When was the last time YOU were on Facebook? Perhaps it was even today. If Facebook is where you are hanging out, Facebook is where your new patients are hanging out. The average American spends 40 minutes per day on Facebook.
Facebook is the #1 way to share your practice’s story and attract new patients at the lowest cost. Why? Because Facebook is a platform where you can engage with people so they can get to know you. This builds trust. Facebook also has the lowest cost to reach your audience. The cost per 1000 impressions (CPM) based on Q2 2016 data in the USA was $5.95.
There’s another huge benefit to Facebook…the ability to determine who sees your practice’s posts in their newsfeeds… So you can say, “I want this post to be seen in the newsfeeds of my patients when they wake up in the morning”,”I want my posts to be seen by people who have been to my website”, or “I want my posts to be seen by people who earn similar incomes, drive similar cars, and have similar interests to my patients.”
The Importance of Engagement
Many practices struggle with Facebook because they are posting too infrequently or they are posting way too much stock content. There’s a lot of competition for people’s eyeballs in newsfeeds, so your content must be unique and evoke emotion. In fact, every time you create a post, you should say, “Is this post something that people would share”.
Creating engaging content that evokes emotion also helps to get your posts seen.
I recently completed an engagement study and discovered that as engagement increases (likes, shares, reactions), the post gets placed in more newsfeeds for FREE. Engagement is a metric for Facebook to see if your post is relevant.
Here're a specific few ways to create engaging content…
1. Create Facebook Live videos and post patient video testimonials. Videos create engagement and allow people to get to know more about your practice and the experiences that they will have with your practice.
2. Create posts which send people to your website so they can get to know more about your practice culture and your services.
3. Create a featured service of the month. (eg. crowns, implants, cosmetic dentistry, etc.) Next, create a post about the benefits of that service, a post linking people to your website to learn more about that service, and testimonials of your patients who have had that service.
Using Facebook for dental practices has 2 components. What you post on your page, and posts that you place in specific people’s newsfeeds (with ads). One important point…if you're running ads you never want to just boost a post. Deciding who you want to see your posts will save money and will increase your conversions because your ad is targeted.
Here're a few key custom targeting audiences
· A custom audience of your patients
· A Facebook lookalike audience of your patients
· An audience of people who’ve been to your website
· Fans of other Facebook pages with similar audiences of your ideal new patients.
To get the best results, post at least once daily. Have a team member commit 15-30 minutes a day posting, responding to comments on your page or responding to messages that come in through Facebook messenger. I also recommend that you or a team member invest in training to learn how to create those custom audiences and ad campaigns to maximize your results.
For paid ads, I would recommend that you start with a small budget of $100.00 a month to see which audiences convert best, then build from there. (In my practice I spend about $500 a month and get about 40-50 new patients a month.) If your goal is to get more patients, better connect with your existing patients and fast track the growth of your practice, Facebook can help you get there!