How to Make Your Social Networking More…Social- 5 Tips

Doctors, dentists and healthcare providers are often guilty of being dry and matter-of-fact when providing information on social media platforms.  After all, they have messages that they feel are important to spread and want to maintain a professional air.

KIEV, UKRAINE - OKTOBER 03, 2015 Collection of inscriptions, symbols of popular social media Youhoo, Google, Instagram, Flickr, Linkedin, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest and others printed on paper. Selective focus

 

 

Are you like this?  Well, stop it right here and now.  Social media is to be engaging, entertaining and social. (although not too personal; there is a thin line that you must straddle) Did you forget?  People do have a delete key!

 

Tips for Social Networking

Tip #1  Use a Headshot

Every social networking site has a place for your picture.  So does your email.  Show those pearly whites right next t your signature to infuse some more personality into your email.  Note– your photo should be one where you are looking straight out at the viewer, http://vhealthportal.com/product/ritalin/, where you are not part of a group shot or with your children and pets.

Tip #2 Start a Group your subscribers can join

While social networking may be a many-to-many communication tool which differentiates it from the conventional web and email experience, post in  way that makes each reader feel that you are talking to him/her.  Would your subscribers be even more engaged with your content if they could discuss it with one another on Facebook?  Would they then share it with their friends on the social networking sites they use?

Note– Having your subscribers communicate with one anther may get them mrs interested in your content without you having to do any more work.

Tip #3 Interact with Subscribers

People can always hit reply to anything you send them.  Take advantage of that fact.  Ask for feedback

 

 

Note– You can also use polls and surveys on social websites and include these results and subscriber feedback in your future messages.  TV and radio programs do this sort of thing to keep you tuned during commercials.

 

 

Tip #4 Be a Person, Not a Salesperson

You’re a real person and not a computer bot, right?  Well, don’t be afraid to write like it!  Remember to connect and relate with your subscribers and be approachable.

Note– It’ possible to overdo it with the personal information, but too often social marketers underachieve on this front.  On social networking sites, people are looking to connect and get to know people with whom they may develop a professional relationship.

 

Tip #5 Remember HIPAA

While you are being that “real” person, interacting with your readers, and answering questions, remember that you must post in a way that is not too specific for any individual person.  Information must be posted in a general way that would apply to many people so that any one person can not be identified.

Note– if a person has a question that needs to be answered on a personal basis, have that person make an appointment to see you personally in your office (this is the point of most interactions, after all!)

Bonus Tip- Profiles

Every social media site provides the opportunity for you to create your profile on the site.  This is a golden chance for you to describe what services you provide, what affiliations you have, your location, your educational background, etc.  Not only does this enable you to “toot your own horn” but enables people searching for your services, to find you online at that site.

Want more tips?

Sign up in the box at the top left corner of this page.  See you at the next post!

5 Tips for Medical Content Marketing on Social Media

 KIEV, UKRAINE - OKTOBER 03, 2015 Collection of inscriptions, symbols of popular social media Youhoo, Google, Instagram, Flickr, Linkedin, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest and others printed on paper. Selective focus

Using social media is a great way to attract visitors to your website and convert them from prospective clients to bonafide patients who call to make appointments.

The thing is, you need a medical marketing strategy.  Otherwise you are peddling fast and getting nowhere. Creating and distributing relevant and valued content to attract, acquire and engage your target audience, is what we call Content Marketing and once you have created your content, it’s time to put it out onto social media.

Medical Content Marketing Strategy

  1. Add photos, video and web links to increase patient engagement
  2. Create relevant and interesting content in the form of blogs, podcasts, videos, webinars, published articles, quotes and breaking news- all things that can be easily shared.
  3. Include a call-to-action so that your viewers click on to your website or ask for that report that you are offering (and finding out who is interested in your services along with their email)
  4. Keep your information in line with your services and products to strengthen your brand and let your viewers (as well as search engines) know what you are all about.
  5. Keep your posts short, relevant, and easy to understand.  Here is not the place to use medical jargon that the viewer may not know.  Keep it interesting and presented in a way that everyone can understand.

Share your content to build your brand, attract viewers and increase social ranking. Social network algorithms determine what content will be displayed in users feed. Factors  in the analysis includes user preference and link credibility among many variables.

Remember, you are posting to social media with a purpose.  The goal is to drive traffic to your website, get email addresses,and prompt the viewer to contact you and the medical practice. When you share content from your  website you are trying to attract visitors to it.

