Do’s and don’ts of social media

Gone are the days where the phone book and word of mouth were how patients found their dentist.

Screen Shot 2015-09-29 at 4.00.19 PMToday, many patients use the Internet and social media to seek out a dentist. Having a website for your practice or using Facebook or Twitter to promote your dental office can be effective ways of drumming up new patients.

Here are a list of five do’s and don’ts of using social media:

Do’s:

  • Determine the ideal patient you are trying to attract. Once you know the type of patient you’re looking to recruit, you can develop your social media strategy, according to Dr. Rita Zamora, an international speaker and consultant on social media marketing and online reputation.
  • Make sure the content you post or share reflects the values of your practice.
  • Let your patients know that your practice appreciates feedback, including on social media.
  • Highlight what makes your practice special. Post pictures of the dental team together. Be relatable, professional and fun, according to PBHS, the website and marketing services provider endorsed by ADA Business Resources.
  • Be yourself. Showcase what you like to do when you’re not in the dental office and insert a bit of your personality into your social media content.

Don’ts:

  • Do not post copyrighted or trademarked content without permission from the content owner or a citation, as appropriate.
  • Do not post information about a patient, employee or another individual, including a testimonial, photograph, radiograph, or even a name, without the appropriate written consent, authorization, waiver and release signed by the patient (or the patient’s guardian).
  • Don’t post graphic images of treatment. Patients don’t want to see open wounds or blood; stick to beautiful, completed smiles, according to PBHS.
  • Avoid posting political or religious content, PBHS says. You could alienate current or future patients.
  • Don’t be antagonistic when responding to negative online reviews of your practice.

To learn more social media tips, visit the ADA Center for Professional Success at Success.ADA.org and search for “social media.”

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