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  • 10/30/2019 3:10 PM | Anonymous

    Welcome to the newest members of the MHSCN Board of Directors!

    Meet Annie Handford

    Annie is Business Development Executive at Streamworks, a direct mail, printing and fulfillment company in Blaine. She has a wealth of print and direct mail experience, with over ten years in consulting, customer service and program management expertise>

    Annie is a community-driven advocate and divides her time amongst a variety of causes. She volunteers with the Humane Society of the US Volunteer District Leader, campaigns for social justice through fair housing with Clare Housing, promotes clean energy with electric cars and visits the Capitol on lobby days.

    Annie enjoys relaxing when at home with her fabulous husband David (who drives an electric car) and by walking her two large Labrador Retriever rescues—Mieka and Rudy. She also spends time reading books (real paper print books!) on current events or by her favorite author, Stephen King; rooting for local teams the Minnesota Twins and Lynx, watching old movies and getting outside by creating native landscaping.

    Meet Nick Hanson

    Nick has been working in healthcare communications for more than a dozen years at institutions including the University of Minnesota Academic Health Center, Mayo Clinic and most recently in his current role at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare -- where he manages media and social strategy.

    Hanson has expertise in crisis communication, public affairs campaigns, social media strategy and management, media relations and digital strategy and communications. Hanson has spent time in the agency world as a digital strategist at Himle Rapp and Company and as a counselor at Carmichael Lynch. He was also a reporter at the St. Cloud Times and Mankato Free Press.

    He enjoys the outdoors, sports, pop-culture, reading and his family Shyla (wife), Violet Rose (3), Lydia Reese (infant) and Pup (12, pit bull mix).

    Meet Hyedi Nelson

    Hyedi is an account director at Belmont Partners, a results-focused public relations and communications agency, and has nearly a decade of health communications experience in both agency and corporate settings. Hyedi leads the Bellmont Partners Health Practice Group and holds a master of arts degree in health communication from the University of Minnesota

    In 2017, Hyedi was an Ad Fed Minnesota's 32 Under 32 winner, selected from more than 100 nominees in the organization's annual recognition of the best young talent in marketing, advertising and public relations.

    Besides spending time with her friends, husband and four year old son, Hyedi loves music, running and food. She also really enjoys sleeping, but doesn't do as much of that as she'd like!

  • 08/11/2019 5:21 PM | Rebecca Kindall Nelson (Administrator)
    Our MHSCN Bridging New Connections 2019 Fall Conference Duluth Minnesota MHSCN's mission for fall conference 2019 is to help healthcare communicators and marketers explore their expanding roles.

    That's why we've invited local and national experts to speak on these topics.

    Keynote: Marketers, Do You Speak CEO?

    Speaking “CEO” is essential for marketing professionals. And yet it is often an area where many marketers struggle. Hear firsthand how a senior vice president of marketing at a growing, five-hospital not-for-profit healthcare system, LCMC Health, successfully made the case for marketing investment to her CEO. In the past three years, the CEO supported a multi-million dollar investment, including: rebranding the health system; adding new FTEs to build a corporate Marketing team, and investing in a CRM tool.

    Figuring out how to connect with your CEO takes more than knowing your follower count, social sentiment, and content performance. You can’t expect your CEO to know what you are talking about and know how to apply it if you aren’t able to translate it into the CEO filter through which they view operations: How is your work impacting the business and strategic objectives?

    Christine Albert, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications for LCMC Health, provides strategic leadership for all marketing planning and operations across this a health network based in New Orleans, LA. She also develops and executes marketing plans to position her organization as the market leader.

    She received a master’s of public policy degree from The George Washington University and bachelor’s degrees in mass communications and French from Loyola University, New Orleans. She is a member of the board of the American Hospital Association’s Society for Healthcare Strategy & Market Development (SHSMD).

    Patient Experience Efforts That Drive Market Share

    Consumers ask their friends, family – and perfect strangers – for insights on the products or services they’re looking to use, including health care providers and services. Delivering a premier patient experience will drive positive word-of-mouth marketing and market share. Health care marketers play a large role in aligning the various patient experience efforts in their organizations. This session will cover ideas that St. Luke’s has used on how to effectively do this.

