Good Listens: Data Mining to Understand the Patient Experience

Written By: Brian Schanen, MS, Marketing Coordinator

Review of: Small Business Success Podcast 051—Marcus Lemonis, Secret Data Miner

If there is one thing I get excited about as a marketer, it is data.

I still remember my marketing professor in college constantly saying, “show me the data.” If I learned anything from that course, it is to do lots, and lots, of quantitative, and qualitative research.

Marcus Lemonis has made a name for himself as CEO of Camping World, and host of MSNBC’s The Profit. My most recently binge watched show, focuses on Lemonis going in and saving, or expanding, a small business. What fascinates me, is how he makes decisions, and the analytical process behind them.

Needless to say, when I saw he was a guest on one of the podcasts I listen to, talking about data, I was interested.


While the thrust of their conversation revolves around using data in marketing, it translates to patient experience scores. Marketers know retaining customers takes effort, but acquiring new ones is even costlier.

When the lifetime value of a patient is north of a million dollars, keeping patients is vital to long term financial success. When customers leave, it is critical to know why. That is where data comes in.

To successfully use data to ease marketing challenges, Lemonis advises that we be specific.

In the podcast, they reflect on the past marketing strategy of “carpet bombing” an audience with TV ads and mass mailings. They stress how the strategy no longer works. Similar to how “carpet bombing” an organization with a barrage new tactics with little direction or specificity, won’t create lasting change.

Mystery shopping allows organizations to find the pain points, and address them directly. Why fault the custodians for low cleanliness scores, when in reality, it could be staff contributions to clutter that drives patients away?

Bottom line?

Mystery shopping helps dive deeper into the patient experience. While you are given patient satisfaction survey scores, it is harder to determine, why that score was given. Patient satisfaction scores are research, but mystery shopping is your lots, and lots, of research I referred to previously.

At ten minutes in length, I encourage you to listen to the podcast on your commute to or from work, and reflect on how marketing data and the patient experience align.

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