There’s some not very good news for dentists who have practice Facebook pages, according to a recent report.
Facebook makes about one in three people feel bad.
If you stop to think about it, that’s probably not surprising. The level of drama, conflict, and outright rudeness reached an all-time high during the last presidential election campaign. Quite a bit of that “feel bad” content continues today.
And given how 2017 has proceeded – three hurricanes, other severe natural disasters, and huge social upheaval – it doesn’t look like things are going to get better any time soon.
When The Map Changes, Adjust Your Course
One well-known approach to marketing suggests that pain – physical, emotional, or mental – is the key to motivating people to take action. History has proven that approach can be very effective … but in a general atmosphere of pain, it becomes less effective. People who are inundated with cheerless, uncomfortable, even painful news develop an emotional and mental numbness as a means of self-protection.
When that happens, banging the “pain” drum isn’t likely to get you very far.
You may not have taken that approach consciously, but if you review your Facebook posts, you’ll likely see that some pain points have crept in there. “Dental pain?”, “Bleeding gums?”, and similar messages are the typical dentist’s marketing hooks. There’s nothing wrong with those messages in and of themselves, but given the overwhelming amount of pain on Facebook, a different approach is called for.
“Feel Good” Dental Facebook Posts
If you’re getting fewer new patients than you used to through Facebook, try acknowledging the problem but make your overwhelming focus on the solution and the benefits of the solution. For instance, absolutely nobody wants periodontitis with its attendant bad breath, swollen, bleeding gums, and loose teeth. You don’t have to emphasize the possible health consequences of not getting treatment. Instead, mention those consequences briefly but focus your message on pink, firm, healthy gums; fresh breath; and eating without discomfort again.
When it comes to solutions for missing teeth, don’t emphasize nutritional deficiencies due to poor diet, loss of underlying bone, or teeth shifting out of alignment. Focus on prospects being able to eat whatever foods they like without discomfort; smiling widely without embarrassment; and laughing out loud again.
Feature Success Stories
Complete your “feel good” approach by touting the results you’ve achieved for patients with specific dental issues. Remember that you’re posting for patients, not for other dentists. Ideally, let your patients share those life-changing results with your followers in their own words.
You should have a policy in place to routinely request online reviews from all of your patients. Make sure that your request includes being able to repost those reviews elsewhere on the internet. You’ll get a lot of “Gee whiz, everybody here is so nice” reviews.
For maximum impact, request video testimonials from patients with the specific dental concerns – gingivitis, malocclusion, extensive cosmetic needs, and so on – whose lives has been improved by your efforts. Feature those on your website and on your Facebook page. Hearing the benefits from the patients themselves is the most powerful social proof you can offer your prospects.
Mix It Up In Your Facebook Marketing
The fact that Facebook is a turnoff for one-third of people doesn’t take away from the fact that two-thirds aren’t turned off or suffering from pain overload. You can do some testing to see which kinds of posts – pain or benefit – are attracting the most new patients.
Once you have the numbers, focus more of your Facebook marketing on the type of post that gives you the greatest return on investment. But again, this isn’t an all-or-nothing model. You can be the “feel good” Facebook dentist while still marketing to the people who are motivated by pain.