Hospitals Turn To Social Media To Build Patient Relationships

Hospitals are turning to Facebook and Twitter, along with other social media engines; in order to improve their level of patient care. By doing this, they are creating “virtual advisory councils” made up of both patients and parents, creating an inside look into the hospital system. These efforts are part of a larger movement, introduced by the ACA to engage patients in their health and enhance the quality of care given by providers. By linking together with the growing social media culture, today’s technology allows hospitals to get feedback on a daily basis, stepping away from traditional means. These fresh ways of customer satisfaction may have an exceptional impact on the quality of patient care.

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Social Media Improves Donor Registration

A new report published in the American Journal of Transplantation last week reveals the impact of a new social media initiative helped to boost organ donor registration rates.

Last year, Facebook introduced an option allowing users add an organ donor designation to their profile.  More than a year later, 30,818 people have registered to be donors, about five times more than the rates before the Facebook classification. The findings suggest that social media might be an effective tool for tackling a variety of problems related to public health in which communication and education are essential.

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Social Media Continues To Impact Individual Healthcare Decisions

According to recent research conducted by BMJ Quality & Safety, social media sites like Facebook and Twitter have become significant sources of specific and individual healthcare information, creating a perfect storm in healthcare with regard to how patients and organizations connect.

HMS Healthcare Management Solutions offers social media implement and strategy consulting to help sort through the confusion. Our customized social media solutions can help you develop a plan, put it into practice and create a presence on social media sites.

Contact us today to find out how our personalized approach can help you set and achieve goals.

Impactful Ways To Engage In Social Media

Social media stands as one of the most effective marketing resources available today.  As Facebook and Twitter become some of healthcare’s most powerful tools for attracting patients and sharing information, the healthcare industry continues to embrace the trend.
Below are some impactful ways to engage in social media.

  • Attract Patients: Twitter and Facebook are great ways to gain a marketing edge on competitors and attract new patients.
  • Manage Information: An established social media presence presents a better position to shut down misinformation and share relevant facts.
  • Resource Referral: Facebook and Twitter can be used to direct patients to helpful resources.
  • Share Events: Social media is a great outlet to share and promote upcoming events and services.
  • Spread News: Share news about your facility as well as general medical news.
  • Recruit For Clinical Trials: Some academic centers have turned to Facebook to fill clinical trials.
  • Respond To Complaints: Social media not only provides a medium for patients to share concerns and complaints, but a place to respond to them.

Healthcare Social Media Series: Social Media Campaigns

Over the last few years, integrated social media campaigns have gained momentum.  Campaigns include coordinated usage of buttons, widgets, online video, podcasts and text messaging to further delivery of a message.

Organized messages are sent to subscribers in a harmonious way to engage users in the medium they are most comfortable with.  Social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest allow for the rapid dissemination of those messages by providing an outlet for quick communication to a wide audience.

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Healthcare Social Media Series: Think Social Media Isn’t Important?

In the last several years, the use of social media outlets has grown significantly.  While many healthcare organizations have embraced the trend, others are reluctant to join the conversation. Below are some important statistics which strongly favor integrating a social media strategy into your communications plan.

  • Social media has a higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing
  • 62% report social media has become important to their marketing plans
  • 43% of online consumers participate in social media
  • 42% say Facebook is important to their business
  • Twitter has 106 million of registered users sending 55 million tweets per day
  • 21% of purchases result from browsing goods and services on Pinterest
  • 77% of B2C companies and 43% of B2B companies acquired customers from Facebook
  • 75% of Twitter traffic comes from outside translating to 180 million unique visitors per month

Remember, establishing a social media presence for your business is critical.  Contact HMS Healthcare Management Solutions and see how we can help!

