Patient Opinion

Journalista - November 2010 - June 2011

Summary

Journalista’s hard-hitting communications campaign for patient feedback website Patient Opinion has delivered impact beyond agenda-setting publicity. By securing deeper political, commercial and media partnerships, Journalista’s PR approach to date has helped elevate Patient Opinion to be a ‘go-to’ organisation for expertise and insight into the NHS patient experience.

Our role was to shift Patient Opinion’s brand from being a specialist user-generated content website into a national authority on the NHS patient experience. We have achieved this through a stakeholder communications campaign which included media relations and commissioning fact-packed research to generate the ‘In their words’ report.

Our hero pieces of PR coverage have secured Patient Opinion ‘money can’t buy’ publicity including extended debates on Radio 4’s You & Yours and TalkSPORT, news items within nationals such as the Daily Mail and The Mirror and long term media partnerships with The Guardian’s Healthcare Network and Health Service Journal.

 In 2011, Patient Opinion was promoted by Parliament in a Health Select Committee report that urged trusts to use service to use online feedback to improve service provision for their patients. Our work has been also been recognised by Patient Opinion’s digital investment partner Channel 4iP, which has released a third pot of funding for the site on the condition that the majority of it is re-invested into media and digital strategy and delivery, which Journalista is being retained to provide.

Objectives

•    Increase the general public’s awareness of Patient Opinion through sustained media coverage.
•    Increase both footfall and number of postings on the Patient Opinion website.
•    Elevate the importance of patients’ and their carers’ opinions in general, and as posted on the Patient Opinion website, with policy makers and NHS trusts.
•    Establish Patient Opinion as a thought leader and the ‘go-to’ voice of patients within the consumer and health-sector media.

Strategy

•    Use existing data to create a report that leads the healthcare news agenda, using this as a platform to raise awareness of Patient Opinion’s re-launched website at the end of February 2011.
•    Use the increased media profile from the re-launch to embed Patient Opinion as the ‘go to voice’ for patients’ and their carers’ opinions with key national health journalists and producers, as well as policy makers and healthcare organisation leaders.
•    Establish Patient Opinion’s CEO Dr Paul Hodgkin as a thought leader on patient experience by issuing comments and writing op-eds on matters relevant to patients’ experiences.
•    Provide a full day of print and broadcast media training for Patient Opinion’s team to ensure their call to action was conveyed effectively.
•    Provide case studies and examples of patient stories to support a range of media coverage on NHS care.

Outstanding results

•    Our report ‘In their words’, which captured the ‘top-ten’ things that lead patients and their carers to tell their stories about the NHS, featured in The Daily Mail, The Mirror, The Guardian, HSJ, Nursing Times and more. The report reached an audience of 14 million for the month of the website re-launch and was downloaded by more than 600 journalists and NHS managers.
•    Over 80 news pieces over seven months campaign.
•    Total audience reach of over 45 million in this same period.
•    Advertising value equivalent (AVE) of over £450,000, based on an AVE multiple of one.
•    Average ROI of 22:1 throughout the campaign.
•    Led the public debate on TalkSport and Radio 4’s ‘You and Yours’, which we shared with other producers to exemplify how ‘media friendly’ the Patient Opinion team are.
•    Positive messaging using case studies from the report in national press, forcing trusts to publicly respond and improve their services.
•    Health Select Committee report on complaints specifically names and ‘strongly supports’ the concept of Patient Opinion as a method of online feedback that drives NHS improvements.
•    91% increase in unique visitors to the site from October 2010 to May 2011.
•    161% increase in stories told on Patient Opinion from October 2010 to May 2011.
•    Secured a regular column titled ‘The Patient’s View’ in the Health Service Journal.

What Patient Opinion say about us

“At Patient Opinion we have used two previous consultancies to provide press and media advice. Both were helpful but in an unfocused and expensive way that did not deliver results.
“Holly and Journalista have been different from the start. Clear and very experienced in our field (health), delivering on time and with good results in terms of agreed KPIs. Excellent value - and just as important Holly and her team are a delight to work with, people with whom clear communication both ways is valued and straightforward.”

Dr Paul Hodgkin
CEO, Patient Opinion

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