Facebook is a social media platform that provokes strong opinions. Love it or hate it, though, Facebook is building a more robust platform that can complement all of your social media marketing strategies. When you are ready to step up your social media game for your clinic, here’s how to use Facebook for medical practices.
Why is Facebook for medical practices so important?
In the past, you might have turned to Facebook as a place to show off your vacation snaps or argue politics, but this social media platform has gathered users who are moving beyond that.
More importantly, of all social media platforms, Facebook reaches the widest variety of age demographics. In fact, just as many 18 to 29-year-olds are using Facebook as 30 to 49-year-olds—something that cannot be said of most other social media platforms.
What is also changing is how people use Facebook. Previously, Facebook was primarily a way to check on your ex from high school or send Grandma pictures of the grandkids. Now, Facebook users are forming community groups that include parent support groups, shared interest groups, and neighborhood organizations. Many of these groups also encourage reviews and recommendations of local services.
To be on the radar of these groups and to garner recommendations, medical practices need to be on Facebook. Facebook marketing for doctors keeps your clinic top of mind for daily users looking for healthcare services in their communities.
As an added bonus, Facebook ads for medical practices are one of the most affordable places to get started with a digital ad strategy. Here are our tips to master Facebook for medical practices.
1. Assess your current Facebook healthcare marketing
Start by assessing where your Facebook presence is right now. Ask yourself the following questions to get started:
- Do you have a business page for your practice?
- If so, how frequently are you posting? (Are you posting at all?)
- Is your page set up for success with a good cover image and complete information (e.g., contact info, services, and hours)?
- Do you have a button set up on the page that allows users to book an appointment or get in touch?
The answers to these questions can help guide the practical set-up of your medical Facebook posts.
2. Figure out which medical Facebook posts resonate with patients
Once you have the nuts and bolts of your Facebook page set up, take a look at which medical Facebook posts are resonating with your current and potential patients.
The easiest way to do this is to familiarize yourself with Facebook analytics, either by installing a plug-in or visiting your Facebook admin page to see who’s looking at what on your page.
Your analytics will give you two main pieces of information:
- Facebook page insights: what people are looking at and how they are interacting with your content
- Facebook audience insights: who is looking at your page
These two pieces of information can help you better tailor your content to give your current users what they are looking for while expanding your reach to new patients.
3. Get inspired with healthcare Facebook post ideas
Don’t think that Facebook for medical practices has to be limited to dry, text-only posts. Some of the most successful healthcare pages includes a variety of posts, including:
- Meet-the-team posts
- Videos and GIFs, like this one from Mayo Clinic
- Polls and surveys
- Health news and updates
The key here is to create varied and engaging posts that position you as a caring and compassionate thought leader in your community.
4. Look to top medical Facebook profiles for inspiration
Still not sure what successful Facebook marketing for doctors looks like? Turn towards Facebook profiles that are doing excellent, stand-out work. These may be local doctors in your community, or they might be nationally-known medical practices in your area of medicine.
Ultimately, your analytics will help drive what you post, but looking at some top profiles can help gather post ideas.
5. Get consistent with your posts
Now that you know what to post, make a schedule of when to post it. Consistency is key here. Aim for three to five medical Facebook posts a week.
Some research has shown that Wednesday between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. is the best day and time to post, but whatever times or days you choose, keep it consistent. Once you have data, discover what’s working and what’s not, and update as needed.
Further, a social media calendar helps make regular posts a snap. Look for awareness days and other holidays to stay organized and keep your posts relevant.
6. Automate as much as possible
Automation makes consistency easier to achieve. Use a post scheduler for weekly posts, and set up automated responses to incoming questions with a link to website (note that a team member will be in touch shortly).
You can also set up template responses to the most frequently asked questions, with a link to click if they need more information. This makes maintaining your page easier, allowing you more time to respond to more complicated questions or draft more engaging content.
7. Make sure your team knows and follows patient privacy regulations
One of the main concerns with Facebook for medical practices is privacy. Make sure your whole team knows and understands how HIPAA applies to medical Facebook posts. This includes but is not limited to:
- Not sharing client testimonials unless expressly approved
- Hiding patient information when taking photos of the office and team
- Hiding or deleting comments or reviews that share personal information
8. Try out Facebook Live
Facebook users spend three times longer watching live videos on Facebook than they do engaging with other types of content. Your business page has a simple button that allows authorized users to go live whenever they want. It’s free, easy, and a great way to engage users with comments and conversation that happens in real time.
Use Facebook Live to connect with current and potential patients. Some ways to use Facebook Live include:
- Offering preventative care demos (e.g., skin check or a symptoms checklist)
- Reviewing new products or services
- Checking in at community events
- Offering weekly live chats
9. Consider Facebook ads for medical practices
Facebook ads for medical practices offers a great ROI with very little effort (or commitment). Your goals for your practice guide your strategy, so take some time to consider what you want to achieve before diving in. More patients? More use of your services? Awareness of your practice?
Once you set your goals, it’s easy to head to Facebook’s ad manager to set a target audience and budget. Create your ads, and you’re all set!
Facebook ads for medical practices are one of the most affordable paid options for social media, helping you better connect with patients for just a few hundred dollars a month.
10. Partner with other related practices
A rising tide lifts all boats, and this is true in the medical community as well. Reach out to health and wellness influencers in your community and offer to do a Q/A session with them.
This builds awareness of your services and can increase referrals from other local providers.
11. Develop your brand and get consistent with your style
Branding isn’t just for soft drinks and shoes. Use Canva or other services to make branded graphics that are instantly recognizable.
Stay consistent with your Facebook posts, too. Put together a clinic social media style guide for content and graphics that incorporates the brand you design. When new users post on your behalf, make sure they’re aware of this guide.
12. Get involved in your community
You are using Facebook healthcare marketing for doctors to build an online community, but it can also help in real life. Set up Facebook events for fundraisers and community building days that puts your staff out among the people they serve.
Facebook for medical practices doesn’t have to be complicated, but we know your focus is on patients.