WebPT Blog - Social Media
May 9, 2013| Mark Kats
Once signed by the governor, Missouri Senate Bill 159 will give patients greater access to physical therapy at a lower cost. The Missouri APTA Chapter has been working on pushing this bill through for two years. Great job! Learn more here.
May is Better Hearing and Speech Month. Take a few minutes to educate yourself about different communication disorders and the services speech-language pathologists and audiologists provide. Here's some information on school-based SLPs. You can also follow the #BHSM hashtag on Twitter for more.
And finally, this week is Nurses Week. On behalf of everyone here at WebPT, we'd like to thank all the hard working, caring nurses out there. Thank you for all that you do!
Of course, these are just a few news stories making the rounds this week. You can also find us on Facebook for more PT, OT, and SLP news and updates.
Apr 25, 2013| Ann Wendel
WebPT’s theme for the month of April focuses on protecting and bettering the planet. As Co-Founder Heidi Jannenga stated, “While we want everyone to play their part in protecting and bettering our planet, we also want any green initiatives to benefit your practice—and your patients.” Thinking about this theme, it occurred to me that the best way we can help build a better future is to cultivate relationships with our current DPT students (and undergraduate students interested in applying to physical therapy programs). The students of today will become the leaders of our profession tomorrow. What better way to benefit all people than to plant and nurture seeds in the passionate group of students currently enrolled in physical therapy programs?
Through social media, I have been fortunate to meet a bright, engaging, dynamic group of students who have challenged me both clinically and professionally. Before I became active in social media, my experiences with DPT students had been less than favorable. I had interacted with only a few students (those doing affiliations at the clinic I was managing). I had mentally split all DPT students into two categories: those who were nice people but poorly prepared for clinical practice and those who were well prepared technically but poorly prepared on an interpersonal level. There didn’t seem to be any gray area. Either the students didn’t have the basics nailed down, or they did and felt like that entitled them to be confrontational with more experienced clinicians.
My overall view of the future of our profession was that we were in trouble. I felt that we were sending out students who were not well-rounded professionals. Some people argue that you can’t teach interpersonal skills like respect, empathy, openness, and curiosity; I disagree. I believe that it’s our job as educators and clinical instructors to foster appropriate interpersonal skills along with other clinical skills. We are, after all, in the business of caring for other human beings.
Mar 20, 2013| Mark Kats
Today's post comes from WebPT Community Manager Mark Kats.
Several news outlets reported on the recent New England Journal of Medicine study that finds physical therapy to be as effective a treatment for a torn meniscus as knee surgery. This is great news for patients and physical therapists alike. It's also another in a series of great arguments for direct access. Read the full article here.
Speaking of direct access, looks like Indiana will join the now 49 states that allow patients to access physical therapy services without a referral. HB1034 passed Indiana Senate this week and is expected to be voted into law on July 1, 2013.
Meanwhile, the fight to keep SB381 from becoming law in California continues. It's been encouraging to see physical therapists present a united front on this, and we hope you'll continue to put pressure on California Senator Leland Yee (Senator.Yee@senate.ca.gov) to kill this bill. Here is WebPT Co-Founder and PT Heidi Jannenga's take on SB381.
Jan 29, 2013| Charlotte Bohnett
According to Hat Trick Associates, as of 2010, there were about 450 million active English language blogs. And in Blog Rules, Nancy Flynn explains that in 2006 a new blog entered the blogosphere every second. Even before Facebook and Twitter, businesses were using blogs as a way to have instant, two-way communication with customers and prospects online. So, why wouldn’t rehab therapists blog? It’s a great way to educate the community, give your practice personality, and promote your expertise.
While you obviously can’t share individual patient data or patient-specific recommendations, you can use your blog to educate, inform, and market generally. From sharing best practices and enlightening anecdotes to highlighting your key differentiators in services or a few core-strengthening home exercises, blogging helps you and your clinic:
- Add value by providing ongoing education. Treatment shouldn’t stop when patients walk out the door. Supplement regular therapy sessions not only with a home exercise program, but with your blog, which will provide patients with great health (and prevention!) resources to maintain their functionality and prevent further injury.
- Establish expertise and increase overall brand awareness. Your patients will appreciate your advice, but more importantly, they’ll trust you. And trust not only strengthens your position as the musculoskeletal expert, but it also fosters loyalty, which is essential. Patients have a lot of choice when it comes to rehab therapy, and you want them thinking of your practice—your brand.
- Increase loyalty through increased interaction with patients and peers. A blog keeps your brand top of mind through interaction. You’ve provided ongoing education and shared your expertise. Your patients are already thinking of your brand when they think physical therapy. So, why wouldn’t they recommend you to friends and family? People love to share knowledge with their circles, and they do not forget good experiences. Word of mouth can serve as a crucial revenue stream for your clinic.
Jan 29, 2013| Charlotte Bohnett
Today’s blog comes from E-rehab.com President David Straight, PT, DPT, OCS. E-Rehab provides physical therapy websites, video, email newsletters, search, and social media for physical therapy-owned private practices. Contact David at 800.468.5161 or email@example.com.
As Benjamin Franklin once said, “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one negative one to lose it.” With this statement in mind—and 21st century technology—let’s talk about reputation management in 2013. Here are a few questions to start you thinking:
- Do you know your online reputation?
- Are there any negative reviews about your practice on the Internet? If so, do you have a procedure for handling these reviews?
- Do you have a proactive reputation management program in place to inoculate your practice against negative reviews?
- Have you considered the impact that positive reviews will have on your practice’s reputation?
What is Online Reputation Management?
