Ophthalmology Business

SEPT 2013

Ophthalmology Business is focused on business topics relevant to the entrepreneurial ophthalmologist. It offers editorial, opinion, and practical tips for physicians running an ophthalmic practice. It is a companion publication of EyeWorld.

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it exists solely for professional purposes. To this end, there are two important types of professional LinkedIn pages: Group pages and Company pages. Company page: A basic Company page on LinkedIn often includes information gleaned from the company website. Establishing presence on LinkedIn lends credibility and improves SEO, and lends visibility to a company, practice, brand, or organization. From here companies or practices post news, company and industry updates, photos, speaking opportunities, and more. Group page: After a Company page has been set up, some (if not most) organizations wish to hold discussions. A Group page on LinkedIn is a secondary account where discussions are held between Group members and managers of the Group. The benefit of a Group is to have a constantly evolving and updated space for conversations without having to inundate the Company page with information. Instagram (130 million users) Think of Instagram as: A visual channel to tell your story. Benefits: Visual platform for reaching your target audience; for those in the healthcare industry, presence can potentially benefit from a refreshing visual makeover (highlight services, practice, procedures unique to your practice; personalize doctors; etc.); linking to community will help build a following and a network; lets followers see behind the "curtain" of your business; great for contests and participation. Drawbacks: Instagram easily becomes stale; overly used hashtags cause content to become lost in the sea of photos; inappropriate channel for some businesses and practices; visual and copy must reflect company/practice culture and message. How to use it: Instagram is a visual tool that employs hashtags and themes to propel an organization into the visible sphere of social media. We can use Instagram to tell a story in pictures. What would a picture book of your practice or message look like? Creating an Instagram account around this idea is challenging, but for certain companies and practices it allows for a unique perspective. A visual representation of a company or an organization is not a fit for everyone, and Instagram is not the platform of choice for delivering a company message. However, it can be a good supplement to your social media campaign, highlighting the behind-the-scenes perspective and lending character and personality to your company. Also, it is important to note that Instagram is currently even more popular than Twitter. How long this trend lasts remains to be seen. Tying it all together Launching a social media campaign is fairly straightforward; Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram link to your company or practice website via buttons (speak with your website developer—it's an easy process to implement). Ideally, all of your social media channels will feed into a constantly churning cycle of information that helps maintain top-of-mind presence for anyone searching for additional information about your company or practice, expanding your footprint and ultimately improving your search engine rankings. However, this does not mean that every business should invest time and money into every social media channel. Boil down your goals and ask yourself: Which channels will work best for my business? OB Ms. Evans is vice president of marketing at Ceatus Media Group, San Diego. An OWL member since 2008, she is the current programs committee chair. She can be contacted at tevans@vectorvision.com. Ms. Wyant is the manager of Digital Media at Pascale Communications. She can be contacted at laura@pascalecommunications.com. September 2013 • Ophthalmology Business eZine 19

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