DO Take Your Writing for Granite

April 21, 2015 @ 11:17 AM

By Randall Gerber

Writer –Winning  2014 Best ROI healthcare blog - By the Carolinas Healthcare PR and Marketing Society

CEO The Gerber Group

No. The headline isn’t misspelled. I mean granite (or marble) because one way to view writing is to approach it the way a sculptor appraises a piece of granite or marble.

Good writing is like good sculpture

Like a writer, a sculptor removes everything that doesn't belong.How do they create their art? They take away everything that isn’t needed for the final masterpiece.

First they take the big chunks away from the corners. The healthcare blog writer removes chunks of medical jargon and technical terms. Even as the large chunks are hammered away, the sculpture has a vision of the final work – a hero leaning forward, a woman ...

Read More

A Man of His Word...or 500

April 13, 2015 @ 6:16 AM

By Randall Gerber

Writer – Winner - 2014 Best ROI healthcare blog - Carolinas Healthcare PR and Marketing Society

CEO, The Gerber Group

Today, creativity is just the start of good writing.

When I talk with college students about writing, my advice is simple: the hardest part of writing…getting your butt in the chair.

Admittedly, good writing requires more than that. Thinking through your idea before you sit down. Allowing your brain to think about an idea while you sleep is one technique I use. Walking the dog is another method. While your pooch smells the roses (or other dog’s pee), let your mind mull. Finally, on a day when my mind has more trouble starting that an automobile in a Minnesota winter, I try cream-...

Read More

Content Marketing Works. Check the Numbers.

July 29, 2014 @ 4:57 PM

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

Web site visitors tripled in a year.  Millions of exposures. Thousands of readers.  More procedures.

Content Marketing Adds UpIt’s the new buzzword among healthcare marketers – Content Marketing.  You generously provide information on topics that are helpful to people looking to educate themselves. And Voila, success!

Well, not really.

It takes an integrated effort.

First, ensure that the web site has on ongoing search engine optimization program

Second, before the first word of a healthcare blog is written, research needs to be done to discover the terms related to the topic people are looking for on the web.  Next comes more research -- this time  to ensure that the topic ......

Read More

Spice it up. Add Video To Your Blog

June 4, 2014 @ 4:11 PM

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

Load up your online Content Marketing articles with great writing, nifty facts and catchy sub-heads.  It makes a very good blog.  So, why am I going to suggest that you occasionally add some video?

Because it works.

Viewers spend 100% more time on Web pages with videos on them. (Marketing Sherpa) Posts with videos attract 3 times more inbound links than plain text. (SEOMoz)

People learn differently.  Some by reading. Some by hearing.  Some by seeing.  Video offers sight, sound, motion, color, speaking to your audience intimately sitting on their desktop, just inches from their face.

Even when we read text, 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual. Non-text ......

Read More

Content Marketing vs. Brand Journalism

May 27, 2014 @ 8:11 AM

Which is what? What is which?

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

A few years ago, every healthcare marketer had the term “social media” on the tip of their tongues.  But things change rapidly these days.  Facebook, Twitter, Flicker, Interest, LinkedIn, Tumbler, Integra, and Google + (Oh, wait I think that’s going away.)

Now, we are likely to hear “Content Marketing” and “Brand Journalism” used in the same breath. Most sources agree that the two are NOT the same.  But there is a wide range of definitions when it comes to how the two are related.

Both Content Marketing and Brand Journalism grow from increasing cynicism among consumers about traditional advertising and PR messages......

Read More

How are You Using Your Media Channels

May 13, 2014 @ 8:57 AM

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

In earlier posts, we discussed the definition of Content Marketing and How Healthcare Media Channels have evolved over the years.  In this article, we’re going to show why Content Marketing is a valuable tool and where Content Marketing fits in the overall marketing strategy.

Offering free, helpful and non-promotional information to a defined audience

Using Search Engine Optimization to craft this material.  This ensures that the key words people are most using in their search are found in your headline and articles.

Leveraging the consumers’ penchant to searching health online through PPC advertising, which uses key words and is directly tied to searches about the topic ...

Read More

Content Marketing: Where Does It Fit in Your Strategy?

May 8, 2014 @ 7:00 AM

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

Content Marketing is a powerful tool – but it is not a silver bullet for healthcare systems.  Content Marketing is certainly the buzzword of the day among all marketers, not only healthcare people.

It’s reminiscent of several years ago, when “Social Media” was the new silver bullet for hospitals and health systems.  Facebook, then Twitter, then Instagram, than…   Each was to be the “most powerful tool” available to health marketers.  And they are powerful.  But no hospital or health systems marketing can stand alone on its social media or Content Marketing. 

A meaningful healthcare marketing program will cover a range ......

Read More

What's It Take to be a Great Content Marketer?

May 5, 2014 @ 2:00 PM

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

To be a great Content Marketer for a healthcare system, it takes a person a bit left-brained (stats, internet savvy, good researcher, understand medical issues) and a bit right-brained (creative, skillful storyteller, solid writing skills).

Granted, it’s difficult – if not impossible – to find all these attributes in one person. 

You can find a TEAM that includes all these attributes and the accompanying skills. It’ll take a talented manager to deal with a group that tries to meld right-brained and left-brained talents.  Assuming you are or can find that person, let’s look at each of the roles.

INTERNET SAVVY.  This knowledge includes a voracious ......

Read More

So What IS Content Marketing?

April 30, 2014 @ 10:00 AM

Randall Gerber, CEO, The Gerber Group

As my 8th grade English teacher used to day, “Good question!”  

Obviously, there seems to be a need for this answer, because my email inbox is flooded with promotions for “Content Marketing” workshops, summits, and conferences.  (NOTE TO SENDERS: These emails are NOT Content Marketing.)

On the other hand, a quick Google search of “Definition of Content Marketing” will spit out a screen full of thoughts by other folks.  When comparing these “thought leaders’” elements to my own, a series of intersecting circles forms in my mind.  In the center, are all those elements that are in common with my thoughts?  Additionally, ......

Read More

Amortizing Your Video Investment

March 6, 2014 @ 11:49 AM

Nearly everyone in healthcare is feeling budget pressure these days.  Marketing is no different.  Phrases, such as Return On Investment (ROI), are as common in healthcare marketing suites as “media mix” and “positioning lines.”

Good Video – whether for social media, internal communications or other purposes – costs money.  Either internal resources are committed to a project.  Or out-of-pocket expenditures go to a vendor.

One of the most effective ways to justify the expenditure of video is to “amortize” its cost.  Here’s another business term to understand.  Amortize essentially means spreading the cost of something over different time periods or uses.


Read More