Marketing your dental practice in today’s digital world requires much more than a few newsletters or billboards. While they work to a certain extent, most of your audience can be found elsewhere. If people are spending more time online, isn’t that where your efforts should be as well?
Just walking along the street, you can see people with their eyes glued to a screen in front of them. A vast majority of consumers spend that time on social media networks. This is why more businesses are spending money on buying online ads, sprucing up their websites and creating original content. Social media can help your practice retain existing clients while attracting potential patients.
But getting started with social media can be a daunting prospect, especially if you don’t have time. Your main goal however, should be to use social media effectively rather than create a page just for the sake of it. You can use social media to promote your clinic properly without spending hours on it. Here’s a quick breakdown of what you should be doing on social media to reach a bigger audience.
Pictures Speak Louder Than Words
People are bombarded with information on the Internet and many don’t have time to read through everything. However beautiful pictures will always grab attention. Images can convey your message more effectively than pages of writing. You can use images in many places – the cover photo for your practice page, appropriate pictures accompanying your blog posts or even amusing images that use humor to make a point.
You may be tempted to use stock photography from a free or paid site but you should also know that customers can usually spot such pictures. The better alternative is to use photos of real people – yourself, your staff and even your patients. Just be sure to ask their consent before posting pictures on social media.
Use Hashtags and Keywords
Whenever you post something new, make sure to include appropriate hashtags or keywords. This makes it easier for your audience to find what they’re looking for. Hashtags give your posts wider exposure and also link you to the growing community around the particular tag.
Make sure that the hashtag is actually relevant to the content of your post, your practice or the community you are posting in. It can be tempting to use a hashtag that is trending. But if it is not related to your content or practice, that strategy can easily backfire.
Sometimes hashtags can mean something other than what the text indicates. So look it up before hitting enter so that you don’t inadvertently connect to inappropriate content.
Keep Your Schedule Consistent, not Content
What does this mean? When you use social media, your audience expects regular content. Whether you post twice a week or once a day, stick to that schedule. Your viewers will lose interest if you don’t have a regular schedule or you are inactive for a long while. Consistency in posting will keep your audience coming back.
But the same doesn’t apply to content. While everything you post should be relevant to dentistry, they don’t all have to be exactly the same. Just because you posted an informative article today, doesn’t mean you can’t post a humorous dental anecdote tomorrow. Showcase a mix of original content on your page or website. Some practices separate different types of posts during the week. For instance, you can post oral hygiene tips on Tuesdays and videos on Fridays.
Social media can be a powerful marketing tool but it also a double-edged sword. Use it properly and it can pay huge dividends in the long-term.