Facebook can be a very effective means of reaching out to and engaging with current, former, and potential patients–if you go about it the right way. The problem is, with all of the Facebook profiles out there, it’s hard to get your page noticed in the first place.
Fortunately, just a few quick fixes can make all the difference in getting more people to find, like, and engage with your page. Have you done these 7 things to improve your Facebook page? If not, we highly suggest that you do!
1. Use brand elements on your page.
More than likely, your practice has a logo that you use within your office and on your website and marketing materials. It’s important to carry that over onto your Facebook page to establish brand recognition. If your practice has several doctors, it’s probably a good idea to have the logo as your profile image; a logo will come across more clearly in a profile image than a group shot of the doctors. If you are in solo practice, you can use your image as the profile picture, but you should still incorporate your logo (if you have one) into the profile in some way. The banner image is a good place to do this.
2. Add a banner photo.
The banner photo is right at the top of your profile, so it’s very noticeable when you leave it blank. Since it’s one of the first things people see when they view your profile, you don’t want to leave it unattended. Facebook banner photos can be a bit tricky due to the dimensions of the image (851 px wide by 315 px tall). You also need to take into account that your profile photo will cover some of the banner image. For this reason, try to make sure any text is right-aligned so it isn’t hidden behind your profile image. If you’re not sure what to do for your cover image, check out this list of best practices.
3. Only use high-quality images.
When visitors view your practice’s Facebook page, you don’t want them to see fuzzy, distorted images. In a way, this goes along with your branding and the image you want to portray to your audience. Think about your favorite brands–you most likely won’t see distorted images on their Facebook pages. Having clear, high-quality images portrays a certain level of quality about your practice. On the other hand, distorted images can look sloppy; it won’t necessarily send patients running from your practice, but it could say something about your attention to detail.
4. Get a custom URL.
If you stick with the default URL for your Facebook page, you’ll get a long string of random letters and numbers that aren’t very easy to share. If you want patients to follow your page, they need to know where to find you. Facebook does have a search feature, but it’s notoriously unhelpful in most of the time. The best way to help your patients find you on Facebook is to give them the direct URL. By customizing your URL, you can include your practice name in the URL. It’s much shorter, and much easier to remember. For example, our custom Facebook URL is www.facebook.com/p3inbound. It’s short enough for people to type into a web browser, and it’s also short enough to put on our marketing materials, should we choose to do so.
5. Make sure all the important information is filled out.
Facebook presents another opportunity to help your patients find out the basics about your practice. Try to fill out as much information as you can, but definitely include your address, phone number, hours of operation, and a link to your website. Even better, take the time to completely fill out the About section of your profile. Give your page visitors more information about what your practice has to offer. Sure, several of your page fans may be current or former patients, but you might have people come across your page who are not patients. This is your chance to grab the attention of those people, in case they need your services in the future.
6. Add some photos.
Since you are a medical practice, your page fans will likely be looking for helpful information in your posts. However, a Facebook timeline full of nothing but text is not very interesting or eye-catching. Try to find images that correspond with the content of your posts, or post some “around the office” photos to break up all of the text. Research has shown that Facebook posts containing photos are more likely to be shared than any other type of post. If you’re looking to get more engagement out of your Facebook page, photos are the way to go.
7. Sponsor a post on occasion.
Sponsoring posts helps you increase the visibility of those posts. You don’t have to sponsor every post, but you should try sponsoring one every now and then to increase your chances of it being seen. Never sponsor content that you’ve shared from somewhere else; only sponsor your own posts or things you share from your website or blog. If you have a particular article or announcement that you want to promote, sponsoring that post is a quick and easy way to make sure that more people see it.
Need some help with making your practice’s Facebook page the best it can be? We offer social media branding and management services on an individual basis. Give us a call if you’d like a quote–we’re happy to help!
Now you’re all set to start communicating and building trust with patients on Facebook! But what should you post? Check out the next article in our series, 8 Ways Your Practice Can Build Trust on Facebook, for ideas.
If you’d like to start at the beginning of our Facebook series, click here.