Twitter: The Vital Digital Intelligence Resource You're Not Using

How many hours do you spend keeping up with the latest and greatest in digital health? One hour, two hours a day? I recently spoke with a health executive who spends a whooping four hours each day scanning headlines, reading emails and more in an effort to stay ahead. 


Stories like these have inspired me to develop this series of posts focusing on how health marketers (and other executives) can do their jobs more efficiently and successfully. (Click here to read part 1, and here to view part 2). 

Today, I’m going to focus on Twitter. 

Now, many of you may regularly use Twitter to keep tabs on health topics, brand sentiment and more for clients. But, are you also regularly using it to track what’s happening in the digital health landscape for your personal and professional development? 



If the answer’s no, I’m not surprised. When confronted with the Twitter firehose, many people find themselves confused, intimidated and frustrated. There's just too much information coming at them and few techniques for separating signal from noise.

But, over time, I come to recognize that Twitter is a goldmine of digital health insights, intelligence and analysis. Many people post content to gain (and keep) a following and more. Here are a few things I’ve learned just over the past month by keeping tabs on Twitter: 

  • Why Apple’s high-end smartwatch could net $5 billion a quarter 
  • How wearables could save millions of lives by 2020
  • New ways Walgreens is partnering with WebMD and PatientsLikeMe to boost wellness (and their relationships with customers) 
  • Why Google Glass is far from dead — especially in health 

How do I do it? Well, I’m using a new secret weapon that has immensely boosted my productivity on Twitter. I also have used these three tricks: 

  • Subscribe to Lists. Many power Twitter users create lists of influencers and others posting useful content. Here’s one that you may find useful maintained by Adam Falat of Walgreens. You can subscribe to receive a regular feed of tweets by people on his list. 
  • Read Those Emails from Twitter: Have you received those “Popular in Your Network” emails from Twitter? They’re useful because they provide you with a sense of what people in your Twitter network are thinking and sharing. 
  • Favorite Tweets: Many people favorite Tweets to keep track of items they’re interested in, but don’t have time to read right away. This is a good habit to adopt. 

If used properly, Twitter can save you time and energy. It can also provide excellent insights that can help you serve your clients, boost your career and more. 

If you’re not maximizing your time on Twitter, you should. 

By the way, if you’d like to see more of the interesting, surprising and shocking things I’ve learned about digital health recently via Twitter, click here to view a brief presentation.

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