CEO and founder of Diamond Dental Staff, Emma Anastasi explains the importance of using social media in practices.
A number of practices struggle with their social media because they’re clinically oriented most of the time. At Diamond Dental we developed a social media course because clients had been telling us that they’d outsourced their social media, but to a non-dental marketing agency. However, the agencies weren’t familiar with dental terminology so were getting things wrong and they were chasing the practice for content or photos and videos. So, thepractices just felt that if they were going to have a social media presence, they might as well do it themselves.
With so many different roles in a dental practice, and with the recruitment crisis, essentially this is another training opportunity that practices can offer to existing team members. If responsibility for social media is given to a dental nurse, then it gives a chance for them to step into another role, or for them to have it as an extended or additional duty of theirs, away from dental nursing. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a replacement for their role as a dental nurse. It’s something extra that they can do to add variety to their job while keeping everything in house.
You need a strategy
We always advise practices not to post just for the sake of posting. However, sometimes practices need a little bit of inspiration about what to post. Unfortunately, with some teams, because they are unsure about what to post, they leave it for a while, and then they feel as if they’ve left it too long to start posting again. So, they can get caught in a bit of a vicious circle.
But there are quite a lot of different things a practice can post about. It could be behind the scenes, or a meet the team page, before and after images, or competitions. So, rather than over- complicating things, if they have a list of everything they want to hit, or everything they want to show about their practice or team, then they can post something every couple of days. They can start small and build up to posting more content, or whatever they have time for.
They need to avoid getting sucked in, though and it becoming a massive undertaking. There’s always tomorrow. So, there’ll always be an opportunity for you to share what it is you are doing.
One of the hazards of being on social media is sometimes practices can feel as if they’re not doing enough. We’re constantly comparing ourselves to what other people are doing. But I think the essence of it is to show your patients who you are, what you are doing, and build your patients’ trust in you as a team, which is especially good for anxious patients.
Getting to know you
Through your social media activity, you can build familiarity about who you are as a practice before the patient even gets to meet you. So, when they call into the practice and make an appointment, they feel connected to you and reassured about what things will be like when they do attend the practice.
In terms of brand awareness for the practice and employer branding, your social media shows other dental professionals who you are and how you work as a team, as well as the quality of your work, which is really important. And as a recruiter trying to help fill a vacancy, it also helps when we are directing applicants to dental websites or social media platforms.
Make it varied
It’s good to have balance and harmony in all that you do. And if you were to have a look at the best performing social media pages, the ones that offer more variety seem to perform really well because they’re ticking all the boxes regarding what people want to see.
So, it’s really important to try to balance things out so there’s a variety of content, rather than your channel being full of just before and afters, although those things are good for patients to see. However, there are likely to be so many other services or things that you offer as a practice and a team you could showcase. Such as meet the team, behind the scenes of the practice, as well as the before and afters. These are all things that are going to create some familiarity for your patients and help them to feel connected to you.
It’s not difficult, once you’ve got the hang of it. It can pay dividends and it can even be fun.
Emma Anastasi is the CEO and Founder of Diamond Dental Staff. Since launching her company in 2018, Emma and her team have passionately built a community and support network for dental professionals, teams, and practices across the UK.
With over 13 years of experience, Emma delivers award-winning business consultancy services that promote sustainable recruitment in dentistry, helping dental practices build an employer brand and a recruitment and retention strategy.