Do you have hard time planning your social media footprint for your dental practice? The chances are that you either don’t have the time or the knowledge to make this marketing channel work for your business.
Say no more, we have drafted this comprehensive tutorial to help you excel at your social media marketing strategy and to never ever wonder how often, what and when to publish on Facebook, Twitter or any other social media platform you use to communicate with your target audience.
The case studies and tips we’ll share with you in the following post aim to inspire you to test and adopt new techniques in order to optimize the social media marketing strategy of your dental practice.
The first step towards building an effective social media strategy for your dental practice is to audit the actual social media presence of your business and to find out what are the things you could improve on.
You should start by reviewing your social media marketing goals and how they can be achieved through each social media platform.
Step 1. Focus on setting measurable objectives:
- X number of new patients converted online per month;
- X number of new web referrals per month;
- X number of people visiting your dental site from a given social media campaign;
- X number of people calling your practice after seeing your social media ad.
Even though Facebook is by far the most preferred social media out there, don’t limit your social media strategy to it only. Keep in mind that your target audience might hang out on other platforms as well. Each social media platform presents you with unique promotional opportunities.
Step 2. Select the most relevant social media channel for your dental practice:
- Define which social media sites are preferred by your target audience;
- Take into account the specifics of each of those channels and consider what marketing strategies you could successfully implement for each one of those;
- Make your message consistent on all social media platforms, regardless of the adopted strategy per channel.
In the following example, a fictional dental practice takes advantage of 5 social media channels to reach out to their target audience. They use:
- to increase user engagement by organizing contests, posting “before & after” photos;
- to actively promote their dental services by posting targeted paid ads;
- to attract new patients by showcasing positive patients’ reviews;
- to educate their target audience via live-streaming, sharing latest dental news and updates, and announcing last-minute changes regarding appointments;
- Pinterest and Instagram:
- to increase user engagement by uploading eye-catching images of their dental practice and their team;
- to educate their clients by sharing their expertise;
- Dental online communities:
- to build long-term relationships with other experts in the field;
When it comes to choosing the right social networks, it’s best to conduct a survey among your existing patients and ask them of their specific social platform preferences.
Your current patients are likely to already follow you on social media. Go ahead and study their demographics and needs. Whether they are families with young children, senior citizens, millennials in Denver, or stay-at-home or busy corporate-working moms, always be specific with your targeting.
For example, if you are a family or pediatric dentist, your target market is young families who have children. You can post on social media photos of your young patients or information concerning baby or children’s dental health. By offering content that resonates with your audience you’ll motivate your followers to share, like and engage with your practice.
It takes much time and resources to manage a number of social media accounts, so instead of spreading thin on several social platforms, concentrate on a few key channels and exploit them to their full potential.
Now let’s go through the benefits of using some of the most popular social media channels:
Step 3. Invest your time in Facebook
Being the most popular social media platform online, Facebook would most likely have attracted the majority of your target audience as its loyal users.
Facebook is an important channel for consumer-facing businesses like dental practices because it provides many tools to communicate with current clients as well as to engage with new prospects. For example, you can easily:
- create an event;
- promote special offers;
- create polls;
- create local advertising campaigns;
- or even get phone calls or direct messages via the platform.
If you are looking to nurture a long-term relationship with your patients – Facebook is your thing. For example if you step up on your customer support on Facebook by answering individual questions or by quickly accepting online appointments, you will easily boost the customers’ satisfaction and will create a loyal fanbase.
Moreover, you can improve your online reach by connecting and cross-promoting with other local organizations on the network or by creating local awareness ads.
Local awareness ads can help you reach locals, who will benefit from your services. With format features like a map listing, “Call Now”, “Book Now”, and “Get Directions” buttons, they can drive more patients to your dental practice.
Step 4. Join the conversation on Twitter
If you want to have real-time communication with your existing and potential patients, Twitter is the right place to be. Be careful, though, the content on this social platform has a short lifespan, so you have to be more active when sharing the latest news and information on trending dental topics.
Remember to include relevant hashtags in your tweets – they could actually boost the visibility of your tweets for a longer period of time.
