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Online Communication: Why Do We Do It?

The COVID-19 pandemic changed a lot in our daily lives; we are not able to meet face to face and most events have been cancelled. Also professionally these times are unprecedented, with a lot of people unexpectedly working from home and not being able to see people at meetings, conferences or trainings. Because we can’t meet each other in real life we meet online.

Over the years the COMBACTE network has grown exponentially. This resulted in a now substantial group of hospitals, labs and contacts across Europe that are engaged in the COMBACTE network and its studies. A focus on communication is imperative to share the important work being done in the various COMBACTE consortia.

Social Media

During this pandemic we have seen a surge in social media engagement. COMBACTE is capitalizing on this and has been continuously increasing its presence on social media; sharing relevant updates, interacting with our network and highlighting important work being done during the COVID-19 outbreak. Especially right now it’s even more important to connect with people, and social media provides a perfect opportunity.

In 2017, COMBACTE launched its Twitter account, followed by a LinkedIn page in 2019. Our network can stay up-to-the-minute on the latest developments and high-quality study news content. Currently, COMBACTE has over 1600 twitter followers and over 300 followers on LinkedIn.

In the interest of our current and future partnerships, it is important to continue this transparent communication on our day-to-day-work, how the collaboration is proceeding and – most importantly – our results. In order to transparently communicate with our network, but also non-scientific audiences, scientific peers, potential business partners or policymakers, online communication is an important tool. It allows COMBACTE to rapidly share and consistently inform people.

COMBACTE WEBSITE

The COMBACTE website contains the most comprehensive information on the work being done within COMBACTE, which includes background information on all COMBACTE projects, an overview of all studies and current up-to-date study progress, noteworthy developments and interim results, publications, and key people in our network.

Since the creation of the website in 2014, the number of sessions (a visitor’s time browsing the website; a measurement of website usage) has continuously grown each year, resulting in 29,837 sessions and over 20,000 individual users in 2019. Since 2015, there has been a 150% increase in traffic to the website. Over half of these sessions are organic, meaning that people find the website through a search engine, with direct sessions, people entering www.combacte.com in their browser, being the channel though which visitors visit the website the second most often.

Organic sessions increased with 72% since 2015 and direct sessions with 19%. Website traffic from social media increased with 87%. Visitors to the website are most frequently from the USA, UK, Netherlands, Spain, Germany, France, Belgium, and Italy.

The Importance of Communication

Publication Library

The publication library has been one of the most visited pages on the website and includes all published scientific papers issued from COMBACTE. Some of the most impactful papers this year include:

NEWSLETTER

To further keep the network updated, a monthly newsletter is shared that highlights the month’s most significant developments and progress within COMBACTE and its trials. This includes study updates, publications, upcoming events and messages from the management boards and top enrollers. If you want to keep up to date with the latest developments you can subscribe to the newsletter.

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