Digital in Healthcare – the Power of Social Media

Once there is a footprint of social media, there is an evolution of the communication within that industry. In the area of healthcare, digital technology has brought huge convenience from patient side as well as hospital standpoint. The board implication of the social media has constructed a mutual benefit bridge between the people we need healthcare service and the institution who can satisfied their needs, specially, in a flexible way timely.

Now, let’s first step further to see  how powerful social media are, from the perspective of  people who need healthcare service.

Whether is Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn, nowadays, a growing number of people are using social media as their families’ primary source of the latest healthcare information and wellness advice. In Specific, 65% of female and 53% of male seek the health information online. 54% of moms own a smartphone, of who 40% have downloaded health wellness apps to following information to better track the health situation of their families.

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Someone would argue that social networker are likely to be more health-activated, how about the other group which is not used using social media?  It is true. However most people also show their opinion that they would willing to be more active if it’s possible to let them get information and healthcare service quickly and accurately. According to a research, “81% of consumers believe that if a hospital has a strong social media presence, they’re likely to be more cutting edges. 72% of consumers would like assistance in scheduling doctor appointments through social media. And nearly half of those said they would expect a response within a few hours.”

Social-Media-and-Healthcare-211x300 234494_origLarge group number of healthcare institution have already realize the importance to use social media better communicating with their patient, collecting feedback, increasing efficiency of operation management, allocating resources, in all gaining better reputation and realizing the mission of their institutions.

There are some promising data showing what efforts the healthcare institution has devoted to build the future national wide healthcare network. “Roughly 1,000 hospitals – or 1 in 5 of the nations hospitals – have a presence on Twitter.”

In addition, social media not just increasing the communication between the hospital and patient, but also strengthening the communication among patients who suffers  same disease, as well as stimulating the valuable and successful clinical experience sharing among healthcare industry. For example, more than 500 Facebook group focused on diabetes treatment, and more than 36,000 YouTube videos are devoted to some aspect of surgery.

healthcareANDsocialmediaIn conclusion, social media is changing our life style, changing our   business ecosystem, and changing the way we are thinking. Its impact is cultivated into our mind day by day, streaming into an unstoppable evolution power.

(All the data are derived from  The Healthcare Social Media Evolution  Akron Children’s Promotion Video)

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Social Media Approach in Law Firm

Similar to the government, law firm is remarked as late adopter of the social media approach. The generally cautious nature of law firm management determines the conservative process of the new technologies implementation in this industry.

Nowadays, the use of social media is widespread around the world. For the law firm, disengagement doesn’t seem a wise choice anymore. The issues are not insurmountable. For any law firm, the premise is a common and acceptable social media policy should be developed to encourage the use of innovative tools and technologies. As Simon mentioned, How Should Law Firms Approach Social Media, “Get input from all stakeholders and participants by establishing a committee of your rainmaking lawyers, senior managers, IT experts, marketers, and members of Gen Y to devise your specific firm strategy.”

desk_hand_shake2_pc_400_wht_4231-resized-600Social-MediaIn early 2012, Social Media Guidance for Lawyers was issued by Law Society, which establishing a promising future of the application of social media in law firms. According to Legal Futures, “by June 2012, twitter was becoming the key referral source for lawyers, with a 663% increase in people asking for recommendations on the social network.”

Besides Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter, various social media software and platform are available now. Law.com provides best social media dashboard for law firm from 2012 to 2013. Different dashboard has different strength that fit diverse marketing strategies.

There are two special human capital should be used for a law firm when establish and apply its social media strategy. The involvement of young minds is as essential as an excellent and professional marketing team.

