Maria Reitan interviews Kyung Han and Rachelle Spero who preview their presentation on “Sphere of Influence of Key Opinion Leaders in Health Care Social Media.”
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Tags: Deirdre+Breakenridge, health+care+communications, Kyung+Han, prsa+conference
Our bottom line of media communications, no matter the technology or medium: The more things change, the more they remain the same.
The biggest change, of course, is that online media is an open and free 2-way conversation with consumers; you cannot fully control it. What remains the same is that your spokespeople and executives can manage the risks and opportunities if they understand and monitor the multimedia landscape, develop relevant key messages and are trained to weave them into honest dialogue and engagement.
Say Web 2.0, and many communicators think only of pro-active social media programs, interactive Web sites and online campaigns. For health care practitioners in particular, these types of outreach raise concerns about regulatory restrictions, especially with prescription pharmaceuticals and regulated devices. So they may be tempted to say, “It’s not for me.”
Yet your message has never been more important than in today’s real-time, all-the-time multimedia world. That applies whether it’s part of a planned campaign or not. Just because you aren’t in front of a TV reporter’s camera or being interviewed by a health care trade or mainstream print reporter, doesn’t mean you aren’t on the record.
In a recent blog, Ben Garrett wrote about the popularity of the social media presentations at the April Health Care Academy Conference held in Chicago. We just can’t get enough information about social media because public relations people recognize the potential for using it in strategic communications. But many of us did not grow up digital, and so we can be intimidated.
The PRSA Health Academy is offering others the opportunity to learn how to create engagement campaigns with Facebook, MySpace, YouTube and SecondLife, from two dynamic presenters at an upcoming teleseminar on June 11.
Ben Garrett, executive producer at On the Scene Productions, is an award-winning health producer with more than 28 years of experience in broadcast public relations, and an innovator in health care communications. He is joined by Dmitriy Kruglyak, CEO of Starfish Apps and Trusted.MD, a social network for health care consumers, professionals and organizations. Ben and Dmitriy will tell us how to harness rich media and use social distribution to make our campaigns more effective.
If you are like most of the marketing and communication professionals I talk to regularly, you are probably thinking about the impact of top social networking sites on your company, your projects and your job description.
How do you go from contemplating a plan of action to producing tangible results?
First, understand the difference between “broadcast” and “social” distribution. Broadcast is defined as any traditional media, such as TV and print and includes “central-to-many” online communication, such as corporate Web sites, blogs or e-mail newsletters. Social is a new term uniting and replacing concepts known as word-of-mouth, buzz and viral marketing.
Why a new term? Because top social networking sites are transforming into social network application platforms (SNAP), with Facebook leading the way. SNAP provides a structured environment for creating applications that spread through existing friend networks via member profiles and targeted messages. Distribution can be tracked and tuned at every step along the way. Minor tweaks can make a difference between a flatline and explosive growth.
It was a pleasure to attend the recent PRSA Health Academy meeting in Chicago, the first time the Academy has held its annual get together outside of Washington, D.C. in 19 years, but it was well worth the wait and a terrific “social” gathering. The over-arching theme was “Boomers, Xers and Nexters — Communicating in a Cross-Generational/Cross-Cultural Landscape,” but the hottest topic of all was social media. Speakers like Ed Schipul talked about how we as health care communicators can ethically penetrate Internet-based communities, and he also explained to us neophytes how the newest social media application “Twitter” works. Dmitry Kruglyak, CEO of Trusted.MD, and one of the top experts on FaceBook, explained how Susan G. Komen used a “Pink Ribbon Application” to engage more than three million FaceBook members in supporting a cure for breast cancer.
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