Your Facebook page success is largely a reflection of how much you talk about it. It’s important to note that Facebook is not a “build it and they will come” marketing tactic. Social media marketing is more like a garden – once you set up your garden, you’ll need to tend to it and nurture it. Likewise, once you set up your Facebook page, the number of likes and comments you get on your page are often a direct result of the continual conversation and promotion done within your practice.
One doctor recently said, “Asking patients to like us on Facebook is just as hard as asking for referrals.” Over the years, I can tell you that asking for referrals was the most common complaint I heard from doctors and team members. Likewise, once the shiny newness of having a Facebook page wears off, you’ll need to consider how you can keep the momentum going.
Below are a few tips to help you overcome the roadblocks to effective – and fun –conversations with patients about Facebook.
Determine who will talk with patients. Will it be the doctor, hygienist, office manager or someone else who will mention Facebook? Whoever is going to talk with patients about your Facebook page should be familiar with the page’s activity (often the more a team member enjoys Facebook personally, the more comfortable they feel talking about it with patients). Discuss this with your team and decide who is best – and willing, or even better, excited – to talk Facebook with your patients.
Plan what to say. No one is really excited about saying, “Hey will you like us?” Take time to brainstorm with your team about how you’d like to promote your Facebook community. I’m a fan of scripts. Determine how you want to talk with patients about Facebook and put it into script format. Your team members can each personalize the script so conversations are authentic to them.
Consider what your Facebook’s “purpose” is. Will you put root canal videos and bloody dental implant abutment photos on your page? Or will you be sharing fun news about you and your team, such as the photos of your recent team outing? When you and your team feel good about your posts and the messaging of your page, it’s a lot easier, and more fun, to invite patients to join you there.
Accept input from your team, and most importantly take your brand into consideration. Whether you intend it or not, your page will ultimately portray a personality and voice for your practice. Set a vision to ensure your Facebook community aligns with your practice values.
You can use your Facebook page metrics as a barometer to show how well you are promoting the page offline (talking with patients in your office). If your page has no recent activity and your likes and comments are flat, chances are you need to step up the conversations in your practice. Talking with patients about Facebook doesn’t have to be a struggle. For many practices it’s just a matter of putting the tips above into action. Keep me posted on your progress!