With the new normal taking over and more people preferring to stay in than go out (I am definitely one of those people), this means that most people will be going online a lot more often, either to buy, to watch, or to keep themselves updated. It also means that people will not be thinking about their oral health the way they should. As the expert, you know the consequences of this.
Therefore, with everyone online, it is up to you to start using social media to your advantage in order to let not only your existing but prospective patients know you are here and you are offering a safe space for them to take care of their oral health while we all continue to endure this pandemic together.
Social media is just the right platform to communicate this message. Remember that it is important to develop a solid plan that will best suit your team and your practice when it comes to developing any kind of social media strategy.
Here are just a few tips to enhance your social media presence and maintain your audience:
- Update your platforms
If you already have a social media presence but you haven’t updated in a while, it’s time to do just that. Three months without an update is like three years online.
First off, if you are already open or you are getting ready to open, make the announcement as soon as possible on all your social media platforms.
Second, update any pages or groups, start posting relevant information and images.
Right now, most prospective patients are checking their options online to see what dental clinics are doing in their area to keep them safe and well, to keep themselves safe and well. So, third, and most importantly, educate new and existing patients on what you’re doing in the office to make it safe.
2. Ask an Expert
Trying to keep all your social media platforms up to date with information and relevant images can be time-consuming and might not fit into the duties of you or even your front staff. You need help. You might even need help developing a strategy before you start work on your platforms.
Talk to an expert. There are many social media experts out there that can help you not only develop a social media strategy that will work for you and your clinic but also keep all your platforms updated.
3. Stay consistent
No one has all the time in the world to post on their social media platforms, and if you have decided early not to bring on a social media expert, the best thing to remember is to stay consistent with your posts. Whether you post every day, twice a week, or once a week, you need to pick a schedule, set that schedule and stick to it.
4. Take time to clean and fix
Just as you take time to clean up your workspace and your computer in order to work more efficiently and effectively, so too should you take time to clean up and fix any issues on your social media platforms. Update your information, fix any broken or unavailable links, correct any spelling or grammar errors. All too often I have come across social media posts that are old or just haven’t been edited.
Before you post, get someone on your team to review your post and catch issues that maybe you missed. It happens. And it’s an easy fix with a quick and solid review.
5. ABP: Always be posting
This comes down to consistency. The one thing you cannot do once you’ve committed is simply stop. Like I said earlier, three months can feel like 3 years online. Don’t leave your social media platforms so long they start developing cobwebs.
Always be posting, whether it’s just a short meme, a blog post from your website, or information about what’s going on in your clinic. Once you’ve developed an audience, the only way to maintain it is to consistently post and keep that audience up to date.
6. Choose quality over quantity
Try not to get so hung up on the numbers. They are, after all, just that—numbers. It is the quality of your audience more than the quantity that you want to focus on. Your audience needs to be engaged, talking, sharing, and developing a community in which they can be comfortable and relaxed with their opinions, comments and questions. You do want to grow your community, but exercise patience. The people who are enthusiastic about the conversation are the ones you want. More activity on your social media platform promises to generate more interest for you and your dental practice.
7. Stick to a consistent message
Developing your presence on social media cannot be haphazard. Stick to your clinic’s message by posting information relevant to your goals. If the message you want to convey is that you have a safe clinic for those looking for a dentist, stay true to that message. Always ask yourself before you post if what you’re posting contradicts your message in any way. If it does, scrap it, and start fresh. Remember, it’s not always about what you say but how you say it.
The key to all of this is planning. If you plan your social media strategy, from the content right down to the time the content will be posted, you will reap the benefits of your efforts. As the world continues to open up, and the pandemic remains a force in our lives, we need to stick together and provide a message of unity, understanding and empathy on not just social media, but our websites and our blog posts.
This is a bad time to become complacent, so remember to stick to the guidelines put in place for our safety and keep yourself, your team, and your patients (existing and new) safe and well.
For more social media tips, check out the resources below: