With Q4 right around the corner, it’s time to think about your final social media marketing efforts for 2015. Are you on track to hit your year-end goals? Are you able to show return on investment (ROI)? Now is the time to ramp up your efforts. Here are five keys to social media success to help you finish the year strong:
- Be consistent. It’s common for healthcare marketers to slow down on social media posts this time of year, both intentionally and unintentionally. There’s a lot of competition for your audience’s attention as people spend less time online, and retailers spend a fortune on social media advertising to grab their audience’s attention when they are online. There’s also a lot of competition for marketers’ time as the end of the year approaches with 2015 reporting and 2016 social media marketing planning. Don’t let these challenges derail the social media marketing success you’ve been working on all year. Continue to post consistently and put extra effort into creating intriguing content to catch your audience’s attention.
- Be timely. With the holidays approaching, now, like always, is the time to be timely with your content. This is an especially crucial time for healthcare. People are often focused on avoiding holiday weight gain, using their HSA dollars and managing stress this time of year. Tailor your content to timely issues like these to help your social posts give something valuable to your audience in a time when they’re most looking for it.
- Remember the CTA. Having a clear call-to-action (CTA) is always a best practice with social media marketing, but at the end of the year in particular, social posts tend to steer away from it as they focus more on feel-good messages. You can still incorporate the feel-good holiday messages while having clear CTAs, though. For example, maybe you encourage people to send an e-card to patients through your website or read your latest blog post on surviving the holidays.
- Make it easy. Is your CTA for patients to schedule an appointment before the end of 2015? Make it easy for them. This is a hectic time of year and people are strapped for time. They don’t want to jump through hoops or sit on hold to make an appointment. If your hospital or health system doesn’t currently offer online appointment scheduling, consider making that a key priority for 2016.
- Move beyond Facebook and Twitter. As mentioned above, it can be tough to compete for attention on social networks this time of year. People’s newsfeeds are filled with sponsored posts and latest deal of the day, so consider focusing more of your efforts on YouTube, LinkedIn Instagram or Pinterest. Research from our recent whitepaper Analyzing the Digital Marketing Presence of the Top 15 Health Systems revealed that health systems are still focusing the majority of their efforts on Facebook and Twitter and are not paying much attention to the other social networks. Now is a great time to experiment with your content on the other networks. Yes, people will still be bombarded with retailer messaging on the other networks, but it may be a little easier to stick out from the crowd there.
Armed with these five social media best practices, healthcare marketers can end 2015 on a high note. And remember to keep these tactics in mind as you begin your 2016 social media marketing planning. Now is the time to start!