Twitter lists on the other hand allow you to categorize Twitter users by common feature, like: satisfied customers, or competitors, partners, industry leaders and so on. You can add users to a list you’ve already created, even if those don’t follow your business. By doing so you’d find it easier to navigate between the chaos of streaming tweets and filter out only the important conversations for your business.
You can import contacts from your address book to Twitter and draft your lists with ease. Twitter lists can help you monitor target patients, track your competitors without officially following them, or find inspiration from other dentists, industry influencers, and authoritative dental organizations.
You can also find and follow already existing dental-specific Twitter Lists by typing in Google site:twitter.com, followed by keywords like dentists lists or dental lists:
Search Google for relevant Twitter lists.
Step 5. Show off your dental practice on Instagram and Pinterest
Instagram and Pinterest are not just for foodies, fashionistas, gym enthusiasts, or travelers. If you are creative and have the resources to come up with visually appealing content, don’t skip thеse social platforms.
- post visuals featuring your modern and good-looking dental office;
- share successful dental makeover cases;
- promote special discounts;
- publish behind-the-scenes snapshots;
- create Instagram Stories by recording a short video featuring you and your patient;
Pinterest is an endless source of content inspiration for a variety of dental tips, dental do’s and don’ts, infographics about dental health, so if you’re stuck on what to offer your target audience, search the site and gather fresh ideas in no time.
While creating your content for Pinterest and Instagram, do not forget about hashtags. Both platforms encourage using as many hashtags as possible, as long as they are relevant.
If you focus on cosmetic dentistry, you can utilize Instagram and Pinterest to post visual content to popularize your service and brand image. Be careful when editing your images for the platforms and don’t overuse image filters.
Step 6. Improve your Google visibility with YouTube
If you can take the time to create videos regularly, managing a YouTube channel for your dental practice will be a great competitive edge to your marketing strategy.
YouTube videos will help you increase the online exposure of your website and expand your reach to more local dental patients. You will definitely stand out as many of the local dentists don’t invest time into producing and uploading YouTube videos and that is not due to any lack of desire, but to some serious bad planning issues.
Here are some tips on how to pimp up your YouTube videos in order to increase your chances of getting them in Google search results when an online user searches for symptom explanations, an oral problem or a specific treatment, such as dental cosmetic procedure:
- Add attractive and descriptive video titles containing target keywords;
- Create custom thumbnails that catch viewer’s attention;
- Include keywords in the first 120 characters of the video description because Google provides a short snippet of the video description in the search results;
- Write clear and catchy Call-To-Action links to your website-content;
- Upload a video transcript.
The majority of the search queries that tend to trigger video results are often informational in nature. In order to meet the demand produce how-to videos and videos illustrating dental treatments that you perform in your office.
Step 7. Share your expertise and build brand awareness with online dental communities
On online forums you can connect with your industry peers, dental service providers and manufactures. You can show your expertise and popularize your practice by adding value to the ongoing discussions.
Forums like DentalTown and WebDental gather a community of dentists who share their experience and answer dental-related questions. They’re also a great source of information about every aspect of running a dental practice, including practice management, office design, dental marketing, best practices in the field, new technologies.
Another benefit of taking part in online communities and forums is that you are able to directly interact with your customers by answering their questions and sharing information that they care about or are looking for.
When participating in Q&A social media sites try to answer the initial question directly or acknowledge what others have already written.
Step 8. Connect your official blog with your social media profiles
Popularize your blog posts by sharing them on your social media accounts.
Add social sharing buttons on your blog to make it easy for readers to share your content with their friends.
Try to produce compelling and valuable content on a daily basis and make sure to share it on your social media profiles. When your followers see that you’re active on a regular basis, the memory of your business will remain fresh in their mind.
Seems like an impossible task, doesn’t it? The best tip for ensuring long-term user engagement is to mix up your content:
- educate your followers;
- engage them;
- entertain them;
- remain relevant and useful to your target audience.
Step 9. Educate your followers
Gain trust and stay on top оf your target audience’s mind by providing professional information in a creative and engaging way on a regular basis. Educating your patients is one of the best ways to position yourself as “the expert” in your niche. It’s simple, just follow some of the ideas we’ve listed for you below:
9.1 Post general dental tips like links to industry news, videos, statistics, or even your own blog. Thus, you can build credibility and trust among your followers and boost your website’s traffic, which is a great thing!
