As we kick off 2019 and make goals for the year ahead, it is the perfect time to take a step back, examine your social media strategy, and ensure it is enhancing your brand and strengthening the relationships that are critical to building and sustaining your medical practice. Here are six resolutions to help guide you:
1. Choose the right social media channels. Make sure you are focusing on the most effective social media platforms to reach your specific target audiences. Trying to reach older patients? Facebook is your best bet. Have a younger patient base? You may need to focus more on Twitter and Instagram. LinkedIn is more of a professional network and best for connecting with physician colleagues to build referral relationships.
2. Keep your accounts active and engaging. Set a goal for how many posts you will make each month. We recommend at least two, and four is even better. Then develop a content calendar and work ahead when possible to create your posts.
3. Build your base of followers. If you are posting relevant content on a regular basis, your audience of followers will organically grow. However, also be sure to inform and remind your patients and referring physicians about your social media accounts during visits and in any print or electronic communication you send out. Encourage them to like/follow as a way to stay informed.
4. Engage and respond. Someone in your practice needs to receive notifications of social media comments or reviews and respond appropriately in a timely manner.
5. Position your practice as a trusted resource and thought leader by providing valuable content. Look for timely, seasonal and relevant topics to cover and share. Don’t just “sell” the services of your practice. Provide useful health tips, share information on new research, and pass along other news in your field.
6. Look for ways to incorporate more photos, graphics and videos. People are visual, especially when scrolling though a busy social media feed. Use interesting images that will help attract interest as well as videos that inform and personalize your practice.