Three Major Social Media Trends for 2017

By: Kelly Hutchinson

1. More Mobile Video

On average, people in the U.S. spend three hours a day on mobile devices, with 87 percent of that time spent in apps like Facebook and Instagram. According to Facebook’s Q3 Results from 2016, mobile-only monthly active users rose over a billion, meaning that 59 percent of Facebook users access the platform via mobile device. videostat

So what content is being consumed on mobile? Video. One in three consumers watched video on their mobile devices in 2015, and that is projected to rise to two out of three consumers by 2018.

Mobile video viewership will continue to rise across social media platforms, which have already been adapting to accommodate this shift. On the second and third-quarter earnings calls in 2016, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussed their company-wide push to become “video first,” shifting focus from text and imagery to video.

With mobile viewership at a steady increase and social media outlets pushing for more video, plan on incorporating mobile-friendly video content into social media outlets in 2017. Not only does video align with online content trends, but recent research from BuzzSumo’s review of 800 million Facebook posts suggests video content was more likely to be shared than any other post types.

>> Live Video

live-reactions-android.pngLive video started building momentum across several social networking sites in 2016. From May-October, Facebook Live usage increased up to 4x, and to further expand live video, Facebook announced in October that users are able to connect live video to their TV via Apple TV or Chromecast.

Facebook is also piloting a Snapchat-like camera feature (that will roll out globally this year) that will allow users to post quick status updates via video, while incorporating additional visual features.

In late November, Instagram added live video with a twist – live video that disappears. This video feature appeals to Instagram’s younger audience, competes with Snapchat and provides a different experience from live video capabilities on other platforms.

On December 14th, Twitter announced the ability to ‘go live’ within the Twitter app, as opposed to redirecting to Periscope, to post real-time video content. While this should boost live-video usage on Twitter, data from January-August 2016 suggests Facebook Live has a higher usage base compared to Twitter’s Periscope usage.

Regardless of which live video platform is most popular, live video will continue gaining ground in the social landscape, presenting an opportunity for brands. According to TechCrunch, Live Video encourages more comments and are watched 3x longer than non-live content.

>> 360 Video

360vidsampoSocial platforms are moving toward Virtual Reality (VR), starting with 360 degree video. Facebook aims to increase use of 360 video, while potentially offering a reach boost to 360 content within News Feeds. Additionally, Twitter announced their 360-live capabilities via Periscope at the end of 2016. Currently, this feature is only rolled out to certain partners and requires a 360 camera.

The popularity and use of 360 video is projected to grow on both platforms throughout 2017 and the coming years, as Virtual and Augmented Reality become more popular and accessible.

Video in any format can be a major asset to a facility’s presence on social media, however, HIPAA regulations have to be factored into all video production. Learn how to keep videos HIPAA compliant from a previous MarketShare post.

2. Social Ad Utilization

Social networks are adapting algorithms to reduce clutter – pushing businesses toward spending ad dollars for visibility as opposed to relying on organic traffic and reach. Each platform has its own native ad capabilities and have proven ROI for brands.

Here are three benefits to advertising on social networking sites in 2017:

  • Targeting: Social networks provide audience-targeting capabilities that permit advertisers to pay only for those likely to be interested in, or engage with, an ad based on the targeting parameters. Whether targeting by behaviors, demographics, geography, interests or all the above, each platform has audience targeting and segmentation that allows you to get as broad and/or niche as needed.
  • Optimized Bidding: Most social media platforms allow you to adjust your bid based upon your business objectives. For example, if the main goal of a Facebook ad campaign is awareness, you have the ability to optimize for reach. On Twitter, video advertising is based on a price-per-view model, optimizing the ad for video views.
  • Affordability: Advertising on most social platforms (Snapchat not included) is affordable and easy to begin, and you can pause and end as needed. For example, on Facebook, you can potentially boost a post to 250 users for $5.00/day.

Many Divisions and facilities have already delved into the world of advertising on social media, and with algorithms limiting business’ organic social reach, there is no better time to test it out if your social strategy needs a boost.

3. Embracing Social Media Direct Messaging

Social networking sites have continually been updating and improving their direct messaging platforms and capabilities. While messenger capabilities are typically used for user-to-user communication, social sites are pushing for brands to utilize this feature to engage directly with their consumers, and vice versa.

