- Clinician 1
- FaceBook (the many pages dedicated to different advanced practice nursing groups)
- LinkedIn (NP groups)
- Advance for NPs & PAs
- The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (has a networking site that is difficult to find)
- The ENP Network
- Many NPs on Twitter
- NP Central Listserv
- NP blogs
These sites are primarily geared to the NP with the hopes of networking with fellow NPs. I have personally been a part of every one of these sites - more so as a lurker - to see what my NP colleagues are talking about and discussing. It's rare that I feel compelled enough to comment about an issue (well, I take that back - that's what my blog is for!) There are the regular participants and the occasional flamers.
I generally come away disappointed with the lack of participation and relatively low engagement. (The only way that I can quantify the number of "members" is by looking at the largest NP group on FaceBook that has a paltry 2100 or so - not to mention that the majority of postings is from recruiters trying to fill positions or someone trying to promote or sell something health related). Is it because NPs are too busy to spend time posting on forums? Is it lack of awareness of the various sites? Are there just too many sites to track and be active on?
Is it all of the above?
It's obvious that social (and professional) networking sites aren't going anywhere anytime soon (FaceBook touts 500 million uses). However, there needs to be increased participation and discussion for them to be meaningful before people give up on them altogether - at least from a professional standpoint.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. Do you participate in these sites? Were you aware of the varied social networking landscape? Do you have any ideas to increase user engagement and if so, which site(s) would you choose?
(By the way, of my FaceBook friends, it looks like I had one person unfriend me. I'm not sure who it was, but then again, I guess I'm not missing out on much if I can't figure out who it was!)