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The Basics: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter


The basics
LinkedIn is the most professional networking site of the group. Typical users have a LinkedIn profile as a means of establishing and maintaining professional relationships. Most profiles have the look and feel of a résumé - users can list their current and past employers, accomplishments, education, and professional affiliations and memberships. Other users can search your profile to see if there is an opportunity to build a business relationship, or an associate can browse your other connections to see if you have a trusted contact that they can do business with as well.

How can it benefit pharmacists?
LinkedIn offers pharmacists many potential benefits. One benefit is the "Recommendations" feature, where past customers, associates, or employers can recommend you to others. This is great for the pharmacist seeking new employment, the pharmacy seeking new customers or employees, or the vendor seeking new relationships.

Using connections is a great way to find familiar people to work with. If you see that one of your fellow pharmacists has a connection with a particular vendor, it can bridge the gap for you to establish a connection. Also, you can ask the pharmacist about that vendor to see if they are trustworthy or worthwhile to do business with.

What does OPA offer?
It is no secret that professional memberships are value-added mechanisms in the business world. Memberships to groups like OPA show your professional network that you take your profession seriously. Having the OPA "stamp" on your LinkedIn profile demonstrates your commitment to the industry. The OPA group also features a news feed, discussion groups, and links to OPA Career Center job postings.

For general information about LinkedIn, CLICK HERE.

Sign up for OPA's LinkedIn group today.


The basics
Facebook is predominantly a social tool, rather than a professional one. Typical users have Facebook as a means to reconnect with old friends, chat with current friends, post pictures. Facebook allows users to create a profile where they can share every detail about their lives.

What does OPA offer?
OPA's Facebook page will keep you updated on all upcoming events. If you are attending any of the events, you have the option to "RSVP," which will tell others in the group or your network of "friends" that you will be attending. OPA also will post news relevant to pharmacists on the page, and you can share that information with others in your network as you see fit. Anyone who signs up as a "Fan" (a Facebook way of saying you are following a group) of OPA will also be connected as part of the OPA network where you can post comments, engage in discussions, or post photos from OPA events.

For more information on Facebook, CLICK HERE.

Sign up as a "Fan" of OPA on Facebook today.


The basics
Twitter is the newest major social networking tool on the scene. It is the simplest one to use once you learn the lingo and procedures. Twitter can best be described as "short and sweet." Twitter operates a lot like a blog. Each post is called a "Tweet," and it is limited to 140 characters. Twitter recognizes how short our attention spans are - so if you can't explain it in less than a few words, you've lost out on making your point.

How can it benefit pharmacists?
It is important to think of blogs when trying to wrap your mind around Twitter. Many of us read blogs for two reasons: to get different perspectives on current events and issues, and to serve as a filter for the infinite amount of information on the web. Twitter can offer the same thing, but it gets to the point.

Once you set up a Twitter account, you can follow APhA, NCPA, your local government officials, vendors, and your favorite columnists. The best part is that Twitter won't them bore you, and you can get all the news you need in a fraction of the normal time.

What does OPA offer?
OPA's Twitter page offers a lighter side of our association - here, you can get everything from the hard news (legislative updates, action alerts, and important deadlines) to the soft news (pharmacy fun facts and random news of interest). We recognize that for the most part, life is built on personal relationships - OPA's Twitter page is a fun, informal way to keep up with your professional organization.

For more information on Twitter, CLICK HERE.

Follow OPA on Twitter.

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