The Coronavirus crisis may have you seeing fewer patients through your door for the time being, but it’s a great time to step your social media game up and boost your dental marketing efforts while serving your audience.
There’s no question that there are more people than ever on the internet right now — specifically on social media. With so many people out of work, home from work, or working from home, social media usage is at an all-time high.
In this article, we’re talking about how your dental practice can capitalize on the number of people who are on social media by connecting with your patients, growing your audience, and setting your practice up for more new patients once you’re able to open your doors back up.
Your Patients Are on Social Media
According to a study in 2019, 79% of the US population had a social networking profile. What’s this mean for dentists? It means that your patients or prospective patients are on social media.
A successful dental marketing strategy dictates that you meet your patients where they are — and more than ever, you can find them on social media. This knowledge makes social media for dentists crucial if you want to connect with your audience, build brand awareness, and attract more patients.
If you’ve dabbled in social media before, setting your practice up with accounts, but haven’t been consistent, you probably haven’t seen much success. Now that you have a bit more free time on your hands and you’re committed to improving your practice’s marketing during this time, it’s a great time to take your socials to the next level.
5 Social Media Ideas to Increase Your Dental Marketing Efforts
Use these five tips to start to build your practice’s social presence, serve your audience, and hopefully, see more new patients when the pandemic is over.
1. Create a Professional Brand Experience
Your brand is what patients think of when they hear your practice’s name. If you already having a brand strategy in place, it should translate through all your marketing efforts, including social media.
Your brand helps differentiate your practice from your competition — it allows you to show your personality and encourages your patients to develop a connection to it. The more you reinforce and stay committed to your brand, the more you’ll create awareness and trust.
Creating a professional, cohesive brand experience on social media includes various different concepts. Here are our top four tips for creating a memorable brand experience:
- Design a brand logo that displays your practice’s philosophy and personality and use it often.
- Use colors consistently and choose ones that make a statement.
- Use consistent tonality and language in your posts and keep it simple. Avoid using too much technical jargon that may turn an average patient off.
- Create or purchase branded templates to keep your feed looking cohesive and consistent.
2. Show Up Consistently
You put all that effort into creating a social media branding strategy, now your next step is to show up consistently for your audience. A consistent brand is a trusted brand. If you only post sporadically or fall out of routine, your audience will take notice and you’ll lose credibility. The best way to stay on track with social media posting and engagement is to create a content calendar that makes it easy to stay on task and consistent on social media.
It’s up to you what consistency looks like for your practice. You could commit to posting five, three, or two days a week. The most important thing is that you show up when your audience expects you to and that you stay consistent with your branding and messaging.
Part of being consistent is also using branded hashtags and using the same profile photo, cover photo, and bio on each of your platforms. Your audience should be able to click on any one of your social profile links and see the same information across each of them.
3. Create and Share Original Content
Does your practice create content regularly? Blog posts, research papers, media articles, photos, videos, etc.? If you weren’t creating content before COVID-19, hopefully, you’re taking some time to do so now. The content that you create is perfect for sharing on your social channels. According to Sprout Social, 33 percent of people say that they prefer to engage with media that teaches them something. This is a great opportunity to spread your knowledge in an easy-to-understand way and it provides you with some great social media post ideas, allowing you to repurpose and share your content many times over.
4. Go Live and Use Stories
Every major social platform now has the ability to share content that’s only available for a specific time. This type of sharing creates a sense of urgency and a feeling among your audience of not wanting to miss out. If you advertise that you’ll be going live on Facebook or Instagram and you create some excitement around the topic, you’re likely to get a lot more people to show up than if you were to create a video and ask users to view it on your website or another platform.
Here are our the top three ways to share live or limited-time content that we encourage you to utilize in your social media plan:
Instagram and Facebook Stories
On both of these popular platforms, photos or videos that are posted to your stories are available for 24 hours only. According to Instagram, nearly one-third of the most-viewed Stories are from businesses. This is the perfect way to post content that gives your followers a behind the scenes look into your practice. It’s also great for offering advice or information and to advertise your latest feed post.
Instagram and Facebook Live
When you do a live stream, your viewers can engage with you, reacting or commenting, in real-time. Under normal circumstances, you might “go live” while performing a procedure so that your audience can get an up-close and personal, real-time experience of what it’s like visiting your office. During COVID-19, you may want to go live with a Q&A session or to discuss a particular topic and allow your users to interact with you throughout.
Twitter chats are public conversations that are centered around one specific topic. This is another opportunity to offer live Q&A sessions that promote your practice and expertise while contributing to the greater good and helping answer questions and ease minds during this troubling time.
5. Engage, Engage, Engage!
Using social media to build your brand and increase your following is more than just posting consistently — you have to engage with your audience. This means that you comment on posts, participate in group discussions, answer questions, and add relevant medical advice to the conversations that are happening around you. By using social media as more than just an advertising tool, you can help to expand your online reach, better serve your audience, and manage your reputation at the same time.
Consumers love when they see a brand engaging online. This can mean anything from answering their questions to responding to criticism. By being actively involved and engaged with your audience, you’re showing that you care about them, their questions, and their concerns. A little bit of engagement goes a long way in fostering relationships with patients — new and old.
Whether you’re a social media newbie or a veteran, now is a great time to re-evaluate your social media plan and strategy so that you can provide the most value possible to your patients during this time. With more people than ever on social media, your practice can capitalize by increasing your content output, interacting with your audience, and even by offering fun events like live Q&As, giveaways, or polls. The opportunities are endless.
To learn more about social media marketing for dentists, check out our blog post Get Results that Make You Smile: 6 Social Media Tips for Dentists.
Need help with your strategy? Core Dental Solutions is here to help! Schedule your free consultation here and let’s work together to make sure your practice comes out of this pandemic on top and ready to take on more new patients.
We are here for you! To help you manage through this difficult time, we are discounting our services by 50% from April-July and offering a complimentary strategy session to all dental practice owners.
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