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BizReport : Social Marketing : April 27, 2009


Ad-ology: SocNets influence patients

According to a new report from Ad-ology, social networks are impacting nearly half of recent hospital/urgent care patients, especially in the younger demographics. Researchers have found that 40% of the general patient population and half of 25-34 year olds are impacted by social media.

by Kristina Knight

"Progressive hospitals are already participating in social media through specific micro-sites, social networking, online communities, and targeted online marketing," said C. Lee Smith, president and CEO of Ad-ology Research. "Urgent care and maternity provide excellent opportunities to connect with younger consumers, and social media is the way to engage this group."

Much of this is because, especially in the younger demographics, many hospital stays are related to childbirth; social networks, forums and message boards are very influential with the demographic because of the camaraderie found there. About 20% of 25-34 year olds report being influenced by social networks after a maternity-related hospital or urgent care visit.

For older consumers, direct mail and newspaper advertising has a similar impact. Those over the age of 55 are more likely to be influenced by a direct mailing or newspaper ad than a social media outlet; many of these consumers are concerned with quality of care, specialized services and health care costs.

Overall, however, about 60% of females researched family doctors online and quality of care ranked high amongst all patients. Those in the 18-24 demographic were most likely to visit a hospital/urgent care website.






Tags: Ad-Ology, social marketing, social media, social network impact, social networks








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