Advances in medical technology and the transfer of electronically generated and managed data is moving faster than many of us can comprehend. So, why are some marketing professionals having to adopt technology at such a slow rate? What inhibits your industry from keeping pace with the latest technologies for marketing your business?
Wake Up Call for Senior Living Marketers
The senior living industry is one such example where information technology adoption is lagging. Studies show that 99% of assisted living and nursing homes use IT, but this is mostly limited to MDS processing and billing. With the federal government’s program for electronic health records (EHR) due to start in 2014, operators will be expected to have the electronic infrastructure necessary for managing patient records in place. As they focus their attention on electronic medical records and related systems, many operators are finally realizing the prospective benefits in terms of overall cost savings, accuracy and quality of resident care.
Seeing the Opportunity for Digital Marketing
By having to adopt technology for their day to day operations, senior living owners and operators are beginning to see some parallel benefits of adopting digital marketing technologies into their operations as well. This trend is being supported by the increasing use of smart phones, other electronic devices, and the continued growth and usage of the internet. All of these are working together to help people become more comfortable with, and more trusting of, the new marketing technologies.
What You Can Do To Get Started
Even though you might feel behind in your digital marketing efforts, don’t despair—there are some steps you can take to start the journey. If you are a beginner, I recommend the following 10 things you need to do in digital right now:
- Follow the industry—Sign up for Google Alerts, listen up for industry buzz words and track general trends.
- Interact with current users—Talk with other marketers using digital marketing and ask how they find it useful.
- Get involved with social media—Create accounts on several platforms. Sarah Milstein, co-author of “The Twitter Book,” suggests that you “spend 10 minutes a day every day for 3 weeks checking those accounts and seeing what is coming in, figuring what they are doing and what you like so you can mimic them.”
- Approach social media as if you are joining a community—Don’t just barge in front of someone and start shouting. Steve Patrizi, VP at LinkedIn Corp. advises that you would” come up and introduce yourself and try to come up with something that’s relevant to that person.”
- Create compelling content—Be passionate and show enjoyment in what you do; otherwise, it will be transparent to those you to whom you are communicating.
- Walk in your customers’ shoes—You have to know who your customers are and what is relevant to them. David Fischer, VP of advertising and global operations at Facebook, Inc. says to “pay attention to where your customers are spending their time and what they are doing” so your marketing can reflect that.
- Develop a content strategy—This is critical in order to ensure that your digital marketing effort has a purpose.
- Understand mobile content consumption—With the rapid rise of mobile media, you now need to make sure that your website and e-mails are formatted for mobile.
- Get your head into video—Many times a video can tell a better story that text—and it’s not that expensive or hard to do. Jay Baer, founder of the social media strategy firm Convince & Convert, says that “videos are a powerful communication vehicle…and effective for SEO.”
10. Don’t neglect e-mail—Even though social media, mobile and video are hot, don’t neglect e-mail. Make sure it is a part of all your digital marketing efforts and there is always room to improve on its effectiveness.
How many of the above mentioned tips have you done? If your response is “not many,” what are you waiting for? Isn’t time you started taking some of these initial steps to improve your organization’s digital marketing presence?