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14
Aug 2015

Facebook Updates and Opportunities to Expand Reach

Facebook’s most recent algorithm update is another step in the direction of better understanding how users interact with the platform, while continuously assessing user preferences.

The update is intended to improve user experiences by considerably reducing the reach of organic posts that appear too promotional in users’ News Feeds. After surveying hundreds of thousands of users, Facebook determined these traits as too promotional:

  • Posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app
  • Posts that push people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
  • Posts that reuse the exact same content from ads

What does this mean for the healthcare industry?

Meaning depends on how healthcare focused organizations view audiences and  what they intend to accomplish through a defined Facebook marketing strategy. Consider these points:

A range of healthcare organizations are playing an ever increasing role in the proactive health and well-being of the communities they serve, which requires a great deal of trust from a wide range of audiences. This trust lies in how they help sustain overall well-being and then care for both routine and complex healthcare, if needed. Based on system capabilities, clinical staff or support personnel expertise and brand promise of the organization, these strengths will win customer loyalty and increase lifetime value.

A significant part of that trust comes from real world personal experiences and interactions – more and more often communicated across social media in real time. Be sure as you set high standards to engage your communities, apply the same principles to engage your social media audiences.

While important to highlight short term classes and events, remember that true long term engagement is what will drive long term success.

Be a Community, Not a Broadcast Channel

Winning the trust and subsequent power of word-of-mouth doesn’t come from aggressively pushing a barrage of sales tactics into users’ News Feeds, nor does it come from one-sided conversations about what your organization can offer. Instead, users want to be part of an engaged community of support, through:

  • Informational and engaging content
  • Insightful articles and content
  • Short, concise messaging with a related photo

This type of engagement can better capture users’ attention and inspire them to share it amongst their network, which serves to expand your brand’s reach and influence. Sharing proactive health topics and resources can be an untapped, yet exceptionally strong, point of differentiation. One of our clients, Piedmont Healthcare, shows incredible reach with custom content through their Living Better communications. AVID Design built a dynamic category presentation of topics for easier search and share. This ease of sharing on social media provides an opportunity to serve communities beyond geographic boundaries for the improved health and wellness of a much more global community.

AVID Design offers full-scale written and visual communication services for hospitals and healthcare systems, including Content Management Systems, SharePointWeb DesignSEO and PPC, Content Development and AssessmentOnline VideoAnalytics and Measurementand more. 

Justin Small | Digital Marketing Specialist | AVID Design

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06
May 2015

AVID Design Attends Annual NACCDO/PAN Conference

AVID Design is thrilled to be participating in this year’s annual NACCDO/PAN Conference (National Association of Cancer Center Development Officers / Public Affairs Network), taking place May 5 – May 8, 2015, and hosted by the Yale Cancer Center at Yale University.

Throughout the week, AVID will be engaged in discussions with other creative and likeminded marketing, public affairs and development professionals. We’re excited at the opportunity to meet with and network amongst industry experts from around the country to constructively exchange ideas on a wide variety of topics. Some of these topics include industry best practices, innovative marketing strategies and methods, and creative, real-world solutions to the industry’s common pain points.

The event will feature seminar speakers during the course of the week who are also top-tier professionals from across a multitude of disciplines, such as media relations and marketers from some of the largest and most successful hospital systems, individual media relations and marketing firms, philanthropists and health writers from prominent publications.

AVID Design developed the NACCDO/PAN mobile app, available to download for Android and iPhone users. The app includes the conference’s agenda along with descriptions of the events and a short bio of each guest speaker. The app also offers a survey for you to provide feedback on each event to help improve the experience for next year.

AVID will be covering the event on Facebook, Twitter (@AVIDDesign) and LinkedIn using the official hashtag, #NACCDOPAN. Be on the lookout for some very interesting, informative and entertaining updates!

AVID Design offers full-scale written and visual communication services for hospitals and healthcare systems, including Content Management Systems, SharePointWeb DesignSEO and PPC, Content Development and AssessmentOnline VideoAnalytics and Measurementand more. 

Justin Small | Digital Marketing Specialist | AVID Design

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05
May 2015

Google’s Latest Update: Mobile-Friendly Pages, Now More Heavily Promoted

Google recently rolled out another algorithm update that is essential to recognize if mobile-users happen to represent a significant portion of your audience… And if you’re in the healthcare industry, that likely means you.

In the search engine results, Google’s algorithm is now favoring web pages that are more “mobile-friendly.” The guidelines for this particular initiative do not leave much room for interpretation as Google plainly states the criteria that needs to be met to be considered mobile-friendly.

The algorithm now more heavily promotes and boosts the rankings for pages that are either hosted on a separate mobile URL (m.example.com) or have responsive web design capability. The update also detects that tap targets are appropriately positioned, as page elements like these are believed to offer the most enjoyable search experience for users on mobile devices.

Furthermore, pages that require excessive horizontal scrolling, tapping and/or zooming in order to adequately read text run the risk of decreasing in the organic rankings. Additionally, pages with video and other media that doesn’t play because of mobile-compatibility issues will also be penalized.

