With over 900 million users, Facebook rivals Google as one of the most visited websites in the country. The average user clocks approximately 23 minutes on the site per visit, and it is estimated that over 40% of Americans have Facebook accounts. With so many users spending so much time online, Facebook presents tremendous marketing potential you cannot afford to ignore.
The Multiplier Effect
To really appreciate its potency you must first understand social media’s multiplier effect. When someone “likes” your Facebook page, all of their friends are notified, thus significantly increasing the number of users exposed to your page. The average Facebook user has approximately 130 friends, so imagine how just a few “likes” can drastically increase your visibility.
But leveraging this multiplier effect to your advantage requires proactive marketing strategies. Dental practices cannot expect to increase customer awareness by simply creating accounts, and should commit considerable time to maintaining their social media presence.
Let us consider a few basic methods of maximizing the impact of your practice’s Facebook account.
Establish a Personalized Username. Once you have setup an account for your practice, be sure to set a unique username for your Facebook page. Your personalized username should be short and memorable, providing your patients easy access to your site. To select your username, go to www.facebook.com/username/.
Get “Likes.” Once a user “likes” your page, they will see everything you post from your account. Every post you publish should offer meaningful content that attracts new likes. Encourage your staff to remind patients to like your practice.
Link Facebook with Everything. Make sure every page of your website contains icons linking to your Facebook page. Also include your Facebook URL on all forms of business communication, including your business cards, letterhead and emails.
Place Reminders in Office. Place signs in your office reminding your patients that your practice is on Facebook. Some experts recommend offering patients conditional access to the internet from an iPad or other device while in the waiting room. Grant them access only if they agree to “like” your page.
Customize Your Page. A fully customized page, with specially designed logos and graphics, will set your page apart from the competition and may attract more interest.
Implementing these strategies will help you begin to use Facebook effectively to market your practice, but plan to dedicate time each month to generating fresh new content and posts.