Meeting – Nov. 30

On Wednesday (Nov. 30th), BYU PRSSA heard from Brooks Stevenson, the Director of Communications for Primary Children’s Hospital in Utah about healthcare communications and how to find a job in PR.

Stevenson has been with Primary Children’s for two and a half years and manages all marketing campaigns and internal communications for the hospital. Stevenson mentioned that he chose to work with Primary Children’s because, like the late Steve Jobs, he wants to “make a little dent in the universe.” He also mentioned that he loves working with children because they have so much hope and joy.

Stevenson said that hospital communications are unique in the following ways:

Media Relations

  • Hospitals often work as consultants and experts for news requests so they hold a special relationship with news media
  • These relationships get stronger the more a hospital can assist and become valuable to news media for other stories

Strategic PR

  • The Healthcare industry targets mainly women, mothers, and grandmothers because of their role in deciding healthcare services for the family
  • Healthcare businesses often target social media influencers like “mommy bloggers” to help with social outreach and earned media


  • The nature of Healthcare makes it difficult to measure a direct ROI on tactics and strategies
  • Some hospitals give value to the number of media hits or measure the strength and quality of relationships with their public

Stevenson also gave “5 Tips” for Healthcare communicators.

  • Learn to create visual content
    1. To enhance press releases, blog posts, & articles, be sure to attach b-roll footage, relevant images, and real life examples to make story creation easier for journalists
  • Understand Data & Web Analytics
    1. Develop an understanding of tools that measure online performance and be able to use them to improve results
  • Media Landscape
    1. Understand it and how it has changed
    2. Figure out what is needed to tell a story, preferably your story
  • Monitor Conversations
    1. LISTEN!!!
    2. Monitor conversations and learn what your brand, or your client’s audience is feeling, saying, and sharing with others
  • Stay ahead of the digital PR curve
    1. How you reach your audience and distribute content has changed dramatically
    2. Make yourself valuable to your company or team with your knowledge of modern media platforms and your ability to reach new publics

-Cole Stephens, BYU PR Major

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