3 Unexpected Ways People Choose Dentists on Social Media
Think social media’s just fluff for your dental practice? Think again! 🚀
In our latest eye-opening video, Shannon and Dominique unveil 3 astonishing ways patients are choosing their dentists on social media. Get ready for insights that could:
- Help you dominate a majority of the market.
- Cement your status as a thought leader.
- Potentