Times have surely changed. It is no longer a time now when doctors spend their time attending to their patients at specific hours. Scientific advancements have enabled everyone, especially doctors to attend to the patient’s qualms at any given hour. If your question is whether doctors these days are technophobes? Well, the answer can be said as a definite NO.
Social media has made doctors to move away from the stereotypical impression that a patient’s privacy can be invaded. Instead, it has enabled them to send out health text messages to patients, track disease trends on Twitter, identify medical problems on Facebook pages and communicate with patients through email.
Physicians these days realize that patients prefer more than just a 15-minute office visit and callback at the end of the day.
Kansas City pediatrician Natasha Burgert shares similar views saying, “These tools are embedded in my work day. This is something I do in between checkups. It’s much easier for me to shoot you an email and show you a blog post than it is to phone you back. That’s what old-school physicians are going to be doing, spending an hour at the end of the day.’
Dr. Burgert also makes it a point to return her patients’ phone calls, conveys tips on her blog, Facebook and Twitter pages relating to child-rearing.
She also has stated that such a medium ensures that the doctor and the patient stay connected at times when a patient requires constant medical attention without actually being present around them.
Another person from the medical fraternity to join in the bandwagon of the social media users has been Dr. Steven Nissen. Dr. Nissen in his 60’s, a cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic, must be noted, for he has only recently started to experiment in e-technology. He recently went live on Twitter.
Dr. Nissen has said that he found the whole experience of going live on a Twitter chat as “in some ways maybe a little exhilarating.” He also mentioned, “This was an opportunity to use a different communication channel to find an audience to talk about heart health. The downside is that we dumb it down. It’s very challenging for physicians, primarily because the messages that we have are not conducive to 14 characters. If you ask me a question, you’re likely to get a five-minute answer.” He discussed issues such as heart failure and cholesterol problems. Dr. Nissen has expressed his views on using the medium more in the future.
The American Medical Association has also stepped in to acknowledge physicians from using social media, but has also advised them to “maintain appropriate boundaries” with patients.
A recent online study in March found that 60 percent of state public health departments use Twitter or another social media site to interact with their patients.
Lee Aase, director of Mayo Clinic’s Center for Social Media inRochester,Minn has said that they have already been active on the social media domain by holding “Tweet camps” for their doctors on using Twitter. He further goes on to say, “If we can trust doctors with sharp instruments and narcotics, we can trust them with Twitter and Facebook.”
M&M is organizing a social media game in Canada. By using Google maps, Facebook, Twitter & Foursquare consumers need to trace ‘Red’.
The intro video is pretty cool and activates consumers to start their M&M hunt in the city of Toronto. Tips are posted on Facebook and Twitter to guide the gamers through the streets. Each day (until 4/12) there are three chances to find ‘Red’.
By following the game on Foursquare, players gain further clues as the Red M&M checks in to locations. Extra tips are unlocked each time the player covers 30km via Street View. Back on Toronto terra firma, hints are being left via QR codes on posters or barcodes on packs of the sweetMore tips can be found in the Toronto streets. There are hidden tips on posters and M&M packages, consumers can scan them via the stickybits app.
Once they have found Red, players are encouraged to keep quiet about their find and log the details by clicking a button – each success giving them extra entries into a sweepstake to win a red Smart car. Fifteen runners up will receive an iPod, cinema tickets and free M&Ms.
A very nice way to keep your customers engaged and motivated, isnt it?
The campaign : To promote Corona Light, the drinks company created a Times Square app on their Facebook page, that allows users to upload a picture. Pictures entered will feature in a billboard to be shown in Times Square, from November 8 – December 6 2010. People have to
‘Like’ the page before they can enter, which is driving up their numbers. The numbers : 118,986 Facebook fans at time of writing (October 2010) Why we love it : A high impact campaign that has really caught the attention of Facebook users, attracted by the kudos of having their picture shown in a high-impact setting. It shows what can be done by bigger brands who have the luxury of higher marketing spend, handing over advertising
power to the people. Find it at : http://www.facebook.com/CoronaLight
The campaign : A great early example of a social media campaign, from Blendtec. It showed how fun content can come from the most unlikely of sources – kitchen accessories. The Blendtec site features a range of products being put to the test in a series of videos to see if it will blend. The videos featured on the microsite Will it Blend.
The numbers : Over 140 million video views. Sales of blenders have increased by 700% since 2006.
Why we love it : No social media list would be complete without it! As well as being a brilliantly fun campaign, it also proves the case for social media driving sales, as the sales figures above show.