Today, it is essential for doctors and medical practices to implement social media into their marketing practices. It’s fairly easy to recognize the importance and value of social media for doctors- after all, millions of people used social media websites to not only find information about doctors, but to also share their personal experiences with certain doctors or medical practices.
What’s sometimes difficult about social media for many doctors is managing their presence on these sites. While some doctors may just use one or two social media website (such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest or Google+) others have a presence on nearly every popular site! Having a presence on several sites may seem like a lot to handle, but before you even sign up for a social media site, make sure you have a plan that will help you (and your patients) get the most out of any site.
Here is a social media “checklist” that will help you develop your social media identity.
- Plan to post frequently. Whether you choose to simply create a Facebook or Twitter page, or to expand your presence across several social media sites, plan to post frequently to any page. You don’t necessarily need to post something new each day, but make sure to set aside time to post any new information to your page. Staying active on a social media website is important, since it will keep you at the top of your patient’s minds.
- Plan to connect with new people. The main purpose of social media often gets lost among people today, but the main purpose is to be social! Establish some kind of connection with at least one new person each time you use your social media websites. Comment on what they have written, follow them back, or just try to start a conversation. In today’s increasingly competitive healthcare market, even establishing just one connection with someone is extremely valuable!
Share something that another person has posted. Social media is a give-and-take type of medium. If one of your patients shares a photo, video, or some kind of content with you, be sure to share that post with others. This will not only help grow your social media presence, but it will also help your patients remember you fondly. It may also help your medical referrals to post something about another practice!
- Plan on being responsive. If you receive a personal message, be responsive! Obviously, you should not bother replying to a message that is spam, but if the message is valuable, take the time to respond to it. After all, if a patient has taken time out of his or her day to write you a valuable message, it’s important to respond. Furthermore, the patient will appreciate a personal response from you, their doctor.