How to Use Social Media Insights to Drive Patient Engagement and Donor Retention | npENGAGE

How to Use Social Media Insights to Drive Patient Engagement and Donor Retention 

By on Nov 29, 2017


Social Media Insights for Healthcare Nonprofits

The modern healthcare market is a competitive environment in which hospital foundations need to compete for donors. These donors are smart, mobile and social-savvy. They have an abundance of choices as to where they want to contribute and how often. 

There are ways to gauge what your donors are saying and address them according to their preferences. Your foundation should be applying social media strategies to not only retain current donors, but recruit new donors as well. 

Tips to Incorporate Social Insights into Your Strategy 

Social listening tools can help inform communications for your strategy while offering powerful opportunities for real time, personalized multi-channel engagement.  

1. Monitor Your Reputation  

It is essential to know and understand what people are saying about your organization in real time. You need to be able to screen positive and negative influences as it relates to your foundation and respond on a personal level. If you utilize a multi-channel engagement tool you’ll be able to regulate your brand perception across all media instantaneously and seamlessly.  

An unhappy family member of a patient has posted on Twitter, mentioning they will no longer support the philanthropic side of the hospital due to a recent circumstance. You can immediately respond to them to learn more about the problem and work to resolve it with the patient and family. 

2. Identify Topics & Trends 

The healthcare giving landscape is changing rapidly, and social media plays a critical role in understanding how individuals are talking about their communities, their preferences and even your foundation. If you notice a trend in conversations, seize the moment and send an email or social post when the issue is most likely to gain traction. Social listening can help you understand what your donors want to hear so you can tailor your communications to get their attention.  

You may identify that a large group of your patients are enthusiastic about an upcoming road race and therefore, promoting that your foundation is hosting a tent at the finish line is a smart strategy. 

3. Customize Interactions 

Customize your nonprofit digital marketing campaigns based on activity or interests to create a brand experience that is personal and engaging. Social listening can help you understand what your people want to hear so you can create communications that get their attention. Instead of sending mass emails to your entire patient and donor population with content that may only be relevant to few, break down your population into segments to increase the chance your messages resonate. When the recipients feel that your message is personally for them, they are more likely to have a positive perception of your foundation and are more likely to interact with you in the future.  

You can create a campaign contest that gives donors and patients the opportunity to share their favorite caretaker story to increase engagement and lead those to gift consideration. 

4. Find Influencers 

Discover social influencers already in your database and engage them through meaningful interaction and nurturing, ultimately extending your reach. These influencers can be current donors, former patients or foundation staff members. Creating a strong influencer program is one of the best ways to reach their large social networks and encourage specific interactions with your organization. Your efforts are multiplied with the assistance of even a few social media influencers. 

You find that several of your annual event committee members are active responders on Twitter and have large social networks that follow them. Invite them to become a part of your influencer program and gain access to their network as well. Pushing out strategic content to them for sharing also helps get your specific message out to the right targets.  

Get Your Free Social Insights Report 

Want to learn more about the social side of your audience? We can provide a free report that will tell you the following information after analyzing 5000 of your records:

  1. The overall effect your donors have on 100+ social media networks 
  2. Your top influencers and their associated reach
  3. The social platforms where your contacts are most active
  4. Top geographic locations, age groups, gender 
  5. The hottest topics of conversation in your population 



Russ Cobb was formerly President and General Manager of the Healthcare Solutions Group with Blackbaud. With vast experience in sales, marketing and management, he brings a wealth of healthcare market knowledge and forward-thinking solutions to both hospital systems and their foundations. Blackbaud partners with these entities to increase revenue, reduce costs, enhance constituent relationships, and increase philanthropic giving.

Comments (1)

  • Jinu says:

    I think these tips are great. Social media is a great way to connect with people in todays world. Communicating though social media is fast and the organization can provide individual responses to address concerns and questions that people might have.

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