Posted in #HCSM

How To Develop A Social Media Strategy For Healthcare Marketing

In the past decade, social networks have evolved from “a nice to have” add-on to a necessity for healthcare marketers. 

If you haven’t yet integrated social media into your marketing mix, it’s time to do so. Not only is social media marketing more affordable than traditional forms of marketing, but it’s also more accountable, with specific tracking and monitoring options at your disposal.

When using social media for marketing purposes, it’s important to understand that social media marketing is more than just creating social accounts and posting updates once in a while. Nor is it merely a digital tool to broadcast updates. To make social media an effective means to reach patients you need to take a strategic approach.

Before diving into social media, you need to think about what you are actually trying to accomplish. The temptation is to start right away by building a following on one or more of the popular social media platforms. But actually, this is not where you should start.

why
Image: Marie Ennis-O’Connor

You need to start with your “why” before your how. In an interview, Lee Aase, communications director for the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network (MCSMN), pointed out that “Everything starts with why you are using social media If you do not have that “why” out there, then it’s going to be easy to not be motivated enough to stay with it.”

When I take on a new client, I always start by working deeply with them to uncover their motivation for wanting to use social media.  I believe this step is so critical that on occasion I have to advise some clients that they are not ready to commit to social media.

Social media will only work for you if you are prepared to put the work in.

For those of you reading this who are ready for the challenge and willing to work at it, read on to find out the next steps you need to take to ensure the time and effort you spend on social media will pay off for you.

A Six-Step Approach To Developing A Social Media Strategy For Healthcare Marketing

Step #1 Set SMART Goals

Without goals, it’s hard to know exactly how well your social media strategy is performing. Clear goals will not only propel your strategy forward, but they will also serve as defined metrics when it comes to measuring your progress. Describe the specific goals and outcomes you’re seeking to accomplish with your social media activity. These should be aligned with your business goals and clinical priorities.

Do you want to attract more patients? Communicate more effectively with existing patients? Create and maintain an online reputation? Drive traffic to your website? Chances are you may want to do all of these things, but it’s best to identify your top two to three goals and focus on them first.  Whichever goal you wish to pursue, make it as detailed and specific as possible. The more trackable your goal is, the easier it’ll be in a few months to see if you have achieved it.

Take Action: For a goal to become a reality, it needs to be specific, measurable, attainable, and realistic, as well as time specific — these are often called SMART goals.

Step #2 Understand Your Audience

Before you jump into the tactical and practical details of your social media plan, it’s critical that you take the time to understand your audience.  Where do your patients go online for research? What health issues concern them the most? Which online communities inform or influence them? What times are they online? Consider your audience’s engagement time, not your work hours.

Take Action: Start by finding data on your existing audience. Use the Demographics and Interests sections of Google Analytics and the audience analytics features contained within Facebook Insights and Twitter to help you.

Step #3  Set Your Marketing Budget

The perception that social media is free is misguided. The days you could make an impact with a few tweets or Facebook posts are long gone. Running a social presence now requires an investment of resources.  You may need to buy-in services such as SEO (search engine optimisation), analytics software, content or creative support. You will also need to budget for paid advertising, particularly if you want to make an impact on Facebook, where organic reach has steadily declined over the past few years.

Take Action: Set a realistic budget and create a digital marketing strategy that works within it. Whatever you decide to spend money or time on, be sure to track how your content performs on social media relative to the amount of time and money you put against it. This is your social media return of investment (ROI) and it is closely linked to the goals you set at step #1.

Step #4 Choose Your Social Channels

Armed with information on who makes up your audience, the next step is to determine which social media platforms they use and direct your efforts accordingly. Most marketing efforts are focused on the trifecta of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, but visual platforms such as Pinterest, Snapchat, and Instagram are also very popular for healthcare marketing.  This doesn’t mean that you have to be everywhere at once. It’s important, especially if your resources are limited, that you’re focusing your social media efforts in places that will generate the most return for your time online.

Take Action: Do your research to determine where best to focus your social media efforts to be successful.  Read Which Social Network Is The Right One For Your Medical Practice? for more advice.

