As this form of digital marketing continues to change and adapt, oftentimes making it difficult for a busy private practice owner to keep up with the trends.
Below are the best practices for social media marketing should remain relatively immune to such changes:
If you are looking for a marketing campaign that provides numerical results, then social advertising is an excellent place to start. [see: Social Advertising for Physical Therapists]
5 Basic Social Media practices for PTs
1. Optimize Your Business Page/Account.
Always update as much information as possible for your business page profiles. (Nothing should be set on default!) This page represents your business and your brand. Just like a website, it should look professional and properly display who you are and what you do.
- Header. The header image is typically the best place to offer a positive sense and portrayal of your clinic’s brand. On most social networks (I.e., Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.), this is typically done through the posting of a large image. Therefore, it is important that you use a professional image with appropriate dimensions. [see Ultimate Guide for Social Media Dimensions by Hubspot]
- Profile Image. This is typically a smaller image, so using a logo is a common and appropriate practice here.
- Description. Clearly describe your physical therapy clinic and your primary services. (For example: sports rehab, neck & back pain, injury prevention, specialties, etc.)
- Contact information. This should be a no-brainer. (I.e., phone, email, address, etc.)
- Links. Don’t forget to have a link to your website!
2. Have a Goal.
Surprisingly, this is where most physical therapy clinics fail.
In my experience, most business owners understand that they need social media but fail to recognize why they need it. Just like any marketing strategy, starting with a goal will help you stay consistent and helps you determine if your efforts are successful.
Choosing a SINGLE goal for your efforts will make your strategy consistent and achievable. Below are some strategies and common social media goals.
- Increase Followers. Grow your channel with more followers, subscribers, friends, connections, etc.
- Brand Awareness. Get as many eyeballs as possible on your pages. (I.e., impressions, reach, views, etc.)
- Engagement. Encourage followers to take an engaging action such as commenting, sharing a post, retweeting, etc.
- Conversions. Encourage followers to buy or get additional information through sign-ups, lead generation, purchases, and so on.
3. Be Consistent.
It’s very difficult to achieve a goal without consistent actions. Here’s how to stay consistent:
Post consistently. Creating content on a regular basis is usually the biggest challenge for any content marketing campaign. I strongly recommend scheduling out a content calendar. That way you can keep yourself accountable through planned posts and topics.
Use consistent content. It’s OK to experiment here; however, it’s best to be consistent with your content after you gather a strong following.
- Channels. Typically, the right social media channel is the one where your audience is already hanging out. Yet, the right channel for you might only be what you’re best at. Facebook is a safe bet because it takes all types of content (text, image, video, etc.). However, it’s the most competitive channel. If you’re good at image/video content, then Instagram could be a better option for you.
- Voice. Do you have a certain writing style? Does your content have a sense of humor? A consistent voice can lead to more engagement.
- Content. Do you hate writing but enjoy video? The right type of content for you and your business is the content you like doing. Examples of content other than text include vlogging (video blogging), memes, infographics, interviews, etc.
4. Be Social.
Just posting content is not enough. Engaging with your audience is important for any social media goal.
- Respond. Always reply when someone messages you. Also, replying to comments is a great way to build a conversation.
- Share. Sharing relevant content from other sources is great for engagement. A trending topic in the news that is related to physical therapy is a great “sharing” opportunity for any clinic.
- Build Relationships. Social media is a great way to build relationships with other physical therapists. Joining or creating a Facebook or LinkedIn group is an excellent way to do this.
5. Buy Advertising.
With Facebook, your content will have limited impressions without some $$ behind it. Yet, the targeting abilities with Facebook are second to none, which allows your ideal audience to see your content and your ads.
Other social networks like Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn all have a paid advertising platform which is great for promotional content.
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