In our regular checkups with our clients, we often ask them what they’ve found to be the hardest part of social media marketing. Without a doubt, the most common answer is along the lines of “getting team members to bring up our social media efforts with patients,” or “inviting patients to participate.” We understand! Snapping a pic with a patient or inviting a patient to leave a review can be awkward at first, especially for team members that aren’t especially outgoing.
We can promise you though that once your team becomes comfortable asking patients to participate in social media, you’ll see real improvements in your practice’s online visibility, reputation, and new patient referrals. Patient posts and reviews are powerful, authentic word-of-mouth recommendations that reach the people most likely to become new patients themselves — their local family and friends.
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Role-Play Exercise to Encourage Social Media Participation
The things your team members will need to do generally fall into three categories:
- Invite a patient to participate in a practice campaign or giveaway by snapping a photo and sharing it to their own Facebook account.
- Invite a patient to write a Google review of your practice.
- Invite a patient to simply Like your practice’s page on Facebook.
Divide your team into pairs and have each pair choose one of these three scenarios. One person will assume the role of the team member, and the other will be the patient. The person playing the team member will then talk to their partner as if they are just greeting someone who has come to the office, or just about to wrap up after an appointment, and encourage them to participate in the practice’s social media as given by their chosen scenario.
Simply doing this exercise can help team members formulate a “script” in their head they can follow to make bringing up social media easier. It will also reveal any hitches in the process such as taking too long (should be two minutes or less), or not knowing how to instruct a less technically-savvy patient on exactly what to do.
Regardless of the scenario, you can follow these steps when inviting a patient to engage with your social media:
- Mention something fun your practice has done on social media recently.
Example: “Did you see the Shark Week video we did on Facebook last week?”
- Tell the patient what’s in it for them for participating. Example: “If you take the 30-Day Flossing Challenge by sharing a photo today, you’ll be entered to win a pair of movie tickets!”
- Express your appreciation for the patient. Example: “We’re so grateful to have awesome patients like you, and when you write a review it helps more people find us!”
- Remember to SMILE! Patients won’t be enthusiastic about social media unless you are first!
As always, in any social media marketing effort that involves patients, their comfort and privacy come first. Make sure to also train your team on these HIPAA guidelines and your practice’s social media policy.
We at My Social Practice have spent years honing our tools to make sharing about your practice as easy and intuitive as possible for both patients and team members. Find out more about our practice campaigns, Photo Booth App and MSP Reviews service by requesting a free demo!
About the Author: Blake Hadley is a dental digital marketing expert and one of the founding members of My Social Practice. My Social Practice is a dental marketing services company located in Salt Lake City, Utah. Blake is passionate about helping dental practices grow. If you’d like to book Blake or one of the other members of My Social Practice’s speaking team, you can do that HERE. Interested in learning more about the benefits of SEO for dental practices or our agile dental website development service, you can learn more here.