In an age where people are turning to the Internet for tips and general advice, Healthcare providers should, and are, mixing social media into their marketing strategy.
As we know, social media can provide instant updates (Henry Ford Hospital live-tweeted a procedure from an operating theatre!), Q&A opportunities and communication in times of crisis, amongst many other options.
With more than 40% of people agreeing that information found on social media affects the way they deal with their health and with 60% of social media users stating that they trust posts by doctors over any other group it’s no wonder that healthcare organisations, both private and free are stepping up their game.
Here are 3 great examples for social media marketing for the healthcare sector.
Bupa have a great social media presence with over 20K fans on Facebook. They share fantastic tips such as Bupa Travel Tips, focusing on traveling with a medical condition, post insightful and moving campaign videos and share general feel good posts, like pandas on a slide to celebrate Friday. They also heavily focus on major health campaigns, such as Cycle to Work Day.
Bupa’s social media presence is very impressive, considering they run international channels as well for their locations in Denmark, Arabia, Australia, South America and Hong Kong. Bupa’s efforts are a clear indicator that social media within the healthcare industry is something that can bring patients and professionals together outside of the GP’s office.
GE already has a gargantuan presence on social media. Their mix of beautifully composed images with informative and factual based text speaks to both the visually stimulated and the seeker of knowledge. So it’s only natural that this converts over onto their healthcare pages.
Their social media pages tend to focus more on the science behind biochemistry using amazing images and insightful infographics. The hashtag #GECellfies is used to share beautiful images of cells from all types of living organisms, gaining frequent retweets from both those in the medical and scientific sectors but also from those who appreciate good art.
The NHS not only has a main page for NHS Choices, but multiple NHS practices have set up their own pages to give up to date local advice to the patients in their areas. Various NHS trusts have rolled out excellent social media policies in the form of social media toolkits and staff guidelines to help their employees make the most of the opportunities that social media presents, whilst also highlighting the potential risks.
The channels focus on trending national campaigns such as #NationalTransplantWeek and #sayidonate, #CycleToWorkDay as well as utilizing clever hashtags, like #BehindTheHeadlines, used for separating the fact from fiction around misconceptions with various medical issues. Their YouTube channel is packed full of entertaining animations, informative interviews with NHS staff and full series focusing on themes from newborn baby care to organ transplants.
The time is definitely right to start tackling social media if you’re a healthcare professional. As evidenced above, there are lots of options and topics for you to be talking about, so why not get stuck in and try it for your practice!