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How to build an authentic patient experience through social media

There’s no doubt that technology has made us more connected.

Because we’re more connected what we say and do is shared more then ever.

As we begin 2016, we all need to be mindful about delivering a consistent, authentic patient experience both on and off line. That means allocating time and resources to earn the trust of patients and build a practice that’s worth being connected to.

content-marketing-healthcareIn order to build deeper relationships with patients, you have to do what you say and genuinely show that you care. In this experience driven economy, we must go beyond simply providing services and create memorable moments. 

So what can you do to build an authentic online patient experience?

Develop useful, informative content

Today content marketing typically means producing a lot content for the purpose of helping your website rank better on search results.  Keep in mind that it’s not just about the volume of content you produce but, more importantly, the experience patients have with you and your brand. 

Developing content that is meaningful, educational and defines areas of specialization not only builds credibility, but fills a need for patients. Your content, whether that’s the words on your website, articles on your blog or enewsletter, posts on social media or your presence at a local event— has to be part of a seamless experience across channels and mediums. This should all be part of a marketing strategy that’s working toward building a authentic positive patient experience with your brand.

Develop content that is engaging and shareable

Look at how patients are engaging with you today. That may include calls coming in to the office on your nurse triage line,  pre and post op information shared for a procedure, feedback that you gain from patients or compiled outcomes data that is shared with hospitals and or payors.  Use these as valuable pieces of content to drive engagement and shared on social media or your website. These may include:

  • Creating short shareable videos in a question and answer format. Upload them to YouTube and embed then embed them on your website and social media.
  • Developing a symptom checker or assessment tool for your website
  • Compiling and charting your outcomes data
  • Hosting an online event such as a webinar. Save the recording and redistribute it on your website and social media
  • Follow up with those who post a question to your Facebook page
  • Building a knowledgebase. Creating blog articles that demonstrate that you are an authority on a topic builds confidence.
  • Adding convenient, but secure, tools to your website for requesting an appointment, completing patient forms or paying a bill.

Encourage open feedback

As out-of-pocket costs for health care increase, patients are increasingly shopping for their medical care and comparing reviews.  Collecting patient feedback but not sharing it outside the organization could be a missed opportunity.

Using patient satisfaction surveys, asking for patient feedback or reviews and then pushing those positive comments back out to the ratings sites allows the newest positive comments to display ahead of older negative reviews.  

Content will always be extremely important

When building your content strategy, you must have the entire cross-channel experience in mind to effectively and authentically engage with your audience.