Step #5 Create A Content Strategy

If patients are searching for health information online you need to be creating and sharing what they are searching for.  Tune into the health stories patients are reading about and be ready to provide context, counter misinformation and dispel myths with medically factual information.

When creating a content strategy for your medical practice consider the following points.

What makes you uniquely you? What values does your organization stand for? Use social media to communicate the “who” and “why” of your practice. What unique qualities make you stand out?

Consider your social media tone and voice. How do you wish to communicate on social media? Do you wish to be seen as authoritative, inspiring, friendly, approachable, or helpful? Authentic communication and engagement are highly valued traits online as much as offline.  Look to build and strengthen trust and credibility in all your online interactions. The tone and voice you use should be consistent through all social channels. Your patients should be able to instantly recognize the tone in your social media messages as identifiably you.  Establishing a clear and identifiable voice can also make it easier for others in your office to post on social media for your practice.

Consider the type of content that works best on each platform. Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest require high-quality visuals to stand out. A blog, on the other hand, is better suited to long-form thought pieces. Think about how you can vary your message delivery to complement how people like to consume online information. Alternate between written content, video, infographics, and podcasts to match your audience’s preferences.

Take Action: Create content that truly resonates with your patients. Generally speaking, patients are less interested in your brand, your physicians or your technology, than they are in how you can help them solve their problems. Great content is not about you, but about what you can do for your patients to improve their quality of life. Use a mix of original content and content curated from highly credible evidence-based sources.

Step #6 Track And Measure Social Media Activities

How will you know if you achieve your social media goals? To determine how effective your social media efforts are, you will need to measure your results. Some key metrics to track are the number of followers you attract and retain, what people are saying about you, your company, or brand, and which social media channels drive the most traffic to your website. Social media metrics should always be tied to your social media marketing goals and your target audience.

Take Action: Use built-in tools such as Facebook Insights and Twitter Analytics, third-party tools, and measurement of social traffic and conversion with Google Analytics to track and measure your progress.

With currently 2.8 billion social media users globally, expected to rise to almost 3 billion users by 2020, social media’s influence has still not reached its peak. It’s a dynamic environment in which new networks emerge, old networks evolve, and user bases continue to grow exponentially. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by this rapidly moving landscape and unsure of your progress. By building your social media strategy on a solid foundation you are less likely to become distracted by shiny new tools, and more likely to see results over the long-term.


Need help creating a social media strategy for your business?

Get in touch with us to discuss your needs. 

Posted in #HCSM, Infographics

The 11 Most Common Website SEO Issues [Infographic]

SEO (the acronym stands for Search Engine Optimization) is the process of getting traffic from “organic” listings on search engines in order to improve your website’s search engine ranking.

Did you know that 39% of total global web traffic comes from search, with Google receiving over 63,000 searches per second on any given day?

But 75% of users never click past the first page of search results.

In this infographic, you can see at a glance some of the most common on-site SEO issues, with duplicate content being the worst offender.

seoissues-semrush-100816

Want to optimize your website? Check out these tools.

Posted in #HCSM

Click, Like, Retweet: The Role of Social Media In Maintaining Healthcare Reputation #SMDAY

While every day is Social Media Day, today, June 30th, 2020 marks the eleventh annual official global celebration of all things social media.

Social media has an increasingly important role to play in maintaining a healthcare organization’s reputation and image. Not only are patients seeking health information online, but many also say their choice of a specific doctor, hospital or medical treatment is influenced by social media.

Patients are also using social media to vocalize how they feel about their doctors, drugs, treatment plans, insurance, and medical devices. Don’t think if you are not on social media, patients aren’t discussing your organization. You can’t opt-out of reputation management – whether you have a social media presence or not, a patient who has a bad experience with your organization is only one tweet or Facebook post away from sharing it with the world.

Be Proactive in Managing Your Online Reputation

It is far better to take control of your reputation by responding to these conversations yourself and correcting any misinformation or misperceptions. Responding in real-time strengthens public perception that your focus is firmly on patient satisfaction.

Remember that everything you do online – every blog post, every tweet, every conversation – is a reflection of your brand. A successful social media presence hinges on the trust between you and your followers. Becoming a trusted source of health information for your patients and proactively developing a strong, consistent, and credible image online will increase patient trust and confidence in your organization.

