As a dentist, you might be wondering how you can leverage social media to attract more patients to your dental practice. Luckily , social media has made it such that you can reach out and engage with your existing and potential patients.
With many platforms available there are a number of factors you need to take note of. Issues of privacy and liability are areas one needs to be careful of. This is where our 10 Social Media ideas come in to help you reach, interact, and attract new patients to your practice.
1. Attract more patients using your online platforms
At this juncture, we are sure you have an existing website. When was the last time you checked it though? You might have the best marketing material out there but it won’t mean anything if your patients have an outdated website.
In order to attract more patients to your dental practice you should yourself;
- When was my last review?
- When was my last blog upload?
- What are my patients expecting?
- What are my competitors doing better?
- What should I do to answer questions 1-4?
Content isn’t the only thing that needs checking and updating. The structure of your website is always in need of tending. Make sure your site is user friendly and easy to navigate. Most online users are mobile so make sure your website is optimized for mobile phones and tablets. Offer free booklets, the ability to follow up on payment records and test results to help with ease for your patients.
2. Increase your online presence
Our world is now digital, research shows that
- Facebook averages about 2.23 billion monthly active users (MAUs).
- Instagram hosts around 1 billion MAUs.
- Google My Business though not considered a traditional social media platform has been proven to boost SEO rankings.
That being said relying on interactions on one social media platform isn’t enough. Your practice should be present and well engaged on as many platforms as can be managed.
Each platform has its merits and demerits. Put together you should have a well-reaching presence for your patients to be up-to-date on what is happening with your practice and how it affects them.
3. Tailor your content
Currently, there are six living generations that are capable of growing your practice:
- GI Generation – born between 1901 and 1926.
- Silent Generation – born between 1927 and 1945.
- Baby Boomers – born between 1946 and 1964.
- Generation X – born between 1965 and 1980.
- Generation Y/ Millennials – born between 1981 and 2000.
- Generation Z – born after 2001.
Clearly you need content that is both easy to understand but engaging to the younger audience. Lucky for you there are content specialist that can do this for you at a low price.
4. Consistency is key.
Gaps between content posts are a sure way of driving potential patients away. Your social media platforms need to have constant uploads. Your potential patients are always surfing the web for informative engaging content. This means you need varied content that is churned out frequently. The more patients visit your page the more curious they are to visit your practice.
5. Start in the office.
Though we have highlighted the need for quality content, the most important information online should be about the practice itself. Information like;
- Opening hours.
- Office phone number.
- Website address and URL.
- Types of services offered.
This is the information that should stick out the most on your website about your practice.
6. Boost or sponsor posts
The great thing about social media is it free. But to attract more patients to your practice you have to pay the cost. Each social media platform has its own version of paid advertising. This means more features than your general advertising. Facebook, for example, has sponsored ads
This means you pay Facebook to make your posts appear higher on several news feeds. This gives you the advantage of having more people view and engage in your posts. These are paid ads that will reach a wider audience than regular posts.
While paying for these services might seem expensive, you should know that most social media platforms are lessening organic social media feeds that reach its users. These paid options increase traffic to your social media pages and attract more patients to your practice.
7. Add value to your page
Your social media page is an information hub. This means all dental news good or bad must go on your page, preferably before anyone else does the same. With current helpful content, your page becomes a go-to for the latest news and information in dentistry.
It is approximated that over 60% of US adults get now get their news from social media while almost 20% say they hear news from social media first before confirming it elsewhere. This means your social media content needs to be of value always.
8. Encourage Reviews
Online social media reviews play a huge role in determining whether your practice retains patients or not. It also shows you if patients are happy with the service you are offering or not.
According to an article published by Inc.com:
- 91% of people read online reviews.
- 84% of people trust online reviews as much as friends.
- 68% percent of people form an opinion after reading between one and six online reviews.
In addition, it is estimated that consumers read an average of 10 reviews before making a final decision. This means online reviews today have taken over the function of yesterday’s “word of mouth”.
This also means there is a need for you to invest in monitoring and engaging your reviews on a regular basis if you want to attract patients to your dental practice.
9. Be part of online communities
Be it a Facebook group, Twitter chat, or LinkedIn group these online communities have the potential to expand your practice engagement. Use these communities to showcase your expertise to a larger audience as well as interact with potential patients.
The more engaged you are in these communities the more potential patients will be drawn to see what you actually have to offer in the real world. This makes these platforms ideal for attracting patients to your practice.
10. Pay attention to visuals
There are plenty of things about dentistry that you can’t share online. Social media users however relate more to pictures than anything else. The common go-to when posting pictures is posting a before and after shot to showcase a transformation.
There are other posts that can attract more interaction to your pages. Organic posts of a staff member’s birthday, a fun team-building exercise, or a testimonial from a patient is great for patients who will be on your page. Show that you are human first before anything else, mix the marketing with a warm human aspect. Always keep in mind that this isn’t a personal account, keep it professional and beneficial to the patient and practice.
Dentistry has a lot of things to it but a dentist cannot go to cure a patient without communicating with them. Social media is a practice best bet to extend your means of communicating with your patients. At this point it might feel like a lot but were you help patients there are entities that support dental practice management to keep you up-to-speed with communication.
Our advice as we conclude is, social media is a chance for you to present the character and feel of your practice. Keep it unique, keep it professional, keep it interactive, and fun but above all keep it honest. If you follow these 10 tips, you can start attracting more patients to you dental practice.
SupportDDS is a leading Texas-based in-sourcing company that provides virtual assistants and administrative support for dental practices. Moreover, we provide both short and long term virtual outsourcing services customized to suit your business process needs.