Using facebook for your dental practice

Social media can be a very useful tool to promote your practice, Gillian Heron of Pink Inc Web outlines how to get your faces online

Most people use Facebook on a regular basis, which means, as a business, you should seriously consider using it to keep patients informed. It is important that you get it right from the start, so here are a few tips to get you up and running.

1. Set up your Facebook page

As a company on Facebook you have to set up a page as opposed to a profile. To do this you will need to determine who is best placed in your team to look after your Facebook page. This person will then either have to create a Facebook profile or use their existing one to become the creator and the administrator for the Facebook page.

2. Personalise your Facebook page

Think about your patients and what information they may want or need to know about your practice. Add this, as well as links to your website, on your info tab. Brand your Facebook page with your practice logo or get your graphic/web design company to help design something eye-catching. You may want to change this on a regular basis for promotions.

3. Claim your Facebook place

By claiming your Facebook place you can let people check in to your dental practice to gain some exposure.

4. Claim your Facebook page address

As standard, Facebook will issue you with a random link for your Facebook page, but once you hit 25 ‘likes’ you can claim your practice name link.

5. Create engaging content

There are a few simple rules to using Facebook as a business. Don’t be too controversial, stay interesting and don’t make everything sound like an advert.

Try to vary what you do on Facebook, post a fact through a status update, ask questions, link to a video and thumbnail for more interactive and visual engagement and upload photos to show real life case studies.

Don’t post too often, decide within your practice how many times per week you think it would be appropriate to post on Facebook.

6. Moderation

Remember to moderate your Facebook page. Respond to negative comments quickly as well as thanking fans for positive feedback. Engage and facilitate conversation with quick responses on Facebook. It has to be an integral part of your marketing and as such needs the correct staff resources allocated to it.

7. Promotion and getting your numbers up

Promote your Facebook page online and offline. Link to your website, email marketing and email signatures. Put the Facebook icon on your brochures, appointment cards, recall cards, promotional posters etc.

You also might want to encourage your patients to like your page by running a competition.

8. Goals and targets

As with all marketing your need to have a clear vision of how you want to use Facebook. Set goals and targets on the number of likes or how much traffic links to your website, or you may want to focus on the number of customer queries dealt with on Facebook.

Conclusion

Marketing on Facebook is constantly evolving and your dental practice may get by focusing on:

  • engaging your patients
  • encouraging conversation
  • maintaining good customer service
  • offering valuable information on dental health and dental products
  • providing information which can be shared and passed on
  • keeping visuals bright and eye-catching and
  • not being overly sales-focused with your content.

Good luck and remember to ‘like us’ at http://www.facebook.com/pinkincweb for more tips!