Social media is no longer a necessity when it comes to marketing your practice. It is a norm. Now more than ever, people are scouring your social media pages for more information about your practice before they make the decision to become a loyal patient.
But does this mean you need to be on every single social media platform?
The short answer is no.
In fact, being on every social media platform is not a smart strategy. The more efficient plan is to pick a platform that your target audience spends the most time on.
So if you’re wondering which social media platform is right for marketing your practice – keep on reading!
Which Social Media Platform is Right for Marketing Your Practice
The truth is there are endless options when it comes to social media platforms. There are even platforms you’ve never heard of. So let’s begin by talking about the big social media contenders:
Although there are other social media apps out there, these 6 platforms are the ones that the general public is more familiar with. But in order to pick the right platform for the practice, you need to know the user demographics of the platform. In other words, you need to know if your target audience is spending their time there.
So let’s dive into what you need to know about each social media platform.
When Instagram first hit the market, many people assumed that it was a teen-centric platform. But that is no longer the case. In 2022, the majority of Instagram users fall in the age group of 18 - 44 years old.
The consensus? The majority of Instagram users are Millennials and Gen Z. However, according to Hootsuite, Gen Xers is the fastest-growing group of users on the app.
As for Instagram’s gender demographics, 50.7% of the platform identify as male, and 49.3% of them identify as female.
Now that you have the numbers, let’s talk about the most important question – how many people turn to Instagram to make purchasing decisions?
Turns out, 81% of Instagram’s users turn to the app to research a brand or product before they decide to do business with them. And 80% of Instagram’s users claim that they use Instagram to make final purchasing decisions.
This means that Instagram has become essential for brands who want to gain the trust of their target audience.
Instagram is one of the best platforms to be on if your target audience are millennials, Gen Xers, and Gen Zers. To be quite honest, Instagram has become one of the most important social media platforms to have as most people turn to the app to find out more about the business they’re interested in.
To simply put, Instagram has become an essential part of digital marketing. And we recommend having a presence there regardless of who you’re targeting.
According to the Pew Research Center, users aged 65 and older are the platform’s fastest-growing demographic. However, the largest group of active users happen to be Millennials, with a reported estimated total of 84% of Millennials being active on the platform. And Gen X isn’t far behind with an estimated total of 74% of them being daily users.
But something to note when it comes to Facebook is that organic reach is significantly down. This is due in part to the increase in audience since 2004. In turn, it’s become way more competitive when it comes to capturing your target audience’s attention.
This means the most effective way to get seen and discovered on Facebook is via Facebook ads.
If you’re looking for organic growth, Facebook is not going to be your best bet. We suggest starting a Facebook page for your practice where patients can leave reviews. You can also repurpose content from your Instagram to your Facebook page.
However, if you’re running a promotion or an incredibly enticing deal, Facebook ads is a great way to generate more targeted leads.
So if you have more money for ad spend, Facebook is a great channel to focus your marketing efforts.
LinkedIn hasn’t gained as much attention as other social media platforms, such as Instagram, Facebook, and even Pinterest when it comes to marketing your practice. However, it should not be ignored.
With over 675 million users worldwide, it still holds a lot of potential for you to get in front of the right eyes.
Similar to Facebook, you can set up a personal profile and a profile for your dental practice to market your services. But with LinkedIn, your approach is going to be a little different.
For starters, you want to be well-versed in SEO practices such as keywords. This helps you by being more searchable on LinkedIn. You’ll also want to focus your marketing efforts on your personal profile by connecting with prospective patients through talking about your qualifications, background, and practice culture.
LinkedIn also offers special features to help build trust with your clientele, such as endorsements that highlight your expertise, as well as recommendations from your peers and existing patients.
LinkedIn isn’t a platform that we recommend pouring all your marketing resources into. However, if you already have an existing LinkedIn profile for your personal use, why not beef it up a little with your credentials, qualifications, and endorsements from your peers and patients?
This can only help you in the long run.