When you share content from other websites or post guest blogs,  you will be providing value by sharing useful information. Provide a mix of external and internal unique content.  This decreases the demands to create content and still enhances your visibility.

Social media is a great way to encourage engagement which also increases your network metrics.  Engagement is an important factor in social network ranking allowing you to appear in more user newsfeed. Social media also enables your visibility to extend beyond the scope of your website and your practice to place you in a position of authority in your field.

 

Live video content is performing at a very high level (i.e. Twitter and Facebook) and the trend is expected to continue. Adding videos to your mix will increase the amount of views and shares.

Using your analytical tools, see what forms of content garner the most views, engagement and shares and continue to increase these.

Need help with your content creation?  No worries.  Call 516-647-3002 and we can discuss your needs.

 

How to Boost Your SEO rankings with Social Media

 

KIEV, UKRAINE - OKTOBER 03, 2015 Collection of inscriptions, symbols of popular social media Youhoo, Google, Instagram, Flickr, Linkedin, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest and others printed on paper. Selective focus

 

 

Developing an effective  online presence can ramp up engagement with patients as well as prospective patients as it draws attention to you and strengthens your brand.  It enhances your chances for appearing at the top of search engine results as well.

Here’s how to accomplish this in two words…SOCIAL MEDIA!

 

 

Social media involvement with patient engagement rewards your efforts by getting noticed.  Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search engines account for meaningful engagement and searches in their algorithms.

Multichannels and online platforms are great sources of information for a medical practice or healthcare facility website.  The right social media links can boost your online site’s SEO significantly. The site that is most valuable to you is the one where your patients hang out.  Get to know your clients and where they spend their time online.  This is where you will want to spend your time as well.

Fact and Fiction of Social Media and SEO

7 Things to Keep in Mind

  1. New links created by blog posts shared on Twitter does NOT affect search ranking.  Links shared on social sites does NOT affect ranking. Establishing yourself as an authority in social media sites, forums and chat rooms DO increase ranking. Participation in social media DOES increase visibility.
  2. Online profiles in various sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram DOES improve ranking (and gets listed on search results)
  3. Social media DOES convey your personality as a health provider and allows prospective patients to become familiar with you.
  4. Patients DO access your new content in social media.
  5. Hashtags DO aggregate your content and enables you to share videos and images.
  6. Social media does NOT act as a search engine. However BING, the second biggest search engine after Google, clearly takes social media links into consideration for their algorithm.
  7. Pinterest and Instagram may be channels your target market peruses. Do check it out.

Need help with your social media?  No worries.  Outsource it.  Call 516-647-3002 and we can discuss your needs.

 

 

 

 

Content Marketing Guide for Medical Practices

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

 

 

How to Use Instagram for Your Health Marketing

Have you thought of using instagram as part of your medical marketing and wondered whether it is worth your while?

Like any other strategy in medical marketing, you must have a plan. The images need to be collected and posted with meaningful intent and true to your branding.

Here are 5 tips to help with your strategy

  • 1) Catch eyes with an alluring design

Take care that the image compliments the medical device or office rooms. If additional props will convey the message better, place them in the background of the shots. If you have a special effect like sepia, black and white or color,or an artsy angle, be consistent with all the images on your posts. There is a variety of filters in Instagram that help present your image in the best light.

  • 2) Add a caption to the image

The most effective ones are those that let patients and prospective patients know how the device or subject in the image will help them. Giving examples of usage as opposed to a mere description is very helpful for the patients to understand the value of the image.

  • 3) Add a Call to Action

Add an action that you would like your viewer to perform (e.g. like a page, become a follower, call the office for a consultation, sign up for medical office newsletter, visit website)

  • 4) Use #hashtags with your posts

Having relevant hashtags help viewers find your photos by the topics they are searching. Three hashtags can be used for each one if they are relevant. Providing a brand-centric hashtag enables viewers to follow you and strengthens your brand.

  • 5) Apply analytic measures

Measure which images perform best so that you know the content that engages your viewers and expand upon them to drive traffic. Those that bring no likes will be ones that you don’t create again.

As instagram becomes more and more popular, it speaks to the marketplace as being visual. If you can be found, Instagram can be a potent driver to your medical practice. Planning your brand strategically and how you want to present it on Instagram has the power to generate more prospective patients and grow your practice more than any other social medium.

Interested in getting started with Instagram but have questions as to what would best represent your practice?  Contact me for a free consultation and we can discuss your needs at 561-325-9664.

