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If You Build “It” They Will Come…

How often, when addressing audience building, do you hear:


“If you build it they will come”

In a recent blog post Mitch Joel addresses this along with some very good tips that can apply to hospitals (also receiving good commentary by Bryan Vartabedian, MD on his blog 33charts)


A quote from Mitch Joel that sums it up in my opinion:


“As you build your own spaces and places on the channel and platforms, always remember that the “build it and they will come” model won’t work. The best way to grow an audience and build a community is to make yourself a valuable member of the existing communities. Figure out where the dialog, conversations and feedback around your area of interest is happening and be present and accounted for there. All of the time. As much of the time.”

Here are 3 of my thoughts that support this statement:


  1. Understand what “It” is. Where do your consumers want to connect? If you want to build community around a certain service line where do those specific consumers want to receive information? Not only do platforms vary by location they can even vary by service line.
  2. What is being said about you? Before you create accounts on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, etc… Look up your facility/location on Google Places, Yahoo Local, Yelp, etc… look at the comments and reviews you are getting and how many people have marked each “helpful.” These are small conversations that are already happening. Claim you listing on these platforms first and start engaging. 
  3. Search and Listen. Use the search tools in Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube (even Google Alerts) to see what is out there on subjects you feel your facility can add value. Then spend time engaging those communities to understand what others are looking for and where you can interject. But please remember to listen and ask questions first don’t just start “selling” your services before people come to trust you.

I would love to hear how each of you identify and connect to your audiences…Thoughts?

– Reed

Author Info

Reed Smith