Social media is a must for healthcare organizations that want to have a robust brand that is interactive with the community.  Social media should be fun and educational.  We offer a few tips to ensure both.

  • Post regularly, but don’t post just to post.  No one cares that you had Starbies this morning or are so glad it is Friday.  They do care that your sweet patient brought you Starbucks and you want to thank them (pics please) and that in honor of it being Friday, your office is power walking at lunch together (again, pics) to kick off a healthy weekend.
  • Aim to post 2-3 times per week.  1-2 can be health tips, health articles, and resources.  1-2 should be about your practice.
  • Want a bunch of easy content?  Do a “Meet our Team” series!  Feature every single team member…1 team member per week.  Picture, why they love working there, what they do for patients, and something fun about them.  Bam.  You just got 10-15 weeks worth of posts…and patients love learning about the team.
  • Want more easy content?  Have each provider give you one or two line Pearls of Wisdom for health.  Simple, easy to follow advice is best.
  • Another easy way to gather content?  Follow one of the hundreds of health topic calendars out there.  Here is one of many:  Either use tips on these topics from your own team or borrow resources and post links.  Organizations like American College of Obstetrics & Gynecology and American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons are great, reliable source for that.
  • Local health/community events can be great content.  It shows your engagement with the community.  Be sure to check them out before posting though.  You don’t want to inadvertently advertise for a competitor or an organization that you don’t know.  If in doubt, skip it.
  • Most importantly, post about things going on in your organization in real time!  Celebrations, new services, new team members, new offices, new equipment, anniversaries, kudos, and anything along these lines.  This gives your practice an identity other than just being a company.
  • Consider non-work, healthy posts on team members.  If a team member runs a marathon or helps organize a local farmer’s market, with their permission, this can be good content to show what a supportive health-conscious organization you are.
  • And, sell yourself every now and then.  Don’t sell all the time.  But, do it sometimes.  Talk about your allergy testing services or hormone replacement therapy or success stories with medically-supervised weight loss.  If you have relevant regular content, no one will mind when you sell on your social media little bit…and you just might get some business from it.  Just space it out and be sure lots of non-salesly content lives in between posts where you are self-promoting.
  • Don’t use patients names, discuss patients, or talk about anything that would normally be an issue under HIPAA.
  • Don’t tag your physicians or staff members.  We generally think it is best to keep business and personal lives separate, particularly if patients may see anything “questionable” on the personal pages.  And, it gets messy if patients “friend” staff members and/or providers…and particularly so if they “message” them regarding health issues.  Evaluate the pros and cons…and make your own decision here.
  • Don’t allow photos of your team drinking or smoking.  While it may be innocent, it may not be perceived that way and literally could be used against you in a court of law.
  • Use the “front page of the paper” + “mom” + “grandma” + “pastor” test.  If you wouldn’t want it on the front page of the paper, wouldn’t want your mom, grandma, or pastor to see it, then don’t post it on social media.  If it passes all four of those, it’s probably fine to post, unless your mom or grandma is also a pastor that owns a gossip paper.  If that’s the case, we want to meet her!  🙂

Have fun with it and allow it to showcase your brand and your culture.  And, really, if you find that mom/grandma, introduce us!