These days it’s expected that if you run a business of any kind, you’re on at least one social media platform. Especially since the pandemic, clients and potential clients increasingly expect to be able to reach businesses whenever they want to and by phone, email, text, and social media too.
You can’t afford not to be on social media, and while it does give you another marketing task to add to the list, there are a lot of advantages of being on social media too.
Shorten the learning curve with our social media tips for optometrists.
Why is being on social media valuable?
Social media has become a vital part of any marketing plan and here are just a few reasons why:
1. People expect your business to be active on social media
Many people now use social media to search for businesses and check out the ones they find to see which looks the best. That means you can’t afford not to be there. Don’t give your competitors a head start by either not having a presence at all or by neglecting the one you have.
2. People rely heavily on peer validation
It’s natural for people to ask around and talk to their friends and family when they’re looking for a new optometrist. They want a great recommendation and the reassurance that they know someone who had a good experience.
Failing that, their next step is often to go straight to social media to look at optometrists in their area and check out their social pages and any reviews they have. They want to see that you have a busy, informative, and helpful page with lots of engagement from happy clients, and they want to see recent great reviews.
That reason alone tells you that you can’t afford to leave out social media from your marketing.
3. People use social media platforms as a discovery & research platform, just like Google
Google is no longer the only place people search for businesses. They increasingly use social media platforms to find the right business and to look at posts, other people’s comments, and the interaction and engagement on the page.
People also tend to be led by emotion too, so they’ll go for the optometrist that feels right to them: The one they like the look of best, and the one that makes them feel comfortable.
4. People want an insider view into what their experience will be like with your business
The way you respond to your audience on social media can give insight into your business and what it’s like to be a client. The more you can post helpful information that your audience wants to see, and the more you respond back to them, like their posts, comment back, and say “thank you” for compliments, the better new visitors to your page will feel. They’ll assume that you’re like that in person and if they’re happy with what they see, that could be the difference between them booking with you or booking with your competitor.
Social media is also very visual so it’s the perfect opportunity for you to post plenty of high-quality images showing the inside of your optometry clinic. People love to see smiling staff and a welcoming interior. Video can also work really well, with a tour of your premises, or showing off your equipment.
5. People want to see results and how others have found success with your business
Before and after shots can work for an optometrist if you’ve changed glasses that didn’t suit your client for beautiful new ones that make them look amazing. If you’ve got those, post them often on social media. They are really convincing for anyone looking to change their glasses and get a better look.
Obviously, you will need your clients’ permission before you post.
The other way to do this is to use other people’s content by asking permission to share your clients’ own images of them wearing their new glasses and smiling happily. That’s great social proof.
Proven social media tips for optometrists
We’ve already given you some ideas to improve your social media presence, but here are our top social media tips for optometrists:
1. Post consistently and share visually appealing images / videos
The main thing to focus on with social media is consistency. You can’t leave your social profiles for weeks without posting and then post an offer and expect lots of people to respond and take up the offer. What you need is regular, informative, and interesting posts each week, showing your brand voice and your business personality.
The way to do this more easily, without it becoming a chore, is to create a content calendar and plan out the next three months in advance. That way, it’s easy to write ahead if you need to when you have more time, you have time to prep if you’re doing videos, and you’re never left staring at a blank page and wondering what to write. Your content calendar really is a great time saver.
People do respond well to videos and quality images. As we said above, they like to get an idea of what your practice is like before they visit and they want to see what you can offer. Take the time to add great images and interesting videos to your page feed.
2. Treat platforms differently; each has their own algorithm and people use social media platforms differently
Every platform really is different, with its own algorithms and best times of day for posting. Look at your audience and where they like to hang out and choose your platforms based on where they are and where you can post the right types and lengths of content.
Get to know your platforms well and look at your statistics. You’ll be able to see what topics people most enjoy, when posts are best made, and what content types go down well. Don’t guess at these and continue on with something that’s not working. Use your stats wisely to inform what content you create and in what formats.
3. Respond to comments and questions
When posting on your page it really is important to take the time to talk to people, engage with them, and respond to them. The idea is to build a community of people who enjoy your content and like what you do, so it’s much easier to gain leads and to get people on your mailing list.
The other reason to do this is that when new people visit your page, it’s important that they see a vibrant, interesting page that’s full of engagement and looks like there’s a lot going on. You have to create a great first impression for new clients.
4. Educate your community
Your social media platforms are great places to educate and inform your audience. You can talk about eye care, glasses care, and an endless range of topics around optometry and show them just how much of an expert you are.
You don’t have to stick to just posts though. You can run live Q&As and Ask Me Anything events or you could film videos talking people through the eye test and your equipment. You can also educate your audience by answering their questions and comments, which also improves engagement.
When they next come to choose an optometrist, it’s so much more likely to be you if they understand how good you are and how much you care about your clients.
5. Be authentic
One excellent way to stand out from the competition is to just be authentically yourself. There’s only you who can be you and that alone can help you differentiate your business from the pack. People buy from people. They don’t buy from faceless, personality-less businesses. If they like you, they will buy from you, and they can only get to like you if you are fully and authentically you when you post on social media.
It’s also the right thing to do. People want to buy from honest, genuine, ethical businesses and that approach really does come across on social media. Don’t pretend to be someone that you’re not. Just be authentic and real. It’s far easier and you’ll attract more of the right audience for you too.
6. Set goals and be strategic with your time spent on nurturing your social media presence
Social media can be a huge time suck if you let it, so it’s important that you set goals and decide what you want to get out of it. You can then plan your time on your platforms and ensure you don’t waste time doing things that don’t get you further toward your goals.
Work out your goals and then you can create a plan to achieve them. You can update your content calendar with the types and topics of content that will help you achieve your goals and check your statistics regularly to make sure you are achieving what you want.
It also helps to schedule posts in advance so that you don’t have to be on social media all the time. You’ll still have to keep up with responding and reacting to people’s posts, but scheduling can free up a lot of time for you and let you get ahead with your social posting.
Attend a Surefire Local Marketing Platform demo
Social media marketing can be a lot of work, but Surefire Local’s business intelligence marketing software can help you save time and effort.
With our professional marketing platform, you can plan your social media, post to your platforms, and schedule posts in advance, without leaving your dashboard.
And you can manage your most important online marketing activities all within one platform. Save even more time by running the whole of your marketing from our platform. You can manage your content marketing, email marketing, paid ads, getting and responding to reviews, updating your directories and Google Business Profile, and so much more.
You don’t need multiple tools and just as many logins, and it’s easy to generate reports covering every aspect of your marketing in detail or an overview that shows you everything.
Gain deep insights into how your marketing is performing and easily adjust where you need to improve.
Our marketing software makes life so much easier, so why not book a demo today and see how we can help?