Social Media Is An Essential Component of Healthcare Marketing

Realising social media’s potential in healthcare requires an organizational culture that values social media as central to its overall strategy. Social media should be viewed not as an add-on, but as an essential component of healthcare marketing. Unlike traditional marketing practices that have stayed constant for decades, social media is still a relatively new marketing channel with new networks, updates, and features constantly emerging. Marketing departments need to invest more of their budget in platforms and resources that takes full advantage of the opportunities presented by social media.

Create A Winning Strategy

The best social media accounts are precisely targeted, updated frequently, and foster an ongoing dialogue with followers. that’s why it’s so important to have a plan in place at the outset and monitor, measure, and adjust your progress as you go.

Recommended Reading: How To Develop A Social Media Strategy For Healthcare Marketing

Start by optimizing your website – think of it as your home-base to which you will be directing your social media followers to find relevant and engaging information. With more people accessing the Internet via mobile devices, make sure your site is optimized for mobile viewing. to increase the likelihood that your website will be placed at the top of google search results, thereby earning you trust with your audience, consider adding a blog to your site. A blog serves to proactively show your patients that you are a trusted source of healthcare information.

Recommended Reading: 9 Proven Ways To Increase The Visibility of Your Healthcare Website

Next, put a content promotion plan in place. In today’s noisy social media world, you need to amplify your content to be heard. Make it easy for people to share your site’s content on social media by incorporating social share icons prominently throughout your website.

Create lots of visual content such as infographics and videos and encourage people to share these on social media. Post updates about your hospital’s accomplishments, showcasing ground-breaking surgeries, cutting-edge research, and the work of high- profile staff members. Cross-promote each piece of content you create but do not copy and paste the same post on each platform—format each of them to meet the requirements of the specific platforms.

Recommended Reading: 10 Places To Find The Best Free Images For Your Healthcare Marketing

At the end of each week, take time to monitor and measure the impact of your social media activity. Monitor your engagement rates and pages views to see which channels get the most attention and measure the return on investment for paid ads and social media promotions.

Wrapping Up

Social media’s influence has still not reached its peak; it will continue to disrupt healthcare in ways we are only beginning to understand. It is equally important nowadays for healthcare organizations to communicate with patients online as it is through more traditional offline channels. Knowing how to leverage this opportunity is an essential skill for the modern healthcare organization. I like to use a quote from Erik Qualman: “We do not have a choice on whether we do social media, the question is – how well we do it”.

You might also like to read Ten Top Tips To Celebrate Social Media Day 2020

 


This is an edited version of an article that appeared in HealthManagement, Volume 18 – Issue 2, 2018

Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: How To Create Facebook Collections With Saved Content

Welcome to this week’s social media tip. Today I want you to show you how to use Facebook Collections to curate and organize saved content for easy access and sharing.

Ever come across a piece of content on Facebook but don’t have time to read it in the moment? Did you know you can save that content to view later?  Facebook lets you save content (posts, events, pages, and photos) directly from your news feed and then easily access your saved items from the left navigation menu on the home page.

c52f1658-cac0-40eb-ac33-ef155d619dbd

Here’s how to do it.

To save content to your saved item list, simply click the three dots at the top right of any Facebook post in your news feed, and then simply select the option to save the content.

download - 2019-12-05T082106.892 When you start building a group of saved posts, you can start to organize it into collections, categorizing it by topic.

To create a collection, simply click on Create Collection in the left sidebar.  You’ll then be prompted to name your collection.

e15bd512-52b9-4c51-be29-91d1799482c1

If you want to add a saved post to a collection, simply click the Add to Collection button below the item in your saved list – or create a new collection.

download - 2019-12-05T082916.255

You can also share a saved item directly from your list by clicking the Share button.

download - 2019-12-05T083146.196

I find the ability to save content on Facebook and categorize it according to collections a very useful feature.  I like to share a #MondayMotivation quote each week and many times scrolling through Facebook I’ll find the perfect quote to save. Come Monday all I have to do is access my folder containing quotes to share one quickly and easily with my followers.

Here’s to your social media success!

