All of these aforementioned efforts are working toward one main goal—building a strong online community for patients, family members, staff, and other brand advocates.
"The community we've built on Facebook should meet the expectations that patients have for MD Anderson as an institution, and among other things, that's to be caring, attentive, empathetic, helpful, and authoritative," Nathan-Garner says.
"Our interactions with prospective patients and their families on our social media channels may be their first interactions with MD Anderson, and this interaction may make or break their decision about whether to seek treatment at MD Anderson or refer someone else here."
Nathan-Garner didn't want to speak directly to the American Journal of Medial Quality study correlating Facebook likes with quality, but she did say that MD Anderson promotes its high quality of care indirectly on social media.
It shares countless patient stories, most of which mention the high-quality care the patients received while at MD Anderson. It also shares blog posts and other content from its doctors and other experts and thought leaders.
"The most direct promotion of hospital quality on our Facebook page actually comes from our followers," she says. "We recently shared a blog post about what to expect during your first visit to MD Anderson, for instance, and we received 25 comments, almost all from patients praising the hospital."