You can share tips like highlighting the benefits of flossing, tongue cleaning, using a mouthwash, keeping one’s toothbrush clean, using clove for toothache pain, and spending enough time brushing teeth.
9.2. Post information and examples of dental care and oral habits that may compromise people’s overall health, appearance, and comfort. Remember – fear is a key emotional trigger to influence a consumer purchasing behavior.
- Clarify the procedures and services being delivered;
A dental clinic in Pasay City, Philippines promotes and educates its Facebooks fans about the benefits of their in-office procedure.
- Provide preventive oral health care information;
You can share preventive care tips like changing the toothbrush after having a cold, flu, a mouth infection or a sore throat.
- Explain nutrition habits and their effect on dental health or share recipes that are good for oral health and ask people to share photos of their versions of the recipe. It’s a great way to start a conversation with your fans.
You can share articles created by industry leaders, partners, and authoritative dental organizations as long as they are useful to your followers.
9.3. Remind your patients to schedule their next dental appointment.
Point out the benefits of regular check-ups and cleanings. For instance postponing plaque and tartar removal can lead to some serious progressive conditions.
9.4.Broadcast live videos
Share what’s happening in real time at your dental office by live-streaming on Instagram Live Stories, Facebook Live Video, or by posting videos on Twitter, that are powered by Periscope. This is a great way to:
- start a “behind the scenes at your clinic” series;
- run a live Q&A or “Ask Me Anything” sessions;
- cover an event;
- shed a light on your key manipulations or even more detailed, patient surgeries.
A well-thought engagement strategy will help you reach out to your audience without breaking the bank – you just need some creativity and a mobile device. Video content builds up a personal connection between you and your target audience. Moreover, social media platforms that allow video upload automatically notify your followers when you go live.
The owners of a dental center in Caloocan, Philippines livestream from their office and give their audience a true taste of what it’s like to be their customer.
9.5.Differentiate your practice
Highlight key features that make your practice special. Most people fear going to the dentist. Try helping your patients overcome their fear by offering them comfort, relaxing atmosphere, and positive attitude:
- the greeting is important – conduct an initial contact and hear out your patient’s complaints and reasons to feel anxious and explain thoroughly the procedures that follow next;
- think out of the box – provide the comfort of the SPA treatment and offer in-house complimentary hand and arm massage after the dental manipulations;
- the environment matters – offer a scented towel after the dental visit;
A cosmetic dentistry in Kingston, Jamaica offers to their patients a warm, scented towel to refresh their face and hands after a dental treatment.
- music to distract them from their fear – offer headphones to mute the machine sound during the procedures;
- comfort to ease the tension – equip your waiting room with comfortable chairs;
- keep them entertained while waiting – provide various magazines or kids’ coloring books:
Colouring removes focus from stressful situations and negative thoughts.
Patients will be pleasantly surprised, and this will result in positive online reviews and recommendations.
9.6. Keep your patients up-to-date with your practice growth
The dental industry is a dynamic field with new technologies and treatments coming out every day. Keep your patients informed about the changes in the industry and promote new procedures or high-tech dental equipment available at your practice. For instance, you can announce new additions to your dental practice including:
- Interior make-over: more comfortable and state of the art patient chairs;
- Installation of new professional equipment: X-ray sensors or a panorex machine.
The more modern and up-to-date your dental practice looks like, the more comfortable your patients will feel about having you as their personal dentist.
A dentistry in Glasgow, United Kingdom informs their Facebook followers that they are using special chairs that can flip round for left- handed or right-handed dentists in less than two minutes.
9.7. Let your patients know your availability
While you might have already set up the general working hours of your practice in your social media accounts, you should also post information about special appointment opportunities like:
- available hours around the holidays;
- last minute call-in appointment opportunities;
- unexpected booking opportunities due to cancelled appointments;
- special emergency or seasonal working hours.
A dental practice in Roy, Utah informs its patients that their working hours are different for the holidays and that the office will be closed on Thanksgiving and Black Friday.
