How to Use Facebook to Get New Patients
In 2019, Pew Research determined that 72% of adults use social media daily for not only social connection but also to engage in news and entertainment content – and this was prior to a national and worldwide pandemic occurrence. Hence, digital marketing is the principal ticket on-trend for reaching potential patients and consumers.
Why Facebook for Doctors?
Facebook is the top social media site for adults within the 18-64 age group, used up to 30 percent more than all other apps of its kind. Among those demographics, females currently engage far more than males. And it just so happens this same group is making the buying decisions: adult women account for 80 percent of all healthcare purchases and decisions made in the home.
The Four Posts to Bringing in New Patients Using Facebook
As in, practice information. Provide everything a potential patient would want to know: phone number, physical address, hours of operation, and even driving directions or a map. (Always remember to inform your followers of any change in hours or other pertinent information.)
- Be sure to streamline your username with your URL to include the name of your practice. This will help your users share the page more easily.
- Use real photos for your profile and cover photos. Clean, appealing images of your lobby or exterior are best. And always include your logo.
Consider the following when seeking to build a great online presence and patient trust using your healthcare Facebook page:
- Good visuals – Use real photos, never stock images. Keep your colors and fonts on-brand whenever possible.
- Content – Feature physician and staff photos and bios to build community with your followers. Allow for patient and even staff testimonials to construct even more good associations with the practice. Followers are interested in your employees and will feel good about seeing photos and stories that show how your business interacts with and remains part of the surrounding community. This can include posts about volunteer days and your practice-sponsored community events.
- Don’t forget posts featuring health observances, and more importantly, relevant information like the availability of seasonal vaccinations and appointment openings. Serial posts on current health topics can encourage followers to keep tuning in. You can drive users to your website by linking a teaser to your own amazing content.
- Most of all, keep everything professional, consistent, and on-brand.
- Being social – Your marketing team can help you engage with your followers in appealing and exciting ways to turn them into fans, who will in turn breed more fans, and patients. Great ways to build an online presence include asking your friends and family, and your current followers, to like and share your page. Make it beneficial for your followers to like and share your content.
- Those digital marketing tools – Consider using paid advertising to boost your online presence, as well as free tactics including hashtags. And ensure all of your branded marketing materials (online and otherwise like business cards) feature your social media URLs and widgets so that your patients know you are online, everywhere!
- Best Practice
- Following others – Respected businesses and clubs in your community, as well as influential and credible medical organizations and professional associations will lend to your page and practice credibility, and occasionally provide new content for you to share.
- Being professional – Consider the length and frequency of your posts. Simple and informative content can be scheduled to post 1-2 times per day to keep followers engaged. Respond very quickly to any questions or comments, remembering that complaints draw big audiences and how you reply can gain or lose fans. Follow your HIPAA guidelines carefully in all content and interactions. Remember that staying on-brand and professional will maintain trust.
- Get Help
Remember to refer to your digital marketing team for consistent content specifications and recommendations to keep your healthcare organization’s Facebook page fresh and helpful to current and potential patients. We can help you maintain quality and measure your content effectiveness, for a successful page that will draw in followers and more patients for your practice.
By Jason Heflin
Jason Heflin is one of CrowdSouth’s owning Partners and brings years of marketing experience from his past lives as a corporate marketing manager, writer, and freelancer. He also plays the ukulele for fun, which is cool.