Why The President Is a Better Social Media Marketer Than You

By Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer

Two days after the State of the Union address, the President was answering questions via social media in a “Fireside Hangout.” (The “fireside” name taps into the legacy of the Franklin Roosevelt presidential Fireside Chats on the radio between 1933 and 1944.) And just last week, the First Lady discussed her Let’s Move initiative about healthy kids in her own Fireside Hangout.

Google Hangout is a free video chat service. It’s a widely available—but often under utilized—platform that hospitals, providers and healthcare marketing executives can use to increase and extend online visibility. Use it for face-to-face chat, hosting virtual meetings, and broadcasting to a large audience. Here’s a bit more background…

No stranger to the connectivity of social media, this was the second post-State of the Union broadcast from the White House using Google’s Hangout. And if you turn back the calendar a few pages to last year’s campaign months, both the incumbent and the challenger were deep into social media platforms. Pick one…in 2012, both candidates were actively using Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and Spotify to reach voters in big numbers online. You’d have to call them world-class social media users.

The best part is that you don’t need to be running a national campaign to put Google Hangout to work in your healthcare marketing plan, to communicate with a specific audience, or to support a particular program, topic or health initiative. You can use it for external or internal audiences.

Hangouts are oriented to face-to-face-to-face video chats with up to ten participants. But you can stream your hangout publicly via Google+, your YouTube channel and your website. As a bonus, “Every Hangout On Air is automatically saved to your YouTube account” advises Google, making it easily accessible and available for further sharing.

Not to be outdone by the President, you can get acquainted with Google Hangout as a healthcare social media tool with this introductory page and video.

Are you using Google Hangout? We’d like to hear from you about how this video chat has been working for your hospital or medical practice. Drop us a note or post a comment below.

Lonnie Hirsch

Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer at Healthcare Success
Stewart Gandolf, MBA, is Chief Executive Officer of Healthcare Success, one of the nation's leading healthcare and digital marketing agencies. Over the past 20 years, Stewart has marketed and consulted for over 1,000 healthcare clients, ranging from practices and hospitals to multi-billion dollar corporations. A frequent speaker, Stewart has shared his expertise at over 200 venues nationwide. As an author and expert resource, Stewart has also written for many leading industry publications, including the 21,000 subscriber Healthcare Success Insight blog. Stewart also co-authored, "Cash-Pay Healthcare: Start, Grow & Perfect Your Cash-Pay Healthcare Business." Stewart began his career with leading advertising agencies, including J. Walter Thompson, where he marketed Fortune 500 clients such as Wells Fargo and Bally's Total Fitness.

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