Early on, more than a few medical practices, providers and hospitals jumped onboard the nearest social media bandwagon because it was the trendy “thing to do.” Besides, we all know that “social media is free.” Right?
It turns out, of course, that social media can be relatively low in cost, but overall, it isn’t completely “free.” In fact, savvy business minds recognize that even low cost efforts are operating at a negative/loss if there’s no return on the investment. Having a LITTLE OUT and NOTHING IN is really a nasty hole in your wallet. (The slow-drip loss of precious resources is still a loss.)
On the other hand, the various social media (SM) options available have grown to be among the strongest marketing and growth tools for business in general and healthcare entities in particular. Depending on your goals and target audience, SM options are versatile and harbor enormous potential for telling your story and brand/business development.
Mastering the basics of social media…
Successfully generating results with social media first requires a mastery of the basic elements. There are many helpful articles available in our extensive (and free) healthcare marketing library.
If you’re new at this, or if a refresher would be helpful, click through on this sampler:
10 Commandments for Success in the Art of Social Media
Mayo Clinic Shares Secrets of Social Media Success
Your Social Media Strategy: Get Started (or Get Serious)
9 Success Keys: How to Make Your Social Media Truly Engaging
Tips and techniques beyond the basics…
Pushing beyond the core elements, the recipe for success with social media includes applying more subtle ingredients. Here are some of the tips and techniques that can help raise the bar:
Favor your audience’s social media. Twitter might be quick and easy, but of little help if your audience is gathered around Facebook.
Talk to the individual. Think of social media as a one-to-one communications channel. While you may have hundreds of followers, each is a singular touch point in the audience.
Tell don’t sell. Engagement follows authority and trust. Consider how to build rapport on elements of your credibility, authority and expertise.
Think interactive dialog. Social media gains traction when there’s a beneficial exchange of information and ideas. Inspire conversation, not monolog and participate in timely discussions.
Use your most likable voice. Notwithstanding the need to provide expert/authoritative information, present yourself with a friendly tone of voice.
Leverage the facets of your Internet presence. Think of social media tools as integrated parts of the larger online presence. Look for opportunities to cross-utilize your website, your blog, your YouTube Channel and others.
Be helpful and informative. Useful answers and solutions carry benefit and are often shared with others. Your audience wants to know “What’s in this for me?”
Connect with us right here, and let’s talk about how we can help give your social media greater traction and effectiveness.
Stewart Gandolf, MBA
Marketing a healthcare organization can be challenging - even painful if you don't approach it with the right knowledge, tools, and guidance. By reading about mistakes and lessons others have learned the hard way, you can boost your marketing effectiveness and take a shortcut to success. Discover how to avoid these "Seven Deadly Sins". Plus, join over 30,000 of your fellow healthcare providers with a free subscription to our Insight Newsletter.