January 28, 2019

Old Doc Tries Twitter

By Lee Aase, Director, Mayo Clinic Social Media Network

One of our Mayo Clinic physicians contacted me a little over a week ago with a request for help in exploring his personal use of Twitter.

Below is our email conversation, shared with his permission, to highlight resources we offer medical professionals through the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network.

Subject: Old Doc Tries Twitter

Hi Lee,

I’m a program director, education chair, sit on a national panel for program directors, am 50 yo, and getting pressured into joining Twitter. It’s probably a good idea and so I’m willing. What could go wrong, right? My question to you is how to put my official Mayo photo into my Twitter account. I’m also open to any suggestions or direction of course. Can you advise an old man in the new ways of education?

Ken Olivier

My response…

Hi Dr. Olivier - I’m 55, so if I can do it…

We have just the perfect resource for you, I think. Your situation is exactly why we created the Social for Healthcare Certificate from Mayo Clinic and Hootsuite, which is a series of 20-30 minute modules covering how to use the major, most relevant platforms in the medical/professional context.

The whole certificate is CME-accredited, but you can just pick and choose which modules are most relevant to you. One of them covers the basics of Twitter.

We recognized that people like you obviously could learn through hands-on trial-and-error (as I did) but also that you’d probably prefer a more focused, best-practices approach that respects your time. And it’s cool to avoid errors in public, too.

Other individuals and organizations pay us for access to the training, but it’s free for Mayo Clinic staff. Just create your account on the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network using your email, and then you’ll have access to the modules from this page.

We’d also recommend you create a profile on LinkedIn if you haven’t yet. We also have a module on that in our basics certificate.

Happy to help if you have further questions, and would welcome your feedback on the basics modules.


The takeaways for you from this conversation are straightforward:

  1. If you’re a Mayo Clinic professional or allied health staff member, like Dr. Olivier you have access to our Social for Healthcare Certificate at no charge.
  2. If you’re not employed at Mayo Clinic, you still can access this training either through a Corporate membership or an individual Premium membership in the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network.

Start by signing up for an account using your work email address.

If your employer is already a Corporate member of MCSMN, you’ll automatically be upgraded to premium status.

If not, you’ll be able to upgrade individually, or we can discuss the benefits of Corporate membership if you send us an email.

We’re proud of the social media basics resource we’ve created for medical professionals, and we’re glad we can offer it not only to our Mayo Clinic staff but also to colleagues elsewhere who join with us in MCSMN, a learning community that develops and shares best practices for social media application in a health care context.

I hope you’ll take advantage of these resources and join with us — and with Dr. Olivier — in learning and sharing together.

Lee Aase is a Communications Director for Mayo Clinic's Social & Digital Innovation team and is Director of the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network

Choose a message to share 
What happens when an old doctor takes to Twitter?
Social media isn't necessarily easy for everyone.
What are the benefits of joining the MCSMN, anyway?

Tags: Learning Modules, Physician Involvement, Social Media Basics Certification

Thank you for posting Lee. This is perfect after our recent conversation with you.


The best part about this post is that if you follow Dr. Oliver today he has embraced the world of Twitter. I just visited his page and his tweets are awesome! On a side note; outside of his health related posts, I'm especially looking forward to seeing if he tries to bake cookies again. 🙂 The photos are great!

Please login or register to post a reply.

© Mayo Clinic Social Media Network. All Rights Reserved.