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Customer Experience Speakers for Your Event – ReadWrite

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Shep Hyken


Whether you want to improve your business’ reputation, raise customer satisfaction scores, or ensure customer loyalty, creating a memorable customer experience (CX) is how your brand can stand out in a very competitive market.

What better way to improve your customer experience knowledge and develop a practical game plan than getting to know CX experts and their strategies?

Customer Experience Speakers for Your Event

Here are 25 customer service experts who are not only recognized for their thought leadership, but also their ability to deliver an excellent customer experience keynote speech.

Shep Hyken
  1. Shep Hyken

Shep Hyken is recognized as one of the foremost CX and customer service thought leaders in the world. He is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author who helps frontline employees, managers and leaders deliver an amazing customer experience, every time. Shep is the creator of The Customer Focus™, a training program presented all over the world virtually and in live events. He has been inducted into the National Speakers Association Hall of Fame for his achievements in the speaking profession. His latest book, I’ll Be Back: How to Get Customers to Come Back, Again and Again, is a masterclass in turning customers into repeat customers and repeat customers into loyal customers.

Website | Linkedin

Blake Morgan
Blake Morgan
  1. Blake Morgan

Blake Morgan believes that “If you make people’s lives easier and better, you will always have an audience.” If you have heard one of her keynote speeches, read one of her bestselling books, or listened to her podcasts, you are familiar with this message. It is a message that she preaches and follows as a customer experience futurist. Blake is the author of two customer experience books, including the bestseller The Customer of The Future. Real Leaders Magazine recognized her as one of the top 40 female keynote speakers for 2020.

Website | Linkedin

John Hall
John Hall
  1. John Hall

John Hall is a thought leader and speaker on topics including content marketing, relationship building and customer experience. As a strategic advisor at Relevance, he works with businesses to boost their digital approach and own their industries. John is the author of Top of Mind: Use Content to Unleash Your Influence and Engage Those Who Matter To You, a book highly recommended by Forbes and Inc.com as well as industry leaders.

Website | Linkedin

Stacy Sherman
Stacy Sherman
  1. Stacy Sherman

Stacy Sherman is a speaker, content creator and thought leader who is all about customer experience. She believes that superior customer experiences can be created through engaging employees. Customer experience is a differentiator, especially in a world where impersonal interactions are becoming the norm. She founded Doing CX Right to help brands realign their strategy to the heart and science of customer experience. She is also the author of two internationally bestselling books, including Customer Experience 2, in which she is one of 24 CX experts sharing strategies and tactics for business success through top-notch customer experience.

Website | Linkedin

Simon T. Bailey
Simon T. Bailey
  1. Simon T. Bailey

Simon T. Bailey is a motivational speaker, coach, author, and TV host who helps people and organizations reach their individual and business goals. He has more than 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry, including as a sales director for the Disney Institute. His books, videos, speeches, and other content are based on his three decades of experience in corporate training. His latest book, Be the Spark: Five Platinum Service Principles for Creating Customers for Life, inspires readers to attract and retain customers through surpassing expectations and creating memorable experiences.

Website | Linkedin

Brittany Hodak
Brittany Hodak
  1. Brittany Hodak

Brittany Hodak is the chief experience officer at Experience.com, an experience-management platform. Brittany is recognized as an expert at creating and nurturing superfans for brands of all sizes. She helps brands create customer experiences that turn them into superfans who help generate new customers. As an international keynote speaker, she is highly engaging and utilizes the perfect balance of humor, business insights and real-world experience in creating excellent customer experiences. During her high-energy keynotes, Brittany makes sure that her audiences learn how to generate real results that impact their customers in the long term.

Website | Linkedin

Steven Van Belleghem
Steven Van Belleghem
  1. Steven Van Belleghem

Steven Van Belleghem is a customer experience thought leader. In his keynotes, he coaches individuals and organizations about the future of customer experience, especially in the digital world. He is the co-founder of Nexxworks, helping companies to put innovation and customer-centricity back into the heart of their business. He is the author of multiple bestselling books, including When Digital Becomes Human: The Transformation of Customer Relationships, a book that explores new digital relationships and what successful companies have done to be the best at it.

Website | Linkedin

Dan Gingiss
Dan Gingiss
  1. Dan Gingiss

Dan Gingiss believes that a remarkable customer experience is a company’s best marketing. As a keynote speaker, he teaches businesses to create great experiences that compel customers to share with their friends and social media followers. He is the chief experience officer of The Experience Maker, a company that teaches employees and leaders how to use customer experience as their sales and marketing tool. His upcoming book, The Experience Maker: How to Create Remarkable Experiences That Your Customers Can’t Wait to Share, is a guide to standing out in a competitive market by creating evangelists out of happy customers.

