Social media is no longer an afterthought for many companies and organizations.
Every major brand has a strong presence on every major platform, and they actively plan strategic campaigns to make the most of this presence.
Though companies in every industry have made the leap into social media, the healthcare industry has lagged behind.
Social Media is a powerful marketing tool of healthcare providers.
Now, more healthcare providers are making social media a part of their marketing strategy. The healthcare industry is an increasingly competitive field, and in order to reach more patients, you need a strong digital marketing strategy.
Online marketing and healthcare are a powerful combination. Social networks have become an important health and information resource for many users. More and more users look to social media for healthcare news as well. In fact, the CDC now boasts 1.9+ million followers on Facebook alone. These platforms allow hospitals and healthcare facilities to connect with their potential patients one-on-one, while also providing valuable information to help them find the medical professional that is right for them.
You went to medical school to become a doctor, a social media marketing expert.
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It is extremely important for any business to use social media, but it is especially important for the healthcare industry.
Healthcare is a people-focused industry. You can connect with new patients in a powerful way through social media platforms.
Social media is a powerful communication tool and one of the best ways to market online in today’s digital era. Using these platforms comes with a slew of benefits for your patients and your medical practice.
Social media allowed doctors and health care providers to bring information to a larger audience than they would otherwise have access to. This is not only great for connecting with new potential patients but helps with overall brand awareness for for medical providers.
Social Media offers multiple benefits for doctors and healthcare providers. It allows you to connect on granular level with people who are seeking the services your offer.
Target Specific Audiences: Healthcare organizations use these platforms to target specific demographics. This can be changes in policies or recommendations for a certain age group or posting health tips tailored to the demographics these organizations serve. If you are a pediatrician, for example, your content will likely be tailored toward parents, while a general practitioner may have content that applies to a broader range of people.
This is especially helpful when directing users to resources for their specific health concerns. When creating content for your social media, consider what kinds of patients you see or want to see, and what sort of health concerns they may have.
Engage Your Audience: Once you have a following, or if you already have one, it’s important to regularly connect with the people. This will keep your practice in mind so they remember to schedule and stick to appointments. Posting regularly will also build up the trust with the patients that follow you. Increase your engagement by interacting with comments on your posts, or through Question and Answers posts or livestreams. Doing both of these actions will help build your brand’s reputation as helpful and approachable, which is important for doctors offices.
Build Your Professional Network And Improve SEO: Social media also can build your professional network and expand the reach of existing resources. Build your reputation by sharing helpful content and other doctor’s or organization’s achievements in the healthcare industry. Examples include backlinks in search engine optimization (SEO), sharing or linking to content other than yours works to boost the reputation of your practice and the practice you are highlighting. In the eyes of patients, this shows you are knowledgeable and up to date on the latest in healthcare. Other doctors may also turn to you and share your content in turn, which gives your content and reputation an added boost.
Putting a simple link to your healthcare website on your profile’s bio will act as a backlink and attract new potential patients to your healthcare office. Just having these profiles will help build your reputation with Google as well. The more signs Google has that your practice is real, the more they will trust you. This will boost your position on the search engine results page.
Answer Common Questions: Doctors and healthcare organizations are an important information source when it comes to various health concerns. Social media tools offer creative ways for healthcare professionals to answer common questions. For example, the World Health Organization (WHO) developed a Facebook Messenger chatbot to answer questions and direct people to the right resources regarding their health concerns.
While your practice or organization may not be as large or prominent as the World Health Organization, you can still leverage the same tools to answer common questions your patients or potential patients may have about common ailments, your services, and other business-related questions.
Attract New Patients: As with any good marketing strategy, consistently posting on social media platforms will help new patients find your practice. This is done through audience engagement, the natural boost with consistent posting will give your brand a well-curated social media marketing strategy.
Brand Awareness: Social media is by far the most frequently used way to connect online. Because of the amount of social connection that occurs on these platforms, it’s the perfect way for your healthcare office to gain patients. By adding this type of marketing to your digital marketing strategy, you build the visibility for your office. The more people see your posts, the more likely they are to call your office next time they need a checkup.
Time-sensitive posts work well for engaging your audience and educating them. This kind of content can include articles about recent health epidemics, routine procedures, health screenings, and emerging hot topics in the industry. It will also build a relationship with your audience, who will grow to trust you to cover the latest news in the healthcare industry. This will bring them back to check your posts regularly.
A great way to help with your brand authority is showcasing the people on your team. Whether a hospital or a small team, you can highlight some of the exceptional employees at your practice. Healthcare social media can sometimes come across as a bit sterile and purely informational, so adding posts like this helps humanize your organization and allows patients a peek into how you operate. It also makes your content more relatable and can encourage potential patients to consider your services next time they are in need.
