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Michael Shabkie - EMS and Ambulance Consultant

Friday September 27, 2012
Michael Shabkie, Principal at Marketing 911

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As I reflect on my time in the field as a Paramedic, I am amazed at the clinical tools I had to perform my duties. From a latest 12 lead ECG defibrillator to the multiple airway devices at my disposal, I felt I had the tools necessary to positively impact the patients I treated. Fast forward a bit and I cannot say the same thing about my years in Marketing and Business Development for some of the largest organizations in the country.


My first role in Business Development was truly a "trial by fire". I was tasked with growing a multi million dollar ambulance company outside of their traditional service area. It was like being handed the keys to the space shuttle with no instruction manual. As you can imagine, the first month was a little unnerving. One thing became very clear early on, the company I worked for had no way of tracking their interfacility business in a meaningful way. All I had access to was the dispatch data in a very raw format. I was stunned to learn that the ambulance industry had not developed an intelligent CRM program or data driven software solution. I managed my marketing efforts with great success because it was a labor of love not because I had the tools to succeed.


Awhile back, I had the opportunity to serve as the President for a growing ambulance company that provided service in a competitive market. During that time, I had the pleasure of meeting Christopher Webb. Chris served as my Director of Marketing and was responsible for increasing market share and providing leadership to our marketing associates. On the third day in my new role, I asked Chris to show me how he keeps track of ambulance transports and describe his overall marketing plan. I was stunned at what followed next.


Chris told me how frustrated he was with trying to extract the dispatch data to gain insight into the marketing efforts. He also told me that when he started, he did not have access to any of the customers contact info that had been developed in previous years. That is when he had that "ah ha" moment. He decided to develop his own ambulance marketing software to track his efforts, provide market intelligence and provide "real time" alerts when call volume dropped in a facility. He showed me his software and I immediately saw the value in it and fell in love.


EmergiTrack was born!


EmergiTrack is the first customer relationship and ambulance marketing program dedicated to increasing revenue for an ambulance company. We have been able to add operational features and refine the layout with the small to medium sized ambulance company in mind.


The program makes it easy to manage anything and everything related to ambulance marketing efforts. We like to think of it like a marketing incident command center that delivers relevant customer details and also integrates directly into your other business-critical services. By merging ambulance run data with marketing analytics, EmergiTrack gives ambulance company owners real time feedback on the performance of their company while uncovering opportunities in the market.


Using real-time analytics assists the leadership team make smarter business decisions that will lead to increased revenue. Some of the features Chris has built into EmergiTrack are as follows:


· Alerts staff when runs are decreasing from facilities using defined real time metrics
· Ability to drill down to the specific caller responsible for ordering ambulance transports
· Be immediately alerted when any individual caller begins calling you less
· Monitor all marketing staff activities with time-stamped notes and logs
· Keep all your business intelligence in one centralized location
· Enter and track unit fueling to prevent theft and misuse
· Enter and track all company incident reports or customer service issues with our closed-loop incident reporting software providing daily email and text message alerts
· Publish a company calendar for either employee access or Administrative use

We noticed early on that one of the challenges traditional customer relationship management (CRM) systems face is poor usability. With a difficult interface for a marketing associate to navigate, successful implementation can be fragmented or not complete. We overcame this challenge by making Emergi-Track easy to use on every step of a sale-from phone calls and emails, to collaboration with the EMS operational staff, it is all simplified and tracked in one place.

Simply put, we have developed the marketing tool that I so urgently needed in my career. Emergi-Track simplifies; streamlines and strengthens the customer relationships as well as the operational processes. It focuses on providing the ambulance company with the agility to respond quickly to changes in call volume and customer service issues.


I am glad to have met Chris and had a chance to actually use the software in real time. I only wish I had met him years ago. It would have saved me countless hours working with a poorly functioning spreadsheet program. It is our hope that our readers will learn from our mistakes and take the next step in implementing the marketing tools their organization so sorely needs.


About the Author

Michael Shabkie has extensive ambulance business development experience in Arizona, Texas and Colorado, with both the public and private sector. He is currently the CEO of Priority One Ventures and serves as a Principal at Marketing911. He has also served as a key collaborator for EMS system design, developed winning contracting strategies, managed political and public affairs, and acted as an executive advisor on operational processes for both public and private ambulance organizations.


For more information visit: www.marketing911.net.





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