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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Boomers, social media and healthcare marketing

More than 60% of boomers consume and contribute to social technologies like blogs, social networks, microblogging, podcasts and online videos, according to a recent report from Forrester. This is up from roughly 40% a year ago. The implications for healthcare marketers are clear – either integrate social into your marketing efforts or risk becoming irrelevant. 
Here are some tips on getting started:
• understand the different segments of boomers in terms of how they use social technologies, e.g. their interests, goals, benefits and rituals (here's an introduction from the book Groundswell)
• confirm and prioritize your business and social media objectives
• identify your priority stakeholder groups based on your objectives
• develop your social media platform, e.g. is it education, empowerment or both
• determine the social media strategies that make sense to reach your stakeholders, e.g. content and conversations, types of channels and promotion activities
• determine the roles and responsibilities of those who will be driving and influencing your efforts, e.g. researching and developing content, providing videos, ongoing execution, conducting analysis, implementing refinements, etc. 
• clarify and develop your corporate social media policies
Importantly, it takes time to ramp up with social media. It takes time to engage people, to draw them into conversations, to build credibility and relationships. But the wonderful thing about social media is that you can take baby steps. Steps that are extremely efficient and that allow you to learn and quickly adjust as you go. 


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