In the last decade, social media has become a one-stop-shop for nearly 4 billion social media users seeking inspiration, entertainment, and news. It has also become one of the most cost-effective digital marketing tools for dentists. By combining its accessibility (with more social networks being added every year) with real-time responsiveness, dentists can create vivid, approachable online personas for prospective and current patients to interact with.
Some of the ways dental offices can leverage social media for their purposes include:
• Patient acquisition. A social media presence can tell prospective customers what you have to offer and remind current patients why they stay – which can also lead to referrals and valuable word-of-mouth messaging.
• Brand awareness. Define how you wish to be known and present that brand on social media. The fun kids’ dentist? Pain-free sedation options? Expert implant dentistry? Own it.
• Increased traffic. Always include your website link on social media profiles. When prospective patients follow you from Facebook to your URL, that not only increases traffic but triggers website retargeting for even more impressions.
• Shelf life. Your content is always out there for social media users to find and consume on their schedule. A featured video, even if two years old, might be the deciding factor for a new patient!
• Engagement. Personalized and informative content will generate engagement which can help build relationships. Social media will also keep you top-of-mind with patients between appointments.
• Affordability. While there can be paid components of social media – Facebook ads, subscription services and fees – consistent posts and content can create organic visibility for little to no cost.
Which Platform Should You Use?
Social media is constantly evolving, with new platforms, features, and algorithms regularly being introduced, tweaked, or eliminated. Choose the ones that have staying power – and it doesn’t hurt to check out where your competition is posting. Several platforms allow you to post automatically on others which broadens your reach and saves time. Here are the most effective social media tools for dentist marketing:
Facebook is the most popular social media platform in the world, with almost three billion active users each month. Additionally, it offers flexibility of posted media from office updates to live events to video content, and more. Facebook paid ads are an affordable way to target specific demographics and markets for your practice.
As part of the Meta universe, Instagram easily links to Facebook but may reach a whole different audience. Primarily begun as a platform for sharing photos, Instagram is now a major source of video and live content as well. Hashtags are a big part of content searches to capitalize upon.
Not only is your audience on YouTube (often for hours at a time), but it’s also the internet’s second largest search engine. Dentists who are comfortable on camera can create a YouTube channel for elevating engagement with viewers. Video can also be imbedded in websites and other platforms.
Twitter sees over 6,000 Tweets every second. As a platform, it is ideal for sharing bite-sized information, customer service, and #hashtag memes or marketing.
The professional networking site of LinkedIn is a great place to connect with peers, new patients, and even potential employees. Posting blogs on LinkedIn can increase your SEO reach.
Dentists can also think outside the box by incorporating TikTok, Pinterest, and other emerging social media platforms.
What Content Should You Share?
Social media content is limited only by your imagination. Educate your patients with infographics or videos. Use humorous posts to personalize your practice and put your patients at ease. With patients’ permission, post before and after photos of cosmetic or implant results, or successful first pediatric visits. In that same vein, patient testimonials are valuable tools for marketing.
Be sure to post essential information about your practice, including video tours, office hours, team news or promotions, and special events. Encourage team members to share as well. However it’s a good idea to establish a social media policy according to the American Dental Association. And always follow all HIPAA protocols when referring to any patients.
Social media marketing should be as painless as possible, just like your dentistry. RAMP Results can help suggest the best platforms based on your unique practice and create the perfect ads for a dedicated budget. Contact us today and get started.