How Social Media Can Play An Important Role In Promoting Medical Tourism?

People are most likely to believe in shared information and in a two-way form of interaction mode of social media, which serves the best purpose in this method. Medical travellers not only look up for information and destination and clinic selection but are also likely to share their experience in social media platforms.

The pew national survey 2014 found out that nearly 72% of the American population lookup for the information online. One out of the four patients check reviews and experience with a particular clinic found online. When the emphasis is one of the patients' experience, then one can easily imagine the impact of social media in promoting anything, including medical tours.

Social media can be useful in medical tourism promotions to a great extent. Leading healthcare brands are focusing a lot on authentic digital platforms for information dissemination.

Google isn't enough:

One out of every twenty google searches on google search trends is about health. 85%of the doctors believe that patient opinions are greatly misled by google search results.  Potential customers always look for authentic information to address their issues.

Social media: a vital tool in the digital market.

Facebook:

Facebook is the most used social media platform in the world, needless to mention its enormous popularity. Any campaign on Facebook has the potential to reach millions of people.

  • More than 1.15 billion people use Facebook.
  • A Facebook log in can access one million web pages.
  • 23% of Facebook users log in every day.
  • 47% of Americans say Facebook is #1 influencer of purchases.
  • 70%of marketers use Facebook to gain customers.

Using Facebook to connect with medical tourist all over the world: the medical tourism industry has much to benefit from the use of social media because of the influence it has on the people recently. Social media channels can prove to be an effective online promotional strategy to bring in more medical tourists.

One way of potentially bringing in more medical tourists would be through advertising. The same can be done through Facebook. Ads on Facebook should be able to educate potential patients on why they should choose a particular medical company for their health needs.

Twitter:
  • Over 550 million registered users.
  • Two hundred fifteen million monthly active users.
  • 34% of marketers use Twitter to generate leads successfully.
  • Fastest growing network with a 44% growth from 22012-13

Advertisements took to twitter to directly interact with clients and get to know about their needs. A simple retweet is required for the message to reach many people.

Hashtags are trendy on social media channels. In twitter, the selection of a proper hashtag is crucial when attempting to start a twitter chat. The hashtag should be relevant to the brand being promoted and may contain the company's name.

Pinterest:

Pinterest may not be as common as platforms like Facebook and Twitter, but it's a lot different and more stylish. Users can make a board and pin whatever they may find interesting into separate groups. The pages also give links outside Pinterest. Many businesses stress more pictures and even fill some blank texts in the false belief that pictures speak a thousand words.

Instagram:

Instagram has its aim focused firmly on pictures. It increases the responsibility of the advertiser. The company needs to share catchy photographs and posters to gain attention. The aim of using Instagram as a platform is to narrate experience based on prospective clients' personality. No one is looking at print ads as everybody's attention is glued to smartphones and social media.

YouTube:

Viewing a video of an advertiser is a lot less complicated than looking up for textual information on Facebook or twitter. One does not have to register themselves to view a video online. This is what works speculate for sites like YouTube.

Personalized social media will provide a dose of reach:

Everybody needs undivided attention to satisfy their requirements. Social media has helped in simplifying the approach of personalization.

  • Online reviews of physicians combined with personal thoughts will drive the growth of clinics, hospitals and centres of excellence.
  • Curated videos in social media can be useful to dispense information.
  • Create opportunities for live interactions with doctors.
  • Being an excellent listener on any platform is essential to build a brand reputation.

15 practical social media marketing strategies:

  1. Focus on engagement more that audience volume.
  2. Creating a social media team.
  3. Building an online personality.
  4. Educating the target audience.
  5. Providing unique content that isn't found anywhere.
  6. Be a good listener and smart in responding.
  7. Create viral content to appeal to communities online.
  8. Apply surveys and contests to drive engagement.
  9. Facilitate collaboration with physicians online.
  10. Aim for more personalized content.
  11. Be a smart storyteller.
  12. Focus on relationship building and customer loyalty.
  13. Selecting a brand ambassador from loyal customers.
  14. Create relevant online ads.
  15. Creating different content for different channels.

The potential downside of social media platforms:

Medical tourists using the internet to look up for pieces of information on specific medical tourism won't tolerate any issues that they may face while surfing the websites. They always tend to move to the next potential website when they face any inconvenience.

Social media is shaping up to be an essential tool in determining the success rate of the medical tourism business. Medical tourism providers need to be increasingly wary of how they handle their online profiles and websites. They also have to be cautious about taking their clients to avoid negative publicity on social media.

Final word:

The decision for social media platform should not be blindly based on social media stories, glossy, eye catchy pictures, witty captions and attention-grabbing videos. Medical tourist need to go a great deal of homework and research before they decide travelling anywhere and getting treatment. It's not always wise to pick up a doctor from any random Facebook page. Training and experience of physicians, board certification and accreditation still matter when it comes to choosing any treatment.