However, this is difficult for healthcare facilities to utilize and still align with HIPAA regulations, since conversations with patients need to be taken out of the social setting and into the doctor’s office. Despite this setback, it is crucial to monitor a social profile’s direct messages and be prepared to respond quickly, effectively and within HIPAA’s guidelines (i.e. not revealing any patient’s condition or coverage data online).

If you would like to discuss how to best respond to direct messages on social media, please reach out to the Reputation Management Team here.

Promoting Healthcare Videos on Social Media: 101

By: Kelly Hutchinson

According to a U.S. Digital Future in Focus Report, 7 out of 8 Americans watch online video with more than half consuming video on a daily basis. Looking forward, Google estimates that video consumption will account for 70% of all consumer internet traffic by the end of 2017.

This presents a significant opportunity for marketers to reach consumers with timely, entertaining, relevant videos through the platforms and apps they are viewing these videos – social networking sites.

With users spending more than 43 minutes daily on social networking sites like Facebook, social networks provide a fitting platform for promoting videos.

To guide video promotion on social networking platforms, check out our recommendations, tips and ad opportunities for four of the main social sites below.


> Upload Video File Directly to Facebook

When promoting videos on Facebook, always remember to upload the video file directly to Facebook rather than posting a YouTube link. This allows the video to appear up to 11x larger in a user’s News Feed and enables the auto-play feature.

Posting a YouTube video link, as opposed to directly uploading the video, will share a smaller thumbnail image of the video and creates an extra step for the user.

> Utilize Facebook Advertising to Boost Video Views

Explore Facebook ad options to boost video views if appropriate and beneficial for your video. This social media platform is a good promotion outlet for videos that are more emotional, personal or humorous in nature, but would not be as beneficial for a procedure focused, clinical video. Videos can be used in three different ad formats on Facebook:


  • Single Video ads are the standard video layout. This format is optimal when promoting only one specific video.
  • Carousel ads showcase up to five clickable images or videos for the user to scroll through within a single ad unit. This format is best for showcasing a series of short videos, or alongside other imagery creative from a marketing campaign.
  • Canvas ads use a combination of media types, like videos, still images and call-to-action buttons, to convey a sponsor message as an interactive, seamless experience on mobile devices. Similar to the Carousel ads, this format would be most beneficial for a marketing campaign that tells a story through creative assets.

Tip: When looking at Facebook metrics, a video view is counted each time a user views a video for at least three seconds.

Click here to learn more about video advertising on Facebook.



> Share Short Videos

Since Twitter focuses on providing an outlet to share information in a clear and concise way, it is only recommended to promote short, 10-30 second videos on the platform, even though Twitter permits videos up to 140 seconds in length.

> Upload Video File Directly to Twitter

As with Facebook, it is recommended to directly upload videos as opposed to linking to them off-site. It is important to note that a video upload does not count toward the 140-character tweet limit. Uploaded videos will automatically play in Twitter feeds and timelines without sound, but will expand and unmute when a user taps on the video.

> Utilize Twitter Advertising to Boost Video Views

Twitter video ads can help boost video views and benefit marketing campaigns and initiatives. Here are a few things to note about Twitter video ads:

  • According to Twitter, nearly 90 percent of all Promoted Videos are viewed on mobile devices, so it is key to optimize videos for mobile.
  • Communicate a video’s message in the first 15 seconds of a promoted video.
  • An advertiser has 116 characters of tweet copy, 70 characters for the video title and 200 characters for a video’s description. Incorporate crucial keywords and compelling tweet copy to encourage users to tap into a video.
  • Advertisers can add a call to action to a video – “Visit site” and “Watch Now”.

Tip: When looking at Twitter metrics, a video view is counted each time a user views a video for at least three seconds.

Click here to learn more about Twitter video ads.



  • This Facebook-owned platform should not be disregarded by healthcare marketers when promoting highly visual, compelling and emotional video content.
  • This social platform is not recommended for clinical or procedural videos.
  • The maximum video length permitted is 60 seconds, and uploaded videos will automatically play without sound in an Instagram feed until tapped.

> Utilize Instagram Advertising to Boost Video Views

Here are three considerations when promoting a video on Instagram via video ads:

  • Instagram ads will not appear to people viewing Instagram on a desktop computer  (this is a low number of users).
  • There are two formats for video ads on Instagram – Video (single videos) and Carousel (multiple videos and/or images).
  • By default, Instagram automatically optimizes ads and shows them to people who are more likely to view a video.

Click here to learn more about Instagram video ads.