A family dental practice in Paris, Texas apologized for the inconvenience caused due to power outage. The post regarding the canceled appointments was shared 28 times.
A health center in Washington tweeted that they had to delay their dental appointments due to a fire at the office.
A family oriented dentistry in Ely, Minnesota changed their working hours during the summer season. The update was well-received by the patients.
9.8. Launch your own posts series
Come up with a catchy title for your post series, something that will motivate social media users to click and skim through your content. The series can be dedicated to:
- oral health advices;
- dental jokes;
- your team behind different projects.
The dentistry in Manhasset, New York posts a scheduled series of tips on oral health under the name “Tuesday Teeth Tip”.
9.9. Introduce your team and practice culture
Since all your team members, including dental hygienists, dental technicians and receptionists, spend time with your patients, you’d better introduce them to your followers in order to build trust and to create a close-knit community. Bring the focus to individual employees by:
- introducing new team members;
- saying farewell to those who are retiring or leaving your practice;
- acknowledging your staff’s job accomplishments or sharing their spare time activities.
Share a photo and a short bio of your employees so that your followers get to know them better.
Turn these “personal” posts into regular monthly or weekly series. Showing the human face of your business by sharing a spontaneous photo of a team member can also boost your reach and user engagement.
A dental practice in Coffs Harbour, Australia celebrates employee birthdays and anniversaries and often shares photos of the event on their Instagram account.
Show that your co-workers enjoy a relaxed working environment. Your followers will feel that your office has a cozy family spirit and will be more inclined to visit or to refer your practice.
You can post photos of your staff as a further way of offering appreciation or congratulations on successfully achieving a goal, like for instance running a marathon…
…or the arrival of a new baby.
9.10. Launch and promote non-profit local community initiatives you take part in
You can raise money to buy materials for building homes for local homeless people or to buy a piece of playground equipment for your local YMCA. You can also cooperate with local societies, clubs and other concerned authorities to organize awareness campaigns for causes like Mouth Cancer Action Month, National Smile Month, and Give Kids A Smile. The involvement and dedication will contribute to the favorable image of your business in your local community.
Every year this Manila dental clinic provides free dental services to retired priests.
An Australian dental center encourages their followers on Instragram to take part in their cause and donate $1 toothbrushes that are handed out to people in need in Papua New Guinea.
To raise awareness on the mouth cancer you can provide free oral cancer screenings or start a campaign on how to improve oral health by sharing informative photos and links.
A dental clinic in Glasgow, United Kingdom organizes a Foodbank Drive each year in attempt to collect food for homeless people and families in need. They are collaborating with a local football club and a local community, that is aiming at raising awareness of homelessness in Glasgow. The dental clinic promotes the initiative solely through its Facebook page and encourages their followers to donate any of the already listed items by dropping them into the clinic. The campaign gets lots of engagement.
9.11. Organizing or participating in industry conferences and courses
Share posts regarding hands-on courses you have attended or delivered. This is a way to demonstrate your expertise or willingness to improve your skills. Focus on the benefits your patients will enjoy as a result of your team’s new qualifications and gained expertise.
A dentistry in Glasgow, United Kingdom shares their engagement at the Scottish Dental Show 2017, where their dental hygienist discussed the maintenance of dental implants and the benefits of the team approach.
Step 10. Engage your followers
10.1. Ask questions
Encourage people to like and comment your posts by posing questions about relevant topics like sharing their personal oral hygiene habits, for instance. The more your followers engage with your posts, the more visible your content will be to them and to their friends.
You can ask questions about oral care habits or related topics like smoking, chewing ice, nail biting, flossing, gum chewing, etc.
10.2. Join the conversation
Participating in social media groups and discussions can help you expand your social media footprint and stay abreast of the ever-changing dental world.
- Take part in Facebook Groups
Search for relevant and active groups where you can collaborate with industry peers, and discuss on topics related to dentistry like: clinical cases, personal experiences, ideas for a better clinical practice, academic researches, innovative clinical products, relevant events.
Additionally, you can also network with potential customers. Browse local groups or friends’ groups. For example, if you are a pediatric dentist with a practice in Oakdale, California, you can join local moms’ groups, groups for baby and children items, or neighborhood groups.
