Tip for making Engaging Captions on Your Instagram Health site

Posted by barbarahales

Since your forte is medicine, HTML codes and site formatting may not only be foreign to you, but also make you shudder just thinking of it.

But there are some simple tricks

Giving places for the viewer's eyes to rest with spacing,  and line breaks give the content look more appeal. They work the same for both captions and bio on your Instagram Health site

smartphone doodle
For the Android phones:

Add spacing between lines simply by hitting the “return” key to drop down a line or two. Two will leave a line space between paragraphs. Please note, it only works if you hit the return key immediately after the last letter, or character at the end of the paragraph. Inserting a space after the last letter will negate the desired drop.

 

iOS phones: 

This is a little bit more cumbersome and actually works better if you create the caption in another app like Note to get the desired effect and then transfer it over by copying the caption and uploading it onto your Health Instagram page. However, if you choose to type the caption directly using your iOS smart phone, hit the “return” key FIVE times after the end of the paragraph or line in order to put in a line break.  This tip comes from Social Studio.

Ever wonder what the three-dot button was for?

This button enables you to choose "Edit" after you've already uploaded your Instagram post so that you can alter your caption.  Not only will you be able to amend any spelling errors, you will also be able to implement hashtags which you may have forgotten the first go around.

If you need help with your medical Instagram posts, feel free to contact me for a free consultation at:

561-325-9664.  Let's get together and fulfill your health marketing needs!

 

 

Doctor- Do people want to see Your Face on Instagram?

Posted by barbarahales

Do people want to see Your Face on Instagram? The answer surprisingly is yes!

Remember when Ellen Degeneris posted a selfie of herself at the Oscars on Twitter?  There were so many viewers in such a short period of time that Twitter was literally shut down from too much activity.  The same actually holds true for Instagram.

According to researchers at both  Yahoo Labs and Georgia Institute of Technology, after studying more than 1.1 million Instagram images, those with a human face garnered more than 38% more likes and 32% more comments.  The conclusion is that faces induce engagement amid photo-sharing sites.

As  physician in a medical practice, you have an instant supply of human faces that you can insert onto your Instagram site.  In addition to you, there are the medical assistants, nurse practitioners, other physicians, any referring doctors, nurses, clerical staff and manager, to name a few. Writing a caption under each photo is a great opportunity to introduce the staff and the role that person plays in the office as well as the various staff responsibilities and how to reach the staff members.

**Caution- do not post any images of patients or babies delivered now as this is a violation of the HIPAA code.

Saeideh Bakhshi who led the study from Georgia Institute of Technology, tries to explain the results by saying:

“Even as babies, people love to look at faces. Faces are powerful channels of non-verbal communication. We constantly monitor them for a variety of contexts, including attractiveness, emotions and identity.”

Additional Observations

  • Both male and female faces got the same number of comments and likes
  • Children and adults got the same results
  • More followers = more engagement but only if posting was meaningful and not too often
  • Posting too frequently decreases the probability any single image has of getting likes or comments.

Saeideh Bakhshi notes:

  “Posting too much decreases likes two times faster than comments.”

The results of this study do have practical implications for a health site.  For example, instead of showing a medical device, show a video or photo of you, the doctor and staff using the device or displaying it with a description of the device and indications for it in the caption under the image.

Whenever you have the chance to insert people into your posts, do it!

Eric Gilbert,  an assistant professor in the School of Interactive Computing. points out:

“Designers could also use this knowledge to quickly filter, prioritize and highlight photos shared by followers.” Especially pictures that have just been submitted and haven’t had enough time to pick up very many likes or comments yet.”

Of course you want likes on your posts but don't forget the importance of analyzing the reaction (or lack of it) that you got from your patients and prospective patients. Review which posts got the most reaction, comments and likes so that you know how to proceed with future posts that you create and upload.

Helpful Tips

  • Remember, faces get more likes
  • Weekends are the best viewing times
  • Blue is the most ideal color

Post images that work best for both you and your patients (based on their comments and likes)

Most importantly, post images that are in sync with your medical practice and ones that meet your business goals.