    Jessica StauberJessica Stauber, MBA, APR, Director of Marketing and Business Planning, St. Luke’s Health Care System is enjoying her second stint at St. Luke’s. Earlier in her career, she was a public relations specialist at St. Luke’s for four years; she then joined a Duluth advertising agency for 12 years.

    Jessica returned five years ago as director of marketing and business planning. She and her team of seven professionals feel privileged to market St. Luke’s and the amazing health care their colleagues provide.

    The Challenges of Rural Obstetrics Care 

    Nationally, hospitals are closing their obstetrics wards at an alarming rate. Minnesota Public Radio Senior News Reporter Catharine Richert will detail how she reported a four-part series on disappearing obstetrics units throughout Minnesota. Her presentation will look at how rural hospitals are coping with market pressures beyond their control and what the long-term impact may be for communities in which hospitals no longer have obstetrics units or carry out planned deliveries. She will also discuss how she covers health care topics in her region, which includes Mayo Clinic and Mayo Clinic Health Care System, and how she identifies a good story.

    Catharine Richert, News Senior Reporter, Minnesota Public Radio, covers the Southeast Minnesota region for MPR News and is based in Rochester, Minn. Most of her career has been spent covering politics, both in Washington, D.C., and at the state capitol in St. Paul. More recently, her coverage of the state’s bungled rollout of MNsure and the Affordable Care Act won several state and regional investigative reporting awards. In 2017, her investigations into two publicly funded (but failing) arts institutions in Rochester earned her the Eric Sevareid Award from the Midwest Broadcast Journalists Association.

    Catharine has a bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College and a master’s degree in public policy from the University of Minnesota. She lives in Rochester with her husband, a neurologist at the Mayo Clinic, and their three children.

    Communication Challenges to Build and Nurture Community Health Partnerships

    Health systems and hospitals have recognized that new collaboration is needed with community health organizations if health organizations are to be successful in the age of population health and the journey from volume to value. These partnerships embrace schools, faith-based communities, police and fire departments, housing and economic development agencies. To accomplish joint program planning, mobilize needed resources, and then govern these relationships wisely, effective communication strategies and messaging is essential for the sustained vitality of these collaboratives.

    Jim RiceJim Rice, Ph.D., Managing Director and Practice Leader, Governance and Leadership, Gallagher, brings more than 40 years of experience in the development of strategies for successful formation and operation of integrated health systems in 35 countries. He was a founder of the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Society for Strategy and Marketing, and an executive engaged in forming the Allina Health System.

    He will share lessons learned about wise communications for community health partnerships from his more than 12 years of service on the AHA’s Foster McGaw Award program. The award has recognized hospitals and health systems who best demonstrate how they form and govern community health partnerships for health gain, not just health care.

    Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. (NYSE: AJG), is a global insurance brokerage, risk management and consulting services firm headquartered in Rolling Meadows, Illinois.

    Helping Your Organization Thrive Through Change: Change Management Essentials

    Change is the new normal at most organizations – and communications, marketing and public relations professionals play a crucial role in helping ensure that plans are carefully considered and effectively executed. Equip yourself to support your organization through change with this practical session, which takes the best and most important elements of change management methodologies and boils them down to a process that is straightforward and easy to use.

    Learn how to guide your organization through a change in a way that:

    • Ensures individuals have what they need to be successful in making the change
    • Minimizes confusion, resistance and disruptions that can happen in transition
    • Cements the change in your organization’s operating procedures and culture

    Meredith FoxMeredith Fox is the founder and managing director of Portage Partners Consulting, a firm focused on supporting Minnesota’s civic-sector leaders with strategic planning, community engagement and implementation support services. Her passion is to empower the people and organizations in our community that are making the world a better place.

    She has a degree in political science and gender studies from The American University in Washington, D.C. and a master’s of public policy degree from the Humphrey Institute at the University of Minnesota. She's held leadership positions in Minnesota state government, the University of Minnesota and Minneapolis Public Schools, and has professional skills and certifications in strategic planning, leadership coaching, design thinking, process improvement, community engagement, organizational change management, group facilitation, organizational design, project management and executive decision-making.

