And then, once we have them, how can we give them enough content to be valuable, but not too much content because you’re so restricted in what you can talk about.

Elise Orlowski (33:30):

Sure. Oh, yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (33:31):

So, you have, on one side, a more engaged audience with less content that you’re able to do, as opposed to some traditional things we do, we have too much content to actually engage people.

Elise Orlowski (33:40):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (33:40):

An interesting problem…

Elise Orlowski (33:41):

Yeah.

Tripp Underwood  (33:42):

… but like we talked about with Theresa, I think this idea of thinking about it in a broader communication campaign or spectrum or whatever the words you want to use is, is great because, then, it allows you to just smaller hits to touch base, and just more communication points gives you more data, more metrics to work with. So, you’re always building towards a bigger and better event or connection next time, which is super valuable healthcare otherwise.

Elise Orlowski (34:08):

Definitely. Definitely. Like we say always, thank you to our listeners, and thank you for watching another episode of Pivot Points.

Tripp Underwood  (34:13):

Talk to you soon.

 

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