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It’s 2014 and all I have to show for it is this Facebook Page

What do you think of when someone says “social media strategy?” Do you have one? Are you being held accountable for your plan? How so?

From what I am seeing most healthcare organizations see social media as a campaign. What are we going to do on Facebook during this period of time, or event. We need to start looking at social as a business channel and identifying how it fits within the larger digital strategy.

Start by answering these questions:

  1. How are we using social media to build community? How are we measuring community?
  2. How are we using social media to increase engagement? How are we measuring engagement?
  3. How are we using social media to acquire new patients? How are we measuring patient acquisition?

I would challenge you to think more about the return you are getting from your efforts on social. How are you determining the efforts you are placing there are worth it, and what are your key metrics?

There are three types of measures:

  • Volume (followers, fans, etc)
  • Engagement (shares, comments, etc)
  • Financial (patient acquisition)

So how do you measure your financial impact from social? 

This might seem basic or understood – but – do you have a way for digital consumers to become patients? This could online casinos be a call center, make an appointment app, etc. You must have some way to capture information and be able to show where the consumer came from.

A great place to start to understand the flow of your social visitors is to look in Google Analytics. Under the acquisition tab expand the social category and you will see “visitor flow.” It will look something like this:


Looking at this flow chat will give you an idea of those who enter you website or blog from social properties. This will allow for two things:

  1. You can now welcome a specific audience
  2. You can now track who they are – and get credit

If you know who they are and where they are coming from then build specific landing pages. What I mean by this is look at what users from Yelp are doing on your site, where they enter and exit. Build a page to welcome them. Give them what they want. Then if they take action on this page you can assign ROI to this particular group. Once you do this for the main social channels you can start being more purposeful of how you engage users on this properties.

I look forward to 2014 being a year where we are more specific and purposeful with social.

How has your mindset changed about social over the past few years?

Author Info

Reed Smith