Posted in #HCSM

Social Media in Dermatology: A Review of Current Usage

In dermatology, as in other medical specialties, social media has become a platform for patient education, public outreach, and professional development and networking.

A review article published in Dermalogica Sinica sets out to investigate the use of popular social media platforms within dermatology along with the potential benefits and harms of these platforms when used by dermatology providers and their patients. 

Dermatology and Facebook

Facebook remains the most popular social media platform worldwide, with over 1.8 billion monthly active users. In the health-care field, Facebook introduces many new opportunities for networking, professional education, and patient education.

In a 2012 study, [1] Amir et al. showed that almost 13% of dermatology journals were present on Facebook and that number has increased to almost 18% in 2017.   Professional dermatology organizations have also increased their public and professional engagement through Facebook. Popular professional dermatology organizations with the most likes on Facebook include dermRounds, Dermatology, American Academy of Dermatology, and Associated Skin Care Professionals.

Facebook has also been used as an educational platform with the goal of helping providers to provide the highest-quality care to patients. Groups like DermLife and The Dermapaths, a group specifically for dermatopathologists, promote this goal. Another group, The Dermatologists, focuses on providers helping one another with particularly difficult cases.

The communication capabilities of Facebook are also used to improve medical education. In dermatology, reports describe the benefit of visually-oriented social media platforms, such as Facebook for use in medical student education.[2] Moreover, Facebook has found an avenue to enhance patient education and in some cases, patient care. There has been an increase in the number of dermatology journals and patient-centered groups that use Facebook to help educate the public. One study assessing public engagement using Facebook found online educational posts most effective.[3]

Dermatology and YouTube

YouTube is the second-most popular website in the world, hosting over 30 billion monthly users with an average viewing session of 40 min.   The presence of dermatology on YouTube is increasing, with most of its content being educational or advocacy.  One dermatologist, Dr. Sandra Lee (aka Dr. Pimple Popper), uses YouTube to post educational videos and interact with her audience of more than 5 million subscribers. This increase in availability of dermatologic information on YouTube demonstrates an opportunity for HCPs to inform the public about popular dermatologic topics.

Dermatology and Instagram

Instagram is a popular photo and video sharing media platform among teens and young adults.  Instagram “hashtags” allow users to search for and identify content related to a specific topic. In one study, researchers showed that the top three dermatology-related “hashtags” included #acne, #alopecia, and #eczema.[4] Physicians of all medical specialties including dermatologists have created Instagram profiles that allow their followers to see before and after procedure photos, patient education material, and advertisements for cosmetic lines and in-office promotions. In the academic environment, Instagram is used to connect and inform students of events, announce services, and provide public education; however, this tool is underutilized in dermatology. One study found that 7% of dermatology departments have an Instagram profile.[5] A recent study found that 5% of dermatologic focused Instagram posts were made by a board-certified dermatologist.[6] 

Dermatology and Twitter

In dermatology, Twitter has become a popular platform for users to communicate dermatologic concerns. One study shows that almost 85,000 tweets over a 1-year period communicated personal concerns with skin disease [7] while another study shows that the most common type of re-tweeted tweets (43.1%) are about acne.[8] Furthermore, medical schools have begun using Twitter to increase student engagement. For example, Northwest Ohio Medical University used twitter to post weekly dermatology quizzes and successfully increased student engagement from 23.8% to 55.9%.[9]  The authors note, one of the biggest challenges facing Twitter is the dissemination of misperceptions related to dermatologic diseases. With such a large young adult population communicating information through Twitter, there is a significant amount of incorrect information, empirical data, and myths circulating that may influence a patient’s approach to dermatologic concerns.[10]

Dermatology and Reddit

Reddit is a website that allows users to join communities of people with similar interests to share and learn information. There are over 150,000 “subreddits” containing threads of comments pertaining to a particular topic where users are able to comment and communicate with one another. Dermatology has several subreddits with the most common being cosmetic advice, disease identification, and medications.  The authors again point out that Reddit presents challenges as it allows members to post responses to medical questions, thus introducing the possibility for the dissemination of inaccurate or dangerous medical advice. But counter this by highlighting Reddit’s opportunity as an entry point for physicians to provide accurate information and dispel false information, promoting knowledge about common dermatologic topics as a public health measure.[11]

