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Social media3 min read 5 healthcare social media trends to jump on

Stay on top of the changing healthcare social media landscape with these five trends. Discover which channels are growing, which are declining and the content people want to see.

October 29, 2018Molly Phillips, Digital Content Specialist

Managing your hospital's social media is a fun job to be sure, but it's not always all sunshine and shares. Especially if your channel's growth has plateaued. When that happens, it's time to roll up your sleeves and rethink your strategy. You can start by studying up on social media's changing trends.

Here are five healthcare social media trends you need to know:

1. Video is king. People are consuming tons of video on social media.

And it's not all viral videos that they're watching. In a 2018 Hubspot survey, 54 percent of people asked said they wanted to see more videos from the brands and businesses they follow.

The takeaway: Adding video can be a great way to up engagement on your social media channels. Think short, engaging health tips, provider interviews or hospital news.

2. Facebook reigns supreme (for now). That's an important caveat to remember. But for now, 68 percent of American adults are Facebook users, according to PEW Research Center's Social Media Use in 2018 report.

Those numbers may be changing though. PEW noted in the same report that 18- to- 24-year-olds are far more likely to use Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter than all other adult age groups.

The takeaway: You should continue keeping Facebook at the center of your social media efforts, but don't put all your eggs in one basket. If these trends continue, Snapchat and Instagram are only going to grow in popularity. Start your presence on those two channels now—you'll be glad you did when the day comes that Generation Z tries to find you.

3. Chatbots are on the rise. Facebook reports that its Messenger platform has more than 300,000 active bots and that these bots exchange 8 billion messages with businesses every month.

The takeaway: If your hospital receives frequent administrative questions on your social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, then setting up a chatbot will be a worthy investment. Take a look at the past year's engagement before deciding if a chatbot is right for your social channels.

4. Ephemeral content creates connections. You might be wondering what we mean by "ephemeral content." Simply put: It's video content with an expiration date. Think Instagram stories and Snapchat.

Surprisingly enough, this short-lived content sparks high engagement. In fact, Instagram Stories now has more than 400 million daily users. But perhaps the more interesting stat is that one in five organic Instagram Stories from brands get at least one direct message from a follower.

The takeaway: It's time to get scrappy with Instagram Stories and Snapchat. The exciting thing about both of these platforms is that the video's production value doesn't have to be high for it to resonate with your followers. Try using one to take a poll or conduct a spur-of-the-moment mini survey, "What would you most like to see: shorter ER wait times or more free parking?"

5. Social listening is where it's at. This is a trend that's about spotting trends—wait—what? Let's break that down:

Social listening is the process of monitoring your hospital's social channels for conversations, mentions and any other relevant news happening in or around your brand and industry. Within this gold mine of data lies trends, which you in turn can leverage to solve patient pain points or capitalize on popular topics that are relevant to your hospital.

Rather than use their already precious time to pull that data on their own, more and more companies are turning to specialized social listening tools to do that for them.

The takeaway: Start putting more effort into your social listening and be consistent about it. Once you implement changes based on your social listening findings, be sure to track their performance to get a better sense of your ROI.

Let's talk social

Managing multiple social media platforms and creating shareable content from scratch is a big job. Coffey can help. To learn more about our social tool and social strategy services, call 888.805.9101 or email us.

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