HMS Healthcare Social Media Series: Pinterest

Pinterest is the third most popular social network behind Facebook and Twitter.  Over the last year, traffic on Pinterest has increased by 50% and has recorded  3.3 million unique visitors in a single month.  That’s a lot of potential business.  Though Pinterest wasn’t designed to be a marketing tool, retailers and businesses are creating pages for customers to connect and share industry information and other stuff just for fun.  Below are some tips for getting started with Pinterest and using it effectively.

  • Join: Setting up a Pinterest account is easy.  All you need is an email address and the desire to connect with the Pinterest community.
  • Get Pinned: Be sure to add a “Pin It” button to your website and blog so visitors and customers can pin your news and products onto Pinterest.  In addition, add a Pinterest “follow” button to your website, alongside your buttons for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn icons so people know where to find you.
  • Create Boards: Create boards that fit your organization or brand.  Pin images, information and news that appeal to your current and potential clients.
  • Share Data: Infographics, popping up all over Pinterest, are popular because they share data with appealing pictures and graphics.
  • Original Content: Create content specifically for Pinterest so followers have a reason to check in.
  • Include Your URL:  Sharing your URL lets people know where to find you!
  • Social Media Outlets:  By now, you no doubt have established a Facebook page and Twitter feed.  Use them to promote your Pinterest page to gain followers and create a presence.

Follow HMS On Pinterest

HMS is now on Pinterest!  Pinterest is the third most popular social network behind Facebook and Twitter.  Over the last year, traffic on Pinterest has increased by 50% and it continues to grow.  Join us as we embrace this social media trend and follow our pinboards to discover healthcare news, trends and other fun stuff worth checking out.

Click here to browse our boards and stay tuned as we expand our presence!
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HMS Social Media Series: Provider Organization Benefits

Social media provides the ideal platform for healthcare professionals to share experiences and ideas. Social media also offers significant advantages to healthcare service providers as patients seeking support platforms.  Benefits for provider organizations include:

  • Reduced Costs:  Social networking platforms offer huge cost benefits to healthcare providers.  In fact, social media tools can reduce costs of your organization by 30% by minimizing the expenses associated with paper and manpower previously used to take consumer phone calls.
  • Improved Collaboration:  Social media provides the ideal platform for healthcare professionals to share ideas with each other to ensure improved patient outcomes.
  • Far Reaching:  Social media knows no geographic boundaries.  This provides the capability to reach a large audience within seconds. In fact, according to a study in The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, Twitter disclosed a 2010 outbreak of cholera in Haiti two weeks earlier than health officials reported the epidemic.
  • Marketing: Many providers use social media as a tool to assist in the launch of new products and services.  Social media outlets achieve greater publicity because they are capable of reaching a greater audience than traditional press releases.

Stay tuned to the HMS Blog as the next installment of our Healthcare Social Media Series explores the benefits of social media to online consumers.

HMS Healthcare Social Media Series: Joining The Conversation

As social media continues to grow as a communications medium, so too does its impact in healthcare. According to a recent report, patients increasingly are turning to social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter both to find and share medical information. What’s more, of 1,060 surveyed consumers, 45% said that information obtained via social media could impact their decision to get a second opinion.

As more and more Americans look to social media for medical information, it’s important for the industry to understand how to use these new communication tools. Still not convinced?  Here are some reasons to join the social media conversation.

  • Create A Presence: Establishing a online presence is essential as the internet continues to become  the public’s go-to place for information.
  • Build Relationships: Social media allows patients to connect in a less structured environment. Posting a medical questions on a blog or tweeting comments on Twitter is more agreeable, and more anonymous, for those not comfortable speaking frankly face-to-face.
  • Provide Trusted Content: Patients have access to a multitude of irrelevant and inaccurate information.  Through social media, medical professionals can effectively provide patients with trusted and valid content from a named source.
  • Become Approachable:  Interacting with patients on a personal, informal level makes providers more approachable, opens the lines of communication and ultimately improves care.
  • Engage: Every medical professional is capable, and should, express ideas on healthcare practices, procedures and other medical issues through social media.

Ready to get started?  Click here for strategies and tips.