Sign up for in the box at the top left of this page to receive more helpful tips.  See you at the next post!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Ways to Distinguish your Medical Practice from your Competitors?

Posted by barbarahales

If you are practicing medicine in a city or near to one, chances are great that you have a few competitors.  Many will take the same insurance plans.

So, how do you distinguish yourself from being the "me too" practice?  How do you stand out from the crowd?

healthcare.jpg

Look at the services you provide.  Is there a way that you can tweak them to be a little different, or in a way that gives patients better options?

Take HealthSpot as a great example.  They take blood samples for laboratory tests.  So do many others like Labcorp and Quest.

The difference is that they plan on offering results in 7 minutes!  You can go to a retail drugstore clinic and after getting your finger pricked for blood samples, wait for results to your cholesterol and sugar levels, liver tests, and many others.

They have already differentiated themselves by incorporating virtual healthcare providers and will integrate laboratory visits within these consultations.

Using HealthSpot's telehealth platform, physicians can examine patients virtually using their equipment.

So HealthSpot which gives the same blood tests offered by other labs, is setting themselves apart and disrupting the lab industry status quo.

5 Tips for Distinction

Identify the "thing" that separates you from the pack and market it agressively.

Things to try:

  1. Offer free eBooks to everyone that attends your teleseminars

2. Offer a webinar

3. Volunteer your time for community health fairs

4. Offer a free examination or consultation to be auctioned off at a local charity event

5. Offer to speak at the Library or medical associations- offer a copy of your slides to anyone that emails you requesting them (thereby capturing their name and email for your database)

Now consider whether the actions above or others is in keeping with your business plan.

Medical Business Plan

Regardless of the size of your medical practice, whether it is a one-two person group or a large conglomerate health facility, every business needs a detailed business plan.  Think of the plan as your vision for the practice formalized on paper.  Write it done, look at it, think about it and refine it, but get it on paper (or computer).  By going through the process, you will be amazed at the  process that gets your practice to evolve and shape into a sould business and act as a map to success.

Content Marketing Guide for Medical Practices

Posted by barbarahales

A key tool for strengthening your medical practice brand is through content marketing.  The thing is, not just any old content will accomplish this.  You need a plan and you need to act upon this.

Tips to Effective Content Marketing for Health

1) Marketing Plan

Before starting out like "a bull in a china shop" write down your marketing plan and discuss this with your staff.  Adhering to your vision of what your health marketing will be, the marketing will be that much more effective. Instead of being all over the map,  focus on your goals and you will be much more successful.

2)  Top 3 Channels

The 3 top sites are Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. But this is changing (see next tip) Consider which sites your patients and prospective patients are on and go there.  This includes participation in chat rooms and forums where you can provide solutions to the problems that people are seeking.

3) Pictures Captivate

"Nothing focuses consumer attention like visuals" according to Brad Herschfield of MDG Marketing. He strongly believes that providing visuals is an essential component of content marketing such as posts on Pinterest and Instagram. He further points out that high resolution speaks directly to the interest of the consumer. A study published in December 2014 corroborates this as the results show that Instagram has now surpassed the number of active users on Twitter.

 

4. Stay in Sync

While people want to be educated and informed, most people are only interested in viewing topics that are of interest to them and a true reflection of what your services are.  Discuss content within your specialty (and that highlight the keywords that you have selected).
5. Focus on Analytics

Implement an analytical program (Google analytics works well and is easy to use with great functionality).  Keep an eye on the results to ensure that you are getting return on your investment.

If you do not have the time to consistently invest in content marketing with your social media sites, it pays to hire a professional who will represent you and get the job done well.

