Social Media and Your Orthodontic Practice: Engaging Your Audience

Social Media and Your Orthodontic Practice Engaging Your Audience - Feb 24thIn an earlier post, we talked about getting started with social media for your orthodontic practice. The next step, after you’ve chosen which social media channels to utilize and have set up your accounts, is to start using them! Many practices create these accounts with good intentions, but they never really leverage them in a way that helps retain their current patients or get new patients through the door. They key to using social media as an orthodontic office is to make social media work for you. This means engaging your social media audience effectively and approaching it more as a two-way conversation than just a one-way communication.

Here are a few tips we’ve compiled that can help you get on the right track to engaging your social media audience, growing your following, and ultimately, getting more patients through your door:

Write to Encourage a Response

The first mistake many practices make with their social media marketing is not keeping engagement as the main goal for every post they make. Too often, practices just push out information without ever asking for feedback or a response from the people who will be viewing it on the other end.

If you re-post an informative article on Facebook, ask a question to your audience related to that article to make them think. If you post an image on Instagram, comment with saying “Like if …[something related to the image], or “Double tap if you agree.” Encouraging a response to your social media content doesn’t have to be complex or difficult. Most of the time, it’s just remembering to do it!

Share Patient Stories and Tag Them in Photos

Most patients love to get recognized publicly and social media is a great way to do that. Consider congratulating your recently de-braced patients with a social media post and photo, and tagging them in that photo if they already follow you on that particular social media platform (with their permission of course). Not only is this a great way to show your current patients the end result they have to look forward to, but it can also pull more followers in as friends and followers of your tagged patients also see the photo on their feed.

Host a Contest

Hosting a contest for anything free is a great way to elicit a response from your social media following. It can also help draw in more followers as friends of those who participate in it see their activity. This could be something small like a free whitening kit for recently de-braced patients or something huge like a free set of braces for the winner of a video contest. The possibilities are endless, and it can be a win-win as it creates excitement and involvement with your audience.

Ask for Patient Ideas

More often than not, people love to share their opinions and suggestions when asked. Take advantage of that with your social media by simply asking! This encourages a response, but also helps your followers feel like they’re involved with your practice and that you value their opinion. You could ask anything from what they’d like to see in your planned waiting room renovation, or even what they’d like to see more of on your social media. If the opportunity arises where patient feedback could be useful, take it to social media. If you do, however, make sure you’re prepared to both respond to and implement that feedback when warranted.

We hope these few tips give you some ideas to start with as you work to engage your social media audience and grow your followers. As you do this, remember that one of the most important things is to interact with your patients online as you would in person. Keep your unique style and voice consistent to help patients realize that they’re interacting with real people on the other end of your social media.

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