MedTech isn’t a typical B2B industry. The systems you develop and the partnerships you form literally transform — and even save — lives. MedTech success has always required higher doses of trust, relationship building, and customer focus. Today, you have a somewhat-overlooked tool that can make achieving those objectives easier than ever before: social media.
If you need some convincing before you can believe that social media can be effective for raising awareness about your MedTech innovations, and for growing your business, here are eight compelling reasons to consider social media for your next marketing activity.
1. Patients Are There
According to PwC, when consumers need to make a health decision, they’re turning to social media for information and support. These consumers may start a dialogue, or join a patient community to find other people facing their same challenges. Furthermore, an Evariant survey found 57 percent of patients make decisions on where to get healthcare based on social media presence.
2. Patients Crave Information
Research by the Pew Internet & American Life Project found 80 percent of all internet users — about 93 million Americans — have searched health-related topics online. That’s an increase from 62 percent in 2001. Most people, 63 percent, went online to research a specific disease or medical problem, and nearly half, 47 percent, researched medical treatments or procedures. The study concludes that looking for health information is one of the most popular online activities.
3. You Can Become a Trusted Source of Information
Social media isn’t just for advertising your products and your business. In fact, that should be a small percentage of your activity. Instead, it’s an opportunity to share information and establish yourself as an authority in your field.
Curate information that your social media followers would find valuable, like information on new technologies and innovation, new treatments, or industry trends. Also share information that speaks to healthcare providers’ challenges and that can help improve patient outcomes. You’ll build trust as a thought leader and associate your brand with leadership and excellence.
4. You Can Make It Fun
People turn to social media because it’s a quick way to find what they’re looking for — and it can be an enjoyable pastime. Granted, some of the subject matter you are dealing with dictates a more somber tone, but you can find occasions to use eye-catching graphics, video, and healthcare infographics to add interest and visual appeal. And you certainly can celebrate patient success stories! When you find the right mix of professionalism, appeal, and compassion, you’ll attract a larger audience and improve your reach. This can also add value to your partnerships with surgeons and other healthcare providers by creating a greater demand for you MedTech systems.
5. If People Like You, They’ll Share Your Posts
The people you’ve helped, and partners who value working with you, will find you on social media and help spread the word about the good work you’re doing. Their endorsements on social media can go a long way toward convincing others who need your systems to find out more about your company. This is especially true since, as Ipsos MediaCT research found, user-generated content is 35 percent more memorable and 50 percent more trusted than other types of media.
6. You Can Network There
The relationships you build on social media aren’t limited to those with patients. You can also build relationships with partners. Social media offers an effective platform for introducing a new provider who is using your system, or announcing a new partnership with another technology provider. Hashtags and keywords make social media posts visible to those businesses, who will share or like your posts, expanding visibility to other users on the platform. You can also make connections and use messaging on social media platforms to reach out to new contacts.
7. It Helps Manage Your Reputation
MedTech companies may be reluctant to have social media accounts because of the potential for negative comments. Realistically, people who want to post a negative comment online will find a way to do it whether you have a social media account or not. With a social platform, however, you can monitor those comments and respond more easily. Not only can your prompt, courteous response salvage the relationship with an unhappy patient, it can also demonstrate to other followers that you are dedicated to professionalism and the well-being of the patients your systems are designed to help.
8. Healthcare Social Campaigns Work
Maybe the best reason for MedTech marketing on social media is, it works. Proof of that can be found in a list HubSpot compiled of 10 successful healthcare marketing campaigns. One example included there is the #YESMAMM campaign by Carilion Clinic in Virginia, which answered breast cancer FAQs during a Twitter chat and connected women with their website for mammogram appointments. Another is “Patients Stories” by New York Presbyterian Hospital, which provides accounts of how patients were saved through the hospital’s services. Connecting MedTech with physicians, a third example is “Surgical Training in 360 Degrees,” which Medical Realities launched. The campaign uses Oculus Rift virtual reality to show surgeons how surgeries are perceived from a patient’s point of view.
Partnering with a healthcare system or provider, your campaigns on trending topics may even have the chance to go viral, which can mean having your system and your brand be introduced to thousands — or even millions — of people.
Put Your Business Front & Center
Your business is built on improving the quality of life for many people — why not be active in social media communities where those people interact and make decisions? With 80 percent of the U.S population on social media, and the number of worldwide social media users expected to reach 2.95 billion by 2020, it’s time to become a part of the trend becoming a major influencer in so many lives. You will experience ROI in a variety of ways, from new contacts, increased web traffic, and new leads — and you may get to virtually meet some of the people your MedTech system is helping. #whywait
Not sure who your company should be engaging with on social media? No problem. Carevoyance is a leading source for healthcare data, analytics, and insight. Our powerful platform helps you find the physicians and hospitals your brand needs to connect with on social media, giving your marketing team the tools they need to be productive and your sales team the power close more deals. Click the button below to see Carevoyance in action!
About the Author
Carevoyance contributor Bernadette Wilson of B Wilson Marketing Communications is an experienced journalist, writer, editor, and B2B marketer, specializing in content for technology companies.