Advocate Health Care gets big return on video Web chats

The Chicago-area hospital network looked to the White House for inspiration in creating a live Q&A session with a cardiologist.

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Even so, the Feb. 24 program on Facebook, YouTube, and Advocate’s website fooled some viewers into thinking it was a national talk show. Stephanie Johnson, Advocate’s director of public affairs, says folks from Washington state and Texas contacted her to ask whether she could host shows about other topics.

“It didn’t look like some kitchen-sink kind of show,” Johnson says.

The Q&A with cardiologist Vince Bufalino is the first of what Johnson says she hopes will soon become a monthly series for Advocate. Based on the response the hospital system saw, it probably will get there.

First steps

Advocate launched its Facebook page a little less than a year ago, step one in what Johnson calls “a really aggressive social media platform.”

“Once we started finding our groove on Facebook with different initiatives, Christine Bon and our Web team started to do some research for us,” she says. The team discovered that blogging was an effective way to build engagement, but they wanted to go beyond that, so they started working on the idea of a Web chat.

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