Social media marketing enables dentists to build a trusted relationship with current and future patients. By interacting with people on a casual level you can establish a sense of familiarity. This is especially helpful for dental practices that want to reach people that typically avoid going to the dentist.

Tips for Using Social Media to Create Relationships Online

Join a Conversation Through Tweet Chats – You can view lists to determine which local chats are right for you. Make sure to join ones that are in your general area and relevant to your customer base. This could be a local business owner group, volunteer organization, community event chats and more. Since your customer base is anyone living in your area, you will have a wide variety of chats that are relevant. You can use #hashtags to find the list you are looking for. Add value to the conversation by answering someone’s question and letting them know you are happy to talk more offline.

Comment on an Event – If you are involved in, or attending, a community event, use Twitter to comment on it. Twitter marketing can give you broad exposure to people within your community, through your active participation. Many events will have a #hashtag for people attending to comment and start conversations. For example if you attend a concert in the park and one of your patients is playing in it, congratulate them online while inviting others to visit you. This can be a combination of conversation and promotion. The goal is to get your brand in front of other people that attended, and are part of your community. If this was an educational event you may want to direct people back to notes you took or a blog post you wrote about it.

LinkedIn Groups – LinkedIn marketing can be a powerful networking tool. You can create a LinkedIn group or join one. As the creator,you have control over who joins and can moderate the comments better. However, starting one from scratch takes time to build a member base. Search for groups that are established in your local community and start there. The local Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Clubs will typically have one. Once a member you can post questions, share blog posts that you wrote, and directly reach out to people within the group. LinkedIn is a fantastic tool for networking, promoting your practice, and meeting more people. Get the most out of your group by asking members to become your personal connections. This way you have access to their contact information and can send them direct messages. Offer people an incentive for becoming a new patient or invite your LinkedIn friends to an open house.

Recruit Employees – LinkedIn is an excellent vehicle for recruiting future employees. If you are looking to expand the team, see who is participating in industry specific groups in your town. Observe what they have to say, how they carry themselves in conversation, and read their resume. If you want to interview them, simply send a message.

Social media marketing is all about having a conversation and building your brand. You need to consistently engage with people in order to see the maximum results. Find conversations, join them, and add value. People will start to view you as a trusted resource, and someone they would feel comfortable with while in the dentist chair.