Dermatology and Pinterest

Pinterest started in 2009 as a platform designed to share images, GIFS, and videos.  Users are able to upload images, “pin” images, and create “boards” (collections of pins). With respect to dermatology, studies show that informative pins, advocacy, and home remedies compose the majority of dermatology related “pins” and “boards.” However, it is important to note that only 24% of these “boards” were created by M.D.s or advocacy organizations.[12]

Dermatology and Snapchat

Snapchat, developed in 2011, is a social media application that allows users to share photos and videos with other users for twenty-four hours. Snapchat’s interface of quick 10-second stories captures the attention of the audience and the story features allow millions of people to view the same story posted by a particular user. For example, Dr. Michael Salzhauer (a plastic surgeon better known as Dr. Snapchat) posts his surgeries live and receives over 700,000 views/day. He uses Snapchat as a tool to educate the public as well as generate new clientele, as over 60% of new patients in his office come from Snapchat and other social media.[13] The potential benefit of social media, specifically Snapchat, is clear in healthcare, but the use of Snapchat in dermatology is lagging behind that of other healthcare fields.

Social Media Opportunities in Dermatology

The study authors believe “there is a great opportunity for health care providers to enhance communities and disseminate information at a greater, more efficient rate, through platform interoperability. Improved interoperability would also allow for greater patient recruitment and social media-based research.”

Each platform is designed to function independently; however, there is a degree of interoperability among platforms, of which there is incredible potential.

An additional opportunity for social media in dermatology is patient recruitment for clinical research.

Considering each clinical study has a target population, social media provides tremendous opportunity to gather a large volume of patients.

Finally, dermatologic based social media communication, research, and outreach has tremendous value from a public health perspective.

Social media is one of the fastest means for the dissemination of information, especially when content goes “viral.” In fact, the dissemination of public health knowledge through social media platforms has demonstrated a positive impact on health outcomes and patient behaviors.

Challenges of Social Media and Healthcare

Among the challenges presented by social media in a healthcare context, the authors point to biased demographics.

The majority of social media users are white women between the ages of 30–49. [14] Therefore, social media-based research must be cognizant of the inherent biases that may be present.

Not surprisingly the authors consider “the most concerning challenge of social media use in healthcare is the spread of unreliable and sometimes incorrect medical information.”

Most authors of medical information on social media platforms have unverified credentials and are generally underqualified. Furthermore, the information put forth on these platforms is often incomplete, unreferenced, and based on personal anecdotes.

While most medical literature is evidence-based, medical information through social media focuses on individual stories and experiences that may not be generalizable to the population at large.[15]

Furthermore, professionalism is an additional, ongoing concern with the increased use of social media platforms. Other challenges of social media use in healthcare are centered on patient privacy and violations between patient-provider interactions. Social media has brought forth new challenges in this respect, specifically HCPs using identifying patient information in public posts. In one study, it was found that 17% of blogs written by HCPs describing individual patients had enough information to identify the patient or the provider.[16]

Further Reading: Social Media: Professional Boon or Bane? It’s Complicated

Conclusion

The authors conclude, these risks aside, the opportunity to promote public health, patient education, and professional interactions is impactful and should not be missed.

With 80% of people searching the Internet for health information, there is an onus on HCPs to maintain a presence on social media wherever possible to dispel misinformation and circulate evidence-based knowledge.

Notes

This is an edited version of the original review which can be accessed in full here.

[1] Amir M, Sampson BP, Endly D, Tamai JM, Henley J, Brewer AC, et al. Social networking sites: Emerging and essential tools for communication in dermatology. JAMA Dermatol 2014;150:56-60.

[2] Enhancing dermatology education with social media platforms: Are we there yet? J Am Acad Dermatol 2018;79:AB129.

[3] Enhancing dermatology education with social media platforms: Are we there yet? J Am Acad Dermatol 2018;79:AB129. Back to cited text no. 12.

[4] Braunberger T, Mounessa J, Rudningen K, Dunnick CA, Dellavalle RP. Global skin diseases on instagram hashtags. Dermatol Online J 2017;23. pii: 13030/qt7sk410j3.