    Covering the News: What Health Care Reporters are Watching

    The health care industry is an exciting area to cover, especially as major hospital developments are underway in northeastern Minnesota. A Duluth News Tribune reporter will share about this industry and how she navigates reporting on it. She will give insight into how she selects stories, manages challenges that sometimes arise with covering health care and best works with public relations professionals.

    Kelly Busche will speak on health care reportingKelly Busche is the business and health reporter for the Duluth News Tribune. Her coverage includes business and the health care industry, with an emphasis on how they impact Northland residents. She was recently hired at the paper after a summer internship. Busche’s passion lies in uncovering untold, impactful stories and is incredibly excited to cover these stories in this wonderful community.

    Busche graduated in May from the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, where she earned degrees in journalism and political science. During her time as an undergraduate, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Minnesota Daily, the University’s independent, student-run newspaper. Busche also served as an intern for APM Reports, where she uncovered how members of Congress favored certain congressional districts when awarding a popular transportation grant. Busche additionally held a part-time internship with the Star Tribune and a full-time internship with the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

    Sound compelling?

    Register for Fall Conference today!

  • 07/31/2019 9:35 AM | Anonymous
    Get ready for Duluth

    How are we ALREADY planning for back-to-school physicals and flu shot season? Despite our wishes to have a forever summer, the reality is that fall is upon us.

    That also means that we are planning the MHSCN Fall Conference, and I am happy to welcome attendees to Northern Minnesota for the festivities.

    We plan to have a free networking event on Thursday, September 26 and will have a robust line-up of speakers for you the following day.

    Plus, we've worked out lodging deals for those who wish to stay the weekend in Duluth!

    We're excited to hear speakers touch on themes like these:

    • Communications challenges related to community health
    • Impact of patient experience on marketing efforts
    • Tools for your change management tool box Speaking "CEO" & making the case for an investment in marketing
    • Challenges and opportunities in rural medicine

    The only thing better than summers in the sun are fall colors on the North Shore!

    We hope you'll join us for our MHSCN Fall Conference on Friday, September 27 in Duluth.

    A professional headshot of Cassi

    Cassi Chrzanowski
    MHSCN President-Elect

  • 05/24/2019 9:28 PM | Rebecca Kindall Nelson (Administrator)

    Darla Safarian

    photo of Darla Safarian

    Marketing Coordinator

    Consulting Radiologists, Ltd.

    As the in-house marketing, creative and communications specialist for Consulting Radiologists, Ltd., Darla is the website designer and graphic artist, while also developing marketing campaigns across print, digital, and social media platforms.

    Darla studied Graphic Arts and Web Design at Hennepin Technical College and Marketing at St. Mary’s University. Her previous experience in international trade and logistics helped create a solid foundation of planning, problem solving, as well as a unique perspective on vendor relations that Darla now brings to her career in healthcare marketing -- and the MHSCN Board of Directors.

  • 05/10/2019 1:10 PM | Emily Lowther (Administrator)

    The MHSCN Awards of Excellence program is returning refreshed for 2019! The awards honor exceptional efforts in health care strategic planning, marketing, public relations and communications from the past year.

    For this awards cycle, we have simplified the award categories and added some new honors recognizing health care communicators, marketers and public relations professionals.

    Award submissions will be accepted in three categories:

    • Best in Public Relations, Marketing and Communications: This category honors any marketing, public relations or communications project or effort substantially conducted in 2018. Examples include marketing campaigns; media efforts; video series; print or digital publications; and other communications, marketing or public relations work products. MHSCN members and nonmembers are eligible to submit entries in this category.
    • MHSCN Professional of the Year: This new category honors a health care communicator, marketer or public relations professional who has demonstrated exceptional skills and leadership in health care communications, marketing or public relations. To be considered for the award, the nominee must be a MHSCN member.
    • MHSCN Rising Star: This new category honors a health care communicator, marketer or public relations professional in the first five years of their career in health care communications, marketing or public relations who demonstrates strong abilities and growing expertise in health care communications. To be considered for the award, the nominee must be a MHSCN member.

    The awards submission period opens May 20 and closes June 28. Submissions will be collected online.

    The entry fee is $50 for the first submission and $25 for each additional submission from the same individual.

    Awards will be presented at the MHSCN Fall Conference.

