What Do Your Dental Patients Want Online?

You want and need to make your social media posts stand out for your prospects. With the incredible and ongoing flood of online content these days, that’s quite a task.

Regardless of which social media channels you’re using to promote your practice, the first thing to keep in mind is that you’re not posting for a national audience. All dentistry is local, so your posts need to reflect the overall cultural ethos of your market. Obviously, that will vary depending on the socioeconomic, racial, cultural, and ethnic makeup of your population. However, it’s not possible to truly be all things to all people; trying simply makes you come across as insincere. You need to find, or calculate, the “sweet spot” for your prospects in terms of tone, content, and length.

 

Your Channel Will Vary

That sweet spot will be a moving target depending on the social media channel you’re using. There are many social media channels these days – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and Tumblr, to name just a few. Those media channels attract different audiences of different age ranges with different interests and attention spans. For instance, Facebook is the most often used social media channel for seniors, and seniors overall would prefer to read rather than watch a video.

Research indicates that younger prospects generally prefer short videos to reading articles. That doesn’t rule out using Facebook to reach younger prospects, but you’ll likely do better to post short, informative videos on YouTube.

Twitter, with its 140-character restriction, is a different animal from a marketing standpoint. The competition for eyes on Twitter is immense, which is only logical. It’s a lot easier to compose a tweet than it is to write a long-form post or create a video. Relevance, wit, and brevity are the key. Writing effective tweets is an art in and of itself. However, research shows that using one to two hashtags can boost your reach across that platform.

It Comes Down to Content

Sturgeon’s Law, named after the science fiction writer Theodore Sturgeon, goes something like this: 90 percent of anything – of everything – is crap. With the overwhelming amount of online content these days, much of which neither carefully considered nor well done, that law holds true now more than ever. The only way to build and hold an audience on any channel is to capture their interest and deliver considered, useful, and well-delivered content.

Your content on any channel has to speak to the needs, wants, and fears of your prospects. It has to identify the dental issues that are important to your various audiences, explain the possible solutions clearly and briefly, and engender trust in your readers or viewers. You can and should intersperse more entertaining content in order to pique interest and avoid repetition. But never lose sight of your ultimate goal – to convince more of your prospects to choose you to solve their dental problems.

Follow these tips, and you’ll be giving your prospects what they want online.