[5] St Claire KM, Rietcheck HR, Patel RR, Dellavalle RP. An assessment of social media usage by dermatology residency programs. Dermatol Online J 2019;25. pii: 13030/qt5v62b42z.

[6] Park JH, Christman MP, Linos E, Rieder EA. Dermatology on instagram: An analysis of hashtags. J Drugs Dermatol 2018;17:482-4.

[7] Sarker A, Magge A, Sharma A. Dermatologic concerns communicated through twitter. Int J Dermatol 2017;56:e162-3

[8] Shive M, Bhatt M, Cantino A, Kvedar J, Jethwani K. Perspectives on acne: What twitter can teach health care providers. JAMA Dermatol 2013;149:621-2.

[9] Kunzler E, Graham J, Mostow E. Motivating medical students by utilizing dermatology-oriented online quizzes. Dermatol Online J 2016;22. pii: 13030/qt0p31j0z8.

[10] DeBord LC, Patel V, Braun TL, Dao H Jr. Social media in dermatology: Clinical relevance, academic value, and trends across platforms. J Dermatolog Treat 2019;30:511-8.

[11] Buntinx-Krieg T, Caravaglio J, Domozych R, Dellavalle RP. Dermatology on reddit: Elucidating trends in dermatologic communications on the world wide web. Dermatol Online J 2017;23. pii: 13030/qt9dr1f7x6

[12] Whitsitt J, Mattis D, Hernandez M, Kollipara R, Dellavalle RP. Dermatology on pinterest. Dermatol Online J 2015;21. pii: 13030/qt7dj4267p

[13] Patel S, Bewley S, Hodson N. Snapchat is not for sharing. BMJ 352 (2016): i1543

[14] Sadah SA, Shahbazi M, Wiley MT, Hristidis V. A study of the demographics of web-based health-related social media users. J Med Internet Res 2015;17:e194.

[15] Pirraglia PA, Kravitz RL. Social media: New opportunities, new ethical concerns. J Gen Intern Med 2013;28:165-6.

[16] Chretien KC, Kind T. Social media and clinical care: Ethical, professional, and social implications. Circulation 2013;127:1413-21

 

Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: How to Follow Topics on Twitter

Welcome to this week’s quick social media tip. This week I want to show you how to follow topics on Twitter. Following a Topic allows you to stay informed on what’s happening and see more relevant content about that topic.

Here’s how to follow topics on Twitter

From your Home timeline

  1. While scrolling through your Home timeline, you may notice that Twitter will suggest a Topic for you to follow.
  2. Simply Tap the Follow button next to the suggested Topic to follow.

download - 2020-06-11T070703.315

From your Topics menu

Tap Topics in your profile icon menu.

download - 2020-01-30T105328.820

Tap Follow some Topics to browse by category type.

cd83f2bb-78aa-45b1-9888-bae78a337f20

From within each category and sub-category type, tap the Follow button next to the Topics you’d like to follow.

When finished, tap Done.

Note:  Just like with accounts you follow, you can unfollow Topics at any time.

How to unfollow a Topic

From your Home timeline:

  1. In your Home timeline, navigate to a Tweet about a Topic you’re currently following.
  2.  Tap the  icon from the top of the Tweet and select Unfollow.

From your Topics: 

  1. Tap Topics in your profile icon menu.
  2. Tap Unfollow next to the topic.

Worth Noting

Topics you follow are public.

Anyone who can see your full profile can view the Topics you follow. If your Tweets are protected, only your followers will be able to see your Topics.

How to see the Topics someone follows

You have the option to see the Topics that someone else is following. You’re able to view their Topics if their Tweets are public, or if their Tweets are protected and you’ve been approved as a follower.

On the Twitter for iOS and Android app, and twitter.com:

  1. Go to their profile.
  2. Click or tap the more menu  at the top of their profile page.
  3. Select View Topics.

 

Here’s to your Twitter success!

Posted in #HCSM, SEO

Why and How You Should Optimise Your Medical Website For Local Search

“Near me” searches have grown consistently since 2013, according to Think With Google

Your website is the hub of your digital efforts. You want your site to be optimized for search keywords, usability, and content. Doing so will help your website appear further up Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) for the services you offer, and help increase the likelihood that users will remain on your site and get to know you better.