Be mindful of group members’ problems and offer them a solution. However, be careful with self-promotional content and sparingly mention your brand in order not to look too pushy. Also, consider special guidelines that the group may have adopted: for instance, they may require you to join with your personal Facebook profile instead of using your business page.
- Leverage Twitter Chats
Twitter chats are a fine way to build a good followership for your practice. You can participate in already established Twitter chats, for example the #Fallforsmiles Twitter Chat or the #TinyTeethTalk Chat.
Oral Health America has organized a Q&A Twitter chat and uses a specific hashtag assigned to the chat in all of their tweets so that their audience could easily follow the conversation.
However, if you’re having a hard time finding Twitter chats that are a good fit for your needs, don’t be afraid to create your own:
- Choose a topic that will be of interest to your Twitter audience, for example children’s oral health or tooth whitening;
- Think of relevant and unique hashtags for your chat. It’s also good if it includes the name of your dental practice;
- Set a date and time based on when your target audience is most likely to be online;
- Invite patients, colleagues and other dental experts to participate in the chat. During the talk they can clarify misconceptions and provide tips directly to patients, for example how parents can keep children’s teeth healthy;
- Promote the chat on your social media accounts, website and via email;
Twitter chats offer visibility and opportunity to connect to a larger customer base. If you decide that you want to start and lead a talk on Twitter, just be aware that moderating requires a lot of work. You’ll have to keep the chat active, keep an eye on possible spammers and make sure participants are getting along.
10.3.Make a clever use of hashtags
People use hashtags to search for specific content that they’re interested in. Primarily used on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, they are a great way to increase your message visibility online. Using popular local hashtags will help you reach out to more people that might end up visiting your dental office. You can use tools such as Hashtag.org and Hashtagify.me to find relevant hashtags to your practice, specialty or location. Below is a list of hashtags often used by dental practices:
Depending on your goals, pick already used or create your own hashtags that will fit to your specific needs.
Step 11. Entertain your followers
Uncover the more lighthearted side of your practice and have some fun with your content.
11.1. Share dental jokes and dental memes
Get inspired by searching for dental humor images on Pinterest, videos or YouTube, or anecdotes on Twitter.
11.2. Celebrate with your patients
- Record short, personal videos to greet your patients for their birthdays;
- Celebrate the wins of your patients, for example greet a patient for getting his braces off:
Post pictures or short videos that reflect your patients’ emotions. This provokes empathy and boosts engagement.
- Share posts regarding major holidays,g. Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, local and national events, or office celebrations, for example, your dental practice birthday, National Fresh Breath Day, National Tooth Ache Day, etc.
Curate a list of the most engaging major and relevant holidays for the year. Show the fun side of your practice and publish content that is more playful and enthusiastic. Your followers will join in and this will bring more user engagement and social media exposure of your business.
11.3. Recommend dental apps
Share some dental mobile apps that can help your patients take good care of their oral health and have some fun at the same time. Check out the following list of useful apps for patients:
- Brush DJ – it’s a toothbrush timer app that entertains users with musical background while they brush. It also allows them to set reminders to brush, floss, use a mouth rinse, change their toothbrush every 3 months, and schedule their next appointment at their dentist, hygienist or orthodontist;
- Teeth Whitener – the application aims at convincing patients to get a teeth whitening treatment by allowing them to see themselves with a brighter smile;
- Monster Mouth DDS – a fun app that lets users be a dentist for an array of monster patients, each of which has a distinct dental complaint. It’s a kid-friendly app and some of the problems users can solve are rubbing a tooth to clean it, finding hidden tooth cracks with an X-ray, and filling in cavities;
- Colgate Tooth Fairy – helps families build regular brushing routine with a teeth timer game, while providing valuable tips on dental care.
11.4. Organize contests and giveaways
Through social media games, you can both entertain users and subtly promote your dental services. Moreover, getting your fans involved will spread your reach to their family and friends and that can help you grow your followership for good. You can organize contests around:
- Your dental practice birthday;
- Oral health tips;
- Holidays and dental-related special days/months;
- General topics like the changing of seasons;
- Appointment scheduling;
- Referral acquisition;
Offer a compelling prize like professional toothbrushes, a smile makeover at your dental clinic, a gift card to a local restaurant, or movie tickets. When people see real benefits, they are more likely to engage with your contest.
