Towards the end of 2018, Facebook reported that there were 2.27 billion active Facebook users on the platform, and that number grows everyday. Your patients are on Facebook, and you should be too.
The average patient is more informed than ever, and many potential patients are using social media to leverage their decision making when it comes to scheduling their next dentist visit. Online dental marketing is no longer optional, and social media platforms are included in that essential dental marketing mix.
Facebook is arguably the best social media platform for dental practices due to its general popularity, Business page features, and advertising capabilities. If your dental practice lacks a social presence and you're looking to get your feet wet, Facebook is the platform to create and perfect.
Benefits Dental Practices See From Social Media
Social media has many benefits for small businesses, including dental practices. As a dentist, you can use social media to connect with current patients, and even open gateways to connect with patients you haven't met yet, who are looking for a dentist just like you. Social media is even one of the ranking factors for Google's Local Pack, which is where you want your dental practice to be.
Social media as a tool for dental practices is surprisingly backed by science, like social proof. Social proof is a psychological phenomena which essentially says that humans are more likely to indulge in a behavior, like liking your staff photo on Facebook or scheduling an appointment at your dental practice, if they believe it is the accepted behavior among their peers. An easy to understand version is the common phrase, 'monkey see, monkey do'. Therefore having positive reviews, likes and comments on your posts, and even followers or page likes, all speak to other potential patients that their peers approve of your dental practice, and you are the choice they should be making.
It is important to keep in mind that when it comes to using social media for your dental practice, quality should outweigh quantity. It is better to have one or two professional, active accounts rather than a handful of accounts that have few posts and lack TLC. This is why we recommend to start with a Business page on Facebook for your dental practice.
Pros of Facebook for Dental Practices
When it comes to social media for dentists, Facebook has a lot to offer. The marketing tools that only larger companies used to be able to afford are now available to anyone with a Facebook Business page and a marketing budget.
- Ads - If you have the marketing budget, Facebook also has great social media marketing capabilities. You can easily create and run targeted ads to reach potential patients in your local area. Out of all the social media platforms, Facebook offers the strongest ad-targeting capabilities for social media marketing.
- Business page - Your Business page can easily act as an extension of your website. You can post updates, staff photos, dental fun facts, and more to keep your dental practice at the top of your audience's minds. You can even post updates about events, offers, and other dental practice news easily.
- Analytics and insights - With detailed post performance analytics, Facebook Pixel to connect to your website, and more, you can easily see and understand the ROI of your social media efforts. Facebook even allows you to run split-test ads against each other, which gives you even more analytical insights.
If your practice is new to the Facebook game, or if you're looking to finally put the time and effort into your current Business page to ramp up your dental marketing, we have some pointers for you.
- Know your target audience - Identify who your buyer personas, or ideal customers, are. This will help you figure out what your ideal customers look at on Facebook, what types of content they interact with, and more.
- Business page information - Make sure the information about your dental practice on your Facebook Business page's information is detailed and correct. It is important that your digital presence is consistent. Make sure your Business page has the correct business name, address, and phone number, often referred to as your NAP. You'd be surprised and how these types of inconsistencies across your digital footprint can negatively affect your local SEO.
- Keep your content branded. This one is important, especially for fledgling accounts. You want to familiarize your audience with your dental practice, and get them to be able to identify you without much thought. Using your dental practice logo, colors, and other branding will help. You should also identify your social tone, so that your posts all come together to create your dental practice's voice.
- Stay active - This ties into earning recognition from your audience. If you want to be at the top of your current and potential patient's minds (and Facebook feed), you should post content on a consistent basis. Many dental practices rarely update their website with cleaning specials, patient events, or other office information due to the difficult nature of some website platforms, like Wordpress. Social media is a great tool to keep your patients updated, that requires little to no tech-savy skills.
- If you're uneasy, trust the professionals to your social media management - If creating content calendars, creating branded content, and even posting on a consistent basis sounds a bit overwhelming, don't fret. No one expects dentists, orthodontists, and oral surgeons to juggle managing their dental practice and keeping up with their dental marketing. Dental marketing experts know the ins and outs of social media management. You can easily find a professional dental marketing agency who can help get your social media to where you want to be.
There are many platforms out there, like My Social Practice, that promise to help dentists and their dental practices create and manage their social media presence. Our best advice is to nix the cheesy stock images (nothing screams dentist ad like a tacky stock photo) these services provide, and get to talking with a dental marketing professional about where you want to take your social media presence.
If you want to see double-digit growth, contact The Diamond Group. As a HubSpot Agency Partner, we believe in the inbound methodology. We are a marketing group that offers supercharged website design and inbound marketing solutions that maximizes your businesses potential. Whether you need a custom web design, a full inbound marketing strategy, or just want double-digit growth, The Diamond Group has your back.