In the current digital age, most people find the services they are looking for, including healthcare, through search engines.  If you want more people to find you online, you need to optimize your website through good search engine optimization practices.

And if you want to attract new patients, your website also needs to be optimized for your local area. When someone uses the internet to locate a Medical Practice nearby, it’s critical that your website appears in those results (searches on mobile devices containing the phrase “near me” has skyrocketed in recent years).

internet-trends-report-2018-192-1024 (1)

In recent research carried out by BrightLocal, consumers were asked how they used voice assistants and voice search for local business. The top three most demanded voice search functions involve finding restaurants, grocery stores, and food delivery, with clothing, accommodation, and medicine following closely behind.

what-consumers-want-voice-search.png

The Voice Search for Local Business Study also revealed that 46% of voice search users use voice search to find local businesses daily.

how-often-do-people-search-for-local-businesses-using-voice-search.png

There are a few ways you can drive local engagement via digital channels. Here are a few tactics you should consider integrating into your local marketing strategy:

1. Create targeted advertising campaigns

Digital search or display ads offer you an excellent opportunity to target your audience using various parameters. You can leverage digital ad networks, such as Google Ads, and serve ads only to people within a specific geographic location, such as your town/city.

2. Develop a local SEO strategy

When creating content for your website, it’s useful to include long-tail keywords with your geographic location. Make sure your meta descriptions and keywords include location information. Include your location information on every page of your website, either in the header, footer, or elsewhere on the page. If you have more than one office location, have a separate webpage for each site and include the address and location for each. Finally, include Google maps and/or directions to your office

2. Claim Your Google My Business Listing

Google My Business (GMB) is a free, simple to use tool that allows small business owners  to increase their online visibility and promote their business information on Google Search.According to Google “Providing and updating business information in Google My Business can help your business’s local ranking on Google and enhance your presence in Search and Maps.”

GMB appears on desktop – just to the right of the organic and paid search results. If you’re on mobile, it appears as a top result before the organic results. If you haven’t set up your GMB listing, it’s time to do so. Follow these step-by-step instructions to get started right away.

Once you’ve set up your account, it’s time to optimise it. An optimised page helps Google understand more about your business: who you are, what services/products you sell, where you’re located, etc. The more Google knows about you, the more types of searches your GMB listing can appear in.

Conclusion 

Your website is pivotal to your digital marketing strategy. And with more patients than ever searching online for you via mobile devices, it’s imperative that your website is optimized for them to find you.  It takes time and resources to optimize your site to deliver the best experience possible, but if you are serious about how your business performs, you need to get serious about the performance of your website too.

 

Sign up for our mailing list to get helpful tips for growing your practice.

Further Reading: 

Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: How To Assign Admin Roles on Facebook

Welcome to this week’s social media tip. Today I want you to show you how to assign admin roles on your Facebook Page. 

Facebook allows five different administrator roles: admin, editor, moderator, advertiser and insights analyst. Each role has different capabilities.

27405598-3f14-4948-9887-fe65bb311b81

Admin can manage all aspects of the Page. They can publish and send Messenger messages as the Page, respond to and delete comments on the Page, post from Instagram to Facebook, create ads, see who created a post or comment, view insights, and assign Page roles. If an Instagram account is connected to the Page, they can respond to and delete comments, send Direct messages, sync business contact info and create ads.

Editor can publish content and send Messenger messages as the Page, respond to and delete comments on the Page, create ads, see who created a post or comment, post from Instagram to Facebook, and view insights. If an Instagram account is connected to the Page, they can respond to and delete comments, send Direct messages, sync business contact info and create ads.

Moderator can send Messenger messages as the Page, respond to and delete comments on the Page, create ads, see who created a post or comment, and view insights. If an Instagram account is connected to the Page, they can respond to Instagram comments, send Direct messages and create ads.

Advertiser can create ads, see who created a post or comment, and view insights. If an Instagram account is connected to the Page, they can create ads.

Analyst can create ads, see who created a post or comment, and view insights. If an Instagram account is connected to the Page, they can create ads.