This Millennial-centered social platform is a trendy channel to promote video content. According to Snapchat, its content reaches 41 percent of all 18-34-year-olds in the U.S. in a given day, compared to only 6 percent on average reached through TV networks. So how do brands use it?

For healthcare facilities, Snapchat provides a way to connect with young consumers and build brand awareness.

  • This video platform is ideal for Q&A’s with providers, fast health tips and showcasing the personality of a facility and its staff.
  • Posts to Snapchat, called snaps, come in 10-second maximum increments, but up to as many increments as uploaded. For example, if more time is needed, a user can post a series of snap videos that vary from 1-10 seconds, but flow from one snap to the other, appearing as one longer video with micro pauses.
  • Snapchat does not allow videos to be uploaded without the “from Camera-roll” format and designation. Regular video uploads are only available to advertisers. Instead, brands have to record video that posts directly to the brand account’s Story. This means videos cannot be edits, so are more casual in nature .

> Utilize Snapchat Advertising to Boost Awareness

If existing video assets would be a good fit for the Snapchat audience, Snapchat has advertising opportunities to promote video content and engagement. Snap Ads combine a full-screen video ad with direct response, as it is intended for a user to swipe up on an ad to reveal additional content, like a longer video, an informative article or a website. Snapchat has seen a 5x higher swipe-rate over average click-through rates on other advertising platforms.

Click here to learn more about Snapchat video ads.

For more information and resources about promoting your facility’s videos online, contact the Marketing and Digital Services Team.

Lessons from SXSW 2016

By: Emily Williams


From March 11-15 I attended the South by Southwest (SXSW) conference in Austin, Texas. Yes, most people know this as a huge music festival. However, there are three conferences happening mostly simultaneously: Music, Film and Interactive. The Interactive Track (that I attended) is a massive, cutting-edge tech and digital conference featuring keynote speakers (like President Obama), numerous sessions/panels (including execs from Facebook, Google, Mashable, AdCouncil, GM, Unilever and a variety of celebs) and a host of networking events.

Here are the highlights from the top 4 sessions I attended:

  • President Barack Obama
    Tech & Government

    • President Obama stressed that law enforcement should be able to legally collect information on electronic devices – expressing direct opposition of encryption from companies like Apple. He did not comment directly on the current Apple / San Bernardino case, but cited the fact that since the government can dig through “your underwear drawer” at your house, your digital information should be treated with the same access.
    • The President encouraged more relationship between government and tech, recommending that the government learn more lessons from the private tech world to enhance civic engagement and efficiency issues in the government. He urged tech leaders to consider consulting on government projects – even joking about the notorious crash of the website as an example of the government’s need for outside tech help.
    • Interested in knowing more? Check out this recap or this full transcript of his remarks.
  • Daring Greatly
    Brene Brown (Researcher, Author)

    • Brene Brown is a notorious researcher and storyteller that reached fame through her Ted Talk on the power of vulnerability – one of the most watched Ted Talks of all time (currently more than 24 million views).
    • As a keynote (the only keynote – other than President Obama – that has been known to elicit massive standing ovations), she encouraged the audience to live vulnerably, recognize emotions and be mindful.
    • Brown reminded us of Teddy Roosevelt’s famous quote:

      It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood.

      She used this quote to encourage all of us to have our own inner circle – a predetermined number of voices that we choose will matter. She reminded us that those willing to fight in the arena will always fail at some point (reaping both the risk and reward of the fight), therefore those sitting in the stands such not be able to judge our lives while we are in the arena. If you live in the arena, choose a group of voices also in the arena to be able to speak into your life.

    • Those who are vulnerable enough to risk failing will get back up as an even greater person. According to Brown, those who return from failure stronger than before have three things in common:
      • The reckoning – When we are in an emotional state, our emotions get the first crack at telling ourselves the story of what is happening around us. Those who are aware of their emotions are able to investigate them thoroughly for their purpose rather than ignore or indulge them.
      • The rumble – We have to wrestle with our stories to determine the truth – not just the story that we are telling ourselves is true.
      • The revolution – We use our fights, failures and resolutions to transform our behavior and our stories.
  • Improving Engagement in a Mobile and Social World
    Stacy Garcia (Google)

