Exploring The Online Exclusive Content Of Podiatry Today

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Author(s): 
Jeff Hall, Executive Editor

   It has been nearly 20 years since I graduated from college. Back then, I thought of myself as a newspaperman and started my career in the newspaper business. I picked up two newspapers a day back then and grabbed both the New York Times and the Philadelphia Inquirer on Sundays. Then it shifted to just getting the Inquirer on Sundays. Now I cannot remember the last time I bought a newspaper. When you can read all of the news online for free for the most part, why bother buying a newspaper?

   All of that said, I don’t think print publications are going to be relegated to relics anytime soon. There are enough “old-school” folks (and I count myself among them) who prefer to have the print publication in their hands. However, it would be naïve to deny that news and content delivery are changing rapidly. It is an on-demand world with a far greater emphasis on targeted demographics than ever before. People will no longer seek out the news, the news will come to them.

   Social networking sites are playing an increasingly larger role with this transition. As I write this, CNN reported that Facebook surpassed the popular search engine Google for the first time in mid-March in weekly Web traffic in the United States.

   Prior to a social networking presentation at the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons conference in February, the lecturers played a video called “Social Media Revolution.” You can check out the video at www.youtube.com/watch?v= sIFYPQjYhv8. Consider some of these mind-blowing statistics from the video.

   It took 38 years for radio to reach 50 million people. It took television 13 years to reach that number. The Internet reached that number in four years. Facebook hit 100 million users in less than nine months.

   Also be sure to throw out any stereotypes about these social networking sites. The fastest growing demographic for Facebook is reportedly 55- to 65-year-old women. Eighty percent of Twitter use is on mobile devices. A recent Ruder Finn survey found that 91 percent of mobile phone users go online to socialize.

   Over the last few months, we’ve seen steady growth on the social networking sites for Podiatry Today. As I write this, we now have over 700 Facebook fans (see www.facebook.com/PodiatryToday?ref=ts) and over 460 followers on Twitter (see www.twitter.com/PodiatryToday). While I admit I was initially a skeptic about the merits of social networking for Podiatry Today, I have found them to be great tools to promote content, particularly our online exclusive content.

   Over a year ago, we made the commitment to have an online exclusive feature article every month on the Podiatry Today Web site (www.podiatrytoday.com). Online-exclusive features have ranged from “Managing Gout In The Lower Extremity” by rheumatologist Nathan Wei, MD, FACP, FACR (May 2009) to “Key Pearls On Coding For Bunionectomies” by Anthony Poggio, DPM (February 2010).

   We also launched “DPM Blogs” a year ago and have had a terrific response. The blogs have included provocative commentaries from folks like Molly Judge, DPM (“Failure to Biopsy: When Alleged ‘Wound Care Specialists’ Fall Short Of The Standard Of Care”) and Allen Jacobs, DPM (“Why A Post-Op Fatality Is A Wake-Up Call On DVT Prophylaxis”). Patrick DeHeer, DPM, has discussed recent mission trips on his blog (“Wound Care Haiti: Raising Awareness And Making A Difference For People With Diabetes”). What has been our most popular blog entry? Doug Richie, Jr., DPM, penned “Why Podiatrists Should Not Fear Custom Foot Orthotics At Costco,” which has been read by over 4,600 people. For more DPM Blogs, check out www.podiatrytoday.com/blogs.

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