To assign a role go to Settings on your Page, and click on Page Roles. Scroll down through the options above to choose which roles you wish to assign to your team members.

1693526a-0455-4aa9-baa9-c9bc64d55a5b

Here’s to your social media success!

Posted in #HCSM

How Social Media Can Inform Public Health Education and Outreach During COVID-19

A machine learning scan of popular social media platforms could help inform public health education and outreach during Covid-19, according to a new study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

The study measured daily changes in the frequency of topics of discussion across 94,467 COVID-19-related comments on Reddit* in March, 2020 to test the following hypotheses:

  • The pandemic has been accompanied by an “infodemic,” an overabundance of information and misinformation.
  • Public response to the pandemic and infodemic is important, but undermeasured.
  • Real-time analysis of public response could lead to earlier recognition of changing public priorities, fluctuations in wellness, and uptake of public health measures, all of which carry implications for individual- and population-level health.
*Reddit is the 19th most popular website in the world with 420 million monthly active users.

The study identified topics that fell into three categories of interest, tracking daily variations in the average prevalence of topics across all comments.

  1. response to public health measures
  2. impact on daily life
  3. sense of pandemic severity.

Results

52f4e2e4-bbe0-4b90-912b-461f135817ae

This analysis indicates that longitudinal topic modeling of Reddit content is effective in identifying patterns of public dialogue and could be used to guide targeted interventions.

Early recognition of this reality could have led to more specific information dissemination campaigns and earlier public acknowledgment of disease severity.

Questions about safely spending time outdoors peaked in mid-March, representing a missed opportunity for public guidance.

Tracking and responding proactively to common questions, such as what material is best used for a homemade mask, may minimize the spread of misinformation.

Notably missing from these Reddit topics were discussions of contact tracing, a growing area of public concern.

Stokes, D.C., Andy, A., Guntuku, S.C. et al. Public Priorities and Concerns Regarding COVID-19 in an Online Discussion Forum: Longitudinal Topic Modeling. J GEN INTERN MED (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11606-020-05889-w

Notes

Limitations of this study include that Reddit users are not representative of all segments of the population, and that Reddit data is not associated with a geographic location. Real-time monitoring of online COVID-19 dialogue holds promise for more dynamically understanding and responding to needs in public health emergencies.

Further Reading  

Infodemic investigation: Facebook is biggest source of false claims about coronavirus

NUI Galway Study Finds the Sharing of COVID-19 Misinformation linked to Social Media Overload and Trust in Online Information

Disinformation, Misinformation and Inequality-Driven Mistrust in the Time of COVID-19: Lessons Unlearned from AIDS Denialism

 

Posted in #HCSM

3 Places To Find Interesting Ideas For Your Healthcare Blog

Have you started a blog for your medical practice or healthcare facility? Are you sometimes stuck for ideas when it comes to popular health topics to write about?

I’ve put together this list of places to find topic suggestions when your well of inspiration runs dry. I turn to these places when I need a fresh injection of ideas for my own content marketing and I feel sure you will find them helpful too.

1.Buzzsumo

Buzzsumo is a useful tool to find which popular healthcare topics people are searching for on social media. These are the topics people want to read about so it’s worth brainstorming ideas around this content.

In the example below, I’ve searched for the term “mental health” and you can see it’s brought up some interesting topic ideas!

download

 

2. Keywords Everywhere

The Keywords Everywhere browser extension returns a host of long-tail phrases based on what people are searching for using specific keywords.

download

Insider Tip: The Google Keyword Planner within Adwords is another useful tool to find ideas for content based on keyword search.

3. Quora

Quora is a question and answer platform where you can either ask a question about your topic or simply do a search using your topic keyword to find what people are asking about that topic. It’s a super place for market research. Make a list of those questions which you feel you could write about.

download

You have the option to follow chosen topics in your niche. Once you do so you’ll keep seeing the ‘Top Stories’ (questions) in your Quora newsfeed. You can also check out the ‘New Questions’ option to see the latest questions. When you have written an article or blog post on the topic, go back into Quora and answer a question related to the topic. You can include a link to your post in your answer.

Insider Tip: Yahoo Answers and Reddit are also good places to do market research online.

Where do you find inspiration for your content marketing?