Each day this week, I’m discussing one new marketing topic that will better position your practice for success considering everything that is happening around us right now.
Yesterday, we covered In-House Membership Plans. And on Monday we covered Virtual Consults. If you haven’t already read those messages, I encourage you to do so.
Today’s topic: Social Media
Times like we’re in right now really highlight the benefits of having a strong social media presence and sizeable audience in place. If you’ve invested yourself well in social media into the past, you’re now probably pretty well positioned to engage your audience and leverage this platform as a way to stay relevant in a time when online communications with your patients, and potential patients, has risen dramatically in importance!
If you haven’t invested yourself well into social media in the past….well then, there’s no better time to start!
Here’s the deal. Social media is a monstrous topic in its own right. There’s no way to cover the entire subject in this type of forum. So, instead my goal is to highlight some very simple and practical advice that you can leverage right now, during this particularly challenging time that we’re in, to better position yourself for success.
#1: Stop Outsourcing! Way too many practices rely on outsourced solutions with canned, generic social media content. It might make you feel like you’re at least doing ‘something’. And I’m sure some marketing provider told you that you’d get your more followers, more engagement, and more new patients with their ‘ready-made’ content. But, seriously….it’s pointless. Nobody is engaging with your content if it’s not authentic. Seriously, look at the below image….who’s going to pay attention to this kind of stuff?
#2: Find Your Own Voice! Now that you know what NOT to post (see above), it gets a bit harder. So, what should you be talking about on social media? Well, the first thing I recommend to practices that I work with is to sit down and develop a messaging framework that is based on your unique brand and patient value proposition. What are the 3-5 things you want your dental practice to be known for? This is where you start. From there, your messaging should all come back to these key 3-5 pillars that you’ve developed. If this sounds confusing, or you would like an example of a messaging framework, just shoot me an email and I can provide that to you.
#3: Post Content that Engages! Social media is best when it’s more than a one-way conversation. You want people to engage and respond to what you’re sharing. So, ask questions. Invite people to share, comment, contribute, etc. Let me give you an example. We’re all kind of stuck in our homes a bit more than we’d like right now. And we’re probably all reading more than ever. Well, great….share what you’re reading right now, and why it speaks to you. But don’t stop there! Ask your followers to comment and share what they’re reading too. Now, you’re engaging people! Take it a step further. Create a giveaway, contest, or raffle to increase your reach. Ask your followers to like, comment, and share your post to be entered into a drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card. This is just one idea. There are countless other ways to create content that engages.
So, now, instead of some silly generic post reminding people to floss, you’ve got something that is truly authentic and engaging. On top of it, you’ve invited your audience to share with their audiences and drive a much, much broader level of awareness to your message (and your practice).
Bonus Tip: Don’t forget to boost your posts with a moderate amount of budget to ensure you’re generating even more traffic and awareness!
Listen, social media has become one of the most complex and often mis-understood topics in dental marketing. Don’t let that overwhelm and prevent you from taking action. Yes, there are a ton of intricacies and nuances, but at its heart social media is rather simple. And the three steps above are a pretty good place to start.
About Kent Sears
Kent provides over 15 years experience in consulting and marketing strategy. His work has spanned the globe, in both public and private sector, with leading companies such as Microsoft and T-Mobile. He brings his corporate experience to help private practice dentists realize their full business potential through more effective marketing strategies to stay competitive in the rapidly changing world of marketing and healthcare.