Last week, I had the pleasure of attending a lecture by Andy Hetzel, VP of Corporate Communications at Blue Cross Blue Shield. Live tweeting the event was interesting because the hasthag #NewhouseGLDSM was trending nationwide, which gave me the opportunity to tweet with people across the country regarding the importance of communications and healthcare. My favorite quote from Hetzel was, “Social media is like a cocktail party, you need to know when to insert yourself into the conversation at the right place, at the right time.” This quote holds true when measuring the success of social media initiatives, take the Oreo tweet during the SuperBowl blackout, for example. Oreo’s tweet was on point and punctual and obtained an overwhelming amount of publicity and coverage.
Hetzel also spoke about the importance of allowing employees tweet during the workday, stating that they are positive ambassadors for your brand. I also agree that it is important for your employees to convey your brand in a positive light, however there needs to be a social media policy so employees aren’t complaining about their workday or the company they work for. It’s interesting to see how important social media is becoming across all inustries. Hetzel said that Blue Cross Shield is present on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and even Google+.
A couple of years ago, social media was irrelevant to the health care industry, and I think it’s fascinating how vital it has become. Hetzel also pointed out that social media is ineffective unless you are constantly replying to your customers and promoting interactivity between them. Social media platforms are interactive forums, so if customers are tweeting at you and you aren’t responding, the purpose of social media is not being fulfilled.
I produced a Storify recap of the event, consisting of Tweets and photos. Feel free to take a look to get better insight into how social media and healthcare are becoming intermingled. http://sfy.co/gFka
Hetzel concluded the lecture by stating, “Newhouse students are the Harvard Law students of Communications.”
Thanks Andy! We would like to think so!