There are more than 4.74 billion social media users globally. (2) With social media being so popular, many businesses—including healthcare providers—have started using social media as an effective means of marketing their products and services.
How can a social media marketing strategy help your medical practice? Continue reading to learn more about social media marketing for doctors and how you can use it to grow your medical practice.
What is social media?
Social media is any type of digital platform, such as an app or website, that allows people to create and share content publicly. (5) Social media sites can include content of various lengths in many formats, such as illustrations, written content, and videos. You can use social media to:
- Connect with your community
- Create content
- Have conversations
- Share information (6)
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Common social media platforms
There are many different social media platforms with different capabilities and a slightly different user base. As a result, you may use different platforms to share certain content and target specific audiences you would like to reach.
What to post on each social media platform
- Facebook (App store, Google Play, website): pictures, videos, and written curated content.
- Instagram (App store, Google Play, website): high-resolution photos, videos and story updates
- LinkedIn (App store, Google Play, website): professional content, news, jobs, and research
- TikTok (App store, Google Play, website): video content, challenges, and trends
- Twitter (App store, Google Play, website): blog posts, news, and GIFs
- Youtube (App store, Google Play, website): video content (4)
Benefits of social media for medical professionals
More than half of the world’s population uses social media to share information and connect with others. (2) Social media allows you to stay in touch with friends and family, learn new things, develop your interests, and overcome boredom.
As a healthcare professional, you can also use social media as a tool to grow your business and build a professional network by connecting with other health and wellness professionals. (6) Benefits of social media include:
- Communicating and connecting with colleagues and prospective and existing patients
- Increasing brand awareness
- Increasing website traffic
- Promoting products and services
- Reaching new potential patients (7)
We asked Kaely McDevitt, registered dietitian, about the benefits of social media for practitioners. “Social media is an incredible, free opportunity to market your services and connect with your ideal client. Never before have business owners had a means of reaching new people without spending a great deal on marketing. In addition, with how much incorrect health information is shared online, social media only becomes more valuable with more qualified healthcare practitioners engaging in the conversations.”
5 social media tips for your medical practice
To use social media all you need is an internet connection and a computer or smartphone. You can get started by visiting the website or downloading the app of your choice and creating an account. You will then be able to network with people by “connecting,” “following,” or “ subscribing.”
Once your social media accounts are set up, you will be able to create and share your content with those who are part of your network and other users of the platform. The types of content each platform entails can be slightly different.
Here are five tips that can help you get started or increase your reach on social media.
1. Engage in conversations
You can gather insights about your current and prospective patients and their needs by engaging in conversations. This can help you strengthen your credibility and establish yourself as an expert and trusted source of information.
Kaely explains how she uses social media platforms to promote her practice and connect with her clients. “My best advice would be to remember the purpose of social media: to provide value and connect with your ideal client. Your clients want to get to know you as a human, not as a business, and social media allows an opportunity to experience your unique approach to healthcare. If you show up consistently with content that your ideal client would resonate with, social media can be the best marketing tool for your practice.”
2. Incorporate images and graphics when possible
Sharing images and graphics makes information easily digestible and is a great way to catch your audience’s eye.
3. Provide accurate and relevant information
Ensure that what you post is not only relevant to your audience and industry but also evidence-based and accurate. Many social media platforms flag posts with misleading information; ensuring the quality of your information can help you build trust with your audience and patients.
4. Post regularly
When you post regularly, the algorithms on social media sites favor your posts leading to more people seeing them. Additionally, when you post consistently, your audience will look forward to your content and is more likely to engage with your posts.
5. Share your expertise
Sharing your unique expertise and knowledge can help to build credibility and trust as a healthcare provider. This can help you to retain your current patients as well as attract new ones. (1)(3)
When asked how healthcare providers can leverage social media to engage with current and prospective patients, Kaely explains, “We provide educational content on social media to help connect with our ideal client. We find that when clients get to know us and our approach on Instagram, they become incredibly warm leads that have already established that they know, like, and trust us. Over the last six years in practice, the vast majority of our clients have found us through social media.”
The bottom line
Social media marketing for doctors is becoming an increasingly popular way to promote your medical practice. You can use social media to position yourself as a knowledgeable source of health information, stay connected with other healthcare professionals, and build trust with current and prospective patients.
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- Aslam, S. (2022, October 21). • Twitter by the Numbers (2022): Stats, Demographics & Fun Facts. Omnicore Agency. https://www.omnicoreagency.com/twitter-statistics/
- Owen, J. (2022, June 29). Social Media Platform Comparison – What Works Best? SEO Design Chicago. https://seodesignchicago.com/marketing/social-media-platform-comparison/
- Statista. (2022a, May 13). TikTok: distribution of global audiences 2022, by age and gender. https://www.statista.com/statistics/1299771/tiktok-global-user-age-distribution/
- Statista. (2022b, October 27). Facebook: quarterly number of MAU (monthly active users) worldwide 2008-2022. https://www.statista.com/statistics/264810/number-of-monthly-active-facebook-users-worldwide/
- World Stream. (2022, September 3). Social Media Marketing for Businesses. WordStream. https://www.wordstream.com/social-media-marketing