Instagram for dental marketing

Instagram, the social media site that has people share photos and videos boasts over 150 million accounts.  Some of those are your patients and some of your patients that have Instagram accounts have already shared their experience with their friends.  Those friends can become your clients if you properly use the site for dentist marketing.   In order to take advantage of the site, you are reminded of a number of things.  First and foremost, posts with pictures get more engagement than those with just text.  This means that pictures get more likes and shares, which, in turn, means that more people will see them than just your friends.  Friends of friends will also see them.   Another important fact to remember when using Instagram for dental marketing is that you should add a hashtag to every post.  This will enable more people to see it than just your friends.  Many Instagram users search for posts by hashtag.  Therefore, if they search for the ones that you commonly use, your most recent post will come up even if they are not connected to you in any way. Patients and prospective patients want to see what goes on behind the scenes.  The best pictures involve your staff, and yourself, in action, as well as the equipment you use.  You can, with permission, also post pictures of patients smiling after they complete their visit with you.  After all, people love to see pictures of themselves, friends, and family.  So you know those will be shared.   However, keep your posts upbeat.  Leave the bloody pictures to the horror movies.  Many people are afraid of the dentist and this may make them even more nervous.  Even if they are not afraid, pictures mid-procedure may be a turn-off.   You also need to keep the posts fun.  That is what social media started out as and is supposed to be.  Do not make posting to Instagram another chore that you and your staff have to complete.  Another positive to posting to Instagram is that you can link that account to your Facebook account and have the picture or video posted in both places at once.   Another thing you do to incorporate Instagram into your dentist marketing plan is to run a photo sharing contest.  Choose a hashtag and have people post pictures using it.  Then, pick one at random and award them a prize.  This is a great way to get your patients involved.   Other tips include limiting the number of posts to only a few a day, always reply to comments that are posted, as well as all tags, and print out some of the photos and put them on the walls in your office.  This could lead to more followers as they may see the picture, find out you have an Instagram account and then ask to follow you.   Whatever you decide to post, it is best to promote creatively and sparingly, if at all.  Also, leave the words to Twitter and Facebook and limit both filters and hashtags.