Contact me for a free consultation and we can discuss your needs. Shoot me an email at barbarahalesmd@aol.com

 

 

5 Tips to Expect from Your Health Marketer

Posted by barbarahales

There is a key reason why you need to be in the first or maybe top of the second page on the page that someone views after a keyword search.  People don't look beyond the first two pages.  The way to hold that coveted spot is by ranking highly with ranking by search engines.
5 Things to expect from your marketing consultant or health marketer1) Your health consultant must know search engine guidelines  Search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo use algorithms or secret complex mathematical analysis to determine site ranking.  While no one knows the exact criteria on their analysis, Google openly reveals which search engine optimization techniques are approved and which ones are unacceptable.  Techniques that are contrary to their guidelines are known as “Black Hat”.In case you are confident that you have figured out how to get ahead with the analytical formulas, algorithms are routinely modified to prevent anyone from trying to get around the rules.  The worst part of trying to bend the rules is that you can be banned....Zap...the website is gone! There goes all your hard work.  Another serious problem is that your website just doesn't show up in ranking at all!An unfortunate example of this was J.C. Penny who could not be found in Google searches when they were penalized by them.  The chain lost millions!

 

2) Your consultant should track results 

No matter how much money you are spending, you want to know whether the efforts are being rewarded and whether you have a significant ROI. (return on investment). Concrete parameters include CTR (Click-through rates)  and conversions which reflect your results in your SEO campaign. A tangible conversion would be if a prospective patient calls for an appointment, office visit or sends an inquiry by email.

Calls can be tracked by using track numbers and the email form submissions can be determined by Google Analytics.

 

3) Your consultant needs to know how to amass the most ideal keywords for your nicheThough you may have chosen keywords that you feel are reflective of your practice and services, they may not actually be the most optimal. There are tools and techniques that analyze keywords to determine which ones are the best to attract and convert leads to patients. Some perform better than others. Though generalized keywords may garner a lot of traffic, you want phrases that attract your target market- those prospective patients that are looking for you and what you offer.By all means, discuss and supply a list of words that you think describe you.  After all, it is a collaborative effort.  However, the consultant should compile a list including long-tail keywords (comprising 3 or 4 words together that form a phrase that your patients search for. 

4) Your website needs optimization

In addition to incorporating keywords, your consultant must include:
On-Page Optimization
                        Keywords are incorporated into the Title, lead and body content of your webpages
Off-Page Optimization
                         Incoming links should be added to your site from  popular sites that sync with yours and rank well.
5. Accountability
Reliable health marketers and consultants need to provide accountability for their performance by supplying tracking and ongoing reports including your ranking position for each selected keyword and link-building process.
I hope these tips were helpful for you.  Sign up in the box at the top left of the screen to receive more tips and guides.  See you at the next post!

 

 

 

Instagram Ads for Doctors? Targeted Medical Marketing

Posted by barbarahales

Instagram just launched its advertising application program (API) interface which will make it a major powerhouse in mobile advertising.

Buying Instagram ads will make marketing more automated, enabling exposure with images across other social networks.  Facebook's ad-targeting tools will be accessible to Instagram advertisers.

According to Jamie Tedford, CEO and cofounder of Brand Networks:

"Now, Instagram is bringing on experienced Facebook Marketing Partners to help brands use the same advanced Facebook targeting tools to create and deliver relevance-driven ad campaigns that increase ROI [return on investment] by reaching the right audience, at the right place and time," he added. "This is one of the most anticipated moments in the evolution of advertising, and we expect the platform’s offering will continue to expand rapidly."

Instagram's  announcement is just the first round of companies joining the API, with more expected in the future.

An Instagram representative said:

"The Instagram Ads API will help us make ads more relevant to the community, serve more diverse business objectives, and make buying on the platform easier for advertisers. We started working with a group of Facebook Marketing Partners a few weeks ago and they've brought great experience and technological savvy onto the platform. We'll continue to build upon the Instagram Ads API in the coming weeks and months."

What does this mean to you as a doctor, medical practice or healthcare facility?

An ad and image sharing will give great exposure to the ones that you want to reach unlike painting a broad stroke to thousands of people who are not interested in the services you have to offer. Let's say you are an obstetrician.  You can designate that the ads go to women between 20-44 years of age and who are expecting babies or are embarking upon motherhood. In other words, the ad speaks to them directly and specifically to attract new people as prospective patients.

When a small investment in an ad gives you a large measurable return on investment and greater exposure, becoming active on Instagram and running an ad, makes a great deal of sense.

Need help with this?  Call and we can discuss your needs at 561-325-9664.