  • Senor lawyers who are unfamiliar with the fast-pace technologies revolution should embrace the help and assist from junior lawyers who just fresh out of Ivy law school. The young generation has the nature mindset of technologies involvement in their daily life as well as profession work.
  • After establishing individual adoption attitude within a law firm, how to apply a successful social media strategy from the firm level becomes next critical issue. Any law firm among top tier all constructs their robust future on the brand, so creating an outstanding marketing team to promote, protect and enhance the brand integrity is necessary.

culture_commitmentFirst, aligning the goal of the social media strategy with the cultural of the law firm. There is no any other industry would treat culture as sacred integrity as law firm do. Setting up a consistent goal fit the culture does not just mean loyalty to their clients, but also for their brilliant smart guys who would devote to the firm for whole life.

banneritem1Second, a professional marketing team owns the responsibility to training lawyers to communicate effectively from the client perspective by using social media approach. Social media approach would only add value to the firm, when the lawyer could apply their critical thinking fame to the access of social media.

Most important of all, they should consider how to balance the using social media efficiently with guaranteeing security. How to define the scope of the publish content in different social media platform, how to monitor the process of the clients while not construct interfere. There are various critical issues need to consider.

Be creative, even the most tradition industry need fresh blood, so law firm is.

Social Media in Government

As the header imply, this blog focus on the social media’s impact on the business. Someone would argue, does it go a little far away from our topic “impact on business”, if we bring the government to the table?  The answer is not. There are two main reasons. First, government, as adeliberate organization, upholds the cooperation structure characters of diverse business. Second, as the supervisor, guidance and administrator of the market, any evolution  in government level, would pass through the impact to the whole business ecosystem.

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Social media has already been a dominating marketing   strategy for the business, while most government are still in the early stages of the adoption. In term of its complexity and potential national wide impact, there are several critical considerations in order to implement a social media strategy in government sector: objective, security and transparency.

Objective: nowadays, effective communication is no longer a simple conversation. It is massive information exchange via free access of diverse platforms. As a key part of effective social media communication strategy in government, the goal is not only help the administrator to collect sentiment from populace, but also better leverage the government platforms to build deeper relationship with them.

How can social media better support the whole government mission and overall communication strategy is the priority question need to clarify.

Padlock symbol with media icons textureSecurity and privacy: with the social media provide, the populace gain easy access to information platform of government. The good news is the voice from low level of the society could be heard and potential problem could be reflected and solved effectively. However, laissez-faire information exchange also bring inevitable security concern and privacy issue. That’s also one of the main reasons why governments are still in the early stages of social media adoption.

Transparency: functioning as all the other marketing tools, social media realize its value when works effectively as promotion carrier for the organization. Tradition media, such as newspaper, and news broadcast provide us “transparent” information. There is a balance of transparency government need to handle well, reflect the fact, while not expose all. The power of mouth would be used in a positive way as well as in negative. One psychology term – Sheep Effect – provide a vivid description of people’s blindly following behavior. Under certain situation, populace may easily be stirred up. When they are angry, most people would lose logical thinking ability, pushing the negative influence on the society out of control.

The dilemma is, since people know government sometime may not be that honest, how to make the process of social media strategy as much transparent as they can to let populace believe it, becomes a critical issue.

A current example is the Saturday’s devastating earthquake in southwest of China. Social media become an effective information exchange platform that provide various channel let people to donate money and living material to help and support disaster areas. While impact by the Red Cross scandal and the non-transparent report during Wenchuang Earthquake in 2008, a lot of people don’t trust government and related charity organization anymore.

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Besides the key concern mentioned, there are other factors we need to consider to better implement social media in government, such as how to let the government engaging to the events and communication, how to provide a accurate tracking system. However, to future embedded social media strategy in government organization is only a matter of time.

When Consulting Firm Meets Social Media

“Please tell me what is the meaning of B 2 C”, when one of our professors asked us in the class, everyone answered it professionally “ Business to Customer”. As business school student, I thought the answer was definitely simple and perfect. However, professor’s answer was totally out of our expectation. “ You are wrong, B 2 C in business school means banker to consultant. When asking MBA students, half of them want to work for investment bank, half for consulting firm”. Everyone broke into laughter.