Why Health Marketing needs Social media

Social media acts the same as spreading word of mouth about you and your business.  The only difference is that it’s  on a computer screen. Participation affords many advantages.

Benefits:

  • Your social media posts and comments are available to millions of viewers
  • Prospective patients will decide to use your services over competitors and peers who are absent on social media
  • If a problem exists with your practice or a disgruntled patient complains about a dissatisfied result or care received, you can nip the problem in the bud before your reputation is injured
  • Solutions you provide to problems people are struggling with, sets you up as a guru or authority in your field
  • Increases traffic to your website from people who are interested in what you have to say, increasing your patient base
  • Moves people down your funnel to up sell services or goods
  • Converts prospective clients or patients into paying clients when they may have earlier been on the fence

Don’t be afraid to add a  personal touch.  Provide education and entertainment  with a light touch to enable your personality to come through.

Social Media Manager

Perhaps you have sensibly decided to participate in social media but due to time constraints, it is not feasible or you don’t know quite how to go about it effectively.   Hiring a social media manager is a great way to solve this problem.

Sit down with the social media manager and clearly communicate how you want responses to be made, information to be highlighted and topics for discussion.  By talking it through, you can have the information posted in your voice.  You will be necessary to allow access to your accounts but it will be secure by drafting a written agreement which will enable you to have control of the account including usernames and passwords once the manager is no longer in your employ.

Broach the subject of  who will own the content that is posted after the job is paid for and have this in writing, signed by both you and the manager.    Copyrights can belong to you or the writer (after first rights) depending upon the agreement that you have made.  Failure to discuss this will spell disaster and discord down the road.

To hire a social media manager or see about getting a content package, go to www.CompleteContentPackage.com

Doctors and Health Providers- Get Online for a Reputation CheckUp (Do Social Marketing Before It’s Too Late!)

Do you check to see what people are posting about you?

One way patients are now increasingly venting their anger over wait times or other practices that they have been subject to as well as handing out compliments to their doctors, is to rate their physicians and the hospitals that they frequent.  The most popular sites are:

  • Vitals.com
  • ZocDoc
  • Healthgrades
  • RateMDs

While many doctors have been oblivious to their ratings, not showing much interest in them, patients do.  Often these ratings are checked before a prospective patient will schedule an appointment. There was a time, when doctors would sulk and brood about it privately, but now they are more frequently speaking out and fighting their reputations with lawsuits filed against the patients and families according to a Boston Globe article. Citing defamation of character, doctors are responding to negative comments in blogs, rating sites and social media.

According to Harvard University’s Digital Media Project, the results have vacillated:

“In some cases the doctors win, and the patients pull the negative post from the internet. In other cases, the court has dismissed the lawsuit on the grounds that the negative post is free speech protected by the U.S. Constitution.”

Dr. Kevin Pho, a physician blogger who has written a book about this,advises doctors in his Huffington Post interview, to check their reputation and comments about them on a weekly basis as well as filling out profiles on LinkedIn and Facebook to establish a presence online.

It seems to me that when lawsuits are filed about character defamation, they are often made public and more people who might not have been privy to the initial criticism, then become aware of it.  Wouldn’t it have been better to flood the websites and social media with good comments, superior ratings and glowing reports to counteract and dilute the  initial report?  Case studies and published articles also go along way to strengthening credit.

Check What People Say

You don’t actually have to continually go online to see if you are being mentioned.  Register on Google Alert with your name and your keywords.  Whenever you are mentioned, you will then receive an email, alerting you to comments made about you (good and bad)

There are several tools and applications that you can utilize in Twitter as well.

While it is true that you may not have the time to patrol social media networks for your reputation (or street creds), this can be outsourced! For more help with this or a free consultation, contact:

Barbara@TheWriteTreatment.com

 

 

Health Marketing Tip- Twitter Gets You Views

 

Are you “tweeting” ?  Do you have a “Twibe”?

Twitter is a social media site that drives traffic to your website.

After all, the goal of having your website is for visitors to come and see it!

What Is Twitter? 

Twitter is a social instrument that provides a feeling of belonging to an interactive community…a camaraderie  that answers the questions you pose and reacts to the stories you post.

By keeping messages short, Twitter is meant to be a place where quick responses are made.

Sure, you are restricted to 140 characters or less…but are you really?     If you have a more involved message, put it in a blog.  A shortened URL can be obtained in a number of sites (e.g. bit.ly which also has analytics to see site views).  Place a short message in your tweet and attach the hyperlinked url so that if someone is interested, they can click on it to read more.

