social media for dentists

Social media for dentists top priorities

social media for dentistsWhen a practice starts to think about using social media for dentists, I am very often asked: “Which of the social media apps and websites should I focus on my dental practice?”. Unless you have a dedicated social media team in your practice (which I strongly doubt). I strongly suggest that you focus your social media effort on a few social media platforms. Pick those ones that are right for you and do them well and consistently.

Each social media network has its various advantages and disadvantages. The main thing is to be present where your target market is. You need to decide where is most appropriate for your dental practice, and where you can effectively execute your social media marketing strategy.

Each social media network has its various advantages and disadvantages. The main thing is to be present where your target market is. You need to decide where is most appropriate for your dental practice, and where you can effectively execute your social media marketing strategy.

First Steps With Social Media

The important rule to remember when using social media for dentists is to start gradually. Start using only as many platforms as you can handle well. Be regular, be friendly, be fun and be as non-commercial as you can.

  • Step one is to create accounts everywhere.
  • Make social media part of someone’s job in the practice.
  • 15 to 30 minutes a day (not the dentist – his / her time is best spent doing dentistry!)
  • Be consistent and keep it fresh.
  • Get releases from your patients for all photo and video.
  • Be familiar with the latest social media guidelines from Dental Board of Australia – http://www.dentalboard.gov.au/

Seek Professional Help

Contact us if you would like to know more about how you can best use social media within your dental practice. 


Priorities for social media for dentists

Facebook for dentistPriority 1: Facebook

Facebook is the most popular social media platform in Australia, with 14 million users. There is a high probability that many of your patients have a Facebook account.

Facebook acts as an excellent supplement to your practice’s dental website, encouraging constant interaction with patients. Tell the story of your company, intrigue your viewers and reach the millions online.

Ask your patients:

  • To “check-in” on Facebook when they come to your office (they do this on their smartphones).
  • To “Like” your practice page.
  • To post a picture, video or comment if they want to, perhaps about their visit to your practice.

Your posts should be personal, and frequent (ideally daily) but not clinical.  And you should always comment on any post a patient makes.  Facebook is already the most important social site but will become more so. Facebook should be an integral part of your practice dental marketing strategy.

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google plus for dentistsPriority 2: Google+

Google+ is the newest of the major social networks. In just over six months, the platform amassed more than 90 million users. Google+ is the network that is constantly growing and highly rates with businesses. Google+ is a critical part of your dental marketing because Google is able to enhance its search engine results with information gathered from users’ social circles.  There is a good chance that your clients are not active users on Google+, but you can bet your life that they are reading any reviews that your practice has on Google+.

Note, Google+ is not just any social network, it is powered by the search engine giant Google. Google+ has a direct impact on search results and reshaping the user’s experience of doing research in Google and will, therefore, increase the SEO of your website because of this activity.  It doesn’t have even a fraction of the activity that Facebook does. But spending time on Google + should be a priority for your practice.

I recommend duplicating everything you post on Facebook to Google+, slightly modifying some of the languages. In fact, if you post there first, and then post on Facebook, it gives you a bit more Google juice.

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you tube for dentistsyou tube for dentistsPriority 3: YouTube

With just under 14 million users in Australia, I believe that every dental practice should at least consider YouTube as part of their dental marketing strategy.

YouTube is massively searched by people and we are becoming a species that would much rather watch a video than read something.  Every video that you make should show up on YouTube, Facebook, Google+ and your website.  It is important to note that YouTube is also owned by Google.

You must tag your videos properly on YouTube, with the dentist’s name, the dental practices name and whatever else the video is about.  Ideally post something weekly, at the very least.  It doesn’t have to be brilliant or well shot.

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Instagram for dentistsPriority 4: Instagram

Instagram is increasing in popularity. It currently has just over 5 million monthly active Australian users and is growing rapidly. Instagram is the popular photo-sharing app that has taken social media and the world by storm.

Instagram is a mobile device application is very widely used and is owned by Facebook.  You can only use Instagram via the mobile application so it will require someone in your office who knows how to use it.

With this social media app, you can make interesting photos of your patients, particularly before-and-after shots, or provide behind the scenes of your dental practice images for your followers. You can give them a taste of your services; share relevant and useful information in the caption, like your location details or promotions; take users behind the scenes; offer followers exclusive benefits and make your business more personable; and anything else to intrigue them.

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Twitter for dentistsPriority 5: Twitter

Twitter is a great social media tool for enhancing your PR and building your ‘brand’. With just under 3 million active Australian users, you can enhance your ‘know’, ‘like’ and ‘trust’ factor through simply tweeting regularly and sharing with your followers. Share the day-to-day happenings or tweet relevant links and news.

It is easy to be active on Twitter because what you post is so short.  It can be very effective in your practice for alerting patients of openings in your schedule. You can post pictures, videos and alert your Twitter audience every time you post a blog on your website. It can, however, take a lot of time to get most of your patients to follow you on Twitter so concentrate on Facebook, Google+ and YouTube first.  Hootsuite is a website that will coordinate your posts in several places at once, but be careful not to replicate the content everywhere, because if it is exactly the same then you will lose the Google juice.

I personally love using Twitter for sharing practice blog posts, if you have a great blog heading and use the correct hashtags in your post you can easily have your blog posts shared far and wide. For this reason, alone I recommend that you consider posting on Twitter primarily for its SEO value.

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Linkedin for dentistsPriority 6: LinkedIn

LinkedIn has the highest business focus out of all social media networks and serves as an excellent tool to create exposure among and educated and professional audience. Within Australian Linkedin has just over 3.7 million users.

If you are considering using Linkedin for your dental practice marketing, you should not expect to get patients from this but you will get solicitations from other businesses. It is a great way to network with other dental professionals and to connect with dental industry contacts.

Linkedin has some SEO value, so create your profile and post occasionally.

Connect with Carolyn on Linkedin


Pinterest for dentistsPriority 7: Pinterest

Whilst there are other social media networks, these are completely ineffective for real SEO or patient attraction in the dentistry industry.  You may find some practices taking advantage of one or two of them, particularly Pinterest (320,000 Australian users), which has a very high amount of user activity, but for the most part, your energy should be spent elsewhere.

Pinterest is a visual sharing tool where “boards” are divided by topics that include everything from specialities and interests to humour and DIY ideas.  Searching for a topic like “dental humour”, for example, reveals a stream of pictures, called “pins”.

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(All statistics have come from Social Media Statistics Australia – August 2015)


Dental Social Media Marketing

We know that you are busy, so we can take the hard work out of keeping your dental social media pages fresh with our dental social media marketing services. We will post content to keep your social media profiles current while giving your patients and prospective patients the right mix to educate, inspire and inform while sending the patient back to your website to find out more about you.

Not only will we create new social media content for you, we’ll also schedule and post on your behalf. Find out more about our dental social media marketing services.

 

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