Though some clinicians have become real social media sharks, most are simply not utilizing the medium to its best advantage.
(PRWEB) May 27, 2014
What works for MIS can work for anyone in the dental field; however convincing dentists to join the social media revolution has been somewhat of a challenge. Dentistry, traditionally a conservative profession, is wary of anything too novel or untried. Only a few years ago the majority of dentists remained unconvinced about reaching out online. Today, however, almost all are utilizing some kind of online presence to increase product sales and brand awareness, streamline office management, hire staff or keep current with patients. The big question is - are they doing it properly?
The first step is to demystify social media. Online marketing is simply word-of-mouth powered by technology; and not really such a departure from traditional marketing methods such as print advertising, conference going or telemarketing. However, most dental professionals aren’t baffled by creating and circulating a print ad as they are in navigating through the social media scene. How effectively does the global dental community embrace online marketing?
Though some clinicians have become real social media sharks, most are simply not utilizing the medium to its best advantage. At MIS we like to Make It Simple, so let’s give some basic guidelines designed to help you become a more effective social media communicator.
Establish clear objectives: A common mistake is to launch a social media campaign without having clear objectives. Forming a social network presence takes more than simply creating an account on Facebook or Twitter; and just because you’ve established a presence, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your audience will follow.
Individual business objectives should be simple and straightforward: What do you hope to accomplish? Goals can focus on a number of areas such as:
- Brand building: It’s all about acquisition and retention. Get people to recognize your name and associate positively with it. Let them know if you’re attending a symposium or conference and talk about it afterwards.
- Product education: Excited about a new product or treatment? Share it with others. Inform patients about promotions and introductory deals.
- Leadership: You’re an industry expert, so use your specialized knowledge to engage and enrich your audience – offer solutions to problems and address topical issues such as oral hygiene or dental implants.
Follow a strategy: First listen and plan. Get online and find out what interests your audience. Join professional groups and blogs to get a better idea of what readers in your field want in terms of content and devise a plan of action accordingly. Then develop and engage. Create relevant content delivered to the greatest number of followers throughout your social media support system.
Deliver quality: Suitability, quality and share-ability of the content you provide is a key component to a successful online marketing campaign. Readers need to trust your content before they’re willing share it, so make sure it’s relevant and factual. Is your subject interesting and current, do you provide information they can use, is it backed up by research, verifiable facts or real life experiences? If your content has value, your audience will be motivated to share it – and that’s what social media marketing is all about.
Quality is the golden rule for posting content online; whether it’s an article, video or still image, it must be presented well. Poor quality content is social media’s worst enemy. If a video link is broken, an article hastily written without spelling and grammar checks, or an image fuzzy and small, it won’t get passed on, or worse yet, your visitors just won’t come back to you.
Reinforce engagement: Engagement is what social media does best, so make it work for you. Get your readers involved by posing questions or asking them to share their opinions and experiences. Guide your audience as to what you want them to do – a call to action is rarely ignored. Don’t just post a link, create a short message that encourages viewers to watch the video or read the article. Highlight the benefits of watching, reading and sharing. Be open to their responses and remember, even a negative response can be answered in a positive way - that’s authentic engagement.
In conclusion: Social media marketing is no longer perceived as a risky approach and even the most stalwart technophobes are beginning to climb onboard. MIS welcomes you to join us on our Facebook page to see the latest product news, conferences, educational opportunities and one-of-a- kind company events. Via our YouTube channel, MIS hosts numerous product tutorial videos and informative promotional movies, with a continuous stream of new content added regularly. To get the big picture, check out the MIS website as well. It’s packed with information about our products, processes and innovations. We look forward to seeing you online soon.