Website | Linkedin

Denise Yohn
Denise Yohn
  1. Denise Lee Yohn

Denise Lee Yohn is a keynote speaker and brand leadership expert who is known for her expertise and personal approach in helping business leaders build exceptional organizations. Her presentation, Extraordinary Experiences: How to Win Customers’ Hearts and Dollars, teaches businesses how the customer experiences that they create can be their most powerful marketing tool. Denise is also a thought leader and an author of several books, including her bestseller, What Great Brands Do: The Seven Brand-Building Principles that Separate the Best from the Rest.

Website | Linkedin

Jeannie Walters
Jeannie Walters
  1. Jeannie Walters

Jeannie Walters is a customer experience speaker, trainer and consultant. She helps brands create customer-centric initiatives that benefit customers, employees and their bottom line. She believes that customer experience goes beyond a brand’s Net Promoter Score. Brands must have the right vision implemented in their daily actions regarding customer experience that meets their organizational goals. She is the founder of Experience Investigators, an organization that provides customer experience evaluation and training to leaders and employees all around the world.

Website | Linkedin

James Dodkins
James Dodkins
  1. James Dodkins

James Dodkins presents the “world’s first and only musical customer experience keynote.” James used to be a real-life, award-winning rockstar who performed on stages all over the world. Today he is the CX evangelist at Pegasystems, where he helps brands build their own hyper-fans. He is also the founder of Rockstar CX, a company that helps businesses improve their company culture and deliver a better customer experience. James is a four-time bestselling author and was awarded the UK’s Most Outstanding CX Keynote Speaker by Corporate Vision Magazine in 2021.

Website | Linkedin

Adrian Swinscoe
Adrian Swinscoe
  1. Adrian Swinscoe

Adrian Swinscoe is a customer service advisor, keynote speaker and author. He helps organizations of all sizes deliver better customer experiences. He delivers tailored presentations on what it means to stand out in today’s competitive world. He combines research, trends and his experiences to create impactful interactions between brands and their customers. Adrian is the author of Punk CX and believes that CX has become overly technical and needs to be disrupted to be brought back to its people-first core.

Website | Linkedin

Colin Shaw
Colin Shaw
  1. Colin Shaw

Colin Shaw has gained recognition as one of the “World’s Top 150 Business Influencers.” Colin believes that providing a great customer experience is the way to make a business grow. As the founder and CEO of Beyond Philosophy LLC, a management consultancy firm, he helps organizations increase their Net Promoter Scores and enhance customer experience by identifying and resolving the customers’ unmet needs. Colin is a seven-time bestselling author. His book, Happy Employees Make Happy Customers: How to Build Great Employee Engagement to Create a Great Customer Experience, is about creating great employee engagement that drives great customer experience.

Website | Linkedin

Joseph Michelli
Joseph Michelli
  1. Joseph Michelli

Joseph Michelli’s mission is to “serve those who have a passion to serve well.” He is the chief executive officer of The Michelli Experience, a company that helps frontline employees and leaders deliver an engaging customer experience. He is also a speaker and consultant working with organizations to create a space where frontline workers and leaders can grow professionally and in other aspects of their lives. He holds a Certified Speaking Professional designation from the National Speakers Association and is a member of the Authors Guild. Joseph is a bestselling author with titles including The Airbnb Way: 5 Leadership Lessons for Igniting Growth through Loyalty, Community, and Belonging.

Website | Linkedin

Kerry Bodine
Kerry Bodine
  1. Kerry Bodine

Kerry Bodine is an author and customer experience thought leader. She founded Bodine & Co., a consulting firm that helps leaders create a human-centered approach to business. She believes in aligning a brand’s products and services with the needs of its customers. Her book, Outside In: The Power of Putting Customers at the Center of Your Business, is a roadmap for using customer experience as a corporate strategy. In this book, she emphasizes the concept of a customer experience ecosystem that involves the front-facing employees as well as those who are working in the background to deliver service that invokes customer loyalty.

Website | Linkedin

Matt Dixon
Matt Dixon
  1. Matt Dixon

Matt Dixon is the author of three Amazon bestselling books on sales and customer experience. His book The Effortless Experience: Conquering the New Battleground for Customer Loyalty details how companies can earn customer loyalty through delivering on their brand promise and providing an effortless experience. Matt is also a sought-after speaker who has coached Fortune 500 companies in the United States and all over the world on sales effectiveness and customer experience. He is the chief product and research officer of Tethr, an AI-powered speech analytics platform that provides automated insights from customer conversations.

