The big question, once you understand that you should get your patients to “like” your Facebook page and to “check-in” when they come to the office, is how to get them to do that consistently, and not feel weird asking them to do it. (If you don’t understand why this has become so important, read this blog post.)
First, understand that Facebook users get the idea of check-ins and likes. They may not all do it on a regular basis, but most of them know about it. And also, it costs them nothing to do it. They are not going to get spammed or reveal some secret information about themselves. It’s social. In fact, some of your patients are checking in already without you even asking.
So ask. Not in a desperate way, but in a friendly way, like, “We’d love it if you check-in on Facebook while you’re here.” If they say, “Huh?”, take a minute and show them on their mobile phone what you’re talking about. In reception, have a little sign that says, “Like us on Facebook.” Have iPads that they can use in the office, and get an adhesive cover from www.skinit.com that puts your Facebook page location right on the front. And of course, follow the strategy that my friend Dr. Lori Cockley and her team used. (Read this blog post for details on that technique.)
And now…my latest trick. Set up your office WiFi so that as patients log in to use it they automatically check-in on Facebook. Yes, this is possible. It’s a one-click login, and it’s an application offered by Facebook. (No surprise there, just impressive business thinking).
You will have to buy a certain type of WiFi router, but I think it’s worth it. Right now it only works with Cisco and Meraki routers. The Cisco ones are too expensive for a dental practice, but the Meraki are reasonable ($500), including the license. You might need a tech geek to set this up properly. Or a teenager.
Along with this, because they have checked in through your system, there are some marvelous reports that you can generate to get more demographic and behavioral information about your patients from their Facebook profiles. I know this all sounds a bit Orwellian, but if people imagine that data isn’t being gathered about them on Facebook and everywhere else on the Internet, then they don’t understand that these sites are all businesses that sell advertising as their only revenue source.
I think this is a great and simple way to get loads of check-ins, and you’re offering free WiFi to your patients, which you should anyway. You can also set it up so that if they don’t want to use Facebook they can still use the WiFi, either with or without a password, based on your settings. Starbucks makes you watch a video ad to use their WiFi. You just want a check-in. That’s not asking too much.
Click to find out exactly how to do this here.
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