Charlene Li Forrester Web 2.0 Presentation

I had the pleasure yesterday of presenting at a Web 2.0 Summit sponsored by Kaiser Permanente. Our panel was moderated by Ted Eytan, M.D., who also presented on his blogging experience from the last four years as part of Kaiser’s sister (or cousin, or some other relation I don’t completely understand) organization, Group Health. He’s an interesting guy who also has a passion for LEAN in Health Care, which is the topic of the other blog on which he is a collaborator. I also got to meet and hear Tim Collins from Wells Fargo, whose company has official blogs that include Guided by History, The Student LoanDown and one that supports Stagecoach Island, its virtual world. TIm says Wells Fargo was the first big brand in Second Life, but that they got out just as many others were starting to get in. Now they have a world of their own.

Charlene Li from Forrester Research opened the Summit with an overview of Web 2.0. She’s also the co-author of Groundswell, a book I just bought at (It’s also here on Amazon, and I’ll be reviewing it after I listen to it over the next few days). Before her presentation, we got to talk about our experience with audio books, and I recommended some from Patrick Lencioni that I think most people in business would find extremely helpful (and which I have reviewed on this blog): The Five Dysfunctions of a Team and Silos, Politics and Turf Wars. (I thought I had reviewed Death by Meeting, too…but I guess that’s on my to-do list.)

I’ll have my full review of Groundswell, but meanwhile here are some of the high points and recommendations from Charlene’s presentation:

Focus on the relationships, not the technologies. At Forrester, they have developed a four-step process using the acronym POST. You should consider:

  • People – for those you want to reach and with whom you want to interact, consider their characteristics and what kinds of social media involvement they have already. Getting seniors into a 3D virtual world may be a mismatch, unless the group you’re targeting is retired Microsoft or IBM engineers.
  • Objectives – Decide what you want to accomplish
  • Strategy – Plan for how relationships with customers will change
  • Technology – Decide which social technologies to use

Charlene’s blog has a fuller discussion of POST, and I’m sure Groundswell will be even more detailed.

Part of analyzing People is determining where they are on the Ladder of Participation.

Charlene had a lot of other great material in her presentation, but she closed with some Keys to Success:

  1. Start with Your Customers.
  2. Choose Objectives You Can Measure
  3. LIne Up Executive Backing
  4. Romance the Naysayers
  5. Start Small, but Think Big

I particularly like that last point, because it fits with the SMUG (It’s all Free) philosophy. It’s possible to start small because the barriers to entry are practically non-existent, but you should plan for success to that you can scale up as necessary.

For example, you can start a blog hosted on and map to a domain or subdomain of your choosing for $10-$20 (and can extensively customize your look and feel for another $15). Later, if your blog is successful and you decide you want to host it elsewhere to allow more use of Flash and embedded widgets, you can just download and install WordPress from and re-map the domain, and you won’t lose any of your links. I’ll have more on that as I build out the Blogging curriculum.

Economics of Health 101

I’m live blogging this session of Health Journalism 2008, with panelists including:

I’ll possibly have some video of Dr. Fronstin later; he gave a good overview of the basics of private health insurance.

Dr. Wilensky says the basic problem is that health spending is growing by an average of 2.5 percent more than the rest of the economy. Over the long term, she says, Medicare growth approximates growth for all health care. If overall spending continues to increase at the rate it has, and if Medicare essentially mirrors that growth rate, we will see Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security consume all of the federal government’s current revenues before 2030. She recommended what she calls some sensible next steps for Medicare:

Continue reading “Economics of Health 101”

Mayo Clinic Facebook Page Highlighted

I was interviewed earlier this month for an article in 1to1 Media about Mayo Clinic’s Facebook page. Here’s an excerpt:

Like any Facebook user, the Mayo Clinic’s page allows the not-for-profit organization to post information about itself, link to its three websites (for patients, consumers, and research and education), display “wall post” messages and photos, offer video and audio podcasts, provide updates on news and events, and connect with friends. Beyond that, Aase says, “what we really hope to have it be is all about people telling their own stories—describing what their experience was like here and connecting in that way.”

The opportunity for patients to directly tell their stories online is an important word-of-mouth component for Mayo Clinic. “Social networking sites like Facebook are one means by which people stay in touch and share experiences,” says Ed Keller, CEO of the word-of-mouth research and consulting firm Keller Fay Group. “Allowing people to express themselves—telling their stories in their own voice to their friends, family, and other members of their social network—is proving to be a powerful way for brands and organizations to join the consumer conversation and to help improve their own brand position as a result.” Consumer self-expression brings authenticity and impact, Keller adds. “If consumers are happy with their experience with the Mayo Clinic, and they tell others, it will undoubtedly help Mayo to grow its reputation and market presence.”

That’s certainly Aase’s hope. “When [patients] are telling their stories, their friends will see that and may be likely to check [us] out,” he says. “That’s like the word of mouth that happens over the back fence.”

Check out the rest of the article here, and thanks to Jason Alba at for his favorable review.

Update: The Rochester Post-Bulletin picked up this blog alert and published a story today.

Express Health Care on YouTube

My employer has opened its first Mayo Express Care facility in Rochester, Minn. It’s intended to serve patients with conditions that need prompt attention but that don’t need emergency department care. You can read a bit more about the service here, but thanks to YouTube you can take a tour of the new facility.


The business blogger for the Rochester Post-Bulletin, Jeff Kiger, posted this video on his blog last Friday. That’s really the only promotion of the video we’ve done, and it has had about 600 views so far on YouTube. (It got a lot more views on our intranet.) So the YouTube experiment has been interesting.

Jane Sarasohn-Kahn had written about this new service on her Health Populi blog when the story first ran in the Minneapolis Star Tribune in November. She’s been a health care consultant for 20 years and has some interesting perspectives.