Studies have shown that 75% of consumers rely on social media to inform purchasing decisions, and the popularity of business review sites such as Yelp and Angie's List demonstrate the power of online information. According to the Pew Research Center, 57% of all U.S. adults use Facebook, and 64% of Facebook users visit the site on a daily basis. Similarly popular, Twitter accounts for 82% of all social media leads for small businesses, according to eMarketer.
Post regular updates. If you decide to use social media, commit to doing it well. Your practice may benefit from setting up Facebook and Twitter accounts, but only if someone in your office (likely your part-time marketing coordinator) takes on the responsibility of posting to those accounts regularly, monitoring activities, and responding to your online "friends" and "followers."
Don't create new marketing messages for social media. There's no need to reinvent the marketing "wheel" when engaging in social media. Use your established marketing messages to highlight the same differentiators (traits that make the practice stand out from competitors) no matter what the media.
Roger P. Levin, DDS, is the chairman and CEO of practice management consulting firm Levin Group. You can connect with Levin Group on Facebook and Twitter (@Levin_Group) to learn more strategies and share ideas. Also, check out Dr. Levin's free practice management videos at www.levingroup.com/gp.
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