Before You Hit Publish: What dentists need to know about posting on social media

Dentists who are involved in their online marketing have heard, time and time again, the importance of posting to Facebook, Google+, and other social media platforms. The only way social media works is if you’re social, which means you have to engage by making posts and comments on your dental office’s Facebook page, right?
  • Truth: Having a Facebook page, in and of itself, does nothing for marketing. 
  • Truth: Every dentist needs a business page on Facebook and Google+.
  • Truth: The only way Facebook helps SEO is if posts have engagement; that is to say, people “like” and comment on your posts. 
  • Truth: Having your own employees and family engage with your Facebook posts is a great way to boost engagement and visibility. 
  • Truth: If you don’t make posts, there’s nothing for people to engage with. 

What should you post on a Facebook business page?

  1. Your own blogs (optimized for SEO – if you don’t have a blog or don’t publish regularly, call us for help)
  2. Your own images (branded with your logo and a message, when possible – see samples below)
  3. Great reviews (testimonials) posted by patients (if you have trouble getting reviews, ask me about our reputation management package)
  4. Your own reviews of products and technology that you recommend
  5. Healthy living tips by your hygienist; can be links to articles from online magazines, etc.; recipes tend to have a high share rate on social media, as well
  6. Community events and announcements, business reviews, photos of local happenings
  7. Interesting (funny, helpful, insightful, inspiring) ideas that your patients would appreciate
  8. Links to articles you have had published in newspapers, journals, local magazines, etc.
  9. Seasonal pictures of your office staff in action (community service, volunteering, helping patients, etc.)
  10. Before-and-after cases and case descriptions (with patient permission)
  11. Kudos or appreciation to patients and staff who have achieved notable accomplishments, with photos when available, and with permission when necessary (ex: Jenny Smith, a longtime patient of ours, was voted Citizen of the Year in Dunham – congrats, Jenny! We love you and your smile!)

Images for Facebook and Google+

I want to give you some examples of branded images, as noted in the previous section. These are great, because if they are shared to other networks (from Facebook to Pinterest, for instance), and the original link to your website is not maintained, your brand is still there, on the image for all to see, for years to come.
Here’s a Facebook image we created for OrthoSnap, an invisible, removable orthodontic aligner system.
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This is a branded image we used with a recent article, published on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.
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Here’s an example of a custom image we created to accompany a dentist’s blog post.
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And Don’t Forget to Edit!

We all make typos on social media posts. Thank goodness there’s an “edit post” button on Facebook. I encourage you, however, to always, always, always read your post a few times before you hit “publish.”

What NOT to Post

  • Anything risque or profane
  • Anything that could be offensive
  • Opinions about sensitive subjects
  • Anything on politics
  • Overtly religious statements
  • Patient information/photos, without permission (HIPAA)
  • Anything negative about other dentists or physicians
  • Any statement that goes against your state board’s dental marketing guidelines (varies, but includes statements of superiority in most cases)

Need Help with Social Media Marketing for Dentists?

I want to make it clear that posting on social media will not magically make potential patients call your office. It takes a lot of posts, a huge amount of interaction, and consistency for social media to impact SEO rankings. However, your overall online presence, and thus search rankings, should be driven higher if you leverage social media in your marketing.
For professional help with your website, blog posts, social media, or other online marketing strategies for dental practices, call me to chat. I’m Shauna Duty, owner of Identiwrite Creative and 15-year dental marketing veteran. You can reach me at 940-395-5115 or by email at shauna@identiwrite.com