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That’s true. While business recession was the nightmare for most business. Consulting firms were springing up everywhere during that hard time. High pay, high challenge, and high value realizing, consulting firm attracts talents from top business school all around world. The consulting industry is developing at a warp speed as well as the world of social media.

How could my thought abruptly jumped from consulting firm to social media? That’s how I curiously about: what would happen when my top two interests meet together, consulting firm and social media.

Facebook, twitter, and MySpace started out just as convenient and simple platforms for like-mined group of people get together, communicate and share interests. If you are still thinking social media are just involving into people’s daily life and building bridge between small business and customers. You are losing the enormous business opportunities. Today, these same social media network are translating into huge business for companies looking to reach their targeted customers and clients.

When social median meet professional consulting industry, the first successful integrate is professional Social Median Consulting Firm.
As the video articulating their mission, “Connect, Engage and Amplify”. Nowadays, full service social media firms deliver comprehensive consulting service to help clients drive customer perception, and build business brand. These firms own the expert team of social media consultants providing complete social media solutions to help clients generate positive return.

Other than traditional consultant firm, which provide diverse consulting service strategy in different industry. These social media consulting firms focus on full social media camping building for customer. Specific, professional, therefore most of them are not just providing strategy, but also provide human capital – a whole team of social media expertise- to help their clients build initial social media structure.

After identifying clients’ underlying problem, they conduct market research, gather business intelligence by identify critical campaign elements. They help the clients better capture what their potential customers like, share, and see who, when and where they are. Are they time sensitive or location sensitive? Following criteria generating form research and data analysis, social media consultant starts to implement approach:

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One critical issue of guarantee the positive out come of social media approach is to maintain sustainable customer relationship. Therefore, tracking the effectiveness and given timely feedback of the applying strategy is really important. Social media consulting firms usually generate monthly customer report within a time period to let clients check the service results and prove consulting delivers. Such a delicate service process makes social media consultant firm gain credit from clients.

Then, how is social media impact on traditional management consulting firm, such as the big 3, BCG, McKinsey,and  Bain ? A better to clarify the question would  be “ What’s the overall potential for consulting firms in social media market?” or let’s take thoughts deeper “ How are leading consulting firms capitalizing on social media? “

Prepare your mind, let’s set it free for our next discussion.

Does your social media marketing strategy successful?

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How marketers benefit from social media marketing?

Based on the Social Media Marketing Report 2012, generating more business exposure is the number-one benefit of social median marketing, followed by increasing traffic and providing marketplace insights. There are other obvious benefits, such as improving sales, grew business partnerships, reducing marketing expenses, improving search rankings as well as acquiring loyal fans.

While, the top question that marketers want answered is how do I measure and track the return of my investment in social media marketing. Are there any effective tools and are there any benchmarks in the industry?

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Before picking up a tool, the most important thing to establish is what you are actually going to measure based on the social media channel you put efforts on. You should have clearly defined objectives and business goal.

Finding the measurable outcomes is the critical step. You need some key performance indicators, which are agreed-upon metrics that can help you determine whether your social median strategy is successful.

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Based on the report, the top 5 social media tools are Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Blogs, and You Tube. The first indicator to measure the impact of your social media is the number, which give you a general idea of the size of the community you are reaching, such as the number of your followers, fans, and subscribers,

Are they active? Active fans are the group of people who have the actual power to boom your business, by retweeting your latest information, commenting on your post, and inviting their friends to follow your business. Engagement of your followers is another effective indicator to measure how social media impact your target people’s behavior. Besides the number of retweets, comments, clicks, “like”s on each of your post, engagement indicator also includes average time on your site, video views, downloads.

Positive or negative? Rather than just focus on the quantity, quality of the followers’ motion engagement is another critical issue.  Positive comments would add value to your promotion, while negative comments definitely will hurt the reputation of your business. What’s worse, be careful of the speed of bad news spread.

