How do I find time for Social Medial?

As a primary care internist, I work 10-12 hours per day, plus 6 hours on Saturday, and sometimes on Sunday. And I still am behind in my work. Pediatricians are probably just as busy. How could your docs find time to write articulate and well thought out blogs?

This is a question I got from a reader of the blog. Below is my response.

Fundamentally, if you don’t like it, you won’t find the time. Thus, in order to find the time, you have to want to engage in social media; you have to appreciate it. You have to like it, enjoy it and find pleasure roaming the web, reading interesting articles, sharing, communicating, networking etc. If you don’t enjoy it, it will be a chore and you’ll soon get bored and move on.

For years, I complained I didn’t workout because I didn’t have the time. Last year a family member fell ill. He could have died. As a result of that health scare, I have found the time to workout. Now, my wife and I have a perfect synchronized schedule where we rotate, relieve, sacrifice, and change roles in our household, job and kids responsibilities in an effort to meet our new objective of working out at least a few times a week.

If you are not motivated, working out is boring and it is time consuming. When one doesn’t have a motive for working out, it is easier  to choose to eat, sleep, sit, drink and be merry instead. Social Media is the same, in my view. If you are not interested or motivated, you won’t find the time. As simple as that.

Lastly, I wanted to share a great piece by Dr. Vartabedian. He has a great post that gives a few suggestions on how one can have an active SM life with just 30 minutes a day. I know… it sounds like a Billy Mays commercial. But it is really good. Click here for details.

For those of you that do the social media thing, what other tips or ideas could you provide to help others find the time to engage in social media? Is there anything else you would suggest?

7 thoughts on “How do I find time for Social Medial?”

  1. As a physician, I agree that you have to want to engage in social media or it becomes a chore. I bet more physicians would consider engaging if there weren’t such a lack of understanding what social media is and what it can do for the quality of health information on the Internet.

    I have been maintaining my own blog for about 3 years. In the beginning, I found that writing down the “lectures” that I’m used to giving many times a day about various health related subjects was a great source of topics.

    For instance, as a retina specialist, I give the warning signs of a retinal detachment many times a day. Made a great post!

    I might add that this is a pretty safe way in which to educate….it keeps us away from offering advice, and, of course, making a diagnosis.

    Great article.


    1. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment.

      I think you hit it on the head… if we can show other physicians how powerful all this Web2.0 can be, we’d have a lot more engagement from the medical community.

      The truth is, doctors sit on a lot of information. But it rarely gets out outside of the examining room. The web affords us the ability to distribute content relatively easy and with nearly zero cost. I think that is pretty powerful.

  2. As a primary care pediatrician I couldn’t agree more. I work full time seeing patients, help with the business end of our practice, volunteer on many committees in the community and have a family. I do all of the social media for our group of 12 pediatricians. No one else is interested in doing it. I enjoy it very much. I bet 10-15 minutes a day is the minimum, and most of it is just sharing the information I would have been reading about before the SM. I have received considerable feedback from the >500 families following us on Facebook and >250 on Twitter, and almost all of it is positive. They like knowing that what is being shared is something that I have read and found to be credible and useful (and sometimes just fun). Today’s families want this kind of information being delivered to them in a format that they are already accessing. I can’t imaging it will do anything but keep growing and changing (like medicine has always done).

    1. Thank you for your comments Dr. J. I love your comment about parents wanting to get info in this matter. Your are right. And pediatricians especially are in a unique position to leverage this tech considering that our demographics skews younger.


  3. Great post, Brandon! I do like what Dr. V. says about blogging. I tell physicians to think about questions that patients regularly ask them, and write their blog in a question and answer format. That often gets things flowing.

    There are some practices that do not have a physician who is able or wants to write for the practice. In this case, I do suggest that the practice hire an experienced ghost blogger (I am one of many) who will capture the practice’s “voice” and help the practice achieve their digital goals.

    Keep up the good work, Brandon!

    Mary Pat

    1. I’ve even told doctors to film themselves giving the answer to questions they get every day and posting those. That would be enough to get a vlog going.

      As always, thanks for your comments Mary Pat.

Comments are closed.