Once you’ve optimized your Dental Practice Website, you’re ready to reach out to patients through Social Media! Including Social Media sites like Facebook in your dental marketing plan is an effective way to communicate with your current patients and find new ones. This quick guide will give you some concrete marketing ideas for using Social Media effectively to promote your dental practice and meet your goals.

20151207_Digital-Market-for-Dentists-Lesson-2-Social-Media-Marketing.jpgFirst of all: What are your practice marketing goals? Do you want to reach a much larger audience and find new patients? Are you offering new services and want to inform your current patients about them? Perhaps you just want to feel more connected to your current patients and encourage them to visit regularly or improve habits that affect their oral health. Ask yourself these questions before going social.

Social Media channels for marketing dental practices

The first social media priority for any small business marketing plan is a robust Facebook page—it’s the most popular social media site in America, with user numbers continuing to increase, even in the-65 and over age range. Most people “like” business pages expecting to receive service and support, interact with others, and receive exclusive content and offers. Your Facebook page should convey basic information about your dental practice and contain content that will engage your audience.

You should also consider using a Twitter profile to broadcast appealing content that allows patients to connect with you easily. Twitter can also connect you to other business partners and influencers that might enhance your perception online and offline. Twitter allows you to listen to what patients are saying to each other about your practice and other issues important to them.

Other tools you might consider adding to your social media menu: videos of new treatments or a dental practice tour on YouTube, regular photo updates on Instagram , the most effective means for reaching younger patients, and LinkedIn profiles for your practice and staff members so patients can read about their credentials! Tell stories – telling stories about your practice and your patients can personalize your business and increase comfort for patients. The great news is, all of these tools link to each other and work together to create an informative, attractive online presence for your practice.

Your Dental Practice is a Community: Build relationships with your existing patients through Social Media!

Good practice marketing creates and develops relationships with patients, and Social Media makes frequent, relevant communication much easier. Through your practice Facebook and Twitter page, you can share news about new technologies or procedures you have adopted, new staff members, or changes to your business hours or contact information. You can also use social media as a platform for sharing relevant health and dental news, tips for home care, or holiday greetings. Get feedback from your community of patients by encouraging them to like or follow your various Social Media profiles and to share their thoughts by posting comments. Increase your “likes” and “shares” by posting content in the most popular formats—articles in “list” format or those that explain a concept, aka “why” articles.  Treat your patients like a community and they will feel like one!

Finding New Dental Patients with Social Media

The eternal question: How to attract new dental patients? One way is by reaching them via Social Media. When your patients like your social media pages, comment on your posts, or repost your tweets on Twitter, their community of friends will learn about your practice. If a patient wants to recommend you to a friend, Social Media allows them to simply “share” you in seconds. Your Social Media posts, along with a video tour of your practice or introductions to your staff helps new patients immediately get a sense of your dental practice. And if you post good stories and entertaining updates on relevant themes, new dental patients can find you through subject searches on Facebook and Twitter. A quality social media presence can make a big impact. If you build trust in your potential patients using social media, they will be more likely to move from finding you to booking an appointment.

Social Media Marketing for Success: Best Practices for Dentists

Social Media channels are perfect platforms to get your dental practice’s brand out there. Strategize with your staff to map out key topics to post and post regularly. In order to create a unified voice, choose only one staff member to post. A Facebook page with fresh posts creates a community of readers. However, quality is crucial!  Keep your posts relevant, informative, and positive in tone to build trust with new patients and loyalty with current patients. People will keep communicating if they enjoy the content you post, but a few sloppy or off-topic posts can turn them off. Be sure that all staff members who post on social media are well trained, informed of your strategy and stay on point. To make your social media profiles easy for new patients to find in searches, use hashtags and specific keywords related to the topic of each post.

Photo: Social Media & Marketing by Rosaura Ochoa / CC BY 2.0

Categories: Dentist Marketing