One of the projects that Dr. Dorothy Mellon undertakes apart from taking care of her ENT (Ear, nose and throat) patients is researching social media and the benefits that it offers physicians like herself.
As an established ENT specialist, Dr. Mellon wants to give her patients the best customer experience possible. To that end she strongly believes that social media and content marketing are the way to go.
A couple of weeks ago, I spoke with her about the use of social media in her industry. In addition to being a board certified Otolaryngologist, Dr. Mellon is a tech-savvy doctor with ambitious goals for her practice.
Here is the short version of our interview:
Q. What considerations are you making as you research social media in your industry?
A. We are always checking with our patients to find out what types of media they use for communication and content consumption. We discovered that 25% are on Twitter and Facebook, 25% use a smartphone for email and calendar, 25% use their mobile phone for text, and another 25% don’t use any media at all.
We also have to consider issues pertaining to doctor-to-doctor communication of patient notes. Currently more doctors use paper fax compared to digital record e-fax. Ours is a paperless office, and our goal is to remove all paper communications.
Q. Are there any guides, websites, or experts you are reading and reviewing as you do your research?
Medical journals have constant research and literature on media-use type and patient-use statistics. There are website developers in contact with us that are exclusive medical website developers.This is a very hot topic in medical field.
Q. What is it you hope to accomplish by using social media at your practice?
To provide the easiest way for our patients to stay in contact with us, including prescription questions and refills as well as medical information, availability, and releases.
Q. What online marketing channels are you most interested in as you start out?
Interactive Websites (i.e. blogs) and high rankings on Search (Google, Bing, etc.)
Medical professionals understand that patients and consumers are looking for easier ways to communicate with their doctors and receive reliable information about their healthcare. Physicians such as Dr. Mellon who are stepping forward to provide valuable information via social media content are not only making life easier for their patients but also re-writing the rules of competition.
Over to you: What do you want social media to do for your practice?