Manage Your Reputation: Social Media can be used to harm a practices or doctors reputation. Even if you choose to have a social media profile for your practice there are ways that others can in essence create one for you just to leave a bad review. It is important that you have your own official accounts and control the narrative.
Sometimes misinformation comes in the form of untrue statements. These are usually easily debunked by citing published research or the latest information from credible and trusted sources.
Doctors walk a fine line with HIPPA and combating bad reviews, but there are ways to combat false reviews and manage your reputation. A professional reputation management for doctors like Just A Web Company, Inc. can help.
There are many social media platforms out there. It can be confusing. It is best to focus on the social media platforms where you can connect with your ideal patients.
By Focusing on the right social media channels, you will reach more ideal patients have the greatest impact for your practice.
Facebook has a primary user base of almost 3 billion people. Nearly 70% of adults in the US use the service. Nearly 2 billion of the users Facebook boasts are active daily, meaning there’s a lot of available traffic. This pool of people gives the posts your medical practice creates a good chance of finding their way onto the feed of someone.
The users of Facebook tend to skew towards an older demographic than a lot of other popular platforms. Keep this in mind throughout your content creation, as your content should match the general audience of the platforms. Pediatricians should focus their content on the parents rather than making them bright and child-friendly.
Because Facebook is the largest social media platform, they have a wealth of different features you can use. A great feature of Facebook is that you can attach photos and videos to your posts. These could be pictures of your staff at work, pictures of important places in your office, or videos explaining the goal of your practice. The goal of social media is to build the trust of the people that follow you – make sure to use every tool at your disposal.
Because of the personal nature of Facebook, you should also interact with comments that get posted on your page. Engage with the healthcare community to create a more trustworthy environment on your page. Engagement with other’s posts will also help you grow your own following. The more people see of your business profile, the more likely they are to visit it.
Instagram requires an accompanied image or short video. Instagram also has stories and reels which tend to be shorter than normal Instagram videos, and ‘IGTV’ where you can upload videos up to 10 minutes long. These give you a lot of different visual options for your posts, but you always have the option to post a simple image on top of your posts.
Instagram isn’t as popular as Facebook, but it’s active userbase isn’t anything to laugh at. This platform boats around one billion active users monthly, which will still give your medical office’s age a lot of attention. Instagram is also owned by Meta, the same company that owns Facebook, which gives it a lot of similar features while having pretty major differences in the algorithm and minor differences in the people that are active on this platform.
Instagram also makes great use of hashtags – simple words or phrase with a #pound symbol before them. These act as tags for your content and placing the right ones in the description of your Instagram post will draw more eyes to it. Hashtags can be clicked on in order to bring you to a catalogue of similar content under the same genre. Using hashtags like #pediatrician on your pediatric office’s profile will draw people from that hashtag onto your posts. This simple action will raise your visibility greatly. You should try and use around five or six hashtags on each post to gain the most visibility without spamming them.
Many social media platforms are primarily used as ways for people to connect with each other in friendly and social settings. Instagram is used to share art and connect with peers, and Facebook and Twitter help you keep up with your favorite influencer or your family members. LinkedIn sets itself apart from the pack, as it is a business-first platform that helps professionals connect with each other.
LinkedIn is solely owned by Microsoft and has over 310 million active monthly users. While this number is lower than its competition, it’s still nothing to be scoffed at. The platform itself, being business-oriented, also give businesses options for lead generation and connection making. This social media is a great fit for your healthcare office’s social media strategy.
Interaction is important on LinkedIn. Staying active in the healthcare community will draw more eyes to your profile. LinkedIn also has a newsletter feature, where you can write an article and send it out to the people that follow your page. This makes LinkedIn a great place to post long-form content.
Because of the professional nature of the platform, LinkedIn advertisements allow for easy lead generation for your medical office. The problem with a lot of lead generation is the fact that patients have to fill out their contact information. With LinkedIn ads, they can ‘fill out’ the form with a simple click. This will collect their contact information easily, and they won’t have to take as long with the process.
Twitter’s niche comes from the extremely limited space one has to generate content. This feature makes Twitter the best place to go for short-form content. Each post needs to be below 280 characters in order to be posted properly. This platform has 450 million monthly active users and is perfect for low-stakes posts on your page.
The limited space on these posts allow for quick posts that update users on your healthcare. They’re also great for opinion pieces and quick health tips.
Twitter also makes use of hashtags, but the character limit of each post limits the amount and length of the hashtags you can use. Using too many will limit the space for your tweets even more, and just using one can sometimes force you to re-write the rest of your tweets’ content.
Twitter also allows for the posting of photos and short videos as well. While not necessary like Instagram, posting these visual aids to your content will allow you to expand the amount of space your posts take up on people’s feed. These visual aids can fit more information onto your post if needed, and can explore interesting options for posts.
