Many dentists worry about the number of Facebook followers when they really should be worrying whether their followers are reading and enjoying what they are posting on Facebook.
The difference between Facebook and other dental marketing efforts is that a dental practice needs to invest a little bit of time on Facebook.
This small amount of extra time can go a long way and can even provide a rewarding experience as dental patients begin to provide feedback and communicate directly with you and your dental practice.
It really doesn’t require more than an hour a week, but you have to know exactly what works on Facebook so you aren’t wasting your valuable time and dental marketing efforts.
1. Ask questions.
Asking questions of your dental patients is a great way to engage them on your dental marketing Facebook Page. Ask them fun questions like what their favorite dental chair is in your office, or what they think of recent changes to Facebook (there are always changes to Facebook that you can ask them about). Facebook users love discussing Facebook.
2. Share personal stories with photos.
Share images of you and your office staff on Halloween when everyone is dressed in costume, or St. Patrick’s day when everyone is wearing green, but use these fun images as a way to engage your Facebook fans into sharing what it is about your dental practice they enjoy.
3. Hold a contest.
Create a contest strictly for your Facebook fans. Maybe host a Facebook trivia contest where your fans are asked to guess something about their favorite dentist… your favorite color, your favorite restaurant, your favorite hobby, etc., and offer a prize to the winner. Maybe, if they guess the right answer to your favorite restaurant, you can team up with that restaurant to offer the winner dinner for two as the prize.
4. Cross-promote neighborhood businesses.
Is there a local restaurant where you always enjoy lunch, or a place you like to take your children? Why not promote their Facebook Page? Do some of your patients have businesses you enjoy? Think about talking about them and their business on your Facebook dental marketing page.
5. Post Facebook content when your dental patients are online.
Most dentists post their Facebook updates during the work day — not before 6:00am or after 6:00pm. Marketing research has discovered that content posted outside of 9:00am – 5:00pm timeframe had higher user engagement rates than posts made during the work day. Many working moms like to visit Facebook before their kids are up in the morning or after they have gone to bed. Think about offering them something during these hours.
6. Share employee recognition.
Is there an employee whom your patients seem to love? Do you reward your employees on a regular basis? Think about sharing this recognition with your dental patient fans on Facebook.
7. Highlight your community service.
Does your dental practice sponsor a local baseball team or high school football team? Think about posting their game schedule or their losses and wins and ask your fans to attend their games in support. Ask patients to upload photos of the games they attend.
8. Use check-in deals on Facebook.
Facebook allows people to check-in to a business using the mobile Facebook app on their smart phone. To encourage your dental patients to use this app and make an appointment with your dental practice you can create a check-in deal for your page. Maybe you offer those patients who use this mobile marketing app something extra at your practice like a teeth whitening treatment they can use within the year.
9. Offer dental care tips.
Post dental care tips detailing ways in which your patients can take care of their teeth to avoid cavities, or gum disease. Think about all the ways you can help your dental patients protect their teeth, or offer signs of dental problems to watch out for — especially with their children.
10. Ask your followers for content.
Ask your Facebook fans for sugar-free recipes — or for ways they have convinced their small children to brush their teeth before bed. Ask your fans to offer up solutions to common issues with dental care. Highlight and talk about the best solutions from your fans.
Sit down and think about how you are utilizing Facebook for your dental practice and come up with a plan for interacting with your dental patients online.
I hope this inspires you to engage with your Facebook fans in new and compelling ways that add to your dental practice bottom line.