According to Wikipedia, “online reputation management is the practice of monitoring the Internet reputation of a person, brand, or business, with the goal of emphasizing positive coverage rather than negative reviews or feedback.” While much of online reputation management is focused on keeping negative search results at bay, the successful reputation manager works to “bridge the gap between how a company perceives itself and how others view it.”
Reputation management today is what most people would consider public relations in yesteryears. With all of the different outlets for raving fans or ranting critics (think review sites and social media platforms), reputation management is essential to your overall marketing strategy. All it takes is one unhappy patient, one angry employee, or one unethical competitor, and your online reputation can take a significant hit.online reputation, PT best practices, Referral Marketing, referrals, reputation management, reviews, social media
Jan 9, 2013| Charlotte Bohnett
Today’s blog post comes from Senior Writer Charlotte Bohnett and Community Manager Mark Kats.
Between Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Pinterest, Instagram, and whatever other cool, new social network just launched a minute ago, there are plenty of platforms for you to choose from. But which platform is right for you and your practice?
Social media is a conversation—not an ad—platform, so it’s not necessary (or advantageous) to suddenly arrive on the social scene with as many profiles as you can create. It’s much more important to select the platforms that best fit your practice and audience. You can spend all the time in the world tweeting, sharing, and liking without seeing the fruits of your labor so work smarter, not harder.
Here are some tips for choosing the right social media platform:
- Consider your goals on social: Are you there to engage with and educate current patients; to win new business through referrals; or stay on top of the latest industry news and trends?
- Based off your goals, decide who you want to reach. Who is your intended audience?
Nov 1, 2012| Charlotte Bohnett
Last week WebPT descended upon Las Vegas for PPS 2012, ready to talk EMR, technology, cloud computing, marketing, social media, and all things PT. In addition to rocking one of the coolest booths on the tradeshow floor, we thoroughly enjoyed seeing so many familiar faces and befriending new folks, too. Our After Party was a huge hit, and Brad and Heidi got a lot of great questions at their "Taking Your Practice Into the Cloud" presentation. Visit our Facebook page to view photos from PPS 2012.#DocSucks, APTA, cloud computing, ditch the pen and paper, emr, las vegas, marketing, pps, PPS2012, social media, therapydia, tradeshow
Sep 26, 2012| Erica Cohen
Today’s blog post comes from David Straight, PT, DPT, OCS, and President of E-rehab
Millions of Americans search for solutions to their movement disorders every year—and most don’t even consider physical therapy an option. Physical therapy, in most states, is still a referral-based business. In fact, a recent article in Spine stated that less than ten percent of the 32,000 back patients studied actually saw a physical therapist. However, physical therapy websites have seen a steady increase in traffic over the last few years. As healthcare costs increase, it only makes sense that consumers will continue to look for more affordable treatment options, and high quality physical therapy, in many cases, is a more affordable treatment than surgery or injections.
With this in mind, it’s imperative that your website not only stands out, but also drives online traffic into your clinic. Here are seven tips you can implement to make your website a success.content, copy, david straight, design, digital, e-rehab, marketing, physical therapy, PT best practices, social media, website
Sep 17, 2012| Charlotte Bohnett
Today's blog post comes from WebPT copywriters Charlotte Bohnett and Erica Cohen.
A dose of healthy competition never hurt anyone. In fact, it can be exactly the motivation you need to be better in business; better in school; just better. But there’s a monumental difference between setting yourself apart from your competitors and entering into a features race. If we’re all on a mission to elevate the profession and positively alter perceptions about rehab therapy, then we should be focusing on the benefits of our own practices rather than throwing elbows at our fellow professionals. Here are six ways to set yourself apart professionally and successfully.
1.) Identify Your Differentiators
Choose your words carefully—and we’re not just talking about obvious professionalism. Craft your story then tell it, and do so without clichés. It’s really easy to get into a “we’re #1” race with your competitors (a la Verizon and AT&T). But it takes strength, creativity, and a strong understanding and appreciation of what sets you apart to market yourself in a new way (a la Apple). Avoid words like “best,” “unique,” and “top” and focus on the substance behind this language. Why do you do what you do? What do you believe? How do you fulfill what you believe? What do you offer that’s different? How will your patients benefit? What do you want to provide (even intangibly) that no one else has even thought of yet? For a little more inspiration, check out Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle TED Talk below.branding, clinic marketing, competition, cooperation, goals, marketing, Physical Therapy Marketing, PT Marketing, PT social media marketing, SMART, social media, thank you economy, viral marketing, word of mouth
Sep 14, 2012| Charlotte Bohnett
Today’s blog post comes from WebPT copywriters Charlotte Bohnett and Erica Cohen.
Like us! Follow us! Nowadays most clinics have a Facebook and/or a Twitter. With everyone vying for customers’ attention on their newsfeeds, how do you stand out? How do you make your posts, tweets, and page more than just standard business promotion? Let’s talk about impact, emotion, and education. This week, we’re discussing four ways to use social media beyond the standard and instead, use your online presence to market yourself and the profession.
This week we’ve talked thought leadership, promotion, and feedback. In this fourth and final installment, let’s talk getting into the trenches with your fellow users.
Be One of the Users
Be a person first and a business owner second. While the face that you present through your company’s Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and/or Pinterest accounts should always remain unfailingly professional, it’s important to find and use your own voice. Your consumers will relate to and therefore trust you much more as a human instead of a company. So how do you successfully achieve this? Be relatable, be honest, be humble, and most importantly speak in a way and about topics that your consumers are interested in hearing. What that ultimately means is be one of the users, one of the people, a member of the community.best practices, branding, community, Facebook, linkedin, marketing, physical therapy, pinterest, social media, social media marketing for PTs, twitter, youtube