We can’t do live video because of HIPAA.
Legal would never let us.
Our approval process is too cumbersome.
Patients would never agree to it.
Hospital marketers can rattle off a number of reasons they aren’t using live video in their marketing, but we’re going to give you one reason you should: Engagement.
Specifically, viewers spend three times longer watching live videos on Facebook than videos that are no longer live. That likely accounts for at least part of the reason the number of Facebook Live broadcasts has quadrupled in recent years. Live videos now account for one in five videos on Facebook.
Learn How to Livestream
Livestreaming may seem scary in healthcare, but it’s really just another type of content. Remember how anxiety-provoking tweeting on behalf of your hospital was at first? It’s the same here; you’ll get used to it. Here are some tips for making livestreaming successful:
Plan, plan, plan. Don’t let the word “live” fool you into thinking these types of videos are spontaneous productions. Sure, they can be—that’s part of the beauty of livestreams—but for the most part, you’ll want to plan your live videos well in advance so you have time to get buy-in.
Brainstorm live video concepts. Add live video to your content calendar and brainstorm concepts along with your blog posts, podcasts and infographics each year, quarter, month—however far in advance you plan. (In the meantime, see below for some ideas you can start on right away.)
Write an outline. Having a word-for-word script will detract from the appeal of livestreaming, but a general outline will help give your internal video subjects an idea of what you want them to say or cover. Be sure to include any no-no’s as well.
Get buy-in. Write a creative brief for each planned live video that includes who, what, when, where as well as the main messages. Take that brief to your key stakeholders, including legal and compliance. If you’ve had any bad experiences on social media, running a creative brief by your patient representatives also can help prepare you for unexpected reactions that you can adjust for before starting.
Carry consent forms wherever you go. To take advantage of those miracle moments, have consent forms (and your cell phone, of course!) with you at all times.
7 Ways Hospitals Can Use Live Video
Once you figure out the logistics, you’ll see your hospital for what it is: A treasure trove for livestreaming content. Here are just a few ideas to get you started:
- Healthy cooking demos. Perhaps the easiest and safest foray into livestreaming, feature a dietitian making a drool-worthy dish.
- Class acts. Drop in on a tai chi class or ask a physical therapist to show off some moves that will ease back pain.
- Welcome, baby! Everybody loves babies! Ask birthing class participants if they would be up for letting you film their little cutie during his or her hospital stay (well after delivery, of course). Another big hit (that Moms and Dads love) is being on hand to video the first meeting between baby and siblings or grandparents. (Offering to provide the family with a copy makes getting consent even easier.)
- Chemo graduate. A patient’s last day of chemotherapy (or physical therapy, radiation treatment, immunotherapy, etc.) should be celebrated. Ask staff to recommend a patient who might be up for sharing his or her excitement with your audience. Get the patient’s approval first, but then consider surprising him or her with balloons, flowers, or a cake.
- Ask a doc. Position your physicians as experts by having them answer scripted questions about their specialties. Hint: You’ll want to give them strict time limits.
- Surgery in the spotlight. Have a new robot or surgical technique you want to show off? If you have a Facebook group for your providers, don’t hesitate to get a little gory. We don’t recommend putting these types of videos on your public pages, though. For the public, think creatively like creating a video showing off how your robot can hand stitch a delicate embroidery pattern.
- Event “attendance.” Get out your cellphone camera for galas, health fairs, speaking engagements and other events to expand their reach.
TotalCom Marketing is a full-service hospital marketing and advertising agency that believes in getting great results from telling great stories – our clients’ stories. Contact us for more information or view our work here.