You’ve done the work, now you probably want others to know about it, right? Sure, you could go shout about it from the rooftops, but there’s an easier alternative that doesn’t require ladders or shouting. Many people are turning to social media to share and seek health information, and using the appropriate hashtag when you post about your research can make that information more visible to the general public, as well as fellow researchers. 

Why hashtags?

Tagging tweets and other social media posts not only make you feel “hip” but they actually help others find the cool stuff you’re sharing. If you’re not sure where to start, you’re not alone. In fact, you don’t even have to be a social media expert to join the online conversations. Think about the broader categories your research might fit into, as well as very specific subgroups.

Enter: Healthcare Hashtags! Yay!

Healthcare Hashtag Project is a free open platform for patients, caregivers, advocates, doctors and other providers that connects them to relevant conversations and communities.

Search for the most relevant and popular hashtags related to the info you are sharing. Look, for example, at #HeartHealth and you’ll find the related hashtags, recent Tweets, as well as the key influencers for that particular hashtag trend. This provides a quick overview of what’s happening in that world, who’s involved in the conversation, and other hashtags you might find useful. 

How can YOU benefit from this?

Say you are trying to disseminate all your breaking research findings to the community of people who might benefit from your work. Using Healthcare Hashtags you can find the most relevant hashtags to include in your post so that you can easily join in current conversations and increase the visibility of your research, share your knowledge and passion, and even connect you to other researchers in that field as well as community health organizations or other emerging leaders who might take interest in the work you are sharing. 

In addition to posting, there often are engaging Twitter conversations you might be inclined to join to either share your knowledge or learn about others working in your specialty or a related field. Hashtags are also used to highlight topical Tweet ChatsConferences, and Ontologies.

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Here’s a quick 1-2-3 of how to use the Healthcare Hashtags Project:

  1. Prepare your Tweet or other social media message.

  2. Visit the Healthcare Hashtag Project website and search for hashtags related to your work. Refine your selection based on relevancy and popularity.

  3. Tag your post with the top 2-3 hashtags and then publish to the social media platform of your choice.

You can reverse the order of steps 1 and 2 by visiting Healthcare Hashtag Project to see what’s trending, then find a way to join the conversation by sharing your related information using that hashtag.

PRO TIP: Before using ANY hashtag, do a quick Twitter search to preview what’s happening in that world. No one wants to inadvertently tag their research tweets with something that will deliver questionable search results.

Have any other Twitter tips? Share them in the comments, or BE BOLD and write a post about how you are using social media in your research world!

 

More Hashtag Resources for Twitter and Beyond:

5 Twitter Hashtag Rules You Must Follow to Avoid Annoying Your Followers

5 Types of Twitter Hashtag Explained (and How to Use Them)

Hashtags on Facebook — The Definitive Guide

Instagram Hashtag Research: How to Find Great Hashtags Fast

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