Despite a slow start, the healthcare industry has really embraced social media. Now, hospitals and healthcare providers around the country incorporate social tools into their patient outreach strategies. Video, in particular, has been a game-changer for many businesses, and the healthcare industry is no exception.
Video services like Vine have helped healthcare institutions become better storytellers while creating an emotional connection with viewers. Whether your goal is to educate and empower patients, or simply exhibit new technology, video is a powerful tool that every healthcare provider can use.
To help get you started, here are a few of the different ways you can incorporate Vine into your social outreach strategies.
One of the best ways to educate consumers about life-saving procedures and drive awareness for healthcare in general is through visuals. Now the goal here isn’t to scare people away with images of “what could happen if you don’t XYZ,” but rather to help demystify what happens during routine exams, tests, and surgical procedures.
A number of hospitals have successfully adopted Vine, bringing viewers into the operating room. The University of Colorado Health, for example, used the tool to document a partial knee replacement surgery. Similarly, UCLA Medical Center used Vine as well as Twitter to live-document a brain surgery.
While surgeries are a great way to drive engagement and attract an audience, not all Vine videos need to feature these procedures. Simply identifying what happens during blood donation, a stress test, or an MRI can help drive health awareness.
Provide Health Tips
While we don’t encourage you to share personalized health advice with your audience through Vine, it can be a great platform for delivering general health tips. According to research by the Pew Internet Project, 72 percent of Internet users searched online for health information in the past year.
Offer health tips from physicians, nursing staff, and other specialists available to you. Videos tend to have a lasting impression on viewers and are more likely to be shared than text-based reminders. A good example comes from Teton Valley Hospital, which made this easily sharable Vine reminding viewers to walk more.
You can even go bigger, using Vine to create awareness around a day or month. For example, the UNC Center for Heart and Vascular Care and UNC Health Care worked together during American Heart Month to educate people about cardiovascular disease and the importance of a heart-healthy lifestyle. They utilized a variety of social media tools, but this heart-healthy Vine was certainly a nice bonus.
Create Excitement Around Your Facility
Do you have enthusiastic patients like PSL Denver’s Woody Roseland? Highlighting patients is a great way to create an emotional connection and establish brand loyalty with viewers. You can also showcase new products and medical equipment; get existing and potential patients excited about the innovations your institution is making.
The excitement doesn’t even have to be around something that’s tangible yet. Maybe you’re starting a new trial that’ll help improve patients’ lives or, like Detroit Medical Center, you can use Vine to create buzz around a new addition that hasn’t even finished being built yet.
Now that you’ve seen some of the fun ways the healthcare industry is utilizing Vine, it’s time to start brainstorming your own videos. Be clear about your goals as doing so will help you determine what kind of videos to make. We recommend using Vine in conjunct with another social platform, such as Twitter or Facebook, to help extend the reach of your videos.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.