Coming Soon: Twitter Brand Pages

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In order to better compete with Facebook, Twitter is launching “brand pages.” Twitter describes the brand pages as an enhanced profile page that will help marketers create an even more compelling destination for their brands. To allow brands to better communicate with consumers, the brand page features:

  • Header: Large customizable image for displaying your logo, tagline or any other visuals.
  • Promotional tweets: Highlight a top tweet with an embedded photo or video at the top of your Twitter brand page. This helps disperse your most engaging and important content so you can better connect with your target audience.

Twitter brand pages and promoted tweets are free and publicly accessible.

Currently, brand pages are only available to an exclusive group of 21 companies who have teamed up with Twitter to launch the enhanced profile pages. Brand partners include @AmericanExpress, @BestBuy, @CocaCola, @JetBlue and @VerizonWireless, to name a few.

Brand pages will slowly become available to a wider audience over the next few months. So if you are already using Twitter as a marketing tool, be sure to keep an eye out for the brand pages and set one up for your business as soon as they are available!

A Complete Guide to Planning a Social Media Presence for Healthcare

The world of healthcare is inherently siloed, tethered, fragmented and prone to poor communication and collaboration. Today, healthcare workers solve their problems via traditional methods that are often costly, inefficient, nor timely. Increasingly, more savvy healthcare workers are looking outside the system to digital media and communities for answers, but are challenged with uncertainty over concepts of usefulness, practicality, bandwidth issues, “ROI” and privacy concerns.

Establishing a digital presence is rapidly becoming a necessity for healthcare professionals, medical practices, and institutions. Many have recognized this fact, yet many more have not.

At its heart, digital media is about people, it is about relationships, and it is about communication. A social media presence is about educating, engaging and growing your audience, improving outcomes, compliance and potentially the bottom line of your practice.

Human beings are innately social, health is social, health care is not social … yet.

Physicians used to enjoy the ability to get to know their patients and the stories they had to tell. The pressures brought on by fiscal, policy and political will has changed that. We knew our patients, their families, the impact their issue was having on their quality of life as well as relevant important events in our patient’s lives. There are those that believe that technology drives a wedge between the patient and the physician. Alongside the other advantages noted, I strongly argue that the proper understanding and use of digital media can aid us in recovering that relationship we once enjoyed and cherished.

According to a recent AMA study, which also cites a study by the Pew Internet Research Group, in 2011, nearly 80% of Internet users, or 60% of all adults, have searched online for health information. These empowered or engaged patients are not just using the Internet to become more educated about their orthopedic issues, but they are actively seeking advice as well as support. Currently, the source of this “advice and content comes from a few engaging providers, a few engaging institutions, but most patients are exposed to a significant amount of commercialized nonsense driven by a profit motive.

Simply put, social networking and digital technology enables individuals, physicians, hospitals, and patients to create online profiles and connect with one another. Perhaps most relevant to the orthopedic surgeon is that the majority of these patients are researching their surgeon and their respective institutions prior to their visit to your office — they are checking your online reputation, and the message or image you portray.

Read the entire article at www.KevinMD.com.

Managing Your Online Reputation

The internet is a great way to add value to your company and drive patients through your door, but it can also be a dangerous place if you are not maintaining your online reputation.

Online engagement with patients requires a great deal of thought, planning and execution. Here are some tips to help you maintain a positive online reputation:

1. Create a resourceful company website. It is important that you provide your patients and prospective patients with detailed information to help them outside of the exam room and answer any basic questions they might have.

2. Google yourself and see what patients are saying about you. Before you start interacting with patients online, listen to what they are already saying about you.

3. Develop a plan to engage with patients online. From Facebook to Yelp, make sure you are actively engaging with your followers. With social media communities, be sure to provide readers with company updates and interesting information about your field of medicine. On review sites like Yelp, it is important to keep track of the reviews people leave about you and respond to them, if necessary.

3. Monitor your online reputation. Keep track of what people are saying about you online. If patients are unhappy, be sure to respond. If patients are happy, make sure to thank them. By checking on your online reputation frequently you will be able to address negative comments quickly and efficiently.

4. Be committed and stay consistent. Keeping track of your online reputation takes a lot of work. You need to stay committed to engaging with patients and monitoring their reviews in order to preserve a positive online reputation.

Monitoring your online reputation requires a lot of time and hard work. At Goldman Marketing Group, we know that you do not always have the time to manage your reputation in addition to your already busy work schedule. So, if you need help managing your reputation, contact Goldman Marketing Group!

Why Doctors Should Embrace Social Media

Social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter, are an invaluable resource for doctors to engage with their patients. Building an online community makes it easier than ever before for doctors and patients to connect outside of the exam room.

