Clinic’s bustling Facebook page creates tight-knit community

Through employee involvement and frequent, timely posts, Springfield Clinic keeps patients engaged and in the know.

When a team at Springfield Clinic decided to create a Facebook page, they didn’t think it would become the bustling hub it is today. They just thought it would be a good way to get some free advertising.

But Springfield Clinic’s Facebook page soon became much more than that, earning it the title of Best Facebook Page in the 2012 PR Daily Awards.

While the page may have begun under humble circumstances, it quickly grew into an engaged community. The page now serves as a patient education center, as well as a source of clinic news, health information, event details and other topics relevant to patients.

The page has a clear personality and, as a social network should, fosters two-way communication. Clinic employees often begin and contribute to discussions on the page, which enhances its community atmosphere.

To keep the conversations flowing, Springfield Clinic sticks to an editorial schedule. Each morning, the clinic posts a new article from its Health Library. These posts include the latest medical news, background information on current events in the health industry, and new scientific studies.

The clinic posts one to three times per day, depending on the news cycle. The clinic tries to post on a variety of topics to keep things interesting, but will stick to one topic if the day calls for it. For example, it posted seven different statuses on Veteran’s Day, detailing many ways its patients could help veterans. That week, its total reach increased by 787 percent, viral chatter grew by 129 percent and likes increased by 2.5 percent. Additionally, when Illinois stopped offering one of its most popular forms of health insurance, the clinic posted more than usual to link to articles, share press releases, and keep fans up to date on breaking information. The team tracks their progress weekly to learn which type of posts work, and creates content based on those findings. That approach helped them surpass its goals. The clinic currently has a viral reach of more than 155,000.

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