Believe it or not, today’s dental patients are most effectively reached through social media. Patients use social media to build and maintain relationships with both people and businesses. And they make decisions about who they trust based on social proof.
We live in a world where social media has taken over a large part of our lives. That is why it is so important for dentists and orthodontists to have a digital marketing and social media marketing strategy. If your patients don’t find you online, you won’t find them in your chair.
Your dental team wants a social media marketing solution that requires minimal time and effort, but still attracts new patients and creates a great reputation for your practice in the community. The truth is, most dental teams are so busy running the practice that creating dental social media content falls to the bottom of the long to-do list.
Many dentists wonder, what would it require to reach new patients through social media? How can I strengthen relationships with current patients and improve my reputation and practice culture using social media?
My Social Practice has solved this dental social media puzzle.
We like to call our dental social media strategy “the three R’s.” What are they? Reach, reputation, and relationships.
To reach more people online, you’ve got to have a healthy content mix. There are three types of content that we have seen work again and again for dental and orthodontic practices. The three types of content are team content, patient content, and informational content. We have come up with a content rule of how much of each category you should be posting.
When it comes to social media for dental practices, here is the secret formula: 50% of your content should be team content, only 20% should be patient content, and 30% of your posts should be informational content.
Team content is a dental social media post that has team members in it. This could be just for fun posts, posts that highlight things that your practice is doing to support causes, or giveaways that you are running on social media.
There are things that you do in your practice every day that could be great content for your social pages (Hint: My Social Practice will give you ideas on what to do here.)
Patient content is content illustrating what your patients are doing in your practice and the relationship that you have with them. Patient content shows that your patients are comfortable with you and that they enjoy their experience in your practice.
Lastly, informational content. This content ranges from current events to clinical posts about dentistry.
Although the majority of your dental Facebook posts should be focused on your team, it is still essential that you establish yourself as an expert on your social pages.
Informational content will not get as much engagement as your team or patient content. However, posting informational content is how you will be able to post consistently and build your brand.
Consistency is vital to your success on social media. We encourage all of our clients to post at least 3 times a week.
For practices that don’t have a plan in place, posting frequently is nearly impossible. You never know what a day in a dental or orthodontic practice will look like! That is why we, at My Social Practice, provide monthly calendars for practices to know exactly what they are posting ahead of time.
The graphic below shows the difference between an “unhealthy mix” versus a “healthy mix” of content.
Some dental social media marketing companies encourage dentists to post graphic after graphic of impersonal content on their pages. We’ve seen many dentists give up on social media after seeing zero results with this strategy.
That is why My Social Practice developed the “50%, 20%, 30%” rule. We have witnessed this formula work again and again for dental and orthodontics practices all across the country.
A well-known neuroscientist, Antonio Damasio, said “We are not thinking machines that feel; rather, we are feeling machines that think.”
Connection comes before conversion. Most dentist marketing their practices using deals and discounts to attract new patients. The problem with this type of marketing is that it does essentially nothing to build a relationship of trust. If you want loyal patients, you need to foster emotional and personal connections with them.
Dental practices can improve relationships by showing team unity, being human and relatable, sharing dental advice, being optimistic and charitable, and supporting other local businesses in the area.
During the 2020 pandemic, dental and orthodontic practices used social media to show empathy and connect with their patients during a difficult time for everyone.
“Content builds relationships. Relationships are built on trust. Trust drives revenue.” -Andrew David, best-selling author and keynote speaker.
To be successful on social media, you need to be authentic and transparent. Here is a great example of being honest and transparent from Lake Oconee Dentistry.
Dr. David is both professional and genuine in the video. When Dr. David talks about feeling uneasy about reopening their practice, even though the state has allowed them to open back up, he is expressing open communication with his patients. This shows patients that this practice is honest, which translates to honest clinical care and billing.
This kind of content illustrates to your patients that you truly care about their well-being and the kind of experience that they have in your practice. Your patients will feel more confident in you and your team when you are honest with them.
Enable your patients to build your reputation for you! If you foster a culture of honesty in your practice, your patients are sure to share their experience with you with their friends and family.
However, there is only so much that you can say about how awesome your dental or orthodontic practice is. For instance, collecting online reviews. How much better is it when you can get a patient to talk about how great you are? Having postive online reviews on sites like Google and Facebook is critical to your reputation. Here are the tricks to getting more dental reviews.
Before you post on your orthodontic or dental Facebook and Instagram pages, think: Does this content fall under reach, relationships, or reputation? If your social posts fall under one of these three categories then you can be sure that you are posting good content. If not, you might want to think again about what you are posting.
My Social Practice provides dental and orthodontic practices with the materials, tools, skills, and knowledge to build their practices using social media. Talk to one of our marketing experts to get an idea of what your practice needs to grow.