WHEN SOME DENTAL PRACTICES BEGIN USING TWITTER their first question is often, “How can I use Twitter to promote my services!?” As with all social media strategies, the better question is probably, “How can I use Twitter connect with my patients, learn about their needs, build loyalty, befriend new patients, and become a better business!?”
The dental practices getting the most traction from Twitter are the ones sharing interesting content and engaging in conversations with both their patients and others in their communities.
In dental practice marketing, Twitter serves two primary objectives:
- To build relationships with prospective new patients in your geographic area of influence through meeting, befriending, and starting conversations—one-on-one, one at a time.
- To drive practice awareness and gain viral momentum over time through the relationships and conversations you’ve created.
In addition to the primary objectives above, Twitter has some secondary benefits:
- An at-your-fingertips resource for relevant, current, live content and ideas you can use in your practice marketing—and in online conversations with patients and prospects.
- The ability to drive additional views to your blog, Facebook page, and other social media tools.
- Some soft-sell potential, once you’ve achieved some critical mass. There are even a few practices out there talking about how they’re encouraging their patient base to follow them on Twitter, and then they’re using Twitter to fill open spots in their schedules at the last minute (and at a 10% discount), etc.
- Access (you would not otherwise have) to influencers.
- Personal learning. Must everything you learn from Twitter or talk about on Twitter be dentistry related? Absolutely not.
The Primary Purpose Of Twitter IS NOT To Sell Dentistry
Twitter is NOT a place to sell dentistry. I repeat… Twitter is NOT a place to sell dentistry. The example below comes from a dentist who I really admire. He has a very buttoned down practice and seems to be very competent and professional (we have blurred out the name of his practice because it isn’t important to know). The problem is that he absolutely does NOT understand Twitter. Look through the content and see if you can guess why:
Kinda reminds me of this Tom Fishburne cartoon:
So, if the example above is what I SHOULDN’T do, then please show me what I SHOULD do!
Thanks for asking! Click on Post 3 of 5 below to learn more about developing the right mindset behind your Twitter stream.
Here are the titles and links to the other 4 related posts:
Post 1 of 5 – Twitter For Dentists (overview)
Post 4 of 5 – Twitter Basics For Your Dental Practice (the “how”)
Post 5 of 5 – Using Twitter To Engage With Local People (the “who”)
As our valued clients and friends…
We strongly encourage you to carefully read each of the posts in this series. Then, start using Twitter. Give it some time and be consistent. You’ll look back one day and be glad you did.
And finally, if you’re really consumed by Twitter right now, and you just can’t get too much information, you may want to look around Mashable’s online Twitter Guidebook.