Website | Linkedin

Scott McKain
Scott McKain
  1. Scott McKain

Scott McKain is a keynote speaker who provides virtual and live events where he teaches organizations how to provide the ultimate customer experience. He has helped businesses around the world develop strategies that help them stand out from the competition. Scott is the author of four No. 1 bestselling books on engaging customers and increasing profits. His latest book, ICONIC: How Organizations and Leaders Attain, Sustain, and Regain the Ultimate Level of Distinction, contains practical advice on how to take your business to the next level.

Website | Linkedin

Jeanne Bliss
Jeanne Bliss
  1. Jeanne Bliss

Jeanne Bliss is an industry leader in customer-centric leadership. She helps companies around the world achieve business growth that stems from delivering great customer service. Jeanne is the founder of Customer Bliss, a company that helps businesses grow by improving their customers’ lives. Her Five Competencies for customer-driven growth are now adapted all over the world as a tool to shift a business’ focus to customer experience. Jeanne also shares insights that she has learned in her 35 years in CX in her books, including her latest, Would You Do That to Your Mother?: The “Make Mom Proud” Standard for How to Treat Your Customers.

Website | Linkedin

Tiffani Bova
Tiffani Bova
  1. Tiffani Bova

Tiffani Bova is a keynote speaker and the global customer growth and innovation evangelist at Salesforce, where she helps leaders and companies around the world to strengthen customer relationships. In addition, she hosts the What’s Next! podcast where she interviews thought leaders in business, management and customer experience. Her bestselling book, Growth IQ: Get Smarter About the Choices that Will Make or Break Your Business, includes 30 case studies and stories with growth strategies that apply to global brands as well as small and midsize companies.

Website | Linkedin

Ian Golding
Ian Golding
  1. Ian Golding

Ian Golding is a customer experience consultant and keynote speaker who shares his customer experience tools and methodologies across multiple industries all over the world. He is the CEO and founder of Customer Experience Consultancy, a company that helps businesses deploy customer experience management programs. In addition, Ian is the author of Customer What?: The Honest and Practical Guide to Customer Experience, a book filled with stories, practical guides and a sustainable framework for creating a great customer experience. In 2015, Ian became the first Authorized Resource and Training Provider for the Certified Customer Experience Professional accreditation.

Website | Linkedin

Jay Baer
Jay Baer
  1. Jay Baer

Jay Baer is a Hall of Fame keynote speaker, marketing expert and customer experience consultant. He is the founder of Convince and Convert, a firm that works with the world’s biggest brands to enhance their digital marketing and improve their customer service. Jay is the author of six bestselling books, including Talk Triggers: The Complete Guide to Creating Customers with Word of Mouth. Talk Triggers is about the importance of word-of-mouth marketing and how the most successful businesses are creating customer chatter around their brand.

Website | Linkedin

Jim Gilmore
Jim Gilmore
  1. Jim Gilmore

Jim Gilmore is a customer experience expert and keynote speaker who helps organizations understand what the experience economy is and what it means to their processes and bottom line. His company, Strategic Horizons LLP, works with other companies to provide more value to their customers by staging experiences that will earn their business and loyalty. Jim is also the co-author of The Experience Economy. Now that people are spending more money on experiences, The Experience Economy teaches businesses to drive their strategy toward engaging their customers.

Website | Linkedin

Annette Franz
Annette Franz
  1. Annette Franz

Anette Franz was named one of the “100 Most Influential Tech Women on Twitter” by Business Insider. She has over 25 years of experience helping companies understand their customers and employees. As a keynote speaker and coach, she helps companies design strategies to drive satisfaction, engagement and retention. Her book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business), is a guide to how brands can utilize surveys and data, personas and journey mapping to bring back the focus to their customers.

Website | Linkedin

Brian Solis
Brian Solis
  1. Brian Solis

Brian Solis is a global innovation evangelist at Salesforce. He helps leaders humanize technologies and trends to gain a new perspective that will help their businesses thrive in the future. Brian speaks all over the world on the topics of CX, trends and human behavior. He helps individuals and organizations take charge of the future that they want to see. His insights can be accessed through multiple publications and his eight bestselling books. His latest book, Lifescale: How to Live a More Creative, Productive, and Happy Life, is a research-based guide on how to succeed despite the effects of digital disruptions.

Website | Linkedin

David Avrin
David Avrin
  1. David Arvin

David Avrin is a customer experience and marketing speaker who delivers content-rich presentations all over the world. He believes that a good customer experience is more than just service with a smile. It is reducing friction throughout every step of the customer’s journey. David is also the author of three books about customer experience and marketing, including his latest, Why Customers Leave (and How to Win Them Back. This book is set to challenge what brands think their customers want, need and expect from them.

Website | Linkedin

 

Image Credits Speakers: From Linkedin Profiles; Thank You!

