Wondering How To Attract More Patients?

Read Time: 7 minutes

Doctors and hospitals that do not currently have social media may be missing hundreds of potential new patients. People turn to social media daily to answer questions and get more information about a business.

viralMD digital marketing Healthcare Providers Building Your Brand On Social Media

Do I need social media for my practice?

The quick answer is most likely. Social media (SM) growth directly correlates to the engagement with the people on social media channels. Firms can bypass constant community engagement with good hashtag campaigns but the best way to grow a following on social media channels is to engage with the fanbase.

Building a brand quickly

Physicians and hospitals alike can benefit from social media branding. This is one of the easiest ways to build brand awareness. The public is already comfortable engaging with companies on SM channels. Many doctors have started posting on TikTok to be more approachable to Gen Z: the future patient base.

What’s my name?

What’s most important? Have an easy to remember and logical username. For example, Dr John Smith, orthopedic surgeon, would not benefit from a username docjs938. No one is going to remember that name but orthodrsmith or jsmithmd or bonedocsmith would all be easier to recall. The links for all social media channels should be on the practice website. Make finding the practice’s or hospital’s SM channels as easy as possible.

How do I get people’s attention

The best approach is to provide useful updates regularly, ideally 1-3 times per week. Engaging in other people’s posts and following other physicians, pharmacies or hospitals is an excellent idea and a successful strategy.

What should be posted?

Posting or re-posting community events is a great way to gain more followers. Posting events like a community blood drive or state fair using designated hashtags will help posts be seen. Other items to be considered our medical awareness dates, flu shot reminders and major holiday wishes.

Will being on Facebook help my SERP?

This is not a question with a yes or no answer. To help with search engine result positioning, the best approach is a holistic one. Increasing a company’s digital web presence is a multiprong endeavor but having an updated, secure site that creates useful information via blog post on a consistent basis is vital. Posting blogs on all SM channels will provide a way for more people to have the opportunity to see these posts. Content marketing is one of the easiest ways to drive new traffic to a website. Facebook has a strong domain authority and having helpful information on the practice FB page will definitely be an asset.

How social do I need to be?

Social media is just that, social. Having a one-way voice without ever following anyone back or liking any comments will not be as effective as actively managing the social media channels. However a good hashtag campaign can go a long way and many brands choose this approach. For example, KFC is recognized as one of the most clever Twitter profiles. Kentucky Fried Chicken is known for the 7 herbs and spices recipe so the KFC Twitter account follows 7 Herbs and the 4 Spice Girls.

Facebook essentials

Facebook is a must for businesses. Many people have gone to Facebook assuming that this page is updated more frequently than a website. If someone tags a company’s location on a Facebook page and that company doesn’t have a FB page, one will be created. Don’t have an unclaimed FB page. At the very least, have accurate contact information and updated hours on the about page.

Google My Business

Often overlooked, Google My Business (GMB) is one of the best places to post information and almost acts as a social media channel although not in the traditional format. Posting information on the practice’s GMB page will also provide more views than not having anything on there. The knowledge card is one of the most useful pieces of real estate that is available on Google and posting there regularly is very beneficial to both the physician and the patient. Creating or claiming a GMB page is vital to a strong digital presence.

Twitter is newsy

Unlike FB, Twitter is more about just providing information and not interacting as much. Most people that are searching Twitter for information will search via hashtag. Having a smart hashtag campaign will really help elevate a hospital and practice.

Instagram posts

Instagram is not as useful for most healthcare physicians. This channel is image-driven and no one wants to look at sick people. The healthcare fields that do benefit are dermatology and plastic surgery for before and after photos as well as obstetrics, reproductive endocrinology and fertility specialist because people like to see cute babies. The reason that Instagram is not as helpful for hospitals and most physician practices is because links in IG are not clickable However this medium is very useful for providing information about medical awareness dates and following the hashtag campaigns that the organization provides.

Do I need to YouTube?

Many physicians and especially surgeons choose to use YouTube as an instructional type of source for patients. Providing this resource may offer some anxiety relief when surgery or procedure is about to be performed. YouTube will also allow people to get a general understanding of a physician’s demeanor before an appointment.

What about LinkedIn?

The channel often overlooked by physicians and hospitals is LinkedIn but busy professionals use this medium frequently. Most professionals have an established LinkedIn profile and this may be the social media channel used for finding a new doctor or outpatient surgery center. Having a regularly updated LinkedIn profile is another excellent way to build your brand awareness and can help with SERP.

What’s the bottom line on social media?

To build brand awareness, start with a secure website with mobile responsiveness and current information. Make sure what is posted to social media is accurate and recommendations are general. Provide broad-based, useful information that may be helpful to a patient searching on a particular medical condition. Do this consistently will help elevate authority on medical topics while building a trustworthy brand.