Social media — whether blog posts, Facebook announcements, or Twitter messages — have become great tools for communicating and engaging with colleagues and patients.
Social media enable pharmacists to join interest groups and interact with every member of each group. They can share information, recommendations, reviews, photos, videos, and links to internet sites devoted to pharmacy issues and health matters.
The speed at which social media and social networking sites have grown is breathtaking. Facebook, founded in 2004, now has more than 1.2 billion users. Twitter, a form of mini-blogging launched in 2006, now has more than 240 million monthly active users.
Access to these sites is immediate. You can snap a photo with your smart phone and post it on Facebook or Twitter in moments.
Social media offer a way to interact with pharmacy patients/customers on a daily (or more frequent) basis, making them an ideal supplement to regular marketing tools.
Pharmacists and pharmacies can gain from using social media, but they must be aware of the potential risks.