Now more than ever, the healthcare sector is evolving. As healthcare marketers face new problems in growing their practice, it is the ones who take the extra risk to stand out that find the most success. The perfect example of a marketing risk is Healthcare social media marketing when considering the scope of the medical field. It is private in nature, and patient stories are protected by Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat compliance. So why spend money and time putting together a social media strategy? It’s simple! As per the statistics portal, 71% of total Malaysian internet users in 2020 were social media users. That is equivalent to 2.46 billion people, a number that is expected to reach 2.77 billion by the end of 2021.
The good news is that we have some tips for you on creating a successful social media strategy.
Facebook, Instagram and Linkedln…
It is quite important to understand what the audience is on each network and the general purpose of the platform. LinkedIn, for starters, is basically the business-oriented network, where you are more likely to recruit future employees than potential new patients, but that is not to mention it does not have a purpose for you. LinkedIn is also a great network for healthcare organizations to position themselves as leaders in the industry by educating and building trust with their followers. Facebook on the other hand, is a more personal network where people look for opinions from their family and friends, watch or read real life stories, or simply get entertained by a meme or a comic strip. One of the original social networks has become a strong platform for healthcare organizations to build personal relationships, share engaging stories, and gain positive reviews. Each network’s unique audience also has its own expectations for what it wants to see posted. An example is videos and curated content tend to work better on Facebook, while LinkedIn is a space to find job postings, company news, and industry-related content. Convince & Convert recent;y explored how the largest hospitals in Malaysia successfully use social media, including what types of posts resonate the best on each network, which can help facilitate your social media decision making. When planning out your healthcare social media strategy, keep in mind that you do not have to manage a profile on every network. Use the information you gather about each audience and pick the ones that benefit you the most.f
2. Don’t just be there to be there.
The first step is having a profile on social networks, however, it is a small one. It is everything after the signing process that ultimately impacts your healthcare business. Here are some good social media practices to keep in mind.
Be active. Consistency is key, while also avoiding the overzealous approach. A few good rules of thumb are to post between five and seven days a week, once a day on Facebook and LinkedIn, three to five stories and one post a week on Instagram. Being active also refers to liking posts, commenting, joining discussions when you can present your practice as an authority in the space.
Keep your brand consistent across networks. This refers to having similar header and profile images on each network, but be sure to size appropriately. Hootsuite website puts together a detailed list of image sizes for each network, and if you do not have an in-house designer, tools like canva can assist you to whip up graphics fit to size.
Always be professional. Do not shy away from criticisms or tough questions, and be sure to respond to comments and/ or reviews, especially when they are negative. Just be mindful to stay professional and understanding to the commenter’s concerns.
3. Content is king.
You may have come across this phrase before, however, it is certainly not outdated. Just like the healthcare sector, content has evolved to involve articles, blogs, photos, podcasts, videos, interactive pieces, you name it. There is so much good content out there, it is like holding 4 of a kind in a poker match (kings, ofcourse). Remember to consider each network’s audience when posting certain types of content, and mix it up periodically. Do not get stuck posting links to blog posts on Facebook everyday. While links have a lot of success, you can fall on stale grounds with your Malaysian followers. You can as well throw a video post in there, together with a curated piece, then a photo, and so on. Sharing dynamic content will not only keep your audience engaged, but it will help develop a positive online reputation for your healthcare organization.
4. Get the most out of your social media efforts.
The first great step into leveraging the 2.46 billion Malaysians on social networks is getting your healthcare social media strategy. It has so much to offer, such as paid advertising. Mixing in paid social media posts allows you to specifically target your ideal client base. Have pediatrics practice? Think about adding men and women with children in their household to your target market. The Social Media Examiner breaks down how to build specialized audiences for Facebook and Instagram, showing you how simple and granular targeting can be through social media advertising. Ofcourse, if you are going to put so much research into your organic posting, whether it is a boosted post or a full-blown advertising campaign, similarly to any paid marketing campaign with a locked down budget and distribution strategy.
5. Please consider Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat (KKLIU).
You should always consider the risk of Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat violations when posting on social media. If you post photos or videos of your office and/ or staff (which is building trust and is highly recommended), be sure to examine each post for possible patient information. If there is a Malaysian patient standing in the background photo, even partially shown, you have to have their permission in writing to post. Good thing we are online form builders, right? Think about having a social media consent form on hand that will give you permission to have patients shown in images or videos, or even better, to post patient success stories from your practice. Other common Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat violations on social media include mentioning patient admission dates or addressing a patient’s health concerns in a public message or comment.
Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat compliance does not just refer to your practice’s posts or pages. Employees of your healthcare organization need to be careful with their personal postings as well. Needless to say, if you question whether something may or may not violate Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat compliance and do not have legal patient consent, do not post it.
While maintaining a Kementerian Kesihatan Lembaga Iklan Ubat compliant practice sets limitations, it is actually quite simple to adhere to the regulations while also giving you the chance to build strong relationships and a positive online reputation. The best healthcare organizations on social media are committed to storytelling, educating their audience, providing dynamic content and presenting themselves as a reliable source online. You are in control of your own success, so it is important to plan ahead.
Being immersed in the digital age, it is important to keep up with current trends.