Many professionals first scoff at the idea of joining social networks.
Some people see social networks as huge time wasters, and others see their huge marketing potential. Your practice has a lot to gain from joining the social media conversation.
These days most people are on Facebook. Many are on Twitter, Pinterest and Google+. Your practice doesn’t have to join all of the social networks out there, but be sure you are active on the sites you choose to join. Research your patient base to see which network would be best for your practice.
Social Media Lets Interested Followers Find You
The most useful thing about social media is that your followers know what to expect from you. By “liking” or “following” a medical practice, your followers expect to read posts related to your industry. Share information about your practice and your employees. Your followers will quickly understand how your employees interact with patients, and this information helps them decide whether your practice is a good fit for their treatment.
Social media is a free and easy way to gain a following and share relevant information with that following. Your most active social media participants are likely to re-share information you’ve posted, which exposes other like-minded people to your practice.
Social Media Helps Patients and Potential Patients Build A Community
Social media is casual. So many people are comfortable with Facebook and Twitter that your practice will be easily accessible to social media participants. Patients and potential patients can easily ask questions or make comments on your practice’s Facebook page. The ease of interaction means your practice will receive more feedback than usual. Respond quickly, professionally and sincerely to your followers on social media networks. You want them to know there’s a real person behind the computer screen connecting with them.
The people that follow your practice online share a common bond. Make your posts engaging, informative and accessible to your audience, and encourage them to discuss topics with each other on your page.
Social Media Widens Your Exposure
Your social media followers already have an interest in your industry, whether it’s a fertility clinic or a private medical practice. Your posts have the potential to be viewed by all your followers, meaning that your news and information is relevant to their lives. All of your friends and followers have their own followers. If your practice has 100 “likes” on Facebook, and each of those 100 people have 100 friends each, think of how quickly your information can spread. When followers “like” or comment on a post, that post pops up on those followers’ newsfeeds. Then friends of your followers have direct access to view, comment, and “like” your posts also.
Facebook is an obvious choice for a private practice, but others can be equally beneficial. Google+ is a good choice, too, as Google+ posts can influence Google search results. Some practices may enjoy the simplicity that Tumblr and Twitter allow.
What social network has your fertility clinic or private practice joined?
Have you seen an increase in business? Are your followers active and engaging?
What social media successes and challenges have you faced?