5 tips for successful patient relationship building on Facebook
Building relationships with your patients via social media such as Facebook is vital for the success and long-term profitability of your chiropractic clinic. Not only can it help you retain existing patients, but also get new ones through patient referrals in the form of shared content. In other words, if you provide value to your patients with your Facebook status updates rather than try to sell them on your new fancy equipment, they will be eager to share your useful content with everyone they know.
Granted, there is no simple way to get patient referrals and you can never control the outcome of your online marketing initiatives, let alone make patients talk about you. However, you can improve your odds without having to invest more time into your online marketing activities by applying general social media conventions that have proven to be successful.
Naturally, it can be difficult to figure out just what kind of status updates would accomplish your relationship-building goals without alienating any loyal patients and fans on Facebook. The best approach is clearly not a one-size-fits-all sales pitch about your services. Instead, provide educational info for the various chiropractic patient personas you treat at your practice in bite-size format for easy consumption and sharing. People always like to share useful content with their friends and family, which basically generates a virtual patient referral for you practice.
Here are 5 tips for successful patient-relationship-building on your chiropractic fan page:
- Post images with text: Although a picture may be worth a thousand words, adding text on the actual image with an easy-to-use picture editor like Picmonkey increases the effectiveness of your message significantly. Don’t forget to add a few words in Facebook’s text box when posting your pic as status update, though, especially if your account is linked to Twitter. People have no reason to check out your ‘new photo’ if they have no clue what it even is about.
- Share a TIP: Start your status update with ‘TIP’ to draw people’s attention to it. Then offer a useful tip or even a brief checklist that can help improve the quality of life for one of your chosen patient personas. Remember to be very specific rather than general.
- Tell patients/fans what to expect: Add a clarifying statement when you post the link to your educational blog or video so that your patients and Facebook fan know what it is about and how long it will take them to watch it. For example: “Here is a brief article/video for moms with small children on how to prevent lower back pain.” No one likes to be ambushed into reading or watching a lengthy post.
- Call to action: People generally like to help other people and a call to action, such as “Please share this video with someone who suffers from lower back pain,” will no doubt result in at least a few shares.
- Ask simple questions for one-word answers: Most people don’t have the time or desire to respond with elaborate answers to any questions posted on Facebook. If you want your patients/fans to interact on your fan page you need to keep it simple and make it easy for them to respond with one word only. For example: “What does health mean to you in one word?” An additional benefit of this approach will be your improved Edge Rank on Facebook since comments carry more weight than “Likes,” which in turn will make your post appear in more people’s news feeds.
By applying these tips to your daily Facebook status updates you should be able to build stronger relationships with your patients/fans and generate more patient referrals via Likes, shares and comments.