A Contrarian View for 2015

2015

I’m a big fan of all of those “forecasting the future of…” blog posts that we see in January. I just can’t get enough. While many recommendations are pragmatic, it’s easy for prognosticators to throw out a few Hail Mary’s in the hope that if something truly unexpected happens, they can claim to have predicted it.

At the risk of sounding Scrooge-y, here’s my list of unpredictions – themes that I’m seeing on a lot of lists in healthcare, marketing and digital that simply aren’t going to happen… at least not in 2015.

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Connect CRM and the Web for Smarter Marketing

abstract flowchart

More aggressive outbound marketing. Personalized communications. Cultivating long-term relationships. As we look to trends for digital marketers in healthcare in 2015, one of the big ones is the rise of CRM. This is the impetus behind our new partnership with Tea Leaves Health alongside our work with other healthcare CRM vendors.

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2015: The Year the Web Becomes the Marketing Hub

marketing department around table

Not to sound like my grandfather, but I remember the day when an organization’s website was a new way to share information. I remember when any staff member that was willing to take on coding became the webmaster. Most importantly, I remember when the website was not a marketing asset at all. A lot has changed in 20 years.

The role of the Web has changed. The days of the Web not serving as the primary marketing vehicle are behind us. For marketing staff, C-level administrators, and physicians, your website plays a critical role in promoting your brand and interacting with health consumers.

So what’s next?
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Geonetric’s Top Five Webinars, Blog Posts, and Tweets of 2014

goodbye 2014 text on torn cloth and brick wall

Every year we compile our top five most popular webinars, blog posts and tweets to see what resonated with healthcare marketers. This year’s hottest topics included search engine optimization, filling physician schedules, social media marketing and results from our eHealth Survey. Judging by these trends it’s pretty safe to say that content marketing will continue to be an area of focus for healthcare marketers in 2015. Geonetric will be here to help out with everything healthcare web strategy throughout 2015. Stay up to date by coming back to our blog, following us on Twitter or subscribing to our monthly newsletter.
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How Doctors Can Help with Online Physician Promotion

physician-promotion-QA2In our recent webinar, Online Physician Promotion: Increasing Conversions to Fill Schedules one attendee asked an interesting question from the point of view we don’t always get – from the provider. Let’s take a look at the question and how doctors play an important role in their own online promotion.

“If you are a physician, what can you do if your institution is not really helpful in promoting you and just has a static page that no one really checks?”

For starters, don’t make any assumptions. The provider relations team or the Web team should be able to share how much traffic a doctor’s profile gets and what typical providers in the organization get in general. It’s probably more than you think! Continue reading

Your Top Online Physician Promotion Questions Answered

physician-promotion-QA

We clearly hit a hot topic with last week’s webinar, Online Physician Promotion: Increasing Conversions to Fill Schedules, and attendees submitted far more questions than we were able to cover during the session. To make sure we answer all the questions that were submitted, we plan to tackle them over the course of a few blog posts.

SEO v. PPC

Our webinar focused almost exclusively on inbound marketing strategies – organic SEO, social media, and how to focus the experience that consumers get after arriving at your website.  We did, however, get some questions about the role of paid advertising in building provider visibility. Continue reading

Hospitals Like Mine: Examples of Health Systems, Hospitals and Medical Groups that are Effectively Using the Web


Geonetric's Portfolio Results
Not all healthcare organizations are created equal.

The way a five-hospital regional health system organizes its provider directory, positions itself through Web content and implements microsites is very different than how a 120-bed community hospital does those same things.

Seeing how different healthcare organizations use the Web to connect with their audiences is helpful to healthcare marketers. But seeing how organizations that are similar in size or competitive environment use the Web is invaluable.

That’s why when Geonetric recently redesigned our website, we were thoughtful about how to make our client examples as useful as possible for you – whether you market a regional health system, a community hospital or a medical clinic.
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CVS Health Rebranding – What Can Providers Do to Counter?

CVSHealthI have been reading about the rebranding of CVS Caremark Corp. to their new branded name CVS Health.

