Dental Marketing: Facebook as an Effective Internet Marketing Tool

Dental Marketing: Facebook as an Effective Internet Marketing ToolEffective dental marketing requires that dentists keep up a regular presence with dental patients in order to ensure success.

Having a dental website, blog, newsletter, Google+ page and Facebook page are all important factors in keeping your dental practice in front of your dental patients.

Some dentists are still not convinced that Facebook is an effective Internet dental marketing tool.

Last week, Facebook started the process for its highly-publicized IPO. In anticipation, the online competitive intelligence service Hitwise just released their 10 Key Statistics about Facebook, comparing the Facebook audience with that of other social networks.

Here is what Hitwise found —

1. Facebook captures 1 in every 11 Internet visits in the United States.
2. 1 in every 5 page views occurs on Facebook.
3. The average visit time on Facebook is 20 minutes.
4. Facebook’s audience skews slightly more female than the online population as a whole.(Female is 57%, male is 43%).
5. The ages of Facebook visitors are indicative of the website’s strength in the marketplace, with relative parity in distribution of its visit share by age vs. the online population (Ages 18-24 is 18%, 25-34 is 23%, 34-44 is 21%, 45-54 is 19%, and 55+ is 20%).
6. Facebook wins 499,949,430 visits from the most affluent income group versus YouTube’s 223,732,591 visits and Twitter’s 15,166,795 visits.
7. Facebook became the #1 ranked website in the US on March 9, 2010.
8. “Facebook” is the most searched term in the US and Facebook-related terms account for 14% of the top search clicks.
9. Facebook users are highly loyal to the website; 96% of visitors to Facebook were returning visitors in January 2012.
10. Internationally, Facebook ranks in the top 2 websites in every market except China, where Sina Weibo, Baidu Zhidao and Renren are the dominant social networks.

Hitwise further states that “Facebook is the largest website in the US and a top performer in numerous international markets. The fan base of the site is loyal and spends a significant portion of their time online on the social network. Facebook’s influence is seen in the presidential elections, digital shopping habits and beyond.”

Last June Hitwise concluded in their Facebook Fan Acquisition and Analysis that 1 Facebook fan is equal to 20 additional visits to a business website over the course of a year. If you have 500 Facebook fans, this means an extra 10,000 visits to your dental website a year.

Hitwise wrote, “The figure of 1 fan = 20 extra visits to a website uses a unique methodology that combines Hitwise data with data from social media experts Techlightenment. We took the top 100 retailers ranked in the Hitwise Shopping and Classifieds category and bench-marked visits to those websites against the number of fans those brands had on their Facebook page. We then also looked at the propensity for people to search for those retail brands after a visit to Facebook using our Search Sequence tool.”

Here at The Wealthy Dentist we firmly believe that your dental marketing plan should include a Facebook page. With dental patients spending more time online, dentists should increasingly be looking to use Facebook as a part of their dental marketing.

Facebook fans can play a role in dental patient retention and procurement by helping to drive dental website traffic, boosting dental practice awareness, demonstrating dental treatments or acting as a customer testimonial billboard.

Dental Marketing: Social Media For Dentists Explained

Dental Marketing: Social Media For Dentists ExplainedSocial media is slowly being adapted by dentists looking to expand their dental marketing reach.

Marketing statistics company Hitwise reported that one in every eleven visits to Internet sites in the U.S. were to Facebook last month, with the site itself accounting for one in every five page views.

But some dentists are hesitant to take part in this new “social media revolution” claiming that keeping up with the different social channels is confusing.

Recently Douglas Wray posted an image on Instagram (the photo-sharing service for iPhone users) of all the major social media services as compared to donuts (yes, he spelled it “donuts”).

The image has now gone viral.

Here at The Wealthy Dentist, we thought we’d provide our dentists with our own version of the “donut social media” definition . . . dentist-style.

SOCIAL MEDIA FOR DENTISTS

Dental Marketing: Social Media For Dentists Explained

The value of social media comes from using social media as a communications channel. With a few simple dental marketing tools, a dentist can offer patients a new level of customer engagement reminding them of your services whenever they are online.

Please feel free to share this and let us know your thoughts!

