The media group has two main activities aimed at professionals in healthcare, social and medico-social services. Its traditional business is hospimedia.fr, which has become THE source of news and information for decision-makers in the hospital sector. Then in 2005, it launched Staffsanté and, more recently, Staffsocial, two services that act as go-betweens linking recruiters and job seekers.
"We are a dynamic, technology-oriented SME, 100% dedicated to the healthcare and social services sector," states Maxime Hurtel, Web Marketing project leader, before enthusiastically highlighting the two Hospimedia Group businesses - information and recruitment in the hospital and healthcare institution sector and its ecosystem.
How do we deploy technology to serve the company's strategic goals? A crucial question for an enterprise keen on defending its leadership in its niche markets. Above and beyond its marketing practices, a number of basic business processes are part of the answer.
The online reference for hospital news
Today, Hospimedia is the daily news service for decision-makers and professionals in the hospital sector. Its specialized journalists provide real-time coverage of the news and continuously monitor the major issues. Releases, interviews, analyses, summaries and in-depth articles covering all hospital sector news are produced with the utmost professionalism, leveraging the most reliable sources. Hospimedia is available exclusively in digital form via a website dedicated to subscribers and guarantees its readers editorial quality and independence that has made its reputation for several years.
The business model underpinning this activity is based on subscriptions - meaning the subscribers make up the sole source of financing. To date, 800 enterprises and organizations subscribe. But within these organizations, over 30,000 decision-makers have a personal user-id and access code.
"The principle of subscription by organization or enterprise rather than by decision-maker leads to a triple-play marketing and member-relations approach," explains Hurtrel, with the following elements.
Advancing in three directions
The three continuous improvement levers directly concerned by the Selligent deployment project are:
Marketing and direct prospecting activities aimed at attracting new subscriber organizations;
The virality within the subscriber organizations to incite a maximum of decision-makers to discover the added value of the contents created by the specialized Hospimedia journalists;
The growth of use and reading. This means ensuring that subscribers consult the site regularly and fully utilize advanced functions such as search, archive access and reading subject-matter in-depth articles.
"It was to accelerate and underpin our progress in these three key areas that we consulted a number of market players and, ultimately, chose Selligent," Hurtrel adds.
Attracting and nurturing new subscribers
As is often the case in this sector, bringing new subscribers on board is done in three main ways:
Telephone prospecting using a traditional sales force equipped with a CRM system;
Creating traffic on the website and converting visitors, for example, with a 'trial' subscription;
Partnerships and sponsorship of major events that the target audiences are attracted to, the aim being to pick up leads and collect email addresses, with a subsequent relational marketing follow-up.
Selligent's native functions can logically contribute directly to improving the processes in approaches 2 and 3 above. They are also brought into play to carry out the so-called concept of 'lead nurturing' - that is, all the interaction scenarios aimed at nurturing the relationship with the people whose email addresses have been collected, qualify them over time and feed the sales teams with lists of prospects that have reached maturity and who are part of the prime target audience.
Viral spreading of subscriptions
Signing up a new subscriber is the fruit of substantial marketing and sales efforts. Then it is a case of doing everything so that a maximum of decision-makers in the subscribing organization receive personal access codes and take a first step in discovering the added value of the news website. Each time a new person is given access, it is an opportunity to roll out a multi-step readership scenario. One of these steps, for example, consists in asking that person which of the topics covered interest him or her particularly.
In addition, each new member receives 'L'alerteur' ('The Alerter'), a daily newsletter giving a summary of the contents distributed in the past few hours. "Since the integration of Selligent, we are actively working on the design of a new version of the newsletter to maximize its fit with the individual expectations of each member," Hurtrel points out. This primarily affects the functions for identifying the behavioral profiles and the capacity for advanced personalization of the contents.
Encouraging usage and active readership
Besides using 'The Advisor' to provoke people to read the contents, the Hospimedia teams are fully aware of the importance of helping members try out the more advanced functions of the service - using search engines to access the archives, reading subject-matter material, etc. "Here, Selligent will enable us to track the behavior and habits of each member and, using the logic of scenarios, leverage this behavioral data to provoke those who do not (or no longer) use these functions to try them out," states the project leader.
A qualitative and functional step change
"Before, we used an email dispatch solution that didn't allow us to leverage the open and click-through behavior. We had no automation capability that compares with the interaction scenario logic of Selligent. We were looking for a solution that could overcome these functional inhibitors and support us in our progress. Seen from that angle, the choice of Selligent opens the door to a huge number of improvement possibilities. It's up to us to advance step by step," notes Hurtrel, before commenting the different projects on his agenda for the coming months: "Apart from the expected increase in member satisfaction and the growth of their activity, these investments will also enable us to develop a more refined on-line sales and marketing approach."
Enhancing the second market: recruitment
But that is not all. In addition to its news media business, the group is also positioned on a second market, that of recruitment in the healthcare, social and medico-social arenas.
Two brands and two websites are linked to this business: Staffsanté and Staffsocial. Two recruitment sites with similar functions but each with its specialty - recruitment in the healthcare segment for the former and in social and medico-social services for the latter.
This activity is based on a different business model. The recruiters finance the business by publishing their job openings and taking out subscriptions that enable them to access the profile database.
Interactive management of applicant relations
In this context, the Selligent suite leverages its interaction scenario functions to manage relations with each applicant interactively and dynamically.
"Every year we invest substantial funds to extend the visibility of our two recruitment sites. It is a very competitive market. Our success depends as much on that of the advertisers as on the number of applicants who accept to file their CVs or fill out a profile and respond to the recruitment ads," Hurtrel clarifies.
The scenarios instituted by the Hospimedia team help to support each applicant's life cycle, gain their trust and increase their interest in the site. They aim to ensure, mainly via email, that applicants signed up on the site make full and regular usage of its functions and take the time to complete their profiles and CVs.
"We carefully gauge the conversion rate of a person, measured by three key uses of the offering: the use of the search engine to access job offers, filing a CV and creating a profile, and signing up for the 'Job Alert' program," Hurtrel explains. "The latter allows each applicant to receive the latest job offers corresponding to his/her profile by email. Since the roll-out of Selligent, we have a much better understanding of our applicants and, in particular, their progress through the three critical stages." Hurtrel concludes by pointing out that, for example, since the introduction of the first interaction scenarios, Hospimedia has already seen a considerable rise in the rate of CVs filed by applicants who are in the stage of actively seeking employment.
Moving forward on many fronts
The panorama of improvement projects mentioned above is not exhaustive. The list of ongoing projects at Hospimedia is long, be it for the specialized media site or for the recruitment activity - but many of them are clearly of a confidential nature.