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Google and Twitter partner: 5 ways physicians can benefit from social media

Physicians can describe medical symptoms on Twitter and gain patient trust.

Physicians take note. Twitter has relented to a renewed partnership with Google that will allow Twitter activity to be indexed by Google's search engines.

In exchange for giving in to Google's request, Twitter likely hopes to gain more traffic for its users. It's also likely that one reason why Twitter has agreed to this partnership is because its own user base has plateaued.

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On some levels, Twitter users are asking themselves why they should share their social media with this waning platform. They need wonder no more. Physicians can benefit greatly from this new partnership. Twitter users can now reach a much wider audience with their tweets.

This gives physicians who are looking to boost their patient base an opportunity to target high-income patients, as well as targeted patients who suffer from conditions within the physician's niche.

Advertising on Twitter

The partnership between Google and Twitter also brings to light the next obvious step, which is to use Twitter as an advertising conduit. Paid tweets are surely soon to arrive, if they haven't already.

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Physicians who are seeking more exposure will be able to take advantage of the opportunities that this partnership reveals.

Serving the community

It isn't all as selfish as it sounds. There's good reason why physicians in certain regions would want to promote their services to the community. The Twitter and Google partnership makes it possible to do so using only a mobile device such as a cell phone or tablet.

As the article “What the Twitter-Google partnership means for physicians” looks at, there is the ability to advertise the services that can best benefit the most stricken members of the community.

Mini landing pages

Tweets can actually act as mini landing pages. When physicians tweet general info about their specialty, location and perhaps business hours, followers will be able to get just enough information to know if that physician might be able to help their situation.

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When physicians link to their site within the tweet, the followers can click on landing pages right where they need to be to receive proper treatment. In addition, this linking can help the physician's site to gain more traffic that is relevant.

Making tweets relevant

The key to effective tweeting for physicians is to keep their fingers on the pulse of the news.

For example, when a celebrity dies of a certain condition, the searches for that condition jump dramatically across the Internet. Readers want to know what the symptoms are, how people get it and what the treatment is.

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If physicians can respond in real time to live news announcements that are related to health issues, their chances of gaining in credibility and authority are quite high.

Celebrity docs who tweet

Some well-known physicians who are already using Twitter include Dr. Oz, Deepak Chopra, Sanjay Gupta, Dr. Phil and Dr. Drew. If you are a physician wondering if you should start tweeting, know you'll be in good company.

About the author: Kate Supino writes about ways technology influences medical practice.

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