The digital marketing landscape can be an intimidating space for some. New ways to advertise products, connect with customers, and promote your brand online seem to be cropping up every day. So where should hearing healthcare practices be focusing their time and effort when it comes to social media platforms?
A recent study from Clutch found that 86% of small businesses are utilizing Facebook as their preferred channel to connect with customers. Although Facebook started as a place for college students to connect with peers, it has since expanded from a social network to a marketplace, connecting customers with businesses every day.
Totaling at 2.13 billion users (and growing!) by the end of 2017, there are a lot of potential customers waiting to be connected to brands. With Baby Boomers coming in as the fastest growing segment of digital users, it should be no surprise that they are among the most active group of Facebook users too.
This is great news for the hearing industry: you have a swarm of potential customers age 65+ right at your fingertips – 62% of them in fact – and they are now using Facebook to make purchase decisions. So, are you doing everything it takes to connect with these potential patients on Facebook?
What can you do to put the right foot forward in your social media presence? Here are some tips for making the most of the social media giant that is Facebook:
Get set up! Follow these instructions for setting up your Facebook Business page.
- Include a profile picture of your practice’s logo and some sort of relevant image as the cover photo (i.e.
photoof the staff, office building, etc.)
- Provide as much information as possible. Don’t forget to set up your office location, contact info, and hours of operation!
- Link to your website and vice versa! Now that your Facebook page is set up, put a link on your website to drive traffic to your social media page.
- Encourage current patients to ‘Like’ your page. Mention your Facebook page in the office using a handout and send invites to patients to ‘like’ your business page online!
Know your audience.
- Keep in mind who you are talking to and where you are talking to them. Facebook is more social by nature, so use this space to connect on a more personal level. Remember your page will be visible to your entire community, so make a great first impression; lend a voice to your individual brand and share your story.
- Keep it personal. Provide relevant, educational content on hearing loss and solutions, but don’t get too clinical – remember your viewers are consumers.
Get the content flowing.
- Serve up content with a purpose – share what’s going on in the office that month, extend offers, invite patients to events, or announce what latest technology is available at your practice.
- Recycle relevant content. Follow other thought leaders in the industry and repost their articles – you don’t have the reinvent the wheel.
- Know your limit! The sweet spot for post length is between 40-80 characters. Any longer and your readers will get tired and move on to the next post in their feed.
- A picture says a thousand words. Images and infographics are the top form of content for interaction at 54%. Give your readers a break from all the text and provide some visual relief.
- We know your time is valuable, but someone’s got to do it! Assign someone in your office to manage your social media presence and make a habit of it.
- Aim for posts once a week (twice, if you can manage!) – stats show that the most popular times for post activity are weekdays between 12 pm and 3 pm.
- If you aren’t a wordsmith, consider hiring a third-party vendor to manage your social media accounts and/or blog page. Blog posts help boost your SEO rankings and sharing blog posts on your Facebook will drive more traffic to your website.
- Check with your manufacturer reps on any available social media programs you can use.
This might seem like a daunting task, but the more you do it, the easier it will get. You’ll soon get the hang of what types of posts are most popular among your patients and lend a voice to your brand.
About the Author
Julia Shreckengast joined Consult YHN in 2015 and serves as Marketing Account Executive, providing support to Associates by managing creative projects and developing/executing marketing plans. Prior to joining Consult YHN, she helped promote the city of New Orleans as a member of the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation. Julia graduated Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Tulane University.