By Arian Fartash, OD
June 21, 2017
Social Media is a free marketing tool that creates a new form of revenue for your office. I’ve found that offices with successful social media pages bring in about 20 percent more revenue a year.
As a freelance optometrist, who works at various practices in California, and who also has social media expertise, with over 10,000 followers on Instagram, I have found that an average sale from a patient who has come into an office solely from social media marketing is around $750. Why would you want to miss the opportunity of that kind of revenue generation?
Many of your patients are on social media every day, and often multiple times per day. If you want to stay in touch with, and remind them, of why they should visit your practice at least once a year, what better marketing than posting intriguing messages to social media? Here are three types of posts with photos that captured the attention of current and potential patients on Instagram and Facebook. Each of these posts not only generated interest in one of the practices I freelance for, but also communicated a message about its services or products.
Ask a Question: Learn Which Products Your Patients Prefer
Posting a photo with a question underneath has been shown to increase engagement on social media pages. Followers are able to get into a discussion online about the question, and you’re able to better connect with them by writing responses. It also allows you to familiarize yourself with your followers and get to know what they do and don’t like for future posts, and also for your office.
For example, I posted the following photo of two frames and asked which people preferred. From the range of responses, I was not only able to get a good idea of who my followers are, but I was also able to figure out which frame to order for the practice’s inventory.
Interesting Eye Facts: Send a Wellness Message
Social media is about digital storytelling, so to pull your followers in, post an interesting, eye-grabbing photo that shares a cool eye fact, or has a large heading with a fact underneath. Doing this is a great way to educate your patients without overwhelming them with too many facts. Soon, you will be finding your followers more interested in visiting your page to learn more.
I posted the following pop culture photo of a cigarette to grab the attention of my followers. Once they visited the photo, there were facts posted about how smoking can affect the eyes. There were 56 responses underneath commenting on these facts! I was able to capture their attention, and able to educate followers on an important topic they may not have related to.
People Photos: Show Patients Loving Your Merchandise
According to research from Buffer Social, a photo of a face is 33 percent more likely to get likes, which in turn, means it can grab the attention of more potential followers and future patients. Posting photos of your real patients happy in their new glasses is ideal compared to posting photos of your equipment or office.
One word of caution: Be sure to have the patient sign a HIPAA marketing authorization form, stating that they have given you permission to use their photo and name for marketing purposes.
By showing off what matters, such as your happy patients, you are able to present positive images with your inventory and allow your potential new patients to see what you carry. Make sure the photo is taken with a white background to make the patient stand out.
Here is a well-curated patient photo posted by my practice. The photo displays a happy patient in her new frames from the office.
Arian Fartash, OD, is a freelance optometrist in California, who has also gained expertise in social media marketing. To contact: firstname.lastname@example.org