Go forth social travelers, and remember the future is what you make it!
Many of your new patients come through word-of-mouth referrals. However, today’s referral patients no longer pick up the phone and call your office; instead, they go online to learn more about you, your practice and your services before deciding whether or not to book an appointment. Therefore, the modern practice must have a strategy for engaging referral patients even before they arrive at the office. Enter social media.
Facebook, Google+ and other social media platforms are an intersection between your current patients, “friends” (read: potential referrals) and the Internet. With a modest effort and minimal resources, you can achieve the maximum benefit from these programs.
Word of Mouth Upended
The advent of the Internet has altered the traditional referral system, probably forever. But fortunately, social media allows you to engage both referral patients and a broader online audience. In fact, the Internet is teeming with potential patients — both those who have already been referred to you as well as other friends of your current patients who are looking for information on the services you provide.
While this all sounds promising, where do you begin? It’s not so difficult. All you need is a strategy that matches how prospective patients are using social media for healthcare information.
The Pathway to Success
Here are the seven most important aspects of social media.
Design. Establish a custom design that reflects the image of your practice. Social media platforms are a good way to brand your practice identity. The design you use for your social media accounts can and should mirror your practice website’s design, and this can be achieved with ease.
Editorial Calendar. Good social media doesn’t just happen. Each month there are many opportunities to engage your readers, so don’t miss them. Implementing an editorial calendar is the best way to prepare interesting content that will help you engage your followers on a more consistent basis.
Social Dialogue. Posting comments twice a week will probably suffice, but check your account daily so that you can respond to comments from current and prospective patients. Your posts can be about changes in your office (new staff members, new technology), specials or special events you are promoting, or even news items such as developments in health and nutrition. Good posts are anything that connects you to your “followers” and reminds them that you are interested in them.
Video. Embrace video! From Facebook’s new silent viral videos, which play automatically when you scroll through your news feed, to Vine’s six-second videos and YouTube’s place as the No. 2 search engine…video is where it’s at in terms of content.
Pictures. We’re talking about social media, so be sure to include a few professional but friendly images of you and your staff on all the important platforms. People appreciate the human aspect, hence the word “social.”
Testimonials. Positive testimonials from real patients are a great endorsement for your practice and require no management or upkeep. Start a weekly post on your social media accounts in which you include a patient testimonial. For example, #FeedbackFriday.
Facebook “Likes”. The ever-elusive “Like” or “Follow” doesn’t have to be so elusive. A well-thought-out strategy to increase the number of “Likes” on Facebook is time well spent.
Ceatus Can Help!
Ceatus can build your social networks for you and make upkeep easy for your practice with our Premium Social Media Package. To learn more, contact us today.
Ask the experts
Q My SEO company has promised me exclusivity. But I have a competitor just 15 miles away who is also their client, and he wants to rank on Google for the same search terms. Do I have exclusivity?
A There are two types of exclusivity: geographic exclusivity and search engine exclusivity. Search engine exclusivity means that an SEO company is agreeing to target certain search terms for only one practice in a metropolitan market. Ask your SEO company if they have other clients who are targeting the same search terms as your practice. If so, you may have geographic exclusivity, but not search engine exclusivity.
Come by the Ceatus booth for a FREE website evaluation!
InterContinental Hotel Buckhead
April 9-13, 2014
Join Ceatus, Consumer Guide to Plastic Surgery and All About Facial Rejuvenation at this year’s FFAS Meeting in Atlanta. Stop by Booth 301 to meet the Ceatus team and see how Ceatus can give your Internet strategy a facelift. Hope to see you there!
San Francisco, CA
April 24-29, 2014
Meet us in San Francisco for the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery’s 47th Annual Meeting. The Aesthetic Meeting 2014 will be filled with the latest news, technologies, and trends in cosmetic surgery. Ceatus CEO David Evans, PhD, will be giving a total of three presentations, so don’t miss out!
“Strategies to Maximize Your Online Marketing ROI”
Saturday, April 26
12:45 – 1:45pm
Aesthetic Marketplace Theater
“Techniques to Achieve a Dominant Internet Presence”
Sunday, April 27
12:30 – 1:30pm
Aesthetic Marketplace Theater
“Maximizing Your Online Marketing ROI”
Monday, April 28
2:00 – 4:00pm
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center
April 25-29, 2014
The Annual ASCRS and ASOA Symposium and Congress provides attendees with unique access to the latest techniques and technologies in ophthalmic surgery. Ceatus VP of Marketing Tamara Evans will be giving a presentation on how to increase your patient volume through Internet marketing. Don’t miss it!