Besides these direct indicators, there are other indirect indicators to measure the effectiveness of your social media marketing.

  • Competitive data, which include the information shared of your business across other websites or the number of your competitors’ mention of your brand.
  • Referring source: How do you know about us? Friends, news, or social media website. Collecting the feedback of referring source is also nice measurement.

Social Media Network Grab Revenu from Telecom Companies

WECHAT GAINS MOMENTUM

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Based on KPMG’s 2012 media and telecommunications industry outlook survey which reflects the responses of 101 media and telecom sector executives from large, U.S. –based companies with $100 million or more in annual revenue, more than 90% of the executives surveyed expect their companies to grow their activities around digital devices, services, and content distribution. “48% of the respondents expect capital spending increased over the next year, specific, 56% spending will likely be in the areas of new products and services and 43% in information technology.”

On one hand, the prosperous development of the social media network and related service apps boom the media and telecommunication industry, accelerating the  telecommunication technology innovation, increasing the demand of dynamic functions smart phone devices, and proposing of customized service.
One the other hand, the convenience of the social network apps raises challenge for the traditional telecommunication services.

Recently, China’s information ministry is not happy with Tencent. As the giant tech company in China, Tencent has taken shares in everything from instant messaging to social networks. Besides given birth to QQ, the top one instant message software which own 1 billion register users and 0.29 billion active users in China, Tencent now won the fame around world by the instant voice message social network app WeChat.

WeChat Oversea TV Commercial (video)

Originally as a mobile phone text and voice messaging communication service. WeChat provides multimedia communication flexibility, including text, hold-to-talk voice as well as broadcast (one-to-many) messaging. You can share photo and video with your friends at Moments, and exchange contact information. Further, WeChat also supports social networking that you can easily chat with and befriend local and international WeChat users by location-based social plug-ins (‘Shake’, ‘Look Around’, and ‘Drift Bottle’).

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Benefits from its flexibility and convenience, initially launched in January 2011, it has 300 million users as of January 2013.

However, “ With the huge growth of free texting services, operators are feeling the strain. In 2011, they lost some $14 billion in revenue to OTT messaging services”
Goaded by its biggest telecom companies, which are state-owned, the Chinese government seems need to take some action. Rumors rocked that government may ask Tencent to pay telecom companies a fee, or the Wechat user would be charged extra traffic fee. WeChat is no longer “ free”.
The intervention seems inevitable, enormous profit margins involved in traditional SMS service. “A text message consumes a mere 140 bytes. Voice calls use about eight times as much bandwidth per second. Yet an SMS and a minute of conversation are generally charged at comparable rates.”

According to McKinsey’s report, “one Dutch carrier saw text messages per subscriber go from growing 33% in the third quarter of 2010 to declining 11% in Q2 2011. WhatsApp’s smartphone penetration over the same period grew from 5% to 85%.”

How governments balance the encouraging of information technology innovation and supporting of traditional business model becomes another heated topic. The success of new product and service launching is always at the expense of traditional business customer base losing. To innovate or to protect?

Step back, even though there is no WeChat, enormous social median network apps would take over large share of telecom companies’ revenue. Rather than let others innovation companies around the word steal away the revenue. Government sure would prefer let in-house Giant, such as Tencent, to in charge of the huge market. The reason is simple, one is much easier to control.

Besides ask help from government, telecom companies should have some other effective respond to save its business. Double charge traffic fee obvious is the worst suggestion that absolutely will evoke 1.3 billion people’s anger. More and more customers use social media network apps is not just because it is free, since various phone plan in China, such as RMB20 unlimited SMS, is already an economical deal. Two dominant factors make it a super star. First, it is convenient that you don’t need to type; one figure is enough whenever and wherever you are. Second, the power of organizational network, people around you all use it, how long you could protect yourself from the impact of new technologies? To save its revenue, Telecom companies should find the root and then brainstorm.

