The Coffey Blog

Keep it fresh when planning health plan newsletters

Posted on: Monday, November 6, 2017

Laurel Johnson, Associate Editor

In your health plan newsletter, you want to appeal to your members. To give them something valuable, something useful—something to keep them coming back. But, of course, you answer to your organization too—which means industry initiatives, legal requirements and necessary, but repetitive, topics can make it hard to keep things fresh.

Plan and package for member appeal

Never lose sight of the members who will be your readers—and try these tips from Coffey's health plan marketing experts.

Give a new spin to the same old, same old. Here are a few ideas based on common health plan newsletter topics:

Topic Fresh angle with member appeal
Get a flu shot 3 ways to not get sick this germy season
Know your benefits Save money on the care you need
Prior authorization "Is it covered?" [Flow chart infographic]
Diabetes care Newly diagnosed: Moving forward with confidence
Doctor-patient communication Asthma: 3 things to tell your doctor
Caregiver support Caregivers: Be kind to yourself today—plus where to reach out for help

Drill down to compelling specifics. Instead of that roundup on diabetes, cover a common—or commonly overlooked—symptom of diabetes, for example. Or explore the science behind a treatment for COPD or kidney disease. Stories like these can still end with broader recommendations for screening and following treatment plans.

Meet people where they're at. For example, for a Medicaid audience, limitations like food availability or transportation may make "eat lots of fresh veggies" unrealistic. Instead of saying "stay active," list some easy ways to get started. Check out this post on behavior change for more ideas on what might motivate your members.

Make it visual. Sometimes fewer words go a long way. Let infographics—help tell your story. Modern readers—who love to skim content—will be more likely to engage with and absorb information that you serve up in a visually pleasing way.

Make the format work for you. Is there info that you absolutely must include, verbatim, every issue? Or every year? Make it a standing element—without visual emphasis if it's not compelling. That means it gets picked up as-is, and you don't have to reinvent the wheel. That frees up space—physical or mental—for more topical and appealing content.

Consume a variety of media. Read up on social issues and stay in touch with current events, which can help you approach topics with sensitivity and empathy.

Don't do it alone—we're here for you

Coffey offers several libraries of content written specifically for health insurer member communication. We also offer editorial planning services—as much or as little help as you need. To get in touch, call 888.805.9101 or email us.

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