The honest answer to this question may be that your hospital doesn’t need a Twitter account. As is the case with all social media tools, only adopt Twitter if it fits into your overall marketing strategy. You should never launch a social media channel just to launch a channel.
That said, many hospitals make powerful use of Twitter to build communities and share information. Here are some of the key questions to ask when considering a Twitter account for your hospital:
- Who are you trying to reach in our marketing efforts?
- Where do they spend time online?
- Compared to other marketing strategies, is maintaining a Twitter account a good use of your time and energy?
- If you launch a Twitter account, do you have the resources (staff and time) to do it right?
- Does Twitter offer unique opportunities to engage with your target market?
- What messages would you share through a Twitter account that are not already available to patients through other social media efforts?
If, after asking and answering these questions, you think you’re ready, develop a one-page Twitter strategy document that answers these questions, and refer to it as you implement your account. But make sure you’re really ready. Starting a Twitter feed or Facebook page, managing it for a few months, and then just letting it sit idle will send a loud and clear message that you’re not serious about building a social media community.
Now you’re ready to jump in with both feet and start tweeting. It’s like riding a bike. A bit awkward at first, but once you get the hang of it, it’s smooth sailing.
We’ve written more than 50 blogposts that mention Twitter, many of them with detailed advice on the platform. You’ll find them by entering the term “twitter” in our search box. You can also visit our What We Think page to download our free e-book “Twitter, a Guide for Hospitals.”
How we help
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. Read about our services. Start a conversation. Email us or call us at 503-472-5512.