# Hashtag Strategies for the Medical Practice

Posted by barbarahales

When you are actively using Instagram for your medical practice and branding, it is key that you have a planned strategy.

Using hashtags in the right way, will enable you to realize your goals in a much shorter time.
Hashtag Strategy Tips

Technically, Instagram allows you to use up to 30 hashtags.  However, this does not mean it is a good tactic.
Points to remember in hashtag usage include the following:
  • Think of what your viewers are searching
  • Use hashtags that are in sync with your practice
  • Use relevant keywords in the hashtags
  • Don't overload your hashtag list
  • Include 5-10 hashtags for each post (no more)
  • Create brand specific names that relate to your practice name or mission. *Make it unique
  • If you have a twitter and Facebook handle, use the same one on Instagram as well. (cross-pollinate)
By having too many hashtags, the more important ones get drowned out and are not noticed.  Likely the longer caption that the lengthy list creates makes it harder to read.  Including irrelevant hashtags, simply because they are trending, will also make you look very unprofessional and desperate.  Try to be consistent with the ones you choose.Use the same hashtags on all of your business posts so that they become linked or associated with you.


You can't just wing it and expect everyone to find you without a hashtag plan! Having one and following this guide will increase traffic and visibility to your posts and your site.

Determine Medical and Health Related Hashtags

There is an assortment of hashtags associated with every field.  Find them and use them as well for those already searching for these to find you as well.

 

Check out other physicians in your area, your competitors and hospitals.  Discover which hashtags they are using.  Look at the ones trending on Instagram in your field. You can do this by viewing the area "Tags For Likes".  Combine more popular hashtags with those of your own so that your posts stand out. Make a list of the hashtags that represent you and then you can copy and paste them to your posts in the future to expedite them, saving time and efficiency.

If you want to have an active Instagram account that both represents you and gets you more visibility but just don't have the time to get involved with it, you can outsource it!  I would be happy to help you.  As a physician, I know what you need.  Give me a call at 561-325-9664 and I can get you going!

There's no time like the present.  Don't let your competitors beat you to the space and recognition that you would have claimed!
 

 

How to Get More Followers on your Instagram Site

Posted by barbarahales

When you're using Instagram for your medical practice, then you want to get in front of more prospective patients who will be interested in utilizing your services and any products that you have to offer.

Getting more traffic does take time, persistence and consistency.  The good thing is that you have a staff to help participate in this. But, if done right, quality followers will be attracted to your site.

Having quality followers who are actually interested in your practice and types of medical services you offer, will ensure you get real results from Instagram. Just having tens of thousands of random followers does not provide any value for your practice.Tell People Your Instagram SiteIf you want your patients and their friends to view your site, obviously they have to know about it.  Tell them.  A much easier way is to let them know with a small sign by the check-in area of the waiting room.  You can also put it in your monthly patient newsletter.

 Secondly, include your Instagram handle or link on all of your media - website, business cards, contact info, brochures, etc. Make it easy for people to find you and follow you.

Hashtags
Hashtags enable new prospective patients to find you as they are actively searched on Instagram. They will increase the reach of your posts and boost engagement levels.

Follow More People

The rule of reciprocity states that if you do something for someone, that person feels compelled to reciprocate or act in kind.  So, simply, the more people you follow, the more people will follow you back (along with their followers which increases exposure). 

However, you want the images and messages to be in sync with yours which means that you follow those in your type of industry  or those you are affiliated with.

Participate in their posts.  They will appreciate it and it will also allow more people to take note of you.

Check out their profiles and see who is following those who are relevant to your practice and follow them as well.

Chances are if they are following your competition, your associates, or others associated with your business, they’ll want to follow you too!

Profile

Don't forget to fill out your profile.  This is a golden opportunity to inform people not only what you do but what you do for them and how they can be helped!

If you have questions about setting up Instagram, let's talk.  Contact me at

barbarahalesmd@aol.com

 

 

 

 

How to Grow Your Practice with Content Marketing

Posted by barbarahales

Growing your practice means investing in content marketing- investing time, attention, money.  You really can't turn a blind eye to it any longer.

Content marketing 

Content marketing is one of the key techniques to establishing your brand, showing your personality and compassion, getting your message out and distinguishing yourself  from your competition.

