Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: Embrace Long-Form Content

Welcome to this week’s quick social media tip. Today I want you to think about how you can add more long-form content to your content marketing strategy.

It seems ironic, but even with the popularity of video and expiring content, there also exists an appetite for longer, more in-depth content.

serpIQ did a study of the average length of the content in the top 10 results of search queries. The company found that the top-rated posts usually were over 2,000 words.

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Long-form content also gives you an SEO edge. Put simply, search engines are built to serve people the best content, from credible sources, that answers users’ questions. Google has made it explicitly clear that it now prioritizes longer, informative posts over short ones that exist only to sell a product.

Try writing posts that are 1000 to 2000 plus words. Make them a resource type post that people will want to link to when they are writing their posts.

This tactic is no short-cut to success. To write a comprehensive, long-form piece of content with practical application that people want to share and link to takes a lot of research and time.

You won’t write this sort of content every day, but if you plan to make 2019 the year you will produce just one piece of stand-out content, I promise you will look back at the end of the year and feel you’ve really achieved something worth the effort.

Here’s to your social media success!

 

Posted in #HCSM

Study Uncovers Motivations Behind #BreastCancer Conversations on Twitter

In the era of big data, the presence of cancer in social media is undeniable. 

Last October at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2018 Congress, a group of researchers from Spain presented findings on how Twiter users talk about breast cancer on the social media platform.

Study author Dr. Rodrigo Sánchez-Bayona of Clinica Universidad de Navarra in Pamplona, Spain, said: “Many of the patients we see in daily practice use social media to search for information about their disease, so, as care providers, we wanted to know what kind of content they find there. At the same time, the sheer volume of posts on Twitter represents a rich pool of data we can use to assess attitudes and discourses surrounding cancer.”

Twitter is one of the biggest networks worldwide, therefore, it establishes an enormous real-world data field of interest when studying health issues.

The study involved analyzing all tweets posted with the hashtag #BreastCancer over a 7-day period, grouped into four subthemes: diagnosis, treatment, prognosis and prevention.

The data collected included 3,703 original tweets and 2,638 retweets.

The most frequent motive was patients sharing their experiences, followed closely by patient advocacy. The most common subtheme by far was prevention (44.5% of tweets)

“When examining the original tweets, we found that only one in three had medical content,” said Sánchez-Bayona. “However, 90% of this medical information was appropriate, which is likely owed to the fact that 40% of tweets came from institutions and public accounts.”

Classification of Tweets

A total of 1,137 tweets (30.7%) contained content relating to a patient’s experience, while 96 tweets (2.6%) contained an experience from the perspective of a relative of a patient.

Sixty percent of tweets came from private accounts, while 40% came from institutions or public accounts.

The aims of tweets included scientific (17.3%), advertising (15.8%), fundraising (8.3%), and patient advocacy (25.3%).

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Description of tweets (%) containing #BreastCancer in a 7-day period

Leveraging A New Social Media Reality

Commenting on the study, Marina Garassino, MD, of Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori in Milan, noted the presence of patients in large numbers on Twitter. “We should take that as corroboration of a new reality,” she said.

Patients now use the web to find information, and social media must be an integral part of our communication with them. Academic institutions and key opinion leaders need to be even more active in spreading their findings through these channels to counteract the many ‘fake news’ circulating online.

Dr. Evandro de Azambuja, ESMO Executive Board member, further commented: “Healthcare professionals and organisations really need to use appropriate social media as a way of sharing relevant information – both between them and with patients – because that is where it has the potential to be picked up fastest and most broadly.”

When it comes to bringing the best evidence available in cancer research to the attention of as many people as possible, this platform is as powerful a tool as it gets.

Conclusions

The authors noted that this was part of a larger study on discussion of diseases more generally on social media, in which they found that cancer was the most mentioned pathology on Twitter around the world.

The results of the study may be useful in assisting advocacy organisations to provide information about resources, support and raise awareness.

In particular, advocacy organizations can draw on them to create relevant medical content and counseling about cancer that will be more accessible to patients already using Twitter for information and support.

 

Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: How To Leverage A Cultural Trend

Welcome to this week’s quick social media tip. Today I want you to think about how you can tap into cultural trends to create “in-the-moment” marketing. 

Tapping into cultural trends is all about marketing in the moment. This works because people are most interested in “what’s happening now.”

Ellen DeGeneres’s 2014 Oscar selfie, retweeted by more than 2.9 million Twitter users fits the scenario of leveraging a cultural trend — the word selfie was crowned Oxford Dictionaries’ Word of the Year in 2013.