Top Image Credit: luis quintero; pexels; thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

Politics

5 Ways To Better Reach Your Audience

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Brad Anderson


Attempting to reach your audience is difficult, as the internet is full of information, and consumers are flooded with the constant noise of advertising, social media, and email. It can be intimidating for a company to get its message heard over the noise. However, with a bit of care and planning, you can successfully reach your target demographic and interest them in your product.

Maybe you’re a new business with a great product and want to know how to drive traffic to your site. Or perhaps you’re established but have something fresh and exciting to offer, and you need to know how to spotlight it. Maybe you’re interested in learning how to reach a whole new demographic and are unsure how to do that.

To reach out to a new audience online, keep your existing customers interested, or drive conversions, you need to plan your content strategy and SEO carefully. It’s not enough just to launch a product website, announce it on social media, and wait to see what happens. Instead, you’ve got to find a way to amplify your voice.

Initiating a Strategy

Content encompasses everything you use to communicate information to the world: social media, graphics, written communication, and your website itself are included in this category. Your content strategy and SEO should tackle the questions: Who am I trying to reach, What do I need to tell them, and How am I going to do that? MarketMuse’s extensive content strategy guide notes that an effective content strategy outlines business goals and aligns with SEO.

Depending on your company’s scale, you may want to hire someone to help you develop a strategy, manage a team of writers, designers, and developers, and keep an eye on metrics to ensure your messaging is on target and getting the results you need. However, be aware that it can take six months or more to gain traction and that there are some questions you’ll want to ask when hiring an SEO expert.

Here are five steps you can take today to ensure that you successfully communicate about your brand to reach your intended audience.

1. Identify who you want to reach

Regardless of company scale or team size, an effective content strategy begins with research and planning. This step can be time-consuming but is so important. It’s the foundation for building your overall content strategy.

The first rule of content is: know your audience. Who are you trying to talk to and why? Get as specific as you can in this step. For example, identify an age range, gender, if applicable, socioeconomic status, and interests. It is sometimes helpful to create an avatar or character to represent your target market and talk specifically to that person. If you nail your demographic, your message will carry.

Once you know who you’re targeting, make sure what you’re saying to them makes sense. For example, promoting your retirement savings 101 blog cluster and planning tools will not be effective if your language and approach only appeal to a 60-year-old.

2. Sell a lifestyle, not a product

This is one of the trickiest elements of content marketing strategy for any company to master. But, first, it’s important to remember that content isn’t about directly promoting a product or about making a sale. At least, not overtly.

Content strategy is about building relationships and offering something your audience values and needs: information. If your information is solid and you get it in front of the right people, you will build trust and drive conversions over time. It’s helpful to think about strategies employed by large brands – especially what they don’t do.

Athletic shoe companies don’t bore you with all the technical specs of their product; they show you an image of athletes running fast or thriving in their sport. They let you imagine yourself succeeding in the same way. Similarly, the best tech companies don’t talk about RAM or GPUs in their ads. Instead, they show you how sleek you look with the latest gadget. They show you how much that gadget will simplify your daily tasks.

If you work too hard to tell your audience about the details of your product (which may be exciting and important) in your content marketing, you’re going to bore them and lose them.

3. Make sure your content is on point

Great content isn’t necessarily about volume. If what you’re offering is sound, you don’t have to drone on forever. For example, we’re all annoyed by recipe blogs that make you scroll through five pages of irrelevant nonsense to get to what’s of value to you: the recipe.

If you want to avoid being the next recipe blog cliche, ensure your writing and graphics are clean and clearly communicate the data or insights you want to highlight. Plan social media posts to be playful and fun and get to the point right away. Attention spans are minimal when people are scrolling.

Your written content (emails, blogs, website copy) should be clean, clearly written, and well structured. Organize your site to include a search feature, ensure it is responsive to various devices and has multiple easy-to-find navigation options. The key is to eliminate the need for your audience to work to find what they want.

4. Use your digital tools thoughtfully

To ensure your content rises above all that noise online, you absolutely need to include SEO in your content strategy. This is where brands can get a little intimidated, confused, or overzealous, however.

SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is not as esoteric as you might think, but it takes time, research, and effort to implement correctly. SEO can include keywords that help ensure your page shows up in search results, your website’s design and security, and your site’s responsiveness to different screen sizes.

So, what does that mean? Well, the answer to that may vary, but a few essential points will put you on the right track. First, you want to ensure you’re not basing your content strategy on SEO considerations and keywords.

The result will be that your content feels shoehorned around obvious keywords (because it is) and won’t offer much value to readers. Maybe you’ll appear in search results, but that won’t do anything for you once people click on your page and decide there’s nothing valuable. At that point, you’ve lost trust. You may also lose those initial clicks as search algorithms constantly evolve.

