There are a lot of things to consider when you’re deciding how to best market your dental practice. Getting new patients through the door and growing your practice is great, but you don’t want it costing you a fortune either. That’s where social media marketing comes into play.
Having a robust social media presence is one of the most efficient and effective ways for your practice to bring new patients into the fold. It’s also a proven way of starting more conversations with patients and strengthening your relationships over time. Your patients (new and old) are out there on platforms like Facebook and Instagram – and they’re waiting to hear from you.
Give these 10 ways to grow your dental practice using social media a try and see the results for yourself:
- 1. Explore “behind the scenes” – Isn’t it exciting to learn about what makes a business operate behind the scenes? Your patients on social media certainly feel the same way, so give them a glimpse into something more than just the waiting room and dentist’s chair! Show your patients what makes your practice tick, anything from shots of fresh inventory arrivals to prepping for a treatment. By being honest and transparent with your patients about your practice, you’ll gain their trust and loyalty much quicker.
- 2. Post about your team - Don’t be afraid to post photos of yourself and your staff. What better way to show your patients the personal, human side of dentistry than by showing off the faces behind the masks and drills? Post a group photo and then tag the staff in it, you’ll get much better reach and engagement from all their family and friends.
- 3. Show off some smiles – We all know that a picture is worth a thousand words, and it’s no different with dentistry. Result photos are a great way to demonstrate the kindness and quality of your care, at no cost to you. You can also encourage your pictured patients to share the photo on their own social media accounts to raise awareness for your practice even further – just remember to get your patient’s permission first before posting.
- 4. Keep the conversation going – Dentistry is built on the relationships between patients and doctors. But there are many patients to care for every day, and it’s not always easy to have a full conversation – especially when they have a mouth full of dental tools. Social media is the perfect place for you and your patients to extend the shorter interactions you have in the office, as well as start new ones. Be sure to use captions or post updates that encourage engagement, and always let your genuine personality stand out.
- 5. Be clever with your copy - There are many other dental practices out there on social media, and they’re all competing for the same views. Before you plan out your posts, you need to make sure that what you’re offering your patients is worth their time. Don’t just use drab posts with an image, some text, and a link to a page. Find ways to differentiate your posts to make them stand out, such as using more creative images or more entertaining captions.
- 6. Stand out with special services – Much like your posts on social media, the best way to stand out from your competition is to highlight what makes you different. If your practice offers a unique treatment or service, or even a special treatment package– show it off! You want your patients to know that they’re getting the full experience by choosing your practice over the others, so take the time to outline your strengths.
- 7. Be consistent – The typical consumer’s attention span is usually on the shorter side, especially when it comes to social media. If you’ve come up with that “perfect post”, don’t think that you can just rest on your laurels for the rest of the month. The most successful social media marketing plans involve high-quality, regularly scheduled content. This keeps your audience constantly engaged and puts your practice to the front of their minds. If you or your key staff can’t find time to schedule out posts on a consistent basis, don’t be afraid to outsource. A healthy social media presence is essential to getting your name out there.
- 8. Keep up with pop culture – Who doesn’t love a timely tie-in with the latest pop culture crazes? Your audience certainly will, so be sure to find ways to tap into what’s popular and relate it to your practice. If you’re unsure of what’s currently hot or not, the easiest way is to search through the trending hashtags or topics on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Be sure to avoid any topics that could be potentially controversial or sensitive to your audience – stay in safe territory and you’ll be just fine!
- 9. Create or share video content - Video content and social media go hand-in-hand. Videos are a great method of communicating whatever message you want quickly, in a visually captivating and easily understandable way. As with any of your other social media content, be sure that your videos are relevant to your audience’s interests and worth their time to watch. For a starter video, try shooting a video tour of your practice, or maybe a condensed “day in the life” style video about being a dentist.
- 10. Educate, inform, entertain – Social media isn’t the best place for the “in your face” and aggressive marketing methods. Instead, make sure that whatever you’re posting is posted with the intent to educate, inform, and entertain your audience. As a dentist, you’re in a unique position of authority to dispel any misinformation and offer helpful tips regarding oral health. There’s no better way to build your reputation as a practice that cares than by giving your audience the info they need to improve their oral wellbeing.
It may take some time to figure out what posting style and voice works the best for your practice. Just keep at it and your social media personality will develop naturally in time. Remain on message and do your best to stay relevant with your audience – the results will be well worth it!
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