Similarly, the #nomakeupselfie campaign, in which women posted pictures of themselves without make-up in order to raise money for cancer research, tapped into the selfie trend. The campaign raised (Stg)£8 million for Cancer Research UK in its first week alone. This campaign wasn’t even the charity’s idea. The organization leveraged a cultural trend that was already sweeping the Internet.

While the Oscar selfie took us by surprise, there are other trends which are more predictable, for example, major sporting events like the Super Bowl in the US, or the World Cup.

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Twitter is an obvious place to check what’s trending on a daily basis, but you could also try one of the following tools too:

  • Google Trends — filter your search by country, topic, category, specific topic, content type, and more;
  • Buzzfeed — its trending section is perfect for searching for hot topics;
  • Buzzsumo — search for the most shared web content on a specific topic;
  • Reddit — aggregates trending content from all over the internet and shows the hottest (most upvoted) topics on the main page.

Your homework for today – find one trending topic and think about how you can leverage it to create engaging content relevant to your own audience.

Here’s to your social media success!

 

Posted in #HCSM

15 Key Reputation Management Facts You Should Know In 2019 [Video]

Your reputation is one of your most valuable business assets in today’s digitally driven world.

Social media has an increasingly important role to play in maintaining an 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.

One-third of health consumers use social media sites to research health information, track and share symptoms and vocalize how they feel about their doctors, drugs, treatment plans, insurance, and medical devices. Many say their choice of a specific doctor, hospital or medical treatment is influenced by social media.

And with the advent of patient review sites, and online discussion forums, you risk leaving your brand reputation in the hands of others.

Don’t think because you don’t appear online doesn’t mean you aren’t being talked about.

The fact is that patients are talking about you online whether you are there or not!

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.

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.

A successful social media presence hinges on the trust between you and your followers.

A study compiled by Demi & Cooper Advertising and DC Interactive Group shows that more than 90% of people ages 18-24 said they would trust health information they found on social media channels.

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.

You might also like to read 

Do Online Health Seekers Trust Social Media? Surprising Results From A New Survey

Reputation Management for Doctors

Click, like, retweet: healthcare reputation online

Posted in #HCSM, Infographics

5 Digital Trends You Need To Know To Stay Ahead Of The Medical Marketing Curve In 2019 [Infographic]

To succeed on social media, it’s essential to stay ahead of the curve and understand the latest social media trends.

I’ve just published my annual social media marketing predictions for 2019. In it I’ve identified 14 major trends that should claim marketers’ focus in the new year.

It’s a lengthy post but if you’re serious about marketing your medical practice online in 2019, I highly recommend you take some time to read it over the coming days.

Below I’ve highlighted five of these trends which I think will have particular relevance to medical marketing.

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Social media is continually evolving. Every year, everything from algorithm updates to emerging trends shapes and informs the myriad ways we interact online. As you plan your social media marketing for the coming year, consider how you can implement some or all of these trends in your own online strategy.

Final Thoughts

No matter how you approach your marketing efforts to take advantage of the digital marketing trends coming in 2019, never lose sight of the fact that in healthcare your reputation as a credible, and trusted source is paramount.

 

Posted in #HCSM, Twitter

The 5 Stages of Twitter Adoption

It’s no secret that I’m still crazy in love with Twitter even after spending close to a decade on the platform.

I’ve met so many incredible people on Twitter – some of whom have become friends in real life.

I’ve been invited to speak at conferences around the globe.

I’ve never been so strategically connected.

And all because of Twitter.

And yet I still meet people who tell me they just don’t get Twitter.  They say it’s just a place to post what you ate for breakfast, or lunch, or.. well you get the picture.

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But here’s the thing about Twitter that not everyone realizes, you build your own experience to suit your interests and needs.

Twitter is the frame, not the picture, what’s inside is largely up to you.

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I can hardly remember back to the first tweet I sent, but I do remember that there were several stages in my evolution to becoming a Twitter devotee.

And it turns out most people who first join Twitter go through some, if not all, of these stages.

So here’s a fun infographic I created outlining the five most common stages of Twitter adoption.

5 Stages of A Twitter User (4)

 

I’d love to hear from you. Are you a Twitter user? Where do you fall on this adoption curve?

 

Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: Do These 4 Things Before You Post To Social Media

Welcome to this week’s social media tip. Today I want you to think about how you can do more than just add to the online chatter.

Here are four questions to ask yourself before you post to your social media channels.

1. Is this post valuable to my social media followers?

Ask yourself why your followers (and not just you, personally) would find the content to be valuable.

Better still, ask your audience.

Go right to your audience and ask them what kind of content they’d like to see from you. You can create quick polls on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or go deeper with a survey. Survey MonkeyPolldaddy and Google’s own survey forms are all simple tools of the trade which have been around for ages and they still work really well.

