Social media can make or break your practice. If you do it right, you can brand your practice as a company your customers want to do business with. Learn more with these tips.
TOP 5 biggest social media mistakes vets make:
- Not Having Original Content. You’re in the veterinary world. Your business involves the cutest and most loved content on social media —CUTE PETS! People LOVE seeing photos and videos of pets and of you! You help pet owners’ babies and are cared about by them. They want to see what you’ve been up to, too! Don’t be shy! But make sure you have the pet owner’s permission before posting their pet’s photo on social media. A photo release form can help with that.
- Not Having Interactive Content on Posts. After Facebook’s announcement earlier this year that they wanted to better a user’s experience by showing more posts from friends, it caused a big change to business pages with getting organic post exposure. A great way to reach out to people who follow you is to create interactive posts. This involves asking the audience a question in hopes of reactions and comments.
Let’s say a dog stopped by that was a unique breed. Take a photo or video and say, “Stella stopped in today! Can you guess her breed?” The more comments you receive, the more exposure you’ll get on that post. Even people that are friends of the commenters that haven’t liked your practice’s page could see the post on their News Feed! Another interactive post is having pet owners share photos or videos of their pets in the comments. “What’s your pet up to now? Share a photo with us!” People love to show you their pets. Be sure to react or comment back to their comments!
- Not Being Responsive to Your Audience. We live in a world now where we can get answers by just searching or texting. Sure, people are still going to call the practice to schedule an appointment or ask a question, but there are many that are more comfortable texting their question to your page. They may ask you in a post, in a comment, or a direct message. Reply to them when you can! Facebook even shows on your page how responsive you are to your audience when it comes to replying to direct messages.
- Not Spending Ad Money. Are you running a promotion at your practice that you really want to get out there? Hoping for new clients? Spending a few dollars on a boosted post or creating an ad campaign can help! Boosted posts and ads that are targeted to the right audience can get your practice exposure from pet owners who may not have even known you were around! Make sure your boosted post or ad is eye–catching and to the point.
- Not Knowing Your Neighbors. Want to network with the neighborhood? Join your local Facebook Groups! Almost every town/city now has at least one Facebook group that you can join where you can see what’s going on around you. You’ll have to post on a Group as yourself, and not as the practice, but it’s a great way for others nearby to find out what you’re all about.
3 Proven ways to curb negative nellies:
- Respond & Acknowledge. It may sound easy, but the biggest thing a business owner should do is respond to and acknowledge the bad review. Keep things short and simple. Do not try to put the blame on the pet owner. It’s actually normal to have some bad reviews, but how you respond or if you respond will be how you are judged by new pet owners looking for a vet practice.
- Direct Communication. You should always welcome the opportunity to speak directly to the pet owner, but the plan is to try and not have a back–and–forth chain for everyone to read online. Invite them to call the practice and ask for someone specific. Let them know you are waiting for their call because their experience and pet are very important to your practice. Demonstrate the sense of urgency in your online response.
- Push for Positive. You need to really work on having people leave you good reviews. Think about it…when you go to a business and it was a nice experience, you don’t walk out and say, “I’m going to leave a review of how happy I am.” But, when you have an unpleasant experience in a business, you say, “I’m going to leave a review of how unhappy I am”.
Your front desk needs to capitalize on all of those nice experiences to help combat some of those sour ones. If the front team doesn’t feel comfortable asking, put a sticker on invoices or a sign by check-out requesting pet owners to share their experience at your practice. Most loyal, tech-savvy clients will gladly take the second to share…especially if they know it will help your practice. +