Over the last few years we have seen an increase in conversation on public social media by HCPs. For example HCP conversation around the therapy area of diabetes has tripled over the last few years. I had a recent conversation with a nurse on twitter @nursefriendly who backs these findings up by saying there are lots of us (HCPs) out here in #healthcare #tweetchats #facebook forums.
Seeing the increase in conversation is interesting for pharma but understanding what they are doing online and why is the next step. Marie-Claire Wilson, from Creation Healthcare, recently wrote an interesting article looking at how HCPs are utilising and interacting on public social media.
She investigated the area of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and found the main four drivers for HCP engagement on public social media were:
1) Creating news – broadcasting information that would interest their peers
2) Consuming news – staying in touch with new developments and the latest study results
3) Caring for patients – learning new ways to help patients, sharing resources and tips, having direct conversations with patients
4) Collaborating & building networks – becoming involved in a community free of boundaries
Being aware of what is important for online HCPs can help pharmaceutical companies to better tailor their engagement initiatives.
If you have any thoughts on other ways in which HCPs are using public social media then let me know.