Recommended Reading7 Places To Discover What Your Audience Wants To Read (So You Can Write It For Them!)

2. Which channel is best suited for this post?

Now that you are certain the information adds value,  it’s time to decide which channel would be best suited to convey this message.

If you have already created a mission statement for each of your brand’s social media profiles, this step is easy: just see which channel’s mission statement best describes the post.

Recommended ReadingHow To Create A Social Media Mission Statement For Your Healthcare Business

3. Is this post optimized for the social network I’ve selected?

While the quality of your content is a key factor for successful social sharing, how you present your information is also very important.

Study after study confirms that how you create and share content matters — with visual content leading the way. According to research by Kissmetrics, photos get 53% more likes, 104% more comments and 84% more click-throughs on links than text-based posts.

Obviously, if you’re sharing on a visual channel, like Instagram, you’ll want to add high-quality visuals, but consider adding visuals also to more text-based channels like Twitter. Tweets with photos give a boost to engagement rates. 

Pro Tip: You can easily create your own images with drag-and-drop tools, like Canva and Ribbet.  They will also automatically create the right sizes for your Facebook page, so you don’t need to worry about it.

Recommended Reading10 Places To Find The Best Free Images For Your Healthcare Marketing

Other things to consider when it comes to optimizing your posts are using the correct hashtags and creating an impactful headline.

Recommended Reading: 50 Power Words To Super Charge Your Content Marketing

4. Am I posting this at the best time?

To optimize your engagement and reach, you want to share content when your audience is online. If you search for optimal posting times, you will find many guides online. You can follow these recommendations as a starting point, but it’s best to do your own testing to see which days and times work best for your own audience.

Once you’ve determined the right posting times for each social channel, schedule your posts to hit those times. Use a scheduling tool like Buffer or Hootsuite.

Recommended ReadingHow To Better Manage Social Media With Hootsuite

Putting it all together

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I’ve been sharing this graphic for the past three years from Hootsuite and I still love it. The questions above are based on this flowchart. Keep it close to you and refer to it often.

Here’s to your social media success!

 

Posted in #HCSM

How to Care for the Millennial Patient

Millennials (aged 20-35) are often called the “C” generation, “C” standing for “connected.” They are the first generation to be born in today’s digital environment where they’ve had 24/7 access to streams of information and constant connection via technology.   Along with this shift in demographics comes changes in experiences, attitudes, and expectations, all of which have implications for health care providers.

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2012 study from ZocDoc and Harris Interactive found that 51 percent of millennials surveyed visit a physician less than once per year. They believe seeing a doctor is too much of a “pain.”  According to a Salesforce’s State of the Connected Patient report, millennials are generally frustrated with filling out repetitive forms, and the time wasted waiting in a doctor’s waiting room.  Seeing a doctor is an unwieldy, expensive and unwelcome errand.

Understand that millennials are heavily invested in technology, and then get your own technology in order.

In contrast to authority-driven customer communication modes, nearly half of all millennials want their healthcare experience to feel more accessible and engaging.  While millennials have different and sometimes non-existent relationships with their doctors, they believe digital health has the potential to change that.

Digital healthcare that gives a greater sense of control is of great value to millennials.  Commonly cited examples of digital health include health tracking devices like Fitbit, self-diagnosing websites like WebMD, and apps that make it easier to make appointments, order medication, store individual health data, and recommend preventative health measures.

Millennials Turn Online For Health Information

Millennials are driven by information. It is how they make buying decisions and decisions about their own health.  Unlike previous generations, millennials don’t rely on a strong relationship with their doctor.  They are mistrustful of authority (in a study conducted by Greyhealth Group and Kantar Health, only 58 percent of millennials said they trust their doctors), preferring to google their symptoms and self-diagnose prior to scheduling a doctor’s appointment

Compared to any other generation, they default to — and prefer — information corroborated by multiple channels and influencers. In fact, before even meeting with a healthcare professional, 54% of Millennials have consulted as many as seven information sources for purposes of self-diagnosis from blogs to medical message boards, ratings and reviews and more.

Become The Trusted Online Source

Making a practice accessible online is essential to attract millennial patients.

Take a look at how you deliver information to your patients, as well as how you offer appointment scheduling.  Millennials want health information to be readily available and easily understandable.

Review your website. Weed out any industry jargon and hard-to-digest information.  Make forms available on your site so patients can fill them out ahead of time online.

Embrace social media and content marketing. Create and share high-quality content that provides engaging, important information about self-care.