The key is ensuring you are offering quality information to your target audience. Make sure that information is clear and that your website is navigable, and then find ways to work in keywords naturally. Also, don’t be afraid to use social media to toot your horn.

5. Post often and repurpose content

In addition to optimizing your website and content, you’ll want to plan a solid social media strategy and use appropriate posting techniques to boost your web traffic and conversions. The good news is that not everything you post has to reinvent the wheel. For example, it is ok to repurpose the same link with slightly different messaging.

It’s also important to remember to post on different platforms for different reasons. If you’re trying to talk to a Gen Z demographic, you’re probably not going to be successful if your entire social media presence is based on Facebook. You might look at Instagram or TikTok instead.

As with blog and website content, you’re not going to be effective if you simply post ad copy on social media. Instead, find innovative and fun ways to draw your audience in. Make them laugh. Tell them how to solve a problem. Teach them a new skill.

And don’t forget to update your blog copy, too. For example, you might have a blog that predicts the best crypto investments in March. You can create an updated version in April without starting from scratch.

If you take the time to do your homework, develop a solid plan, allow your strategy appropriate time to work, and measure results (and use those to revise your plan, and so on), you have a solid foundation for your content marketing presence. Make sure your content is tailored to the right audience, easy to read, easy to navigate, and actionable, and you can’t go wrong.

Image Credit: Karolina Grabowska; Pexels; Thanks!

Brad Anderson

Editor In Chief at ReadWrite

Brad is the editor overseeing contributed content at ReadWrite.com. He previously worked as an editor at PayPal and Crunchbase. You can reach him at brad at readwrite.com.

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Connected Medical Devices are Revolutionizing Health Care

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How Are Smart Thermostats Making Homes Greener? - ReadWrite


The Internet of Things (IoT) may be about to transform almost every aspect of people’s lives. Health care is one industry already seeing significant adoption of IoT technology. Connected medical devices are helping doctors and nurses remotely monitor patients, access health data, and conduct follow-ups online. As a result, IoT in health care could revolutionize the industry over the next few years.

How Does the Health Care Industry Use Connected Devices? 

The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) includes various devices used inside and outside health care facilities. In most cases, these items provide a few of the same benefits — including streamlined treatment, reduced risk of error, and greater availability of critical data, like information on patient vitals.

Smart Patient Monitoring Devices

One popular application of IoT in health care is the smart patient monitor. This device continuously collects health care information from a patient, including data on heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, and blood oxygen levels. 

These devices help make patient health data more accessible to doctors and nurses inside facilities. A patient’s medical team can quickly and remotely check their vitals from a hospital workstation or a secure device anywhere in the world. The smart patient monitor can also alert staff if someone’s vitals exceed safe levels.

Smart health care wearables and remote patient monitors allow doctors to continue tracking patient vitals without requiring them to remain in the facility. In addition, people who have been recently discharged from the hospital may bring smart patient monitors with them, allowing them to send important health information to doctors without having to return to the hospital for a follow-up. They can also access this information and get a valuable window into their post-release health.

The patient and their doctor can discuss any concerning health information over the internet using a telemedicine video call solution. The doctor can also immediately recall the patient to the hospital if the monitor suggests their health is in danger.

Various IoMT patient monitoring devices exist, ranging from large machines built for hospital settings to lightweight health-tracking wearables people can take with them wherever they go. 

Specific use-cases for IoMT monitoring technology include general-purpose smart patient monitors, motion sensors that track the progression of Parkinson’s disease symptoms, and mood sensors that can help doctors manage a patient’s mental health.

Smart Infusion Pumps and Medication Delivery Devices

Correctly dosing and delivering medicine is essential for patient treatment. However, medication errors remain a common challenge in many medical environments. These mistakes can cause serious injuries or adverse reactions that can lead to death.

The IoMT can help prevent medication errors by streamlining the dosing process and delivering IV medicine.

Smart infusion pumps are medication delivery devices that use innovative technology, barcode readers, and drug information libraries to reduce risk when administering IV medicine. The health care worker will designate an area of use — like the adult ICU or NICU — which will automatically configure the pump based on needs. The clinician will then select the medicine they need to administer from an internet drug library, select a concentration and configure the pump’s dose.

Information from the drug library will help prevent some of the most common medication errors — like dosing mistakes and combinations that may lead to health problems.

Some pumps may require that the clinician scans the drug using a barcode on its packaging rather than choosing one from a list.

Most pump systems incorporate a few safeguards that will help reduce the frequency of medication errors. For example, the pump may include the height and weight information of the patient receiving a drug, helping ensure they receive the appropriate dose.

The pump system may also include information on average drug concentrations and dosing units. As a result, it can double-check with health care workers to ensure an unusual dosage is correct, potentially preventing medication errors. 