While we don’t recommend focusing all your marketing efforts and attention on LinkedIn when it comes to reaching new patients, it’s a great idea to make sure that your profile is optimized in the case that someone does find you on the platform.
Believe it or not, Pinterest isn’t just a platform for soon-to-be brides. In fact, adding it to this list of social media platforms isn’t entirely accurate.
Pinterest operates more like a search engine (e.g. Google) than a social media platform. In other words, Pinterest users are on the platform exclusively looking for solutions to a problem.
But unlike Google, Pinterest calls in a very specific demographic. Not only is their user base mostly female (75% to be exact), but 80% of mothers in the US use the platform on a regular basis. Out of that 80%, 30% of them come from suburban areas with the median age of a Pinterest user being 40 years old.
If you’re a pediatric dental practice and your target audience includes mothers, then don’t make the mistake of overlooking Pinterest.
And if you neeed more convincing on why you should be on Pinterest, here’s a stat for you:
90% of weekly Pinners use Pinterest to make purchasing decisions.
Add that to the fact that Pinterest ads is incredibly cost efficient and you have a great and affordable social media marketing tool to reach your target market.
We have a great episode from our Monday Morning Marketing series featuring Dr. Nathan Coughlin that’ll walk you through the benefits of being on Pinterest.
TikTok… the social media platform that seemingly came out of nowhere and soon took the world by storm. This short-form video sharing app holds so much potential and it’s a great outlet for dental practices who want to flex their creativity.
People tend to think of the platform as an outlet for teens and tweens. However, the stats says otherwise. While 20% of it’s users fall between the ages of 10 - 19 years old, a good percentage of them fall between the ages of 20 - 50. Here’s the breakdown:
- Age 20 - 29: 22.4%
- Age 30 - 39: 21.7%
- Age 40 - 49: 20.3%
- Age 50+: 11%
In other words - don’t be so quick to write it off as just another app for children.
TikTok is where Instagram was in the early 2010s. In other words, if you ever thought “I wish I worked on my Instagram back when the app first launched,” you shouldn’t be snoozing on TikTok.
However, creating content for the platform involves a little more creativity and media knowledge. For example, you’ll need to know (or hire someone who knows) how to film and edit short-form videos that are engaging.
Plus, you’ll want to be able to keep up with trends since TikTok is a fast-paced platform.
The key to marketing effectively on TikTok is to remain educational, entertaining, and inspiration. We have a blog post all about how you can do this so be sure to give it a read.
Last but not least, let’s talk about YouTube. You might associate the platform with vlogs, makeup tutorials, or even travel videos. However, YouTube is a powerful platform that can benefit your dental practice as well.
Through an effective and optimized video, you can attract new leads to your dental practice. Not to mention, video marketing is a creative way to set your dental practice apart.
YouTube is also the 2nd most popular social media network worldwide, ranking right behind Facebook. It also sees 2.1 billion monthly active users. If that isn’t enough to convince you, 62% of internet users around the world use YouTube on a daily basis.
The key to using YouTube as a successful marketing tool is to be aware of the different types of video content that you can publish in order to capture your target audience’s attention. For example, you can create educational videos that teaches your audience something. You can also create testimonials, before and after videos, Q&As, office tours, vlogs and behind-the-scenes, and interviews with a team member.
Creating video content is time consuming but when done well, you’ll see a great ROI. Just be sure to switch things up, keep your videos interesting and engaging, and learn some SEO to optimize your YouTube videos for discoverability and searchability.
Choosing the Social Media Platform that is Right for Marketing Your Practice
Ultimately, each social media platform offers endless opportunities for you to grow your practice. But it’s all about working smarter, not harder.
So instead of being on every single social media platform all at once, you’ll want to pick the platforms that:
- You know your target audience is on
- Aligns with the type of content you enjoy making
For instance, if you don’t have the time to dedicate yourself to long-form videos, YouTube won’t be a great choice for you. On the other hand, if short-form videos intimidate you, TikTok will feel very overwhelming and stressful.
The point being you want to select 2-3 of these platforms and make sure you can dedicate your full attention to it and be consistent with it.