10 Top Ways Dentists Can Engage Dental Patients on Facebook

10 Top Ways Dentists Can Engage Dental Patients on FacebookMany dentists worry about the number of Facebook followers when they really should be worrying whether their followers are reading and enjoying what they are posting on Facebook.

The difference between Facebook and other dental marketing efforts is that a dental practice needs to invest a little bit of time on Facebook.

This small amount of extra time can go a long way and can even provide a rewarding experience as dental patients begin to provide feedback and communicate directly with you and your dental practice.

It really doesn’t require more than an hour a week, but you have to know exactly what works on Facebook so you aren’t wasting your valuable time and dental marketing efforts.

The Top 10 Ways Dentists Can Engage Dental Patients on Facebook

1. Ask questions.
Asking questions of your dental patients is a great way to engage them on your dental marketing Facebook Page. Ask them fun questions like what their favorite dental chair is in your office, or what they think of recent changes to Facebook (there are always changes to Facebook that you can ask them about). Facebook users love discussing Facebook.

2. Share personal stories with photos.
Share images of you and your office staff on Halloween when everyone is dressed in costume, or St. Patrick’s day when everyone is wearing green, but use these fun images as a way to engage your Facebook fans into sharing what it is about your dental practice they enjoy.

3. Hold a contest.
Create a contest strictly for your Facebook fans. Maybe host a Facebook trivia contest where your fans are asked to guess something about their favorite dentist… your favorite color, your favorite restaurant, your favorite hobby, etc., and offer a prize to the winner. Maybe, if they guess the right answer to your favorite restaurant, you can team up with that restaurant to offer the winner dinner for two as the prize.

4. Cross-promote neighborhood businesses.
Is there a local restaurant where you always enjoy lunch, or a place you like to take your children? Why not promote their Facebook Page? Do some of your patients have businesses you enjoy?  Think about talking about them and their business on your Facebook dental marketing page.

5. Post Facebook content when your dental patients are online.
Most dentists post their Facebook updates during the work day — not before 6:00am or after 6:00pm. Marketing research has discovered that content posted outside of 9:00am – 5:00pm timeframe had higher user engagement rates than posts made during the work day. Many working moms like to visit Facebook before their kids are up in the morning or after they have gone to bed.  Think about offering them something during these hours.

6. Share employee recognition.
Is there an employee whom your patients seem to love? Do you reward your employees on a regular basis? Think about sharing this recognition with your dental patient fans on Facebook.

7. Highlight your community service.
Does your dental practice sponsor a local baseball team or high school football team? Think about posting their game schedule or their losses and wins and ask your fans to attend their games in support. Ask patients to upload photos of the games they attend.

8. Use check-in deals on Facebook.
Facebook allows people to check-in to a business using the mobile Facebook app on their smart phone. To encourage your dental patients to use this app and make an appointment with your dental practice you can create a check-in deal for your page. Maybe you offer those patients who use this mobile marketing app something extra at your practice like a teeth whitening treatment they can use within the year.

9. Offer dental care tips.
Post dental care tips detailing ways in which your patients can take care of their teeth to avoid cavities, or gum disease. Think about all the ways you can help your dental patients protect their teeth, or offer signs of dental problems to watch out for — especially with their children.

10. Ask your followers for content.
Ask your Facebook fans for sugar-free recipes — or for ways they have convinced their small children to brush their teeth before bed. Ask your fans to offer up solutions to common issues with dental care. Highlight and talk about the best solutions from your fans.

Sit down and think about how you are utilizing Facebook for your dental practice and come up with a plan for interacting with your dental patients online.

I hope this inspires you to engage with your Facebook fans in new and compelling ways that add to your dental practice bottom line.

Dental Marketing: The Real Facts About Dentists Using Facebook Pages

With more than 500 million active users now on Facebook, The Wealthy Dentist decided to conduct a survey asking dentists if they have a Facebook page for their dental practice to support their dental marketing efforts.

Facebook is now used by 1 in every 13 people on earth and is beating Google in terms of traffic.

60% of dentist who responded to this survey have a Facebook page for their practice, while 40% do not.

Suburban dentists use Facebook pages more than urban dentists, with rural dentists not using Facebook pages at all.

Of the 60% of dentists who are using Facebook pages, the average number of “likes” for a page is 158. The highest number of page “likes” reported are 821 and the lowest is 5.

