Have you heard a lot of people telling you to embrace social media? If you have been reading this column on NDNR for the last 18 months, you have heard us endorsing it. How is it working for you? Are you building a community on Facebook? Are you reaching your mentors on Twitter? Have you got new patients from GroupOn? Are you taking any initiative?
For years, our industry has been shackled as to the frequency and content of information that has reached the general public about naturopathy. We have relied on old style word-of-mouth. This method has worked to a certain extent, but the new rules of engagement in social media allow all of us to be our own radio station, our own TV station, and our own newspaper.
I know you think you don’t have time. But those NDs who are positioning themselves as experts and spreading the value of naturopathy are not only building sustainable practices, but also are leveraging their time and creating passive income strategies. So I guess the real question is, “what sort of life do you want?” When your career is over, for what do you want to be remembered?
Instead of seeing the world of social media as a nuisance, naturopaths need to treat this new arena with respect. Because, to connect with our patients and peers, the social media landscape is something we all need to embrace. And the sooner the better.
Patients are getting fed up with the care and attention they are receiving, and naturopaths are the perfect answer to this conundrum. So who will step up and be a catalyst for this paradigm shift? If you are taking time to read practice-building tips on NDNR, then more than likely, it will be you.
So with myriad choices out there, which tools should you use? Facebook and Twitter have their own benefits, but my recommendation at this aperture is Google+. It provides most of the benefits of Facebook and Twitter, and crucially some other significant benefits that make it a very attractive proposition.
Here are the top 5 reasons why Google+ deserves your attention.
1. Google+ is as open as you want it to be. Facebook is a closed community. Twitter is totally open. Google+ allows you to keep private what you want private, and public what you want the world to know.
2. Free Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Google+ is run by Google, the largest search engine in the world, and this cannot be overlooked. Do you use Skype? Why not use Google instead? Everything you are doing online is being indexed by the Google “bots.” Why not make it easier for them to find you?
3. Google Hangouts. Running a group program? Want to build community? Google Hangouts are extremely useful and there is plenty of potential for innovation with this tool. We are working with a pediatric clinic in New Jersey that is using the knowledge of autism moms to build community at zero cost. Chronic diseases need empowering, community-based solutions. Ask Weight Watchers.
4. Google owns YouTube. YouTube is the world’s second biggest search engine and video content is a classic way that ideas are being spread online. Why not naturopathy? The next generation needs NDs more than ever, and they love YouTube!
5. You are using Google already. Between Gmail, Youtube, Google Voice, Google Documents, or myriad outer useful Google tools, more than likely you are already using it. Adding Google+ takes very little effort.
As a digital media company, we at Revive are looking to set a good example for our potential clients. So come and join us at our free weekly Google+ hangout every Tuesday at 7:00 pm EST. Each week we look at new ways that holistic practitioners can be spreading the word about natural medicine in the new digital landscape. Experience more patients, more community, more health. It’s just that simple.
Get an account. Add us to your circles and let us work together to shift this paradigm!
James Maskell is CEO of Revive NYC, a Brooklyn-based digital media, practice development, and branding company that helps doctors and holistic practitioners bring their message to life. To connect with Revive, please visit www.revivenyc.com.