Don’t forget to spread the word for your giveaway by publishing “before”, “during”, and ”after” posts that feature a photo or a short video. This type of content easily goes viral and generates lots of interest amongst people.
Step 12. Advertise your dental practice
12.1. Create “Before & After” photos
This type of content is great for catching people’s attention and encouraging them to take an action.
Smile makeover images are a good way to showcase the impact of your work.
12.2. Share patient testimonials
Record video testimonials to share the success stories of your patients. Patient proof adds an element of trust to your dental practice’s social media accounts and can have a great impact on potential patients who might be looking for a dentist at the moment.
Resharing patients’ posts featuring positive reviews on your own feed may encourage others to consider contacting your practice in future.
12.3. Run a last-minute promotion
If a patient cancels an appointment, you can run a last-minute promotion on Facebook.
For example, if someone has cancelled an appointment in the last minute, you can post on Facebook that you have a free slot and whomever makes an appointment for that hour will get 50% off their treatment.
12.4. Run paid advertising campaigns
It’s possible to promote your business without spending money on social media advertising, but only if you are willing to sacrifice your precious time and attention. To save your time and efforts you can always invest in paid ads where you can increase your reach, boost engagement or increase conversions. Moreover, social media advertising is relatively low-cost alternative in comparison to more traditional channels like broadcast, print, and direct mail.
Facebook and Twitter have some of the most robust advertising features that allow you to target your current fans, past customers, the visitors of your practice’s website, and lookalike audiences who are similar to the audience of your existing patients. You just need to make an educated guess on how to split your advertising budget between the channels that your targeted audience hangs out.
When advertising on Facebook. instead of only targeting people by their location, it’s better to go with more detailed demographic and behavioral targeting. For example, if you are a pediatric dentist, show your ad to parents within 15 miles of your practice, who are between the 25 and 45 years old, and have an estimated household income of between $125K and $250K. You can even narrow down your Facebook audience by excluding groups of people, for example other local dentists or dental hygienists in your area.
With Facebook Custom Audience feature you can target people who have interacted with your business offline or with your Facebook page in some way (e.g. have followed it, messaged you, liked or comment some of your posts, watched your videos or responded to your event on Facebook).
YouTube also offers a wide variety of advertising opportunities for your business. It gives you an array of targeting options including:
- demographics – filter your target audience by age, gender, parental status, or household income;
- topics – show your ads on videos related to specific topics;
- keywords – show your video ads based on words or phrases related to a video or a channel;
- placements – target specific YouTube channels and videos;
- interests – reach people interested in certain topics.
You can also prevent your YouTube ads from appearing on videos that are irrelevant or can hurt your brand image by excluding placements, categories, and keywords.
Step 13. Blend social media and offline marketing strategies
13.1. Attract new followers outside social media
Use offline marketing materials like business cards, flyers, and posters to promote your social media pages.
Social signs, like “I love my dentist” are a great way to get your team and patients involved in your social media marketing activities. They can help you increase the visibility of your practice and will trigger followers’ engagement.
When you talk to your patients, ask them to follow you on the social networks, to check-in or to share their experience on your social profile.
13.2. Show appreciation to your patients
- Host patient appreciation parties
Hold a patient appreciation party: you can organize a picnic, a movie night, or a special evening at a local venue. Give yourself enough time to plan and publicize both it in your practice and on social media. You can create a Facebook event on your business page.
- Have a Treat Day
Choose a day when your patients can come, chat with you and get a free cupcake. Announce the special day in advance on social media. Invite people to bring a friend or a family member as well.
Shoot photos or videos throughout the Treat Day and share them on your social media accounts.
- Patient of the month program
Recognize a patient of the month by giving gift boxes or flowers to patients at your dental office.
The special gesture will encourage current patients to spread the word about your practice among their friends both online and offline.
13.3. Popularize community events
Show your commitment to improve the well-being of people in the communities you serve by supporting events like
- free oral health screenings at your location;
- a demonstration about a new medical procedure;
- a presentation given by a dental practitioner.