Here are some dentist comments on Facebook pages —

“Facebook provides easy interaction with patients who are active users.” (Minnesota dentist)

“We have had giveaways every other month like a gas card, free teeth whitening, and an iPad on Facebook.” (General Dentist)

“Just starting to use it. Giving away a Kindle for Christmas for one lucky new Facebook Fan.” (West Virginia dentist)

“Electronic email seems to be more effective. They don’t have to like you to get postings, even though the can unsubscribe.” (California dentist)

“I am not sure exactly what Facebook’s value in marketing does for a practice.” (California orthodontist)

“I have a Facebook page because people feel dentists should be involved in latest social media…” (Illinois dentist)

“I am not sure I want one.” (New Jersey dentist)

“Yes, I think if it’s done correctly, it will be another way to market my practice.” (California dentist)

“I haven’t seen much benefit, despite the 1-2 time a week postings.” (Nevada dentist)

“I don’t have a clue about how to set it up.” (General dentist)

“We use it for referrals, trivia, giveaways, etc.” (Utah orthodontist)

“I don’t have time to maintain it and it’s not helpful if you don’t spend some time on it.” (Texas dentist)

As a dentist, if you want to increase your dental marketing influence, a Facebook Page is an additional option; it’s not something that’s going away anytime soon, and we anticipate that it’s something that will continue to grow.

We will continue to keep you updated on how a Facebook Page can assist your dental marketing efforts.

Do you have a Facebook Page?  What are your thoughts?

Dental Marketing: Pinterest Seeing More Health-Related Searches

Dental Marketing: Pinterest Seeing More Health-Related Searches: The Wealthy Dentist on PinterestSocial media site Pinterest is seeing more health-related searches than it has since it launched in March 2010, according to Lisa Israel, a spokeswoman for Pinterest.

Depending on your dental patient demographic, Pinterest is becoming a social media site that shouldn’t be ignored in your 2013 dental marketing plan.

Pinterest has quickly become the 3rd most popular social media site behind Facebook and Twitter.

Women ages 25 – 34 use Pinterest with most averaging 1 hour and 17 minutes per visit and shoppers referred by Pinterest are 10% more likely to make a purchase than visitors arriving at a website by other sources. Pinterest drives more referral traffic than Google Plus, YouTube and LinkedIn combined. A call-to-action pin sees an 80% increase in engagement. (Source: Mashable)

Pinterest generates over 4 times as much revenue per click as Twitter and 27% more revenue per click than Facebook. (Source: Converto)

Dental photographs have always been indispensable in maximum case acceptance. Teeth whitening and braces are the most popular dental “pins” on Pinterest following the trend for users to save (or pin) their self-improvement plans with before and after photographs.

Think about Pinterest as more of an online “to-do” or “want” list in images that link to the websites where the images are found. This is the traffic power behind using Pinterest. Pinterest users “scrapbook” their ideas, hobbies, passions, wants, needs, and inspiration with the world when they “pin” images to their virtual boards.

Members are able to follow each other and comment, just like other social media platforms. They also share their boards with each other.

Here are 7 ways a dental practice can use Pinterest for dental marketing –

1. Share images of your dental practice, both inside and out.

2. Share your before and after photos from those dental patients who have given permission to share their images online.  Use ideas from your case acceptance presentations.

3. Encourage your dental patients to share their images on your boards. Consider ideas like “My dental patients graduating this year” and invite them to post their graduation photos with their beautiful smiles.

4. Share new dental equipment.

5. Even share the things you enjoy and you may find many patients who share your passions for trout fishing, race cars, or golf.

6. If you have dental patients who are getting married, ask them to share a couple of their wedding photographs.

7. Women are even planning their weddings on Pinterest. Think of the services you can offer a prospective bride that she may want to include on her wedding planning boards for things she wants to get done before the big day.

Dentists must be present in more places online, and recognize that dental patients increasingly want to engage in social media, regardless of the platform.

Broadening your dental marketing to include image boards on Pinterest is a simple new way to showcase your dental practice in a positive light. To see The Wealthy Dentist dental marketing ideas on Pinterest, visit The Wealthy Dentist’s Pinterest Page for more details.

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