Setting 2017 Priorities: Refine Your Practice's Social Media Presence

Your best opportunities for low-cost promotion and consequently, practice growth, are probably through social media.

Is growing your practice among your 2017 priorities?

This may sound like a rhetorical question -- who wouldn’t want to grow their practice? -- but it’s actually not. Some dentists don’t want to grow their practice, and that’s OK. We have plenty of other articles for you on Dentist’s Money Digest!

Related: Using Social Media to Retain Dental Patients

If, however, practice growth is on your 2017 priority list, your best opportunities for low-cost promotion are probably through social media. If you are now panicking and closing your Internet browser, stick with me for just a moment. Developing a social media strategy doesn’t have to be difficult, and it certainly doesn’t have to be boring! Even if you don’t know Twitter from John Ritter, you can craft a strategy that’s right for you. Let’s take a closer look.

Do More Good than Harm

Look, a terrible social media strategy can, indeed, be counterproductive. But in 2017 and every year thereafter, the worst social media strategy will be avoidance. Really, how bad could you be at developing a social media strategy? How much harm could you possibly do by being active on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media sites? The answer may lie not in your expertise, but in your commitment and character. If you want to avoid being bad at social media …

Related: Common Social Media Blunders for Dentists

Be Yourself

Every dental practice is unique, as are the individuals who make up your practice. This individuality doesn’t easily come across through your name, logo, or dental practice sign. But it can through social media. Starting a Facebook page or a Twitter account for your practice is free and deceptively easy. So is illustrating the uniqueness of your practice. Create posts that illustrate the unique personality of your team. Include willing patients (with express permission only) in pictures or on your feeds. Have a little fun with your posts.

Give it to the Expert

You don’t have to be digitally savvy yourself to capitalize on social media opportunities. All you need is a budding Mark Zuckerberg on your dental staff. The person doesn’t have to be the young nerd on your team, and it doesn’t have to be a digital expert. You’re looking more for enthusiasm than expertise! Just be sure that you have strict guidelines in place that mirror the public image you want to put forth and that you periodically review any posts before they go live, if possible.

Involve the Whole Team

Because social media is all about creating an experience for your patients, the more your staff is involved, the more the personality of your dental practice will shine through. That’s the low-hanging fruit of any social media endeavor; it is particularly important for dentists looking to build not only their patient base, but their community.

Every journey starts with a few simple steps. Get out there on social media in 2017, and you may find yourself farther along next year than you could have imagined.