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Social Media Guidance

   

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Social media plays an integral role in the way we share and consume information every day. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter encourage dialogue, allow individuals to have real-time conversations about their interests, and offer a way to reach new audiences.

As a pediatrician, social media allows you to position yourself and your practice as a relevant and reliable source of health information for parents and families. Through social media, you not only can educate your networks about key health topics, but also proactively define the voice and image of your practice.

This guide includes tips and tools that you can use to manage your social media profiles, communicate your priorities to the public and engage your patients and communities. This guide outlines the following resources:

  • ​A definition of social media
  • How to decide which social media platform is best for you
  • Defining your social media strategy
  • Management best practices by platform
  • Tips to build your social media presence
  • Responding to and moderating posts and online conversations
  • Making videos to share
  • Requesting vaccine-support videos from parents
  • Sample posts and tweets
    What is Social Media?
    "Social media" refers to tools or services that enable people to communicate and share information online. Social media platforms include social and professional networking sites, like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, as well as apps like Vine and Snapchat, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and blogs. ​

    As the name implies, social media is inherently social and appeals to individuals' drive to define their own voice and be part of a community. Social media now allows anyone to exchange ideas on any topic from anywhere at any time.

    ​For businesses, social media offers new ways to connect with consumers and interact with one another. While social media has multiplied an organization's potential reach, its real-time nature means that businesses are now responsible for monitoring and contributing to online conversations to stay relevant.  ​


    How to Decide Which Platform is Best for You

    While each social media platform has its benefits, you should select to be active on the sites that align best with your target audience and objective. To determine which type of social media account is right for you, ask yourself the following questions:

    1. What are your goals?

    Outline your goals for initiating a social media handle as compared to other, traditional communications approaches. How would launching a social media account help you achieve your objective?

    2. Who is your target audience?

    Who do you hope to reach through social media? Determine and define your primary and secondary audiences.

    3. Which social media platform aligns with my goals and target audience?

    Some demographic groups heavily use a particular social media platform; for example, parents primarily use Facebook. Meet your audience where they are.

    4. What is your content strategy?

    Develop a content calendar and an approach that will ensure that your profile remains active and engaging over the long term. This exercise will help you map your content to your target audiences and identify any potential gaps in content streams.  

    5. How will my team allocate resources to support a social media profile?

    Managing a social media account effectively is a daily commitment. Determine who on your team would administer the account and consider potential time and resource parameters. Define expectations and have a plan for when they may be absent. ​

    Defining Your Strategy

    Stay relevant to current events

    Maintaining and following an editorial calendar is essential to ensure efficiency and to plan relevant messages in advance around key times of year when certain topics will be most relevant. However, as a manager of a social media account, you may need to adjust those plans based on unfolding news events and conversations that emerge online. To stay abreast of social media activities happening in the immunization community, follow key organizations on social media, including the AAP, CDC, American Academy of Family Physicians and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

    Track your progress

    Reference and track your page's analytics frequently to determine if you are meeting your goals. All major social media platforms offer an analytics dashboard. The most helpful and easy-to-understand statistics to track are:

    • Follower growth: The number of followers your account amasses across time. Tracking follower growth will help you determine whether the content you are posting is resonating with your current audience and attracting new ones.
    • Reach or impressions: The definition of "reach" and "impressions" varies from platform to platform. However, generally the two terms indicate the potential audience for each message you send. The higher your impressions or reach, the farther your message traveled.
    • Engagement: Engagement means how many times a user interacted with a particular post. Depending on the platform, engagement may include likes, clicks, comments or shares. Measuring engagement will tell you which type of content is the most successful. For example, on Facebook, you may discover that sharing material on a certain topic or sharing videos results in more likes, comments or shares.​


    June 2016
    Post LanguagePost LinkWhen to
    Post
    Where to PostPerson Photo/Video 
    Does your child have an egg allergy? Learn more about what shots they can safely receive

    www.chop.edu/centers-programs/vaccine-education-center/vaccine-ingredients/egg-products#.VyIvr_krJhE

     

    June 1, 2pmFacebookJohn N/A
    Vaccines provide protection when your baby needs it most. Newborns are especially vulnerable to some diseases.www.healthychildren.org/
    English/safety-prevention/
    immunizations
    /pages/Newborns-and-Vaccines.aspx
    June 2, 3pmTwitterJaneN/A​

    Stay relevant to current events

    Maintaining and following an editorial calendar is essential to ensure efficiency and to plan relevant messages in advance around key times of year when certain topics will be most relevant. However, as a manager of a social media account, you may need to adjust those plans based on unfolding news events and conversations that emerge online. To stay abreast of social media activities happening in the immunization community, follow key organizations on social media, including the AAP, CDC, American Academy of Family Physicians and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

    Track your progress

    Reference and track your page's analytics frequently to determine if you are meeting your goals. All major social media platforms offer an analytics dashboard. The most helpful and easy-to-understand statistics to track are:

    • Follower growth: The number of followers your account amasses across time. Tracking follower growth will help you determine whether the content you are posting is resonating with your current audience and attracting new ones.
    • Reach or impressions: The definition of "reach" and "impressions" varies from platform to platform. However, generally the two terms indicate the potential audience for each message you send. The higher your impressions or reach, the farther your message traveled.
    • Engagement: Engagement means how many times a user interacted with a particular post. Depending on the platform, engagement may include likes, clicks, comments or shares. Measuring engagement will tell you which type of content is the most successful. For example, on Facebook, you may discover that sharing material on a certain topic or sharing videos results in more likes, comments or shares.​


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