I’M APOLOGIZING RIGHT UP FRONT because this post is a bit of a rant. Sorry. I just feel like I gotta get this out of my system. Everywhere I look I’m seeing bad advice coming from website development companies and/or SEO-centric consultants who view dental social media as another traditional marketing strategy.
Best case… These well-intentioned service providers simply don’t have enough social media marketing experience or background to offer good advice. Worst case… These not-so-well-intentioned service providers are taking advantage of many dental practices’ social media naiveté.
Understanding This Difference Makes All The Difference
If you’ve heard me speak at a dental event you may recognize the slide below:
Traditional marketing and advertising are very different from what is now commonly referred to as “new marketing”. For the most part, today’s SEO tactics are much closer to yellow page ads, direct mail, and billboard strategies than they are to relationship (new) marketing.
Please don’t misunderstand my point here. I’m not slamming on SEO. Not at all. It’s an important part of dental practice marketing. What I am slamming are self-proclaimed gurus who carelessly blur the line between non-participatory and participatory online strategies.
Yesterday, one of our client practices forwarded me this email they received:
People Are Smart. They Know If They’re Being Jerked Around
Don’t underestimate the people who are SO IMPORTANT to your practice—your patients and prospective patients. Here’s another example. Read the “SEO optimized” blog post headline below. I can’t tell you how many of these kinds of blog posts I see in practices that think social media is something you “have”—not something you “do”:
Some of the other real gems in the body copy above include:
- “…improve the lives of my Provo/Orem denture and cosmetic dentistry clients.” (Clients? I thought they were patients. And, I guess if you live outside of Provo/Orem they’re not interested in improving your life. Sorry.)
- “Alpine tooth restoration clients…” (Golly… I wish I lived in Alpine so you could treat me!)
- Etc., etc.
Of all the actions items recommended in this post series, 26 Dental Social Media Marketing Truths, I’m making this action item the absolute quickest and easiest for you and your team.
Please either raise your right hand to the square, or link pinkies with someone in your practice, and repeat after me: “I, (insert your name here), do solemnly pinky swear that I will never abuse my patients, fans, followers or subscribers by confusing non-participatory, left-brain, SEO strategies with participatory, right-brain, dental social media engagement strategies. I recognize the difference between the two, and I realize that both can be useful when thoughtfully implemented. However, if I mix them improperly, may the fleas from a thousand camels infest my armpits.” Thanks. That will do.