“Internet Marketing for Practice Success in the Digital Age”
Sunday, April 27
1:00 – 2:00pm
CEATUS Case Study of the Month
Social media plan uncovers Practice X’s hidden treasure
As Practice X discovered, there’s no need to search the seven seas for referrals; a good social media strategy is all you need. It can generate awareness and referral business from people who already know you, and give you access to their friends and social networks. The same strategies you’ve used to increase your word-of-mouth referrals in other mediums can now be applied to social networking — as long as you take the proper steps. Here is how Practice X did just that.
Background: The surgeons and staff at Practice X knew that social media was a very effective way to stay in touch with their patients. However, as a busy practice, they only had time to post content to their Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts a couple times a month.
Problem: They quickly discovered that their posts were being buried under the many posts from their patients’ other connections and “friends.” As a result, Practice X’s posts were not being seen…at all. With such a small number of monthly posts and interactions, they were missing out on golden opportunities to connect with current and prospective patients.
Solution: What they needed was a social media plan that they could implement without having to hire a full-time social media specialist. Ceatus offered Practice X an exclusive social media package that enabled them to regularly interact with their followers. A daily news feed was implemented that allowed Ceatus’ professional social media writers to post interesting articles to Practice X’s Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages. Also, original content was developed monthly, along with a plan that would allow the practice to begin engaging on their own, as they had time. In addition, Ceatus launched a campaign to increase Practice X’s likes. Within three weeks of the campaign’s launch, Practice X’s likes had increased from 179 to 623. Practice X finally had the following it deserved!
Ceatus offers a premium social media package to help practices grow their online presence and convert leads into patients. Contact us for more information.
Drink ’til Ye Irish
6 great Irish pubs for St. Patrick’s Day
The Blackthorn Pub
Finding a TRUE Irish pub experience — without the fake Irish props — is usually as easy as finding a perfectly poured Guinness. Well you’re in luck. Boston locals and visitors agree The Blackthorn Pub is the closest thing to a real Irish pub this side of the pond. With its old-school, worn-in feel and solid selection of beers on draft (including Irish favorites like Guinness, Harp, and Smithwick’s), The Blackthorn Pub will take you back to the Emerald Isle. Plus, the pub screens all the important Irish and U.K. sporting events on large-screen TVs. 471 West Broadway, South Boston, MA 02127, 617-269-5510, www.blackthornboston.com
The Grafton Pub
If the delicious fish and chips and top-notch burger don’t lure you in, maybe the 70-plus craft beers and 20 Irish whiskeys to wash it down will. The pub also boasts cozy surroundings to drink a pint and let the live music fill your ears. 4530 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60625, 773- 271-9000, www.thegrafton.com
The Buena Vista Cafe
San Francisco, CA
How do you like your coffee? Irish? The Buena Vista, a SF staple and the originator of the Irish coffee in the U.S., serves it up daily to visiting tourists and locals alike. Paul Nolan, bartender and Irish coffee mixologist, has been serving this signature drink for 33 years. Who doesn’t like a little whiskey in their coffee? 2765 Hyde St, San Francisco, CA 94109, 415-474-5044, www.thebuenavista.com
New York, NY
With its bald Irish bartenders, cabin-like Tudor interior, Shepherd’s pie and well-drawn Guinness, Molly’s Shebeen may just be the most authentic Irish pub in New York City. After a few pints of Guinness and some Irish drinking songs, you may forget you’re in the Big Apple and feel like you’re in the old country. Come in, sit by the fire and take in the Irish hospitality. 287 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10010, 212-889-3361, www.mollysshebeen.com
The Stag’s Head
If you find yourself in Dublin, The Stag’s Head is the place to be. Luck has nothing to do with it, but being in a 19th century pub in the heart of Temple Bar, Dublin’s pub Mecca, you’ll feel about as Irish as they come. Drink where the likes of James Joyce and Quentin Taratino have and listen to live traditional music in its music venue, the Stag’s Tail. Add this to your Irish pub bucket list! 1 Dame Ct, Dublin 2, Ireland, +353 1 679 3687, www.louisfitzgerald.com/stagshead
Fadó Irish Pub & Restaurant
If you feel like you may have traveled back in time…blame it on Fadó (Gaelic for “long ago”). With its dark wood bar areas, stone patio, stained glass, old-world pub ambiance and its signature Irish Car Bomb, you’ll feel like you were back home in Dublin. If this causes you to start dancing a little Irish jig, go ahead…dancing is encouraged. So lift up ye glass and toast to “A long life and a merry one. A quick death and an easy one. A pretty girl and an honest one. A cold pint and another one!” 273 Buckhead Ave NE Atlanta, GA 30305, 404-841-0066, www.fadoirishpub.com. Note: Fadó has several other locations throughout the U.S.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day from all of us at Ceatus!
“May your pockets be heavy—
Your heart be light,
And may good luck pursue you
Each morning and night.”