Facebook pitfalls that hospital CEOs must avoid

Some level of social media engagement is vital for healthcare organizations and their leaders, but along with the opportunities, hospital CEOs often make mistakes when posting to Facebook, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Nearly three quarters of Americans use the social platform daily, so healthcare CEOs seeking to boost their organizations' profiles for the right reasons must walk something of a tightrope, according to the article. It's not enough to simply "lurk" on Facebook while keeping posts or engagement to a minimum.

Unfortunately, this has been a hard-learned lesson for healthcare executives; a 2013 study found that only about 1 in 4 Facebook hospital posts address issues affecting patients, due to a still-prevailing attitude that social media is a function of marketing rather than human resources, FierceHealthcare previously reported.

On the other end of the spectrum, CEOs shouldn't use Facebook in personal ways that reflect poorly on their organization, according to the article. "As public figures, CEOs need to use Facebook as if every single thing they post (including comments on their friends' posts) could be on the front page of tomorrow's paper," the column states. 

A recent survey found that of the nearly 4 in 10 Americans who follow business leaders on social media, hardly any follow with the expectation of reading personal posts, according to Entrepreneur. Instead, 36 percent look to those leaders to address the company's vision, while 35 percent seek news on company services and 32 percent want the leaders to address customer service experiences.

The best approach is finding a happy medium that engages patients while retaining a distinct, but not overriding, human touch, according to the WSJ, like the occasional post about personal interests such as music or books.

To learn more:
- here's the WSJ column
- read the Entrepreneur article