Here are some great ways to connect with your patients in social media communities:

  • Provide patients with links to your website. But don’t just give them the link. Incorporate the link into an interesting fact or a question to get them thinking about the webpage topic.
  • Share links to other reputable websites or news sources in your medical field. This shows your patients that you are dedicated to providing them with as much helpful information as possible.
  • Invite patients to events at your practice or inform them about special pricing promotions.
  • If appropriate, respond to patients who ask you questions.
  • Have some fun with it! Be creative when you are posting on social media sites in order to really capture your patients’ attention.

Not only are social media communities a great way for doctors to provide patients with resourceful information, but they are also a great outlet for patients to share their success stories, learn about other patients’ experience and help spread your message for you.

If you are a doctor and have yet to set up your Facebook page or Twitter account, what are you waiting for? Sign up today and start strengthening your relationship with your patients! Contact Goldman Marketing Group if you have any questions about managing your social media accounts.

6 Best Practices for Modern SEO

Google’s search results aren’t what they used to be. Need proof? Just look at its results page. No longer solely comprised of traditional, organic site matches, Google now lists local maps, images, videos and social cues as well — and it’s affecting more than just what you see.

If you rely heavily on search engines for pageviews and sales, as many businesses do, Google search results will drastically affect how your customers find you. If your business needs to be seen and clicked, take into account the following six search engine tips.

1. Local SEO is taking over

There’s a good probability that a large chunk of the Google searches you perform will display Google Places listings – and consumers are taking notice. SEO software firm SEOmoz did some eye-tracking case studies on Google’s SERP (search engine results page). The results show that users heavily gravitate toward any of Places’ listings, whether they’re mixed into organic lists, concentrated in a group of seven or even listed in the middle of the results page. The heat map above shows the activity around a Google search for “pizza.”

If your business relies on local listings, concentrate on scoring a seat at Google Places. You can do this by using:

  • Citations: Ensure that your correct business information is listed in as many (reputable) sources as possible around the Internet. As always, consistency is king. If you write “Blvd.” instead of Boulevard on your Google Places page, make sure your other listings reflect the same.
  • Google Places page optimization: Just like your website, make sure your Places page is properly optimized. Include categories that match exactly, and point your Places page back to a city-specific landing page if applicable.
  • Reviews: Google will only display reviews from Google, but getting reviews from aggregators like Yelp, Superpages or Trip Advisor will help increase your presence.

2. You Can’t Have Search Without Social

The separation of search and social has officially ended. Social cues such as Twitter shares, Facebook likes and social bookmarking heavily influence search rankings. Essentially, search results are personalized for each person. With any SEO campaign you put into motion, include a social aspect to it to facilitate information sharing.

3. Think of People, not Robots, When Optimizing Keywords

People search in Google because they have a question. Anticipate those questions — whether about the best style of yoga pants or where to get the lowest mortgage rate. Your keywords and the content on your pages should reflect the answers to those questions. Keyword research is tedious, but it’s arguably the most important aspect of SEO. Transition away from thinking of keywords like data, and put more of an emphasis on the person who will be typing in that keyword.

4. Content Links Are King — Good Writers Are Sorcerers

Google is not stupid — it can spot paid and spam links. For the most effective long-term SEO strategy, move the focus back to great content, both on your website and across other sites. Guest blogging is great, for instance, but to get a leg up on your competition, target blogs that aren’t direct matches to your industry.

For example, a client of my company sells golf carts, so we wrote a blog post about the most tricked-out golf carts for tailgates, and the link we got back was one their competitors didn’t already have.

5. Check your Backend: Schema.org, Microformats and Rich Snippets

The Big Three (Google, Yahoo and Bing) have worked together to develop Schema.org, a set of website standards that will tell search engines what your site is about, making it easier for those engines to read the site’s data and index accordingly.

By using rich snippets, for example, you’re able to tell Google what information to feature in SERPs: product reviews and prices, upcoming events, recipe cooking times, etc. The added data will increase your click-through rate because users are able to preview more about the link before they commit to the click.

6. It Doesn’t Mean Anything Without Data

Whether you’re a one-man SEO show for your company or working in an agency with several clients, your site needs to see results. While ranking reports of keywords is still a great indicator of progress, personalized searches make it difficult to get the most accurate readings. Plus, when Google defaulted to private searches for users signed into their Google accounts, the company made it harder to track how people arrive at your site.

Start relying more on simple key performance indicators (KPIs) to show results, for instance, the number of landing pages you have, the bounce rate of those pages, and the number of keywords driving traffic to each of those landing pages. Google Analytics displays all of this data.

What are some other things you see that are affecting searches, and what are you doing to improve your rankings in these areas?

Next, read The Power of YouTube.

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