Smart Device Scanners

Manufacturers will often use laser marking to create a unique device identifier (UDI) codes on the surface of connected medical devices like orthopedic implants and medical instruments. They provide a wealth of information about the marked device — including the specific version or model number.

Under current regulations, the manufacturer must provide this code in plain language and a machine-readable format.

Smart medical scanners can read the second version of the UDI instantly, draw on relevant information from cloud-based databases and update records. This makes them a powerful tool for conducting inventory, determining an instrument’s specific model or lot number, and verifying the plain-language portion of a UDI.

These devices are connected to the internet, so they can also be used to update cloud-based records as they scan automatically. For example, hospitals that maintain an online database of critical medical instruments can use a smart scanner to update it with new products.

In practice, these scanners can also make it much easier for health care organizations to comply with traceability requirements. For example, clinicians can use information from the UDI to quickly verify the model number, expiration date, and recall status of a medical instrument or device before it is used.

Clinicians that locate faulty or expired equipment can quickly remove it, ensuring it won’t be used for a procedure. 

Smart Pills, Capsules and Medications

New smart pills and capsules can help patients take their medications regularly. They are outfitted with special sensors that activate when they hit the acid in a patient’s stomach. They then communicate with a wearable medical device — like a patch on someone’s chest — signaling that the pill has been taken. 

The wearable device that receives the signal can automatically generate a log or report showing the medication was taken successfully. 

The connected medical device can also track other information — like the patient’s activity and rest times.

The first smart pill approved by the FDA was Abilify Mycite, which contains aripiprazole, an antipsychotic used to treat conditions like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Patients with these conditions may struggle to remember if they’ve taken their medicine, but missing a dose can cause adverse reactions — including nausea, lightheadedness, anxiety, and a return of symptoms associated with the mental health condition the aripiprazole is meant to treat. 

The smart system can help patients track their medication adherence and review patterns when they take their medicine.

Smart pills are not widely used yet, but they may soon help patients and health care providers improve medication adherence and track home-usage. 

Future smart pills may also provide additional functionality. For example, those containing onboard sensors could help doctors track a patient’s core temperature, detect intestinal bleeding, or keep tabs on gut health. Many of these pills already exist in an experimental capacity and may become commercially viable by the end of the decade.

The Future of Connected Medical Devices and IoT in Health Care

Connected medical devices can make providing effective health treatment much easier. The right one can streamline care, reduce error risk, and simplify record-keeping.

IoT in health care is growing fast over the next few years. According to Fortune Business Insights, the market may be worth as much as $187.6 billion by 2028, up from just $41 billion in 2020. As a result, new applications of smart medical technology may become widely available.

For example, it may also become standard for health care facilities to adopt connected robots, like those used in Italian hospitals during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Currently used IoMT devices — from smart monitors to smart pills — will likely become much more common over the next few years as the market expands and health care facilities look to adopt devices that make daily work easier.

Image Credit: Provided by the Author; National Cancer Institute; Unsplash; Thank you!

Emily Newton

Emily Newton is a technical and industrial journalist. She regularly covers stories about how technology is changing the industrial sector.

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How to Stop Inflation from Deflating Your Savings

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Free Your Money: Strategies for Keeping Your Money In The Best Place Possible - ReadWrite


No, you aren’t imagining things. Everything costs more than it did before, and these higher prices make it hard to balance the budget while saving and thinking about retirement. But you can stop inflation from deflating your savings!

In April, the Bureau of Labor released the latest data from the Consumer Price Index (CPI), revealing inflation’s steady creep upward hasn’t stopped yet. The rate of U.S. inflation climbed to a whopping 8.5% in March, marking this spike as the most significant increase in the cost of living in 4 decades.

You aren’t alone if you’re struggling to handle prices at their 40-year high. Nearly half of Americans (45%) polled by Gallup last year admitted inflation caused financial hardship at a time when the CPI was just 6.8%. Moreover, of those that reported facing difficulties, 10% revealed their challenges impacted their standard of living.

While the Federal Reserve claims inflation’s bubble will pop soon, experts anticipate the CPI won’t fall below 4% by the year’s end. That means you can expect another year of high inflation bumping up prices.

Is your budget ready? If not, don’t panic. Instead, keep reading to understand more about inflation and what you can do to protect your savings.

Inflation: An Overview

Inflation is not a product of the pandemic, although it may initially seem that way. On the contrary, between lockdowns and labor shortages — and now the Russia-Ukraine crisis — the past 3 years have kept inflation well-fed.

These special circumstances allowed inflation to grow to dizzying heights, but it’s been around a lot longer than COVID.

