Twitter Is Fun – But Is It Good for Dental Marketing?

Twitter for dental marketingThese days, you can hardly turn on the news without hearing about Twitter… Hear what protesters in Tehran are saying! Read what such-and-such a senator just tweeted! Follow the news program on Twitter!

We’ll tell you a few basic things about Twitter: what it is, what it’s good for, and why it’s NOT the next big thing in dental marketing.

1. What is Twitter?

Twitter is a social networking website where you can post short messages. The beauty and simplicity of Twitter is that it doesn’t try to do much more than that.

First, you create a profile with some basic information about yourself. (See The Wealthy Dentist’s profile) Then you start following other people’s feeds, and they start following yours. Updates are limited to 140 characters, and you can even use your mobile phone to “tweet,” as they call it.

2. What is it good for?

If you’re into that sort of thing, Twitter can be a fun way to interact with friends and family. But if you hate Facebook and MySpace, then you probably won’t care for Twitter either.

Twitter also lets fans follow celebrities; Ashton Kutcher is famously Twitter’s most-followed member. As more and more politicians sign up, politicos are tuning into Twitter too. Newt Gingrich’s tweet about Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor was much-repeated on cable news channels.

But the protests surrounding the controversial Iranian election really brought Twitter into the news spotlight. As the hard-line government tried to shut off phone and Internet access, Twitter (and to a lesser extent Facebook) became one of the only lines of communication, proving invaluable to both protesters and journalists. The US government even asked Twitter to postpone planned maintenance in order to keep the site online during this struggle in Iran.

3. So what about dental marketing?

There’s a school of thought that says you should market yourself to patients through every available line of communication. And there are tech-minded “marketing gurus” who push the latest, most cutting edge technologies.

But I’ve always been an ROI-minded kind of guy. The return on your investment is the most important thing to consider. How much time and money will you spend, and what can you reasonably expect to get in return?

Twitter can give you access to potential new patients, but they’re not there to find a dentist. Most people would do that on Google, not Twitter. Any hard-sell message on Twitter makes you look like a spammer, not a real person. Attracting followers requires quality content, which takes time, and converting followers to patients takes both time and finesse.

If you or someone in your office is enthusiastic about Twitter and wants to post daily tweets, then it might prove an effective marketing avenue. But unless you’re on Twitter anyway, there are better places to spend your marketing energy.

About Jim Du Molin

+Jim Du Molin is a leading Internet marketing expert for dentists in North America. He has helped hundreds of doctors make more money in their practices using his proven Internet marketing techniques.


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