Take note that this update:

  • Affects only search rankings on mobile devices
  • Affects search results in all languages globally
  • Applies to individual pages, not entire websites

Utilizing a platform that allows you to keep pace with the changes in technology is critical in protecting your SEO value on any device. For each of AVID‘s clients’ sites, we tested and made any adjustments needed; we then provided recommendations for clients with older sites that may not have met the criteria. For a good place to start, a member of AVID Design’s marketing team can walk you through the Mobile-Friendly Test.

Keep in mind, however, that Google still uses many factors to determine a page’s rank, and a page can rank well even though it’s not considered to be mobile-friendly. Above all, high-quality content is the underlying constant when it comes to increasing rank. Remember that these initiatives are a part of Google’s effort to promote high-quality and relevant results to provide a seamless and enjoyable user experience.

AVID Design offers full-scale written and visual communication services for hospitals and healthcare systems, including Content Management Systems, SharePointWeb DesignSEO and PPC, Content Development and AssessmentOnline VideoAnalytics and Measurementand more. 

Justin Small | Digital Marketing Specialist | AVID Design

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16
Oct 2014

The Healthcare Industry…Strong Collaboration in a Crisis

As every healthcare provider across the globe focuses on Ebola – seeking the most up to date information and updating emergency preparedness protocols, this is when competitors become comrades within the healthcare industry. We work together and we share resources – all for the greater good.

We have heard the news reports and moment by moment updates from the CDC, but what we would really like is open dialogue with  the community – the people we serve every day. At AVID Design, we so value our partnership with GRHealth and Georgia Regents University and we’re happy to pass this helpful information along to the citizens of this area. GRHealth is hosting a Community Ebola Forum on October 21st – an opportunity to learn more and get answers to questions.

By continuing to share improved processes and more advanced treatment solutions, we stand stronger, together.

AVID Design offers full-scale written and visual communication services for hospitals and healthcare systems, including SharePointWeb designSEO and PPC content development and assessmentonline video and rich mediaanalytics and measurementcontent management systems and more.


Meredith Rose | Director of Content Services | AVID Design

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15
Oct 2014

Google My Business: How We’re Bringing Healthcare Back into Google’s Game

I moved closer to work at the beginning of last month, and needed to make an appointment with a new eye doctor. As AVID’s unofficial Google guru, of course the first thing I did was hit the search engines.

Even as someone who understands that there are more qualifications to look for in an ophthalmologist than “eye doctor in Norcross”, I (like many patients) was in a rush. I made an appointment with the first highly rated practice on the list, but on the day of my appointment, I showed up to an empty building.

I googled the practice again, called the number listed, but didn’t get an answer. A little angry for having wasted my time, I drove back to the office when the practice manager called my cell. The information on Google’s listing was incorrect, she explained. Would I like to reschedule? I decided that no, I would not like to reschedule. I ended up driving back across town to visit my old doctor instead.

This exact situation is happening to many hospitals, healthcare systems and physician practices across the country—sometimes totally unnoticed by the practice managers or marketing departments. As someone who works closely with Google, I totally understood that my potential ophthalmologist’s office had nothing to do with the incorrect listing. However, subconsciously the inconvenience was what determined my physician choice. This error caused the practice to lose a patient. How many others, I wondered, do they lose in a day? A month? A year?

Go Ahead, Check Yourself Out

Coincidentally enough, we have numerous clients using our digital strategy services at AVID Design for this exact issue. For a range of academic medical centers, hospitals and physician practices, we have embarked on an adventure to correct all of their Google listings. And that has been no easy feat — Google My Business is a two-headed beast!

  • Google My Business is not optional – How will your patients find you if not through Google? Your patients are most undoubtedly searching for you, and results are popping up. Managing those results is unquestionably important.
  • Google My Business is Not for the Faint of Heart – Representatives at Google have been very open that the Business platform was designed for just that—traditional retail businesses. The issues we experience with GMB are unique to healthcare, which is an unfamiliar area to the Google team. We are tackling that beast at AVID Design!

Keep in mind: Google My Business is still a new approach – with kinks and missing functionality that will all improve with time, but it is complicated by Google’s tendency is to shy away from healthcare endeavors. Defining a strategic approach to healthcare locations is beyond perplexing — and one that is tough to tackle alone.

The best way to figure out where you stand on Google’s radar is to search for your organization – down as many paths as possible. Search for your hospital name, your brand name, your physician names, practice names and so on. If you find pages for your organization, you should claim them as your own—especially if the information is incorrect.

What We’ve Learned

During our Google My Business initiation by fire over time, the most important lesson learned is that while this technology may still be emerging and imperfect, it has a very real, instant impact on healthcare organizations due to poor user experiences. Taking action sooner than later is always a good idea, but keep in mind that as with any other new online tool or functionality, flexibility is critical. The process may change direction quickly and is definitely a moving target! Be open to evolving your strategy, updating your goals and managing expectations.

Need help determining if you’ve got a Google beast on your hands? Give us a call and we can check out your page standings and see what information is being shared with your current or prospective patients. 

 

AVID Design offers full-scale written and visual communication services for hospitals and healthcare systems, including SharePointWeb designSEO and PPC content development and assessmentonline video and rich mediaanalytics and measurementcontent management systems and more.


Whitney Stuart | Web Content Manager | AVID Design

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