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Healthcare Social Media Trends To Watch In 2022

The new year is finally here, and that means healthcare organizations and private practices all over the country are ramping up their social media strategies for 2022. 

No longer a place to just connect with friends and share photos, social media is now a driving force in the healthcare community for disseminating information, advocating for change, and connecting communities in the pursuit of better health. 

If your organization is looking to improve your social media presence in 2022, tap into these trends to make a bigger impact in your field of expertise.

Patient Education

In the age of Covid-19, the entire world is scrambling to get information about this virus that’s so drastically upended our lives. But very few of us have the time or patience to read medical journals. People are increasingly turning to social media to get information from healthcare sources they trust in “micro-moments” that are palatable for our overstressed brains. 

When it comes to keeping people healthy, education is the first line of defense against any illness, Covid-19 or otherwise. Medical practitioners and healthcare organizations are using social media to inform their audiences and combat misinformation because it’s the easiest and most effective way to reach large numbers of people quickly.

Unfortunately, there is a terrifying array of misinformation on social media, too, so you’ll need to separate yourself from that to be viewed as a trusted authority. This can be accomplished in numerous ways, including applying for a verified account, creating a credible bio for each platform, and earning trust through consistent, well-sourced content. 

Disease Awareness And Support 1

Never before in our history have patients had such hands-on access to information about diseases, conditions and illnesses. While this can sometimes be overwhelming, it also presents an opportunity to not feel alone and to be empowered to take charge of their health and connect to others who can assist in their journeys. Forbes Small Business

Grassroots movements on social media are giving people with different medical conditions the ability to connect to each other, resources, support groups, specialists and more. If you’re able to get in on the conversation with true expertise, perhaps by hosting an online group or developing a resource center within your social media pages, you can add value to patients’ lives and broadcast your expertise to a larger audience. 

Advocacy And Policy 

Social media campaigns are powerful tools for garnering support for new legislation, advocating for research funds, and promoting causes related to disease education, prevention, treatment and management. If there is a need within the medical community you’re a part of, develop a presence on social media. Your voice could be a much-needed amplifier or even the one that rallies the masses to get behind your cause. 

Virtual Conferences And Events 

In-person conferences have always been expensive to host, and therefore, expensive to exhibit at or attend. For many patients, time and cost required have prohibited attendance. With Covid-19 necessitating that many conferences go virtual or use a hybrid in-person/virtual model, patients are able to attend and participate in discussions that can influence the development of new policies, treatments and other interventions for their conditions. 

Consider making your next event virtual or hybrid so you can reach a wider audience and bring in speakers and participants you’d otherwise not have access to. Whether your goal is brand awareness, health advocacy, or a little of both, innovative conference formats can help you achieve a greater result for your efforts. 

Social Audio

With social audio like Twitter Spaces and Clubhouse, host(s) start a conversation about a topic, and people join in to chat about it. There is a low barrier to entry to host or participate, and these conversations can be enlightening.

Social audio is a lot like a conference call, but without the chaos. These platforms are built for a much better user experience, one in which participants take turns talking and everyone can follow the conversation easily. The host guides the conversation and sets the agenda, and people including physicians, nurses, patients, researchers and more can join in from anywhere in the world. 

Anyone can host and participate in a social audio discussion. Adding your particular expertise to a social audio conversation, either as a host or a participant, lends credibility to your name and can help establish you as a thought leader in your industry. Partnering with someone who has experience hosting social audio conversations and already has an established audience could help you be more effective with your very first Twitter Space or Clubhouse room.

Connecting Healthcare Professionals

Historically, physicians have operated in silos. They typically had little interaction with their peers outside of medical conferences. Social media has changed that. Physicians, nurses, surgeons, specialists, public health experts, and other practitioners can now connect with each other to discuss their industry, their struggles, and new developments around their specialities. Not only is this positive for their professional growth, but for their mental health, too. Especially during the current burnout epidemic in healthcare, feeling connected with others could be very healing. 

This year, seek out groups where you can network and interact with other healthcare professionals on social media. You’re likely to make valuable connections and find information that’s useful to bettering your practice. Can’t find a group that fits you? Start your own and invite others to join you. 

Social Media Is A Powerful Tool For Healthcare Professionals 

Traditionally, healthcare has been slow to adopt digital technology, and social media was no exception. But with the pandemic, healthcare professionals everywhere were forced to transition to digital meetings, virtual appointments, online conferences, and social media communications. As it turns out, these options are more convenient and powerful than we ever imagined. 

Once you get the hang of being online, educating the public and connecting with others via social media, you’ll see just how rewarding it is to make a real difference by adding social media to your “medical bag.”

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