July 27, 2020
by Dr. Fadi Swaida
The global dental practice market is projected to be worth $36,8 billion; dental practices in the new millennium need to change their mindset towards social media and leverage it to their advantage.
Practices can leverage social media platforms as a business tool to boost sales, reputation, and generate awareness for their practice. Unwritten rules for dental practitioners suggest that dental practices get clients based on their reputation. Their clients are part of their network and use word of mouth to spread the information! However, the notion of word of mouth has shifted online on platforms like Facebook or Instagram. With a younger demographic and with over 115,6 million active users in the US, Instagram has become a necessity for dental practices in the new millennium.
Instagram should be an essential tool for your dental practice. Hence, here are 5 of the most important ways your dental practice can benefit from it!
The world is changing quickly and it’s important to stay up to date with current digital trends. Marketing efforts that used to work two years ago have become a thing of the past. Instagram offers better ways to market to your audience because you target them exactly where they spend most of their time!
If you know your current patients and future prospects are on the platform, your overall strategy should center around creating a community on your profile that invites people to engage with your content whether it’s something useful for them, a giveaway or just facts. As users engage more with your account digitally, they will be more likely to engage with you offline!
If you are reading this, you are probably also disregarding Instagram. It’s hard to be convinced by a platform that is seemingly used only for gratification and “fun” by the younger audience. But once you understand the benefits of being on Instagram, your perception changes. And this goes for your competitors out there as well. Each practice does things differently and there’s nothing wrong with checking up on practices in your area once in a while to see how they are handling their social media accounts.
If you become an early adopter of Instagram and generate content, then you’ll be miles ahead in the Instagram race. Some might not even consider it, which means your practice gets a bigger piece of the Instagram pie! To stay ahead of your competition, use the platform features fully. Stories, hashtags or location tags are great tools to make your account stand out. You can get inspiration by following popular practices across the country. Use their posing techniques or simply check up on their most used hashtags.
There are three elements that make a successful Instagram account work and your practice needs to implement each of them in order to show up on Instagram. Start by creating a visual style and stay within your brand aesthetic. As visual learners we make decisions based on what we see. This allows users to make easier connection between your service and your practice. For example, if you are offering dental implants then create your posts or stories related to fun facts about it or experiences from your patients so your audience can gain knowledge about the service you are offering as much as possible.
Start by following your friends and other people in your area. You can find people in your area by looking up a location or a hashtag of your location and interacting with their account. Focus on making a genuine connection as it could lead to a possible client.
Start posting and scheduling posts on your account. Instagram works on algorithms. The more it sees you are posting in a request manner, the more it will show the post to more people!
For dental practices, using Instagram is not about persuading people to go to the dentist. We all know when we need to do a checkup. Instead, you should use Instagram to make it easier for people to make a serious decision. 15% of people fail to visit the dentist because they have a hard time finding an office. Ways to adjust your Instagram presence is to have a complete bio with address and opening hours. Using location tags and the appropriate hashtags put you on the map for anyone looking for a dentist.
Your new potential clients are all on social media and mostly on Instagram as well. If you create content that is appealing to them, this is already a big step towards getting better brand recognition and possibly a long-term client!
This is where you take full advantage of Instagram as a platform! Mix in your knowledge with some creativity, come up with fun ways for people to learn about their dental health, what it is like to be a dentist, or how they can solve dental issues at home.
Gaining reputation on Instagram goes hand in hand with the frequency you use it and how you project yourself and your practice on the platform. Don’t be afraid to show the right parts or the bad parts of being a dentist. Make use of Instagram stories or an Instagram post to share parts of the day in the life of a dental practitioner and gain your existing and potential clients’ trust.
The game of Instagram is a fun and rewarding adventure, especially if you own a dental practice, and you understand the value it can bring to your practice. Instagram should be viewed as your visual business card, where you talk to your clients on a more personal note. Once you gain followers and you’re on their digital radar, it’s much easier to get appointments or to promote your dental practice without much investment.
About the Author
Dr. Fadi Swaida first graduated from the University of Western Ontario with an Honors BSc in Biology before graduating from the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Dentistry. He is an active member of his church and enjoys football and being by the water! His outgoing personality and fun-loving character will ensure you always feel welcome at Dental Implants Clinic.
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