Okay, you’ve heard all the noise about how important it is to have a Facebook page for your practice, and you’ve finally done it, but there’s no action on it. Nobody likes your page, nobody comments, and you don’t know what to post.
Wait, you’re not sure that Facebook matters when it comes to marketing your practice? How about a recent Pew Report that shows social media use by older Americans has TRIPLED since 2009? And that the fastest growing segment of Facebook users is the 65+ age group? Or that the entirety of Facebook is now searchable, meaning people can find anything posted about anyone, because of Facebook’s Graph Search? This is not a trend, or a teen fad. This is a radical shift in human interaction.
And some of you will still say, “My patients don’t use Facebook.” And as you say it, a team member will be using her phone to post on Facebook, saying, “You won’t believe what my dentist just said!”
Anyway, this blog post is more for those who have dived (dove?) into social media and are looking to up their game. And for that I turn to a fabulous dentist friend of mine (on Facebook!), Dr. Lori Fonzi Cockley in East Berlin, PA. Here are the steps she took to turn her Facebook page into a source of new patients.
1. Sit down with each team member, one at a time, at a computer and ask them if you can look at their Facebook page. (Set one up for them if they don’t have one, which is unlikely.)
2. In the “ABOUT” section of their personal profile, make sure they have a link to your Facebook page under “Works at”.
3. Then have them find your practice page and click “LIKE”, and then hover over that button until a drop-down menu appears, and then click “Get Notifications”. Let them know that from that point they will get a notification whenever anything was posted to the practice page.
4. When they get a notification, ask that they like, add a comment to, and share anything that was posted. This increases the exposure of the post, as it now is viewable by all their friends, and it boosts the SEO value to the practice page.
5. Then take them to their “FRIENDS” list on the right side of the practice page, where it shows how many friends they have and says, “Invite your Friends to Like This Page”, and ask them to invite their friends to, you know, like the page.
Within a few short hours, you’ll see posts and comments and likes. It’s kind of exciting for everyone.
Dr. Cockley also made the investment to take some professional team photos, and they posted these and tagged them, and this brought a lot of comments and shares as well. And within a few minutes, she had one of the invites call and become a new patient! Her practice is now approaching 1,000 likes, and I expect will continue to grow steadily.
What’s more, everything she’s done is now searchable, and will show up when friends search “dentist” “East Berlin dentist” “dentists my friends like”, and more. If you’re looking to know what else to post on Facebook, read this previous blog of mine. And if you use a digital communication app like PatientActivator, you can take the patient reviews that you get and post them right to your Facebook page.
Please take a moment and visit Dr. Cockley’s Facebook page by clicking here, and be sure to like her page. It’s the least you can do after all this fabulous free advice from her! And then go thou and do likewise!
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Excellent article. I have lots of friends pouring huge amount of time and effort into facebook marketing. But when I ask them about the results they don’t really know. Can you quote some results from well run fb campaigns? Is it as effective as traditional media when you factor in all the time involved?
Mark, it’s hard to pin down the results from Facebook activity, as it serves more as a support for generating word-of-mouth patients. It should be part of an overall marketing approach, and it’s important not to devote too many hours a month to it, but there’s no denying that the general public is looking at Facebook and drawing conclusions about every business that appears there.
Great Info Fred. We are up to 415 patient likes on our page and on occasion run contests for prizes for liking us. Pictures are the key! You might get a few comments on a written post but for example put up a photo of a staff member on a birthday or anything like that and the comments come flooding in.
You’re right, Mario. Photos really are the key. People naturally tend to “like” them, share them, and comment on them, especially if they show something personal about the practice.