Dave Ekrem (@DaveEkrem) is manager of web development for MassGeneral Hospital for Children. He’s been tweeting since 2007, and in 2008 he and Ed Bennett started the very useful Hospital Social Network project, which tracks hospital use of social media.
Dave’s duties include responsibility for the MassGeneral Hospital for Children’s Facebook page, and he’s developed a great graphic of new fan strategies:
I liked it so much I called him to discuss it (after tweeting, of course) and asked for permission to share it here.
Dave says he was trying to put all the potential tactics for building Facebook fans he could think of in one place and hoped that if he put it out there, he’d get some good feedback. So he put the graphic on a list serve for hospital web managers, Social Media and the Hospital Workforce, managed by Ed Bennett. So far he’s gotten some good feedback.
A grass roots approach
Dave tells me that Massachusetts General Hospital takes a grass roots approach to Facebook pages. Entities who want to start one might try out a few posts on the general page before creating their own. But it’s up to them “as long as they adhere to hospital policies and make sure they’re following the guidelines.”
People expect a Facebook page
“We’re getting to the point where people expect you to have a Facebook page, just like they expect you to have a phone number,” Dave says. “We wanted to open up that channel.”
Administration was on board from the beginning, although some wondered how to add the duties to an already-packed work schedule. Dave and a web editor spend around 5% of their time managing the page.
Advice for those still thinking
What advice does Dave have for hospitals that are just thinking of starting their Facebook page?
- Think carefully about how it fits into the overall strategy of your hospital.
- Think carefully about what value the hospital wants to add to your community, whether that’s a geographical or a topical community.
Do you have more strategies? What is Dave missing? What have you tried and how well has it worked?
Visit our What We Think page to download our free e-book: How to Engage Patients in a Facebook Community.
Hive Strategies helps hospitals engage patients through social media. We don’t manage social media. Instead, we help hospitals develop an effective social media strategy and mentor them through the implementation process. Start a conversation. Email us or call us at 503-472-5512.