Powerful Social Media– My thoughts on Weibo Promotion

ImageYesterday, one of my friend found 0.5 RMB in his car and told us “seriously” that this precious 0.5 RMB is his wage for posting a good-word on Chinese twitter- Weibo- for our Party. Seeing ours confused faces, he added, ” Don’t you know the story of 0.5 RMB group whose job is post positive word for our Party and their wage is counted by 0.5 RMB per post? ” Sure it is just a joking.  “0.5 RMB worth nothing now, while it was a huge amount in my parents generation.” I responded and didn’t realized my point is support-less, since social media didn’t occupy our daily life until my middle school life started, year of 2000. I have already treated them a much longer history than they actually are.

Social median definitely change the way of life, especially friends relationship. We don’t need to contact with friends closely by hanging out together frequently, however I would know every places they went if I check their blog, Facebook or Twitter. I don’t need to worry about to contact a long-lost friends in a stranger way, since I could maintain the relationship by participating their life easily by clicking “Like” or make some nice comments on their photos even we didn’t have any true communication in 5 years.

Same thing applies to do the business. We can easily build relationship with friends’ friends who would be the a critical person in our next career or business deal. We are “pushed” to buy products friends say good words on their space.  Even we deny, the comparing psychology contribute to success of social media promotion — low-paid in high-gain.  Here is a good article about China Social Median Marketing, if you are interested in learning more.

Here I would focus on talking about my true experience of the promotion on Chinese Twitter- Weibo, I simply category them into three ways:

Changing from in-group favoritism to kind of responsibility: If one of your friends is doing business, it is really hard to say no when they ask you to retwitter their latest product information. At the beginning, you would be pleasant to help them since it add credits to your relationship with them. While in the long-term, such behavior definitely transfers your twitter or blog to a low quality area people would never interested in, since there is nothing but advertisements. Even we are reluctant to do so, when they @ you, it seems you have no choice. Social median bring us to much convenience at the same time let us easily fall into the friends relations trap too. Regardless your willingness, you do help them products promotion.

Two of my friends are doing the overseas purchasing. I almost blocked their twitter now. Obviously, their social media promotion strategy was totally a failure. I heard more than 10 friends complain about their bombing ads posts. Instead of making full use of their friend’s resource to boom their business, they pay the expense of losing friends.

While, another of my friend is wisely dealing her business with friends relationship. First, She opened another Twitter account when she started her own donuts business. Most important, she make her donuts twitter vivid that everyone is glad to read. She post adorable donuts picture with inspiring morning words everyday and the latest products information with early discount and attractive story behind each donut’s favor. She never said “ retwitter to your friends, then your would get discount”, while people who follow her twitter are always automatically retwitter, since they want to get close with their friends by sharing good deals.

The second way is lottery social media promotion: There is always no free lunch in the world. While “ By easily retwitter this post, you would won the award of free flight to Hawaii” Everyone would familiar with this kind of promotion. The fact is it really works. No matter from10 dollar gift card, Ipad, or limited edition handbag, there is always large group of people willing to indirectly help business do the promotion. The potential gain is huge while it seem cost you nothing, why not?

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Dealmoon, is definitely the most successful promotion business that every student who is studying in North American is familiar with.

I never follow them, while they are always there! —- Unavoidable, there is always some advertisement information on your list, even though you never follow them. Where do they come from? What’s more, I remembered once I post a twitter complaining about gaining weight during the winter, the next day I was @ in a twitter that promoted a lose-weight product. How could the promotion team find me, I totally succumb to the power of business promotion on social media.

How would they fail to grab people’s attention? Even though there is no official report of how Weibo gain in Ads revenue, compared with Twitter- the report on the Forbes, Twitter to hit nearly $ 1 billion in Ad revenues next year, we could foresee the prosperous in Chinese social media market.

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