There are many healthcare providers who dread hearing “Dr. Google” quoted in the exam room. From inaccurate or misleading information to downright “malpractice” (says Tanya Feke, MD in a blog posted on KevinMD.com ), Dr. Google is a challenge for physicians when dealing with patient education. I asked Google expert (actually, Guru) Mark Traphagen of Stone Temple Consulting to join me in a conversation about the “Good News/Bad News” regarding health information online and what a healthcare practitioner can do to become a trusted voice in their community. Listen to our conversation or drop in at the discussion topics below.
[00:45] Mark Traphagen – Guru
[03:30] “Dr. Google Should be Sued for Malpractice”
[04:50] Healthy skepticism for online health information
[05:55] Google is part of the solution, Google’s ranking algorithm
[07:00] Up to 20% of Google searches are health related
[07:30] Google’s Direct Answers
[08:18] “How do I boil and egg”
[08:40] Google Highlights one answer from one source
[09:12] Google partnering with trusted healthcare organizations
[09:52] Re-purposing existing content or producing new content?
[10:30] Pre-approving content
[12:30] Competition between large healthcare brands for providing content
[14:01] Do we care about anything other than Google?
[14:24] “Google’s Mission is to organize the information of the world and diseminate it.”
[14:58] You’ve got to be more creative than ever.
[15:38] Can Bing or Yahoo compete with Google?
[16:00] “The User doesn’t give a hoot about you. They just want the answer.”
[16:44] How many trusted sources do you need for information?
[18:13] Google’s Truth Algorithm “Knowledge-Based Trust”
[20:15] Become a reliable and trusted source, and you could gain a “truth rank” from Google
[20:50] Local emphasis may become more important
[22:00] Does linking a blog post to a highly regarded website help with ranking?
[24:34] If you are building a good content site – cross link to other content on your site
[25:00] Create reasons to link content from other places on your website or blog
[26:30] Google measures time spent on your website?
[28:00] Google wants “useful’ information – not just “good.”
[29:23] Google Search Quality Guidelines – Human evaluation of content
[30:17] Google wants to provide more than the answer to the question
[31:00] Don’t write for Google – write for your audience
[31:35] Serve as a Physician online and offline but still need technical expertise
[33:05] Next time: Mark shares his own patient experience
[34:32] Social Media Tip: Mary Pat Whaley – Content ideas for your blog