With all the benefits social media can provide, you may wonder where to start with content.
Following the best social media practices will get your social media accounts on track.
Healthcare accounts tend to be unique because of focus on publishing content rather than focusing on engagement or sharing a brand-specific message. There are certain factors to keep in mind when generating content, including HIPAA compliance and professionalism. You do not want to do anything that will harm your online visibility.
Identifying Your Practice’s Goals: Before starting your journey on social media, it’s important to identify the goals. Are you looking to help people learn about what your office does? Are you trying to gain more patients? Or are you trying to both simultaneously? Knowing your goals before starting your journey is an important first step and will help you identify the correct platforms to use.
Make sure to incorporate both short- and long-term goals in this strategy planning for your medical office’s social media. Once you have these goals laid out, you should keep them in mind throughout your time creating an online brand on social media.
Do Your Research: As you should do with any marketing strategy, you need to do proper research before starting to post on your social media platforms. Look at your competition to figure out what subject matter is working for them. Then incorporate it into your own strategy. Learn what content may turn people away from your page. The key during this stage is building up a backlog of ideas that you can use on your medical office’s page going forward.
Starting Small Is Key: Coming out of the gate posting on every social media platform you know is quick way to get burnt out. When starting out, keep your social media marketing small and manageable. Starting out too headstrong will overwhelm you when you’re attempting to balance the new patients you’ll gain from these strategies on top of all of the social media posts you’ll have to generate. Managing too many things at once can cause things to fall through the crack.
Content Creation: Your content should reflect your medical office’s brand. Planning out your content well in advance will give your profile a cohesive look while making your job in managing your profile more efficient and easier.
It is always better to focus on quality rather than quantity. Curating the right images that represent the caption you write, as well as your brand, will help your posts stand out. Diversifying what you post will also help your audience stay more engaged.
Consistent Post Scheduling: Creating content is easier to do on a schedule. Pre planning what days you are going to post on your page helps you keep on track with creating content and is less stressful than trying to post off the cuff. Planning your schedule ahead of time allows you to take your time with each post and make sure the information you’re writing is accurate and valuable.
Monitoring Your Progress: Monitoring each post you create as it goes up is integral to the success of your page. Without tracking each post , you won’t know which content is working best. To make sure you’re doing the best you can, monitor how many likes and comments you receive on each post, as well as how many people visit your healthcare practice’s website. Monitoring your success will show you where you need to improve, help you create the type of content that your audience responds to.
Engage Your Patients: Instead of simply publishing to a void, make sure to take the time to foster connections through your accounts. Respond to questions in the comments or post polls to gauge what patients want to see from you. Fostering a relationship also leads to trust with your patients and the community at large, leading to increased patient retention rates as well as adding new patients.
By engaging with your audience regularly, you also establish a voice for your medical practice. Healthcare tends to feel a bit removed, rather than personable. While this tone can be useful when sharing resources and facts, it can make it hard for people to connect to your practice. Social media can help by allowing you to interact with potential patients on a one-on-one basis. It also allows you to show a bit of your own personality and empathy, which increases the feelings of trust built through other methods.
Remain Professional: It is important to remember that your social media account is for your medical practice. Its use is fundamentally different than the average user, which means it is advisable to keep your account professional. Focus on generating educational content and engagement, rather than posting or creating personal content. Low quality content will harm your reputation and practice in the long run.
Keep this in mind when replying to comment as well. Always be polite when responding to questions or comments on your posts and delete any posts that are incendiary or may violate HIPAA.
Social media is a great place to engage with existing and potential patients.
With more and more people turning to these platforms for medical information, it is more important than ever to use your presence online to educate and connect with users.
The best social media marketing strategy is to set goals, create a strategy, and stick to them. This where hiring social media marketing company for medical professionals can help.
The challenge is maintaining your profile and posting regularly. It takes time to create and curate your content regularly, which can take away time from your practice. Many doctors and medical practices choose to hire social media experts to manage their online presence. An expert creates and regularly posts content to your profiles. They determine what channels would be best for your practice.
Our services include creating content that will boost your SEO. Our writers consistently deliver the type of medical based content that users and search engines love. We carefully plan out content to make sure messaging is consistent and relevant to your medical practice and works to establish your authority.
We also create our own content calendar to make sure we post regularly to keep your followers engaged. Our team carefully monitors posts and regularly performs audits to see what social media strategies are working for you and where your social media campaigns may need improvement.
Our team at Just A Web Company can help your healthcare practice build a better social media presence, starting with choosing which platforms are right for your business.
We update your profiles regularly and create engaging content that is sure to loved new and existing patients. Learn more about how consistent posting on these platforms can help your practice! Contact us today!