Show that community engagement and supporting local events, e.g. concerts, festivals, sporting events, manifestations, local school happenings, are all part of your practice culture.
Organize a campaign around your event, create a unique hashtag regarding the campaign for people to follow it on your social media feeds and regularly share advices and health-related information to educate them further.
Invite your current and potential patients through a Facebook event to come along to join your community event. Encourage them to bring a friend by offering a free gift or discounted service.
Step 14. Encourage patient reviews and check-ins
Social networks provide a set of tools and features to help you get the word out on your dental practice:
- Patient reviews – Instruct your dental office staff to ask loyal and satisfied patients to leave a review on your social media accounts when scheduling their next appointment. Print simple business cards or flyers with the web addresses of your social media profiles and ask patients to leave you an honest testimonial.
- Online check-ins – Online check-ins are permanent posts on your patients’ timelines. This type of business referral is quite valuable because it serves as a worth-of-mouth technique.
- Facebook Wi-Fi is a nice way to encourage Facebook check-ins. It grants free Wi-Fi at the cost of simple check-in to your location on Facebook and a “Like” of your Facebook page. What’s in it for you? Well people’s check-in posts appear in their Facebook news feed and consequently all of their friends can discover your business.
Step 15. Practices to avoid in your dental social media strategy
- Don’t be overly friendly and don’t use text message slang on social media.Keep the overall tone of voice on your social media accounts professional.
- Don’t share visual content of your extreme dental cases. People usually fear most of the dental manipulations, so don’t put off your audience.
- Don’t try to sell your services every time you post an update.
- Don’t share content or discuss topics on highly-opinionated social issues on your social media pages because this can hurt your online reputation. Better support initiatives that positively impact the local communities:
Sharing political content may trigger tension among your followers and affect your reputation.
- Don’t hashtag words or phrases that no one will search for or are not relevant to your dental practice. The free hashtag discovery tool Hashtagify.me can help you assess the popularity of the hashtags you are using on Twitter and Instagram, as well as find new, related hashtags.
- Don’t use stock photography on Instagram or Pinterest. Create and upload your own visuals.
Step 16. Create a social media content calendar
Planning your posts by days and topics will help you keep your social media accounts fresh and updated with quality content. When the majority of your content is created at once, your design and messaging will be consistent. However, it’s important to mix your scheduled posts with real-time content. By scheduling your posts and using a content calendar you will end up with more free time to create unplanned content when needed.
Step 17. Automate your social media management with caution
Running your dental practice demands your time and attention in many areas. Because of the fast-paced nature of social media usage, it’s good to use a tool to help you automate the majority of your social media activities. There are many platforms for social media marketing automation out there. Bellow you can skim through some of the most popular ones, which offer a wide range of features, like social media posting, scheduling, monitoring, listening, engagement and analytics:
- Hootsuite, Buffer, Sprout Social, and Agorapulse allow you to manage your presence on different social networks like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Google Plus, Twitter, LinkedIn from a single dashboard. With those tools you can schedule your posts in bulk, keep track on users’ messages and comments, and respond to them;
- Facebook’s Scheduled posts feature lets you schedule posts well in advance;
- Mention allows you to keep an eye on different conversations that mention your practice, your competitors or specific dental-related keywords across multiple social networks;
Social media automation will give you more time on your hands to dedicate on actually engaging your audience, live-streaming, and focusing on improving communications with prospective patients.
Marketing your dental practice on social media is far from being a waste of time and money. Define clear and measurable goals first and then select the best techniques to achieve them. Actively interacting with your followers on your preferred social media platforms will help you attract new patients, boost referrals, and build a loyal online patient community.
If you want to strengthen your online presence and see actual results, it is important to diversify properly your digital local marketing efforts. You should keep in mind the consistency of your business information across the web, build high quality relevant citations for your dental practice, make your dental website attractive to search engines, craft engaging advertising and email campaigns, utilize social media platforms and create content that captures the attention of your target audience.
Start today and take your dental practice marketing to a whole new level by integrating your digital and physical marketing channels together and building effective targeted online marketing to cover existing and potential patients each day.