If a practice wants to stay competitive and relevant in this day and age, it is essential to stay up-to-date on the latest marketing trends and technologies. This is particularly true when it comes to the rapidly evolving world of social media marketing. It goes without saying that having business pages for your practice on all major social media platforms can significantly benefit your brand visibility online. This not only helps your practice to stay top-of-mind for current and potential patients, but can boost your website’s SEO ranking too.
Many practices have eagerly taken this initial step and created business pages, but merely having a page is only half of the story. In order for your practice to fully realize the benefits of social media marketing, you need to be consistently sharing meaningful and relatable content reflective of your practice and industry as a whole. What sort of content should you share? Our Content Coordinator, Katie Weingardt, recently attended the Denver Startup Week lecture, “Social Media: You’re Doing it Wrong” to glean some insights from other industry experts. Here are a few pointers she took away from the experience.
Be true to your brand. Your practice’s social media profiles predominantly serve to maintain, solidify and engage others with your brand identity. Thus, first and foremost, you need to have a consistent and memorable brand in place before building out any social media pages for your practice. This can include a practice logo, brand messaging, targeted demographic and brand essence designed to attract your ideal patients. Having a brand identity and brand messaging is integral before exploring any marketing tactic. You can read about our recommended creative branding process here.
Don’t treat your social media profiles like a manual. Patients will love to browse their newsfeeds and see cheerful greetings, reminders to schedule appointments and simple pointers on how to improve their dental health. They are less likely to enjoy dense informational content better suited for your fellow practitioners in the dental field. While sharing research articles and industry news is great for your personal profile or professional LinkedIn page, it is better to go with a simpler approach for your practice page. Think, “What would my favorite patient like to see from my practice?”
Consider using the 80/20 rule. This is a widely-known approach to social media content that suggests businesses follow an 80/20 ratio of industry-related content to promotional content. It posits that the majority of what you share on your practice pages should be light, engaging, dental or community related content. The remaining 20% can be appointment reminders, posts about your services and posts asking for reviews and referrals. This approach creates a nice balance and prevents your practice from sounding like a social media salesman.
Images everywhere! Scan your newsfeed on almost any social media platform and you’ll notice that the number of posts that include an image far outnumber text-only posts. Images are eye catching and will get your content noticed better than even your highest quality written content. Unique, colorful and bold images are best, but even attaching a picture of your practice’s logo to a post will do the trick. As a rule, attach an image to every post you share for maximum impact.
People do business with people not businesses. The same goes for your practice’s patients. They want to connect with you and your team personally, not a sterile dental instrument or empty operatory room. The content you put on your practice page should convey the same sense of warmth and welcome that you would extend a patient who was physically in your office. This, above all else, will prompt new patients to learn more about your practice and old ones to write reviews and refer others. Do not hesitate to show the human side of your practice by referring to yourself as a team, sharing snapshots of birthday celebrations in the office and publically thanking patients who refer or write reviews. If you want to let the world know that you’re a friendly bunch, show them. After all, seeing is believing!