Social Media Marketing for Healthcare
Social media marketing can help healthcare organizations and marketers engage with patients, promote new relationships, and improve the reputation and credibility of doctors.
According to research:
- Approximately 57 percent of patients decide where to get treatment based on a provider’s social media presence.
- Also, 60 percent of doctors feel that social media marketing helps improve the quality of care they give their patients.
Managing and marketing a healthcare organization? Here are some social media marketing ideas for healthcare to help bolster your presence and strengthen your relationships with patients.
Social Media Marketing Ideas for Healthcare
Establish your social media communication protocol
One of the challenges facing healthcare marketers is determining how their social media efforts affect patient privacy and compliance with regulations such as HIPAA.
This can be easily overcome as long as you have a well-thought-out social media communication protocol in place. Establish a solid set of guidelines when communicating on social media, and consult with your PR and legal teams as you develop your protocol. Have a system and point person in place for responding to reviews, comments, and questions on social media. And if you’re sharing health tips, industry trends, and medical information online, first talk to experts and researchers on your team before you hit “Publish.”
A communication protocol will help you use social media with due care and diligence, without running into privacy issues, compliance concerns, and other things that could get in the way of your efforts.
Use social media to educate your audience
Social media marketing for healthcare can improve your brand reputation and make you more trustworthy in the eyes of healthcare consumers.
But be careful not to be overly promotional and tout your practice too much. Use social media to educate your audience, too, and become a leading source of helpful information.
Spread the word about important health and medical issues. Join awareness campaigns and social media conversations on what’s happening in the industry. Create infographics that make complicated health information easier to understand. Provide relevant and useful content to your audience in ways that inspire and encourage them to take part in wellness and improve their quality of life.
By doing so, you can more effectively foster trust-based relationships with existing and potential patients, while also drawing attention back to your practice or brand.
Answer questions and respond to inquiries
One of the most effective ways to bolster your social media presence is to stay responsive to your fans and followers.
As a healthcare provider, you’ll likely get a lot of questions, inquiries, comments, feedback, and reviews. It’s important that you do not ignore these, and that you are always ready to engage with the voice of the patient.
Answer questions posted on social media comments and forums. Share links to studies or blog posts that could be of use to your community of followers. You can even host a Facebook Live stream or Instagram or Twitter Q&A in order to connect with your followers and address their most pressing questions.
Use social media to showcase the people on your team
A lot of healthcare content on social media can come off as a bit sterile. To combat this, it’s important that you’re able to show some personality and humanize your organization.
One great way to do this is by introducing your social media audience to your doctors, nurses, paramedics, and administrative staff: the people who deal with patients every day. After all, they’re the face of your organization.
Talk about their experience, achievements, and skills. Post pictures of them in their element, or while participating in a community activity or event. This adds a measure of humanity to your healthcare practice, making you more relatable to your community of fans and followers.
Leverage patient reviews as testimonials
Online reviews posted by your patients can serve as powerful social proof for other healthcare consumers.
Don’t hesitate to share these on social media on on your website (with a testimonial widget). You can even create video testimonials from patients who are happy with their experience. Of course, always make sure that you are in compliance with HIPAA guidelines, and never forget to get permission for any information you want to share.
Related reading: “How to Respond to Reviews Under HIPAA Guidelines”
Harnessing the power of online reviews will help you improve patient access, boost patient acquisition, and enhance your brand reputation on social media.
Aim to comfort and inspire
In the face of a health problem, minor or major, patients could often use a dose of comfort and inspiration.
Social media is an amazing platform for healthcare marketers to comfort, inspire, and display empathy. So use it to demonstrate the kind of patient experience you’re delivering. Paint a picture of your doctors’ bedside manner. And show off your efforts to make patients feel as comfortable as possible under the circumstances.