CVS rolled out a new brand along with the announcement that they are removing tobacco products from their shelves in all 7,600 stores and replacing those products with smoking cessation products. As a side note, Walgreens has also removed tobacco from their shelves but CVS Health rebranding takes this move to a new level.

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Google Releases “Pigeon” Algorithm Update

pigeon
One thing we know for sure in the world of SEO is that change is the only constant. Last week, Google made yet another algorithm change, this time targeting the location-specific search results.

And, yes, this one was also named after an animal. We would like to introduce you to “Pigeon!” (We’re not in charge of the names here. Promise.)

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Promises of More Patients: Uncertainties of the Affordable Care Act

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It is almost a certainty that patient care volumes will increase after the complete rollout of the Affordable Care Act. Already, health systems are seeing a new level of demand that is burdening systems because of increased volumes. The patients you are currently treating that don’t have health insurance are mandated to enroll in a health insurance product offered either through a Federal or State exchange program.

The most recent figures from the Department of Health show that 7.1 million people are now enrolled in ObamaCare. Of those, more than 26% or 1.8 million people are between the ages of 26 and 34. The thought behind Affordable Care was that more young people would enroll and force the premium cost down through risk sharing. Although the number of young people enrolling has not achieved the levels anticipated it is a very good start and creates an opportunity for health systems and providers.

The Affordable Care Act ensures that health plans in the individual and small group markets offer a comprehensive package of services, known as essential health benefits. Essential health benefits must include services such as: hospitalization; maternity and newborn care; substance abuse disorder treatment; wellness services, emergency care, along with pediatric services that includes oral and vision care.

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Making the Move to a Responsive, Mobile-Friendly Healthcare Website

pella-regional-health-center-responsive-website-design

With the number of mobile-connected devices projected to exceed the world’s population by the end of 2014, it’s more important than ever to have a Web presence that can accommodate mobile users. And since 31% of cell phone owners, and 52% of smartphone owners, have used their phone to look up health or medical information, healthcare organizations need to make their online experience seamless regardless of what type of mobile device is trying to access their information.

Pella Regional Health Center wanted to ensure visitors had access to their entire site, not just a select subset. Enter responsive design. It enables organizations to build and maintain one site that adapts automatically to the capabilities of the device being used. Essentially future-proofing an organization’s website since it presents the best user experience possible whether the Web visitor is accessing the single site from a desktop, tablet, mobile device or even a mobile-enabled refrigerator.

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How the Web Can Bring Order to the Messiest Health System

health system websites

Healthcare systems are messy. Think about the growing number of different facilities and the departmental divisions that aren’t meaningful to patients but very meaningful internally. Consider the various groups battling with one another over the same patients, or the lack of a consistent philosophy and approach for a given service or procedure. It’s easy in the day-to-day operations of a health system to ignore the complexity of our organizations. I find that when we work on the website we’re pulling off the band-aid and exposing all of that mess.
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David Meerman Scott Embraces Agile, Sort of…

agile-methods

Doesn’t it sound fun to go diving in the Caribbean or to go camping alongside penguins? It does! And the people who market these types of adventures do so in creative ways that don’t feel like marketing. They create great content – the kind of content that consumers love to read and want to experience themselves.

And, according to David Meerman Scott’s opening keynote at the Healthcare Marketing and Physician Strategies conference, healthcare can market this way too. No, you don’t need sand or ocean water or even penguins.

What you need is to write interesting content. How you ask? The key is relevance.

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6 Resources Everyone in the Search Marketing Industry Should Be Using

ace-up-your-seo-sleeve

One question Geonetric hears from clients is, “How do you keep up with all these changes in SEO, PPC, and social media?” Good question!

I shared my reading list with attendees of Geonetric’s 2014 eHealth Client Symposium: Camp Reboot, and thought others may benefit from this list as well. A word of caution: these blogs will turn you into a search marketing geek in no time flat.

So, what do I read in my free time to keep up with Google, Bing and the other cast characters in search and social media? Here’s my current reading list:

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