    • Stacy Garcia of Google challenged marketers to focus on mobile and social when building brands. Companies must build for mobile first, engage users socially and drive traffic to websites to make successful conversions.
    • According to Garcia, 74% of people say they will return to a site if it is mobile friendly. When optimizing websites for mobile, Garcia encouraged us to do three things:
      • Make it fast
      • Make it easy for users
      • Make it consistent
    • There are four types of content that people share:
      • Emotion – When people care, they share.
      • Social Proof – People share what makes them look cool, smart, savvy, etc.
      • Practical Value – If your content is useful, people will spread the word.
      • Stories – People don’t share information, they share stories.
  • Is Twitter the New Customer Call Center?
    Panel: Rebecca Harris (GM), Ashley Mainz (Southwest Airlines), Michael Nagel (Cummins), Angela Wells (Oracle)

    • In this panel discussion, major players in the online reviews / social media space discussed reputation management issues and how to respond to customer service issues online.
    • According to the 2015 Aspect Consumer Experience Survey, 73% of consumers want the ability to solve product/service issues on their own. 1/3rd say they’d rather clean a toilet that speak with customer service.
    • Harris noted that there are two types of customer voices on Twitter:
      • People who want to find a solution
      • People who are mad at the company and want to complain publicly
    • The key to great customer service online is quick, direct responses to consumers. And don’t just respond to the negative – but shock and surprise your online audience as well! Southwest gave an example of giving airline points to a user who tweeted them about frustrations over another airline’s baggage fees.
    • Harris noted that GM recently had a customer that tweeted GM for advice about purchasing a new truck. GM quickly engaged this client in online dialogue via twitter, landing the consumer in the lot to ultimately purchase the truck. The customer had also initially tweeted GM’s major competitor, but got no response from that company.
    • Recent research from Lithium Technologies shows that 53% of people expect a response from a tweet to a company. That number increases to 73% if the tweet is about something negative.
    • Southwest Airlines has a maximum response time of 15 minutes to online interactions. However, their average response time is roughly 6 minutes.
    • Harris said that GM’s philosophy for customer service reps is to hire nice, smart people who really care. Then let them go at it!

Want to know more about SXSW 2016? Visit the SXSW website or email me with any questions!

Best Times for Businesses to Post Content Online

By: Carla Rivera

In our fast-paced world where content is being posted and shared at rapid-fire speed, how do you capture your audience’s attention?  The truth is that every company is continuously trying to figure this out, some faster than others.  What sets them apart?  Not only having the perfect “sharable” content and the right tools, but also having the right knowledge.  When it comes to social media, this means knowing when to post on each outlet.

You hear it all the time, “timing is everything.”  Posting content at just the right time on social media means reaching a broader audience.  The more people that see your content, the bigger the audience you engage and the more likely they are to share that content, giving you an even wider reach than you initially anticipated.  Did I mention posting on social media doesn’t cost a thing?  You have a free marketing tool right at your hands, so why not use it correctly?!

You may remember a similar post on our blog from May 2014. Remember that statistics on social media are always changing.  Make sure you do your research every year to keep up with the latest trends.

Nora Flint of TruConversion recently released the latest analytics on the best times for businesses to share content on each social media platform.

Here is the breakdown:


Best Time:  1 p.m. – 3 p.m., with Friday being the best day for user engagement.  People tend to be in a better mood on Fridays, too.  Use this day to your advantage!  Facebook also allows you to schedule posts ahead of time so don’t forget use this feature.  And remember that videos are more engaging than any other content, followed closely by status updates, links and photos.

Worst Time:  8 p.m. – 8 a.m.  If your practice is closed outside of normal daytime business hours, then you may not be posting then anyways!

Quick Tip!  Need content?  Share a video you recently posted on your YouTube channel.



Best Time:  12 p.m. and 6 p.m. for a higher CTR, with Wednesdays and weekends being the best days for user engagement.  If you’re looking for more retweets, then 5 p.m. is the right time for this.  Also, weekdays are always a good time to tweet being that most people check their Twitter during office hours.  And even though you can’t schedule tweets, the 140 character limit makes it easy to tweet at any time.

Worst Time:  8 p.m. or later any day, particularly on Fridays after 3 p.m.   Think of nighttime as a “Twitter Break.”

Quick Tip!  Try posting small facts and bits of information related to the most searched medical terms.  You never know who might be thinking of booking an appointment that pertains to something that you just posted.



Best Time:  12 p.m. – 3 p.m.  You will be able to engage more users in the evening, with peak time being from Thursday – Sunday.  If you have content that you’d like to share, make sure you post it towards the end of the work week.