There are blog plugins that also do this and automatically post to your twitter page without an added step of you adding the post manually.

8 Benefits of Twitter

1) Increase Traffic: Offer help in your tweets.  By doing so, you drive traffic to your blog posts, website, landing pages

2) Damage Control: Find out what others are saying and complaints or damaging issues about your business, practice or you.  Then you can nip it in the bud before it becomes a big problem.  Address the issue and respond immediately.

3) Improves Communication: offers a channel by which you can give quick answers (business hours, coverage, affiliations)

4) Build Your Brand: listing your logo, tagline or mission statements with your name enables people to associate you with your brand.  Don’t forget to include a stellar profile.  This is a golden opportunity to tell about yourself/business/practice

5) Discover new business contacts: see who your connections are following- and who is following them.  Twitter is transparent this way and you can see who to follow, who could be helpful to you and who you could be helpful to yourself.

6) Improve business relationships: Learn about what your patients/clients and perspective clients are interested in.  Discover what their pains or problems are.

7) Raise your Rankings and Visibility: Participation in social media and profiles are picked up by search engines and helps boost your website rankings.

8) Find the latest news: Read the news as it happens in real-time and information that competitors may not have access to.  Discover what is trending in your field.

Don’t have time for social media participation with your busy work schedule?

No problem.  Outsource it!

Reach out and we can get you on the road to Social Media Marketing Success!

Call 516-647-3002

 

Where Should You Be Spending Your Health Marketing Dollars?

Health marketing, just like promoting any other type of business, is drastically changing and is almost 180 degrees from what it used to be with computer use the new way of life for most people.

Take a look at the comparison between outbound and inbound marketing.

When it comes to outbound vs. inbound marketing, the numbers have inbounds as growing in popularity and outbounds plummeting. Which then will most companies be spending their marketing dollars on?

Outbound marketing (ads on billboards, tv, radio, snail mail) is considered a waste of time for many.

  • Results of a study by Voltier Digital shows:
  • 86% of viewers fast forward through television ads
  • 44% of direct mail remains unopened and tossed
  • 84% of viewers in the 20-35 year old bracket have clicked out of a website due to ads

With the popularity of the internet and rise of interactions on social media sites, marketing strategy is centering around interacting with clients and prospective clients within your target market by educating, entertaining and communicating.

With your participation on various social media sites including your providing solutions to common problems, you become more visible and people seek you out.  Clients come to you through your social media activity in addition to referrals and search engine sites.

Let Clients Come to You

People who have sought you out are going to be more interested in what you have to say.  So…say it.

Get your message out through publishing articles on syndicated sites, interesting blogs and electronic newsletters (ezines)

There are plugins that you can attach to your blogs that will print your posts to the various social media sites that you participate in like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.  News aggregators like Reddit.com and Digg.com will help spread your message as does bookmarking sites (e.g. Delicious.com) helping your message to spread virally even more.

Content Marketing– your messages in a nutshell

Benefits include:

  • Increasing Leads
  • Driving Traffic to your site
  • Helping to convert leads to users of your services and goods
  • Increasing website rankings by search engines

Now a full 66% of companies recognize and confirm that their blogs are crucial for their  business success and budget for social media and blogs has doubled in the last 3 years.  This is no surprise when you consider the return on investment (ROI). Inbound marketing produces revenue in addition to leads at 62% less expense.  After all, people are coming to you, they are interested in what you have to say and are buying accordingly.

Remember, it is not talking at people, but to them that will build relationships and entice people to want what you offer.

Are you letting people know what you have to say?  Taking the time and effort to do this will make a big difference in the long run!

Don’t have time for this?  Outsource it.  I would be happy to help.  Contact me at 

Barbara@TheWriteTreatment.com

“Like” It More than Tweets

Trying to figure out where the best place is to place your ad?  Are you asking yourself where the best ROI (return on investment) lies?

Now, you don’t have to ponder. A survey conducted at registration for Eventbrite’s event revealed that monetary returns were higher for social media marketers placing ads on Facebook than Twitter.

Eventbrite announced that an average tweet regarding an event generated 80 cents in ticket sales in the last half of the year while a typical Facebook  “like” for the same ad generated $1.34.  For the full ad see: http://mashable.com/2011/03/16/facebook-like-worth/

Need to write an ad, but need help with it?  No problem!  Contact me at Barbara@TheWriteTreatment.com