Physician Practice Marketing in the Age of Digital Media

As with traditional marketing, digital marketing also relies heavily on knowing who your target market is.   So in today’s marketing environment, who is the target patient for a physician practice?

The explosion of mobile, social networking and all the other digital forms of communications have ushered is into a world of constant connectivity that offers more selection, more information, and more options. So, how do you ensure your patients are receiving the correct healthcare information?  You access the markets and platforms where your patients are.  Today is the era of participatory health. Today is the era of the E-Patient.   Defined by Nicole Ziady as “e-patients are health consumers who use the web to find information about certain medical conditions, e-patients are starving for information.

According to A Pew Research report, 47% of adults have used the internet to get information about doctors or other health care professionals.  Additionally, 41% of adults have read someone else commentary or experience about health or medical issues on an online new group or blog.  These numbers are clearly important.  Our patients are now educated, equipped, empowered and experts in their own healthcare.  Let’s face it, today is a world of “participatory health.”  Patients research their own symptoms and then report back to their physicians.

Marketing is shifting from the traditional method of promoting yourself, your services, and your products. Instead, digital marketing is becoming more about educating your patients with the correct healthcare information.  Did you know that 14% of people trust advertisements, while 78% of people trust what others say?  Why not write down the answer to that question you received 40 times today in your 7 minute patient visits?  Post it on a blog that links to your website.  Those e – patients will listen.  They will follow and they will be happy.  Positive patients = positive things said about your services = more prospective patients will listen and follow = positive return on investment.

Isn’t that what we all want?

 

 

Balance

Finding balance in my life is difficult. Someone once told me that he thought people spend the majority of time working towards a goal and nurturing the area of their life where they feel the weakest.  Whether true or not, building a business has required the majority of my time over the last three years.  So – I decided to work on finding that balance.

Last week, I took 5 children to Universal Studios in Orlando for Spring Break….by myself!  As I always try to give 100% of myself to everything I do, I am often very critical of myself in the areas I am falling down.    When there are three distinct rings in your life that you want to give all your effort to, I think this is easy to do.

While we were in Orlando, I had another deadline to meet for work.  I had a Webinar to do when I returned on Digital Media and Healthcare.  Luckily, my children and their friends are all old enough, that I was able to spend some time with them in the parks, then return to the hotel room in the afternoons and work on the presentation.

As I was preparing for the Webinar, my thoughts drifted to the question is Digital Media really that great?  Of course, I love it – I am a gadget guru.  However, before cell phones, before laptops, before e-faxes, smartphones, and skype – when you went on a vacation…you were truly on a vacation.  Today  information is always at your fingertips.  My office phone even rings my cell phone when I am not physically sitting at my desk.  My Iphone delivers emails, faxes and texts almost immediately.  I doubt my children even know what an encyclopedia is.  They just “Google” the answers to their research projects.

Digital Media has made it difficult for me to find that balance.  Work is always with me.  Is this a problem for you?  What are your thoughts?

A Three Ring Circus

I am Elizabeth Yarbrough. Welcome to my blog.

As an analogy, I compared my life to a circus one time. As I looked around the room at those curious glances, I kind of laughed to myself. “My life has three distinct rings to it,” I said. “ and “they are all intertwined.”

I have myself as an individual in ring one. The introvert who wakes up at 5:30 every morning to the quiet calm of an old Greenville house. The one who would rather read a book and learn about the world than socially engage and talk about randomness. The one who loves to hear the birds chirp in the Spring and watch the sun rise in the summer. I treasure those moments before dawn – the peaceful, tranquility of the day. That’s me, that’s the one.

The next ring in my life is my role as a wife and mother of three. Three kids? Who would have ever thought? I didn’t even like babysitting, my mother recalled one day! Seriously, this is a part of my life I always dreamed of having. A 15 year old boy, a 13 year old girl and an 11 year old boy. A husband of 18 years. Hormones are raging, technology is blooming, telephones are ringing and schedules are crazy. Sometimes between the hours of 6 am and 9 pm – I am the minivan mom, running here, there and yonder. It is utter chaos. It is confusion. It is awesome.

In ring three is my life I am here to discuss. It is my life as an entreprenuer. I am a Business Woman, and a professional lady. For the last several years of my life, I have been in the trenches, studying, learning and working on web. With that, I challenged myself to understand, focus and connect with the healthcare industry, Healthcare and Web – that’s where I am, that’s where I am focused, and that’s where I can help you. More about that later.

So would I be the high rope walker balancing every step of the way as I walk through life? Or would I be the juggler, juggling everything that comes to me at that given moment? No, I think not. I am proactive. I am a thinker, a manger and a doer. I am the Master of Ceremonies. Welcome, Welcome – let the circus begin!