Effective Social Media for Dentists
Social Media for Dentists
Gone are the days when all you really needed to do to be successful in your dental practice is get your degree, put up an open sign to your clinic, wait for patients to come to you, and expect them to be loyal to you until the end of your dental practice. Times have changed and so have the patients’ behavior and decision making process. To be truly successful in one’s practice, you have to constantly be attuned and adapt to these.
The change that is happening right now is Social Media. Yes, we are talking Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, YouTube, Pinterest, etc! It is now essential for any professional’s success to make use of these available social media sites. After all, these are all for free and very easy to setup; even an 8-year old child could figure it out by himself! Practicing social media for dentists is not very different from practicing social media per se. But is it really that simple?
Setting up your account and filling in your profile with all your credentials is just the first, albeit most important, step of joining the Social Media bandwagon. Social media experts have thousands of tips on how to fully utilize these social media to benefit your professional practice, but it really just boils down to these three basic things: Quality, Consistency, and Intensity.
In Social Media, you must make sure that what you are sharing to your network is something that is at par with the image that you want to project. As a dentist, you would want to share vital tips and advice that your patients would want to hear from an expert and a professional such as yourself. For example, don’t post something that says sweets are bad for your teeth. They have heard that a gazillion times! Instead, tell them how the sugar in these sweets hasten tooth decay as the bacteria that bonds together to make plaque use sugar to energize themselves.
It is important that your postings are not only informative, useful, and enjoyable to your followers. It should also let them know that you are an expert in your field and that you take your profession seriously. In that way, they will know that you are someone they could rely on and entrust their dental health and aesthetics to.
You always have to remember the image that you want to project and make sure that your social media efforts are consistent to that. If you want the image of the friendly neighborhood dentist, then you have to respond to your patients’ online inquiries regularly and make sure that their concerns are addressed in a professional and timely manner. To do this, you have to have to be consistently present online.
It is imperative that you schedule your postings on a regular basis to properly position yourself in the market and online. Besides, it is not called Social Media for nothing! The “social” part entails interaction and the only way you could do that is to ensure that you constantly provide opportunities for such interactions to take place. A sample of this strategy can be read in one of our past articles entitled Facebook Engagement Tips for Dental Clinics.
How aggressive do you want your social media efforts to be? Should you mange several accounts, one for your patients and the other for the patients you want to get? Do you want to start offering an online concierge service to your patients? Would you like to offer appointment setting online? Are you only focusing of Facebook and LinkedIn first or do you want to utilize YouTube and Pinterest instead? Should you start being part of dental listings in your area? Are you going to hire social media experts to help you position yourself and manage your social media? Are you going local or international? You have to determine how fast and how broad your social media marketing will be and strategize according to your desired goal.
How you determine, facilitate, and maintain the quality, consistency, and intensity of your social media could spell the success or failure of your dental practice. At this moment, one of the best ways for you to gain new clients, manage your relationship with your current clients, and keep up to date with the advancements in the dental industry is definitely through social media.
There are several sources of tips on Social Media for dentists. A good one that we have found is a forum led by Dr. Jason Lipscomb where he helps dentists maneuver themselves through the Social Media world.
Sharky founded DentistFind.com, a marketing system to help dental clinics increase patient flow consistently and at a lower cost. You can find his latest business tips on his business blog Business Tool Reviews. While not working on your online sites he is creating art for the clothing line Juzd streetwear.