I get that marketing is not your forte; medicine is your concern.  It's not always easy to figure out where to begin, especially if this is new to you.

I would like to share with you an article from Forbes which puts out an easy to understand, actionable tip sheet.

Tip 1: Be a better writer; tell better stories

People won't remember your advice, they certainly won't remember your statistics but most people will remember your stories- the ones that elicit emotions, whether it is fear, happiness, sadness.

Tip 2: Answer the questions your prospects and customers ask

Let's face it, people are only going to be receptive to information that is relevant to them.

Tip 3: Tell a consistent narrative campaign to keep your audience moving through the marketing funnel.

Present the problem, the history of the problem and the solution you present as well as the success of your solution.  Then present the action steps that you want your readers to take.

Tip 4: Make an appointment with your audience

"Instead of inviting people to sign up for your email newsletter or blog posts, invite them to sign up for a specific piece of content delivered at a specific time"- Andrew Davis, author of Brandscaping: Unleashing the Power of Partnerships

Tip 5: Think about content promotion first

"Think of who would help amplify your content and why.  If you can't answer this question first, don't bother creating it."

Tip 6: Invest in Participation Marketing

"Look beyond our own subject matter expertise to the wisdom of your community for content ideas, content co-creation and promotion."

Go into forums and chat rooms dealing with conversations that are in sync with what you do, your specialty or niche.  What are their problems?  What is trending?  What are the questions that they want answers to?  You could be that guru that supplies it.

Tip 7: Build out your content funnel with EGC- Employee Generated Content

"Content is an ongoing activity, never a one-off campaign".  Think of your staff.  What can they discuss?  They certainly can talk about the process that patients go through when coming to your office for a particular procedure or how to navigate through their health insurance.

Tip 8: Collect and create "content chunks"

"We are becoming more systematic with the way we collect and create 'content chunks'."  Your information can be repurposed in several ways from your published articles to your podcasts, videos, teleseminars, blogs.

"Not only do we have examples at our fingertips for our Facebook content example of week, but becaue of the way we are collecting the data, we can now look at examples by segment (e.g. by tactic type, industry, etc.) The information is all ready for any future formats or projects as well."- Michele Linn, Vice Prsident, Content Marketing Institute.

Tip 9: Learn the skill of writing headlines

85% of readers will make a decision as to whether to read your information based solely by your headline.  This is the sensational or relevant points that scream out at you by newspapers, magazines, media news and ropes you in.  Having a boring headline will surely get your article deleted as quickly as the finger can hit the key.

So, are you weak in the knees at the prospect of attempting these steps?  No worries.  Let's discuss your needs.

Get a free consultation.  Give me a call - 561-325-9664.  Speak to you soon!

 

 

How to Schedule your Health Media Posts in Advance

Posted by barbarahales

There are two main tools that enable you to write your posts in your spare time and then schedule them when you would like them to appear, saving you massive amounts of time.  What are they and which better meets your needs?

Hootsuite vs. Social Oomph

There are similarities between the services. Both:

  • Enable posts on multiple platforms
  • Enable posts on multiple accounts
  • Supplies URL shorteners
  • Have free versions and upgrade monthly pay services

Differences:

Hootsuite

  • Provides interfacing with Google + and LinkedIn which other servers do not.
  • Visibility of live post feeds to Twitter or Facebook is provided by Hootsuit but not Social Oomph.
  • Allows usage of media icons to more easily see where your message is being posted
  • Has an app that communicates with smart phones and smart devices

On the other hand, Social Oomph allows you to:

  • Post direct from Word which is not possible with Hootsuit.
  • Permits set up of autoresponders, autofollows, autodirect messages
  • Provides "Replies Digest" which sends you email notifications of all the RT (retweets) and @mentions of you by name or your health site (enables specific traffic  tracking for your medical practice)

Seeing the differences, the one to use will depend on the types of services that you rely on and where your target market can be found.  In either case, they are both effective at what they offer and either way, you can't go wrong.

Need to set up your account?  Contact me for a free consultation: barbarahalesmd@aol.com