This week we asked some of our readers: How has social media impacted your dental practice?
The use of social media has grown in popularity across the country in recent years and has quickly become the “norm” in communicating with family and friends. It has also been a great way for healthcare providers to connect with patients and potential patients.
Within our practice, we utilize a blog on our website to educate patients who “Google” certain topics or procedures in oral surgery. By targeting certain keywords and phrases, our goal is to be listed higher on those searches and drive traffic to our site. Whether it is original posts we write or link relevant articles on the web, there is always plenty of material to provide.
We also link those blog posts to our Facebook and Twitter accounts to reach those who “like” and “follow” us. From there, certain blogs can spread like wildfire with people sharing and retweeting them. We’ve had a number of new patients comment on how they heard about us through our blog.
Our practice also provides a “Lunch & Learn” regarding social media for our referring offices. This has been a very popular topic as more and more offices are realizing the benefits of social media in their practice. We stress that whether it is Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube or Google+, potential patients use these platforms on a daily basis and having a voice on these can be the difference between them picking their office versus another.
I truly believe that social media isn’t a fad and that embracing it will only help our practice grow. It will be interesting to see what other social media tools will be available in the future.
Courtney Anderson, DDS
Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon
Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons of
Social media is an interesting topic. I entered the world of social media via MySpace about 8 years ago. It was a fun thing to do with my family and friends and seeing all of the creativity one put into designing their page. After a couple years of that Facebook, BranchOut, LinkedIn and a few others were brought to my attention. I was a bit overwhelmed to say the least in the beginning but as time passed and I got it figured out it didn’t seem quite so bad after all!
Now fast forward into today and I can’t imagine living without my laptop, smartphone and all social media has to offer. I have been in the dental field for quite some time and some years ago communicating with our patients was done through the mail and telephone. That’s it. Now we have emailing, texting, blogging and social media sites. We now have so many ways of reaching our own patients as well as potential new patients.
Last year we decided as a team to put up a Facebook page. Some didn’t understand what it was all about and what the purpose was. However, Dr. and I knew that there was something to this and wanted to reach out to our patients as well as those we have not met yet. We have created a page that depicts who we are and by that I mean we post mostly pictures of Dr. off on different adventures, patients who come in as well as the staff having fun! Our Dr. loves to laugh and have fun while we work so our page may seem a bit different than most but that’s who we are and how we want to be seen.
We are also on Yelp; this is where we can really be seen by the public. This one small avenue has helped us increase our new patient flow by about 10%. When looking for a new Dr.’s office, restaurant or particular type of store we generally look at the comments, right? This says a lot in your practice. We have some really nice comments posted, which allows us to be at the top of the page. When we see a new patient who came from viewing us on Yelp we kindly ask them to post their experience with us and in return we have constant comments that make for nice reading for the potential new patient.
I am also on LinkedIn and follow several dental groups. This is a great way to keep up with the industry’s constant growth and be ready for what may be new and exciting for our practice. I am able to follow many of dentistry’s top leaders and gain knowledge and insight that I may not have been able to otherwise access. These are just a few of the exciting social media streams that can be utilized. I am always open and looking for new directions that will help grow and profit our practice. Not only have we made new contacts and friends, it’s FREE! We now have so many more opportunities than ever before to help build our practices. Begin today by implementing some form of social media into your practice and see where it takes you!
Tina Brown, FAADOM
Raymond E. Hoyt, DDS
Thank you very much to Courtney and Tina for helping to get o “The Root of It” on how social media is impacting dental practices. You can continue the discussion on how social media has impacted your practice by leaving a comment here, on Facebook, on Google+, or on Twitter with the hashtag #TheRootofIt.
If you’d like to be featured here on Off the Cusp and help us get to “The Root of It” on future questions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.