While millennials are glued to their smartphones, few actually use the device to make a call –  so use more email and automated text messaging (a 2014 Gallup poll shows that 68% of people ages 18-29 utilize text messaging)  to communicate. with them.

Embracing The Future of Healthcare

Millennials are the first of a technologically-savvy generation of health seekers – closely followed by Generation Z (born between 1995 and 2010).  Embracing the future of healthcare means embracing communication channels that reflect millennials’ wants and expectations.  Regardless of specialty, ensuring your practice offers the accommodations younger patients seek out should become a higher priority in 2019.

Further Reading

Posted in #HCSM

How To Create A YouTube Channel for Your Medical Practice

Earlier this year I wrote a post about the missed opportunity in healthcare to use YouTube as a patient education tool.

As a form of patient education and health promotion, YouTube has great potential but currently, it’s not being used to its full potential.

Aside from patient education, YouTube is a significant addition to your marketing toolkit. Owned by Google, it’s the second largest search engine in the world with added SEO potential due to its Google connection.

YouTube At A Glance

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If you don’t already have a YouTube channel for your practice, perhaps now is the time to consider it.

A Step By Step Guide To Creating Your YouTube Channel

Follow these simple steps and you will have your own YouTube channel up running and ready to reap rewards.

Step #1 You’ll need a Google account to sign-in to YouTube

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Step #2 Next click on “My Channel”

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Step #3 Now add your business name or your own name 

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Step #4 Create a title for your channel

Your channel title should be descriptive and briefly tell viewers what your channel is about.

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Step #5 Select Customize Channel to fill in more details 

Add a link to your website and a description of your practice.  Adding your location to your YouTube videos will make them geographically searchable,

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Step #6 Add a thumbnail image (e.g your logo) and banner (channel art)

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I  recommend you use the same picture across all online media: Facebook, Twitter, website, YouTube, etc. Aligning your video branding with that of your business creates a consistent experience for your audience. When existing and potential customers visit your YouTube channel, they need to feel that it is part of a greater whole.

The recommended size for channel art is 2560 px by 1440 px.

Pro Tip: Canva can help you create correctly-sized thumbnail and channel art.

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Step #7 Connect your social media accounts

Add in your social media accounts.

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These can be overlayed on your banner image.

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As you can see it’s super simple to set up your own YouTube channel. In my next post, I’ll show you how to upload your first video and optimize it for viewing. 


Subscribe to my YouTube channel here. I’ll be uploading new videos in 2019

Posted in #HCSM, Thursday Tip

#ThursdayTip: How To Create Content With Emotional Resonance

Welcome to this week’s social media tip. Today I want you to think about how you can create emotional resonance through your content marketing.

The word “emotion” is a combination of the prefix e-, meaning “away,” and the Latin word movere, meaning “to move.” In this sense, emotions break us away from our standstills, moving us in new directions and prompting us to take action.

Numerous studies have found emotional arousal plays a key role in driving social sharing. In 2012, researchers Jonah Berger and Katherine Milkman published research based on an analysis of 7,000 articles from the New York Times to see which types of articles were most shared by email.

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The results indicate that virality is partially driven by physiological arousal.

“Content that evokes high-arousal positive (awe) or negative (anger or anxiety) emotions is more viral. Content that evokes low-arousal, or deactivating, emotions (e.g., sadness) is less viral.” — What Makes Online Content Viral?

The Harvard Business Review released research in 2016 which showed that creating a powerful emotional experience increases the chances of going viral. The research, based on an analysis by Frac.tl of the top 100 images of the year from imgur.com, as voted on Reddit.com, found:

  • A significant correlation between content views and positive feelings (specifically joy, interest, anticipation, and trust).
  • Negative emotions were less commonly found in highly viral content than positive emotions, but viral success was still possible when negative emotion also evoked anticipation and surprise.
  • The emotion of admiration was very commonly found in highly shared content, an unexpected result.
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Heatmap of the aggregate emotional data, representing the totals compiled (HBR)

One way to create emotional resonance is to tell a heartwarming story.

Effective stories inspire people by creating human connection and emotional resonance. In 2015, an article about a husband and wife celebrating 82 years of marriage, topped USA Today’s most shared content. Not only was the story uplifting and inspirational, but it also shared insights on reaching over 100 years of age (if you’re interested — the couple describes a healthy diet and frequent naps as the secret to growing old).

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Marie Yoland Eveillard speaks with her father Duranord Veillard, who will celebrate his 108th birthday on Saturday, and mother Jeanne Veillard, who turns 105 in May. The couple got married in Haiti in 1932. Tania Savayan/The Journal News

Once you understand how to strike the right emotional chords with your message, you can greatly increase your chance of getting your content widely shared.

Here’s to your social media success!