Have you ever heard your dad tell you a story about buying a bag of candy for a nickel, only for your grandfather to chime in to say he bought the same thing for a penny? They aren’t just yearning for the good old days of their youth. That’s inflation at work.

Inflation is an economic principle describing how the prices of goods and services generally increase over time. Another way to think of it is how your money — or what’s called your purchasing power — decreases in value as time goes on.

Usually, inflation only increases by around 2% each year. And if you’re lucky, your employer matches this increase with an equivalent raise. This zero-sum game means a lot of people may not notice inflation. Sure, things cost more, but you also earn more, so it all evens out.

The problem with today’s record-breaking inflation rate is that prices are climbing far too fast for wages to keep up. While employers have been handing out raises, a survey shows they averaged 3.4% in 2021, less than half of today’s current inflation rate.

With inflation and wages out of balance, you may notice how your dollar doesn’t stretch as far as it used to before the pandemic. Each expense takes up more of your very finite budget as a result.

Americans Are Living Paycheck to Paycheck

Now that everything costs more, many Americans are feeling the financial crunch. According to CNBC, nearly two-thirds of Americans (64%) live paycheck to paycheck today. This isn’t necessarily new. In fact, survey after survey has revealed people have been living this way for nearly a decade.

If you’re living paycheck to paycheck, most, if not all, of your monthly income goes towards making ends meet. With your income tied up with bills, you may have practically no cash for anything else.

Your Paycheck May Not Go As Far — But Don’t Deflate Your Savings

It’s hard to keep up with your savings goals when you live like this. You might even hit pause on savings altogether. And without contributing to savings, Americans increasingly turn to credit cards and short-term personal loans for help in an emergency.

CNBC reports that 56% of Americans could not handle an unexpected $1,000 expense with savings. Most of those without savings would charge credit cards or ask a loved one for some help. But others would go into debt and borrow money online via short-term personal loans to cover unexpected expenses.

While credit cards and short-term personal loans function as emergency backups in unexpected cash crunches, they’re meant as temporary stopgaps for singular expenses. Moreover, borrowing money won’t solve the issue that high inflation is an ongoing problem that will long outlast most cash advances and personal loan terms.

More still, debt can add to your money troubles. If you’re already living paycheck to paycheck, you may not have the cash available to repay your personal loan on time. Late fines and extra interest are soon to follow.

Updating Your Budget with Inflation in Mind

Americans point to high costs preventing them from saving as much as they want, regardless of whether they rely on credit cards or short-term personal loans as crutches.

Unfortunately, there’s no telling just how long high inflation will hang around. Still, one thing is for sure: a higher-than-normal inflation rate will affect prices for the foreseeable future.

Higher prices are the new normal, so it’s time to tweak your budget, updating it for another expensive year. Let’s dive into how you can do that.

1. Make a List of Priorities

When things are tight, you need a plan of action to understand your next move. So sit down and write out your list of priorities. These expenses are the absolute essentials you need to pay each month to keep a roof over your head and food on the table.

Besides housing costs and groceries, this list may include insurance payments, utilities, basic household items, and toiletries. In addition, the minimum payments for personal loans, cash advances, and lines of credit also belong on this list. These minimum payments will help you avoid late fines, extra interest, and credit damage.

This list shows the bare minimum for what you need each month. It serves as a good reminder of what you need to pay first before moving on to other things.

2. Cut Discretionary Expenses

As judge, jury, and executioner of expenses, you should be looking to slash non-essential spending until you have more wiggle room in your budget. Then, the unnecessary expenses (i.e., those you don’t need to lead a safe or comfortable life) should be on the chopping block.

Which expenses didn’t make it on your list of priorities? It can be daunting to say goodbye to the fun things in life, but it’s easier to let go knowing it won’t be forever. You can reintroduce the non-essentials when you start to feel less pressure.

To help you get started, here are some discretionary expenses you can cut:

  • Streaming services: If you have multiple streaming subscriptions, pare them down to the one you use most often.
  • Subscription boxes: While the average subscription box doesn’t cost a lot, it may be too much if you’re living paycheck to paycheck. Put them on pause until you have more wiggle room in your budget.
  • Gym memberships: The average gym membership costs about $600 a year. You can pocket that change by switching to a free at-home workout.
  • Takeout: According to The Fool, the average American spends $2,375 on takeout a year. If you eat out multiple times a week, you stand to save a lot by eating at home.
  • Alcohol: Happy hours after work and wine with dinner add up. Going dry can help you free up more cash for bills.

Finding it hard to say no when you’re out and about? Apply the 30-day rule. In other words, wait for 30 days before you commit to the purchase. A month is long enough to take the wind out of your sails, revealing the splurge for what it is: a waste of money.

3. Automate Savings

Even at this time, savings are an essential part of your budget. It can help you weather unexpected emergencies, reducing how often you tap into credit cards and short-term personal loans.