    Orientation webinar on May 22

    MHSCN is offering an orientation webinar for members interested in learning more about the awards, categories and entry process. The webinar will be held Wednesday, May 22, from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

    To sign up for the webinar, RSVP to Emily Lowther, MHSCN board member. Access information will be distributed to attendees in advance of the webinar.

  • 05/08/2019 1:15 PM | Anonymous

    Cassi wears a tuxedo t-shirt as she interacts with two MHSCN members who are showing off some prizes.I left our Spring Conference, which we coined Deep Dive Into Digital, feeling inspired and excited. We had a room chock-full of like-minded professionals, sharing with and learning from each other. I thank all of you who were able to be there with us!

    A wise man, also known as your current MHSCN President, Paul Fiore, once told me (and the room of Spring Conference attendees) that you should not share all you learned from a conference right away. Instead, slowly leak your knowledge, so as to seem very intelligent in the eyes of your boss and/or leadership team.

    In the spirit of slowly leaking the nuggets I picked up, here are some standout moments for me from our Spring Conference:

    There is No Such Thing as Hospital Marketing

    We're no longer "hospital marketers," we're just marketers. According to Chris Bevolo, and echoed by those who have been in the health care marketing biz for a long time, hospital marketers have come a long way, from merely promoting providers and services to truly driving business and owning the customer experience.

    More and more, we're using data to drive our decisions and really getting to know our customers. We're relevant and important to have at the table, not only within our organizations but within our communities.

    Media Landscape is Changing, Quickly!

    The media landscape is changing and we better make sure we're ready for it. Whether we like it or not, traditional media is on its way out and we're living in a digital age. With new data platforms and tools, we're able to customize communications and be relevant to each individual.

    According to Michelle Fitzgerald of Brew, our patients will come to expect that we know them and will expect us to deliver the right information at the right time and right place. This is an opportunity to start treating our customers not as transactions but as people, by putting them at the center of their health care experience.

    Retargeting is All Fine and Dandy, but Watch Your Back

    Retargeting, or remarketing, means getting back in front of users that you've already reached. The challenge with using retargeting in health care is this little law known as HIPAA and these bits of personal data know as PHI, or personal health information.

    Being mindful of the laws and required disclosures is critical when executing a retargeting strategy. You should always engage your legal team prior to launching a retargeting campaign.

    SHSMD Resources Abound

    With our recent affiliation with Society for Healthcare Strategy & Market Development (SHSMD), we've unlocked some pretty cool resources for our members, including a wealth of SHSMD U webcasts, group rates for SHSMD U Online Course and discounts on national conferences and networking events.

    Penguins are Pretty Cool

    The Como Zoo venue allowed conference attendees a meet and greet with Cupid the African Penguin as part of the post-conference social hour, on none other than National Penguin Day. (Look it up; it's a real thing.)

    Cupid charmed us with his waddle and donkey-like braying sound. The MHSCN board even dressed for the occasion with our tuxedo t-shirts.

    Board members dressed in tuxedos pose next to Cupid the penguin at Como Zoo.

    We look forward to creating more memorable moments at future MHSCN events, including a networking event we're planning for July. Watch your emails for details soon!

    In the spirit of knowing your customers and using data to drive decision-making, I ask that you participate in this VERY brief survey, asking your opinion about the potential for a 'destination' conference for this fall.

    In closing, I want to thank my fellow board members for all they did for the spring conference and do for the organization each and every day. As I looked around the room at the spring conference, I felt proud to be part of MHSCN. 

    Seeing all the pieces and parts of the Spring Conference in motion made me very proud to be a MHSCN board member. If you have any speck of interest in joining this great group of folks, please reach out.

    A professional headshot of Cassi

    Cassi Chrzanowski
    MHSCN President-Elect

  • 04/03/2019 6:48 AM | Deleted user

    For movie buffs, this was the famous line from the 1996 film Jerry Maguire, delivered by the title character, played by Tom Cruise, to Dorothy, played by Renee Zellweger. It’s the line that melted the heart of every woman in the audience.

    At the same time, it had them secretly asking, why can’t my significant other be more like Tom Cruise? Sorry, honey, that’s Mission Impossible.

