In the healthcare industry, one of the most rewarding things is that you’ll come across all different types of people. However, just as it is rewarding, it can often times create an interesting scenario to deal with in regards to your reputation. Because social media is essentially “word of mouth” advertising, it’s important to pay close attention and follow a few simple rules to protect your practice’s reputation.
Know Your Audience
You may want to have the most likes or followers on your Facebook page out of your competitors, and that’s not a bad thing. But not knowing who comprises that audience can be dangerous. Of course, you should be starting out by growing your audience organically, meaning friends, family, and direct patients, but as you expand, you’re going to attract a range of people. Some of those people will have more aggressive opinions than others, while some just are there to stir the pot. It is social media, after all!
On a frequent basis, run through your social media audience and determine if they are legitimate. If you have 2,000 random followers from the west coast, but your practice is in Florida, you may want to do a bit of clean up. This will prevent people who are not there to simply engage with your posts and follow the practice from leaving any rogue comments or causing conflict with other audience members. In many ways, think of this as simply tailoring your social media for advertising purposes. You would do it for Facebook or Google ads, so why not with your followers?
Watch Your Comments, Reviews, and Shares
If you’re posting on social media, you should already know that there’s going to be a little work involved in tracking how well that post does. But, you should also be focused on all levels of engagements for your pages. This can include comments, reviews, and shares, depending on the source.
If you post something today, make sure that you have alerts on to determine what is happening. If you see angry comments, you have the ability to manage those by hiding them, responding to them, or even reporting the user that posted them if necessary. If the post becomes more than anticipated by way of conflict in the social media community, it may be in your best interest to manage that by removing or adjusting the post. If this is too cumbersome for you to manage, reach out to Practis on how to best approach the situation. We’ll get you in a program and help your social media stay smooth and (properly) engaging!
Think Before You Post
From your personal social media to your business’s social media, this should be your number one rule. Although posting is meant to be an outlet for your thoughts, sometimes it’s best to think through those thoughts a few times. Think about the overall sentiment you’re going to portray, who may engage with it, and how it might be perceived. Again, as a healthcare professional you have a very wide audience, so take all factors into consideration.
Even if you are needing to post something a bit more serious, practice empathy for your audience, just as you would in your office. Make it known that your practice is there for the safety and well-being of the patient, and you will make any necessary adjustments as needed to ensure that. That little bit of genuine communication with the audience will go a long way for your overall reputation!
Make Communication Easy
While most people seem to go to social media just to vent, that is a form of communication. Should you not want them to go to social media, or should you want them to communicate via social media a certain way, make sure you have made that abundantly clear. This means clean up all duplicate social media accounts, prominently display communication avenues on social media, and make frequent posts about how to contact your practice.
By doing all of these things, you won’t have people flying off the handle on Facebook or Twitter because of the way your office staff interacted, or that the examination rooms were too cold. As crazy as it seems, you have the power if you’re proactive!
The current times are challenging, and we understand that there are many things to take care of, but don’t let your social media take a back seat. It’s a very important tool to your overall brand, and without a solid reputation you may lose out on qualified patients. Contact Practis today to get your social media campaign started!