HCA Gulf Coast Division Case Study
Everyone loves hospital nurses. They are single minded in their determination to help their patients and a key point of contact for family members. However, hospitals throughout Texas have found themselves in the midst of a serious and worsening shortage of nurses. While others saw only the problem, we grasped the opportunity to simultaneously strengthen the hospital network’s relationship with its nursing corps and express its core values to the community.
We leveraged National Nurses Week to launch an integrated marketing communications program that mixed personal and direct communications from HCA’s president with community events, media relations and advertising.
We negotiated with the Houston Astros to designate the last day of Nurses Week as Nurses Night at the ballpark. HCA Nurse Lori Upton and HCA’s president threw out the first pitch in front of more than 2,000 HCA nurses who attended. Print and radio ads adopted the theme, “It’s my life’s work,” to salute nurses. Additionally, we executed an aggressive media relations program, including the development of a guest editorial that earned a placement on the Houston Chronicle op-ed page.
The campaign strengthened the relationship between HCA and its nursing corps, as illustrated by hundreds of thank you notes and e-mails to HCA’s president. We cemented HCA’s leadership position, leading to HCA President Mike Snow being elected president of the Texas Hospital Association. And we secured media coverage in the Houston Chronicle, Houston Business Journal and numerous local publications valued at approximately $40,000.