    For those of us on the client side of healthcare, you complete me also relates to how we think of agency relationships that bring specialized expertise, capabilities and resources to some of our most critical projects.

    Building Effective Agency / Client Relationships

    It seems so simple. Select an agency that has the expertise you’re looking for and a good track record and set them loose on your project. If it were only that easy.

    Like any relationship, it’s complicated. Stuff happens, and a variety of dynamics get in the way of establishing the partnership you had hoped for.

    I’ve personally had great agency partners that have knocked projects out of the park, and others I wish I could forget – and never will.

    So, what makes one engagement with an agency work so well and others fail miserably?

    Well, we’re going to dive into this topic with an expert panel discussion at our spring conference, A Deep Dive into Digital on April 25th at Como Zoo.

    We’re assembling a panel of both agency and client representatives to talk about their experiences and uncover the keys to establishing and maintaining successful engagements. They’ll also discuss how to get a relationship and project back on track after a setback.

    Our panel will be moderated by Angela Churchill, former MHSCN president and principal at Red Sea Glass Consulting.

    Panel members include:

    • Carrie Young, Padilla
    • Katie Johnson, Lake Region Healthcare
    • Dan Altenbernd, H2M
    • Ryan Davenport, Daven PR

    This group will have you at hello, and definitely show you the money in establishing and maintaining a great agency/client relationship.

    As always, thanks for your interest and support of MHSCN, and I hope to see you at the conference.

    Paul Fiore

    2019 MHSCN Board President

  • 03/27/2019 4:47 PM | Anonymous

    New benefit only for MHSCN members!

    Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development of the America Hospital Association

    The Minnesota Health Strategy and Communications Network (MHSCN) is now an affiliate of the Society for Healthcare Strategy & Market Development (SHSMD), a national voice and resource for our profession.

    MHSCN members benefit from this affiliation in many ways.

    Learn more about SHSMD!

    Join MHSCN now!

  • 03/02/2019 8:09 PM | Rebecca Kindall Nelson (Administrator)

    Margo O'Hara

    Photo of Megan O'Hara

    Senior Director


    Email Margo

    Margo O'Hara is the newest member of the MHSCN Board of Directors. She joins Ryan Davenport and Brenda Jaye on the Member Engagement and Professional Development Committee.

    Margo has more than 10 years experience in healthcare communication, representing clients that range from large scale public health systems to local community based hospitals, medical device companies, payors and specialty services. Her work in those areas has spanned brand awareness, crisis and critical issues, public and media relations, certificate of need reviews and product launches.

  • 03/01/2019 9:57 AM | Anonymous
    Cassi Chrzanoski

    I'm excited to announce that MHSCN has been formally named an affiliate of the Society for Healthcare Strategy & Market Development, or as we like to call them SHSMD (pronounced "shish-med"). There are so many benefits to being affiliated with this national association, and we will be highlighting them in the coming months.

    MHSCN will still operate and be organized as it always has been, but our affiliation with SHSMD will offer additional benefits and resources to our members.

    As an affiliate of SHSMD, MHSCN members are entitled to:

    SHSMD member rate ($200 discount) for 2019 SHSMD Connections

    This annual conference is being held in Nashville in September. Many of the details are still TBD, but this is one to keep on your radar and put in your education budget.

    Free registration to all SHSMD U Webcasts
    The member survey we conducted last year revealed that you were seeking more educational programming. Access to this resource provides a wealth of programming, including webinars, webcasts, online courses and more.

    If you’re not a current member of MHSCN, you may want to become one now. Many of the affiliation's benefits will be for members only. Members benefit from a more robust local professional association with access to valuable national resources -- and no increase in membership fees or event costs.

    Penguin looks at taking a Deep Dive into DigitalTo hear more about our affiliation, be sure to attend our spring conference, Deep Dive Into Digital: A MHSCN Conference at Como Zoo on April 25th. The conference opens with an overview of SHSMD, and includes an exciting line-up of speakers. Our keynote speaker, Chris Bevolo, will sharing findings from his new book, Joe Public III: The End of Hospital Marketing, outlining new imperatives for hospital and health system marketers.

    You won't want to miss this conference. I hope to see you there!

    Cassi Chrzanowski

    MHSCN President-Elect

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