Let’s be real – social media is slowly starting to run the world. It holds an enormous amount of power over your brand and perception within the healthcare community. Some of the best patient feedback comes in through Facebook and Twitter, where you can connect with your patients on a new, more personable level. Think about it, the average social media user checks their Facebook daily, so why not put yourself out there in front of potential patients? If you need some convincing, we’ve compiled 7 surprising statistics about the top social networks for medical practices.
Healthcare and Social Media Statistics
1. 31% of health care professionals use social media for professional networking
Of the health care professionals who are utilizing social media, 60% of physicians say their most popular activity is following what colleagues are sharing and discussing. Over half a million healthcare professionals in the United States have chosen Doximity as their social network. By utilizing this medical network, physicians can stay connected with colleagues, classmates and co-residents. Physicians can even earn category 1 CME credits by reading medical journals available to them.
2. 26% of all hospitals in the US participate in social media
Having a strong social media presence is a great way for physicians to connect with their patients. People are looking for online sources they can trust for information on a condition or sickness they may be experiencing. This is why it is incredibly important for medical practices and hospitals to not only keep up with the latest advancements in social media, but also publish thorough medical content that your patients can trust. Of more than 1,500 hospitals that have an online presence, Facebook has shown to be the most popular social media network amongst them.
3. 54% of patients are very comfortable with their providers seeking advice from online communities to better treat their conditions
While this may not seem important to you, this is actually a crucial statistic in the healthcare industry. Because the Internet has allowed instant communication between individuals, no matter where they are located, it is now easier than ever before for doctors to help one another solve a difficult medical case. Apps like Figure1 allow for doctors to communicate with one another, which could end up cutting the amount of time needed to solve a medical problem and saving a patient’s life.
4. 41% of people said social media would affect their choice of a specific doctor, hospital, or medical facility
Think about it – when someone fears they have a health issue, what is the first thing they do? Google it. Now, times are changing and patients are starting to head to social media first instead. Statistics have shown 30% of adults are likely to share information about their health on social media sites with other patients, 47% with doctors, 43% with hospitals, 38% with a health insurance company and 32% with a drug company.
5. 90% of adults ages 18-24 would trust medical information shared by others in their social media networks
Source: Search Engine Watch
Everyone knows millennials have completely taken over the world of social media. Millennials grew up using the Internet as their primary news source, so it is makes perfect sense that they are more likely to trust medical information on social media. All you need to do is start the conversation, and your target audience will find you.
6. 49% of people expect to hear from their physician when requesting an appointment or follow-up discussion via social media within a few hours
Source: HealthCare Finance News
It’s time to accept that a majority of your patients are on social media, so why not use it to your advantage? By utilizing direct message features, patients are able to contact their physicians and request appointments. Since social media is mostly done in real time, patients are likely utilizing this feature to schedule a quick appointment without the hassle of making a phone call. ZocDoc is another quick and easy way that physicians can allow their patients to make hassle-free appointments online.
7. 19% of smartphone owners have at least one health app on their phone
Studies have suggested that in the near future, patients will use health apps as their preferred medical resource. Two-thirds of Americans have already shown to favor digital health management, including social media. Due to the fact that our lives are filled with healthcare apps, social media, and wearable health devices, it’s crucial for doctors to be well educated on these technologies so they can better reach potential patients.
Start Your Practice’s Social Media Campaign Today
By making social media a priority, you are showing your patients and your fellow healthcare professionals that you care about making connections and building relationships. Our social media team is experienced in helping medical practices build effective social media campaigns and is ready to help your practice get started today! Please contact us for more information.