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Maintaining a strong social media presence is more important than ever. Not only does it make your dental practice look competent and active, but it can actually help you find new clients and build professional connections. Here are some best practices to help you build an audience on your social media channels.
Once you have decided to market your practice on social media, you’ve got to really commit to it! Make weekly posts a part of your routine. If you can’t find time to do it yourself, find someone in the office who can take on the responsibility of posting on behalf of the business. (Ideally, this person will be not only trustworthy, but also able to speak knowledgeably about your practice.) Consistent posting on social media keeps your name at the forefront of people’s minds and can make the practice seem more “personable” and likable. Make a goal to post once a week, or at least twice a month. If that is more than you can commit to, figure out what works for you — just make sure you stick to it!
Photos and videos do better than text-only posts, and it’s crucial that those images are clear and high quality — don’t post blurry or grainy photos. Use proper grammar and maintain a strong brand voice. Are you noticing that people interact with a certain type of post more often? For example, before and after photos of dental work? Post more of that type of content! But make sure you still have some variety. We recommend a mix of before and afters, employee/behind-the-scenes photos, community involvement (photos from a local event, for example), and anything else that captures your brand and shows off your personality and expertise. (For more content ideas, read Part 1 and Part 2 or our Promoting Your Dental Practice on Facebook series.)
Getting involved in the community happens online, too! Follow local businesses, schools, community pages, charities, news stations, and other local pages. Anything that shows your practice is an integral part of the city is a good idea. You can also follow pages of other businesses and professionals you want to connect with. Do you have a local orthodontist you like to recommend to your patients? Follow them! You may be able to build a stronger connection in real life by interacting with their page.
Don’t let comments or posts to your page go unanswered. Try to respond to comments within 24 hours. This shows that you care about your clients! A simple “Thank you,” “It was great seeing you,” or even a happy emoji can be a good response to a kind comment. If you get a negative comment, don’t ignore it! Handling a public complaint with grace can actually make you look good to others viewing your page, and maybe even change the commenter’s mind. (Read more tips on how to manage your online reputation.)
If you want to build your network, sharing promotions on social media is a great way to increase traffic. For example, create a discount that clients can receive if they like your post and then show it to the receptionist at their appointment. Social media promotions and offers will make locals want to follow you so that they can snag a deal when it comes around.
Every social media platform has a way to advertise. Creating Facebook ads, for instance, can help you reach far more people than just those that stumble upon your Page on their own. Your ad will show up in their Facebook feed, where they can then learn more about your business. If you don’t feel comfortable creating your own ads, there are many advertising agencies that can help you write and implement them.