Worst Time:  5 a.m. – 6 a.m., especially Monday – Wednesday.

Quick Tip!  What makes content viewable and sharable?  Just think, what am I expecting to see in this YouTube channel?  More than likely the answer will be: provider bios, practice overviews, educational videos, testimonials, facility tours, provider Q&A’s, etc. Anything informative.

google plus capture


Best Time:  9 a.m. – 10 a.m., with user engagement being higher on Wednesdays.  If you’re going to make a social media post when you first come into work, this should be it.

Worst Time:  3 a.m. – 7 a.m.  Conveniently, this is snooze time for most.

Quick Tip!  Since this platform is perfect for targeting people between the ages of 45–54, this makes a great outlet to share information about your practice, videos, health-related articles, etc.

Check out TruConversion’s infographic for stats on additional social media platforms!

6 Tips to Keep Your Online Conversations Out of the Danger Zone

By: Morrow Heard

Online Conversation Danger Zone
Actively engaging patients online is a great way to improve your practice’s online reputation and offline recognition; however, sometimes these online discussions generate comments harmful to your facility’s reputation. While online conversations do provide the potential for critical comments, the insight and opinions provided are very valuable. Follow these 6 tips to keep your online conversations out of the danger zone.

  1. Avoid hot topics. It is no secret that some topics can develop into heated discussion, especially those that are on everyone’s mind and in the news of the day. When asking questions or engaging online avoid topics that could have a polarizing effect and develop into a heated political debate.
  2. Separate personal interests from business activity. Any questions or engagements that your practice posts online should be clear of personal opinion, and should be connected to the actual business interest.
  3. Conduct a risk analysis. Before posting anything online make sure to conduct a risk analysis and consider worst case scenarios. What would the worst response be? Could this question lead to a discussion that we do not want to be associated with?
  4. Don’t react to provocation. Steer clear of the discussion if becomes a heated debate. Don’t react to deliberate comments intended to stir up a response.
  5. Stay away from open-ended questions with many interpretations. Open ended questions that can be interpreted in many different ways leave too much room for unwanted discussion. Keep questions specific and relevant such as a trivia question or a question about the history of the practice.
  6. Continually monitor activity. Be sure to continually monitor all of the activity associated with your practice online. Even comments posted as a response to a post can be damaging to your practice’s reputation even if your practice did not write them.

Follow all 6 tips, and you can keep your practice out of the online discussion danger zone.

Reputation Management Tip #1: Be Social

By: Grant Peterre

Last year, social media contributors at Forbes published a list of tips for managing online reputations in the business world. The need for social media and reputation management has become increasingly clear as more and more consumers turn to online profiles as a trustworthy testimonial source. This is especially true for healthcare, as clients and patients not referred by friends and family will seek information online regarding new physicians, hospitals, and facilities. You want your online reputation to be as positive and presentable as possible, as potential new patients will most likely seek your information on the internet.

In this five-part series, we will examine each reputation management tip provided by Forbes and discuss the benefits for your healthcare community.

Tip #1: Be Social

reputation management tips from forbes #1 be social

Social media platforms provide the ideal forum to quickly and easily interact with your patient base. Another added benefit is that you can be as formal or as informal as you want. Has someone posted a less-than-positive review on your Facebook business page? Send them a courteous message and offer the contact information for a manager or director that can personally assist them with their issue. Have a great picture from a community service event that your facility has hosted? Share it on your Twitter page with a clever hashtag for all your followers to see!

Google, Facebook, and Twitter are the social profiles that perform the best in search results, so make sure you claim your pages! This will ensure that you are in control of your online reputation. To gain an even larger online presence for your facility, link all of your social profiles together to direct users between multiple platforms.

Read more about Reputation Management from Forbes, and be watching for the next four tips to be discussed here!

The Ins and Outs of a Happy Online Audience

Followers on social media are often direct consumers of your business, so their happiness is important. For example, 72% of followers of a business on Twitter are more likely to purchase from them. Retaining your customers on social media is essential – but what causes people to unfollow your business? BuzzStream and Fractl surveyed more than nine-hundred people to find out why they unfollow businesses on social media. They found the most common reason was the business was producing repetitive and boring content. Excessive posting also resulted in unfollows. According to the survey respondents, however, businesses can keep their audience happy by posting more images and fresh content. Check out this infographic to learn more.

Why People Unfollow Brands on Social Media Infographic Promote My Practice