Admittedly, saving through high inflation is challenging, so you might want to ignore the usual advice to save 3 to 6 months. But, that’s a goal for another day.

For now, save as much as you can to get started, even if it’s just $10 a month at first. Financial advisor David Ramsey suggests lowering your goal to $1,000 when you’re first starting out.

4. Tweak Your Phone and Internet Package

Having a phone and access to the Internet is as close to essentials as possible nowadays. You might need them for work, or it may be the only way you can contact the outside world. So cutting these expenses for the sake of saving money just doesn’t make sense.

If you’re on an unlimited plan, consider downsizing to a cheaper plan with strict data and talk limits. Be careful not to exceed these limits to ensure you aren’t penalized. You stand to save even more each month if you can stomach a prepaid contract.

5. Update Your Insurance

Like your phone and Internet packages, insurance is another essential with some wiggle room. But first, you’ll want to do some research. Go online to compare other insurance companies to see what they offer. Then, when talking to your current provider, you can leverage this info to know if they’re willing to match the competition.

Another thing you can leverage is your loyalty. If you’ve been with the company for a long time, bring this history up while talking to your provider. They might be willing to cut you a better deal knowing you’re thinking about jumping ship.

You may also get a better deal if you’re willing to bundle your life, home, and auto insurance under one company.

6. Eat Better for Less

Putting food on the table has never been more expensive. But, unfortunately, you can’t precisely cut groceries from your budget!

Meat and dairy have been some of the hardest-hit items in the grocery stores, with bacon, eggs, and beef taking most of the brunt. Now that bacon is 26% more expensive per pound than last year, you might think twice about including it on your breakfast plate.

Plant-based eating promises some financial savings at the grocery store, especially if you stay away from costly prepared meat replacements. Instead, focus on tried-and-true cheap ingredients like lentils and rice.

Following a meal plan is also another great way to keep your spending in check at the supermarket. Make a list of meals you want to eat every week, adjusting your plan for weekly flyers and coupons.

7. Use Less Energy

Your utility bills are taking a bigger bite of your budget, like electricity, water, and gas cost more. According to the Guardian, utility prices in the U.S. rose by 33% last year.

Reducing energy consumption across these utilities can help you control runaway expenses.

One of the biggest things you can do to save is set your thermostat according to the Department of Energy’s recommendations. These tips can help you save as much as 10% of your annual heating and cooling costs.

Summer: If you have an air conditioner running, set it to 78°F when you’re at home. Try increasing the temperature as high as you feel comfortable when you’re out.

Winter: During the cooler months, try to keep your thermostat to 68°F while you’re at home, reducing it even lower when you’re at work or in bed.

8. Reduce Your Fuelling Costs

Between inflation and the Russia-Ukraine crisis squeezing the American fuel supply, drivers can expect to spend more at the pumps. If you can’t reduce how often you’re behind the wheel, you should download an app like GasBuddy to find the lowest gas prices in your area.

More often than not, this ends up being Costco, but they don’t get a membership just to qualify for their gas. So you probably won’t save more at their pumps than what it costs to become an annual member.

Another way to keep your driving costs low is by using gas station loyalty cards so that you can redeem points as often as possible. You can also consider carpooling with local friends and colleagues to share the burden of driving.

9. Learn How to Negotiate

The art of negotiation is a hard-earned skill that can do wonders for your budget. Depending on your strategy and your creditor’s policies, you can push out due dates to take the pressure off your budget and reduce what you owe.

If you aren’t sure how to persuade big companies, check out this script for guidance. When it comes to medical expenses specifically, ask if they offer a financial plan that offsets your costs. In many cases, healthcare businesses are willing to give you a discount if you offer to pay the reduced amount in full immediately.

10. Investigate Financial Assistance

Let’s face it — juggling all your bills as inflation nudges them higher, and higher is hard. Sometimes, not even your best attempts at negotiating bills and saving money at the grocery store will be enough to help you balance your budget.

Reach out to a free credit counseling organization for advice. They can provide more significant insights into how to shrink your budget. But more importantly, they can direct you towards government assistance programs that help you offset the burden of your living expenses.

The Takeaway for :

Although inflation is beyond your control, there are ways you can get back in the financial driver’s seat. As prices continue to rise, your budget is your most crucial resource throughout it all. You can refer to this spending plan to understand your priorities and focus on areas of your spending that need work.

You can reduce your monthly spending and save more, whether it’s unnecessary splurges or excessive fuel spending. Keep these tips in mind for the rest of the year.

But more importantly, know that you aren’t alone in facing these prices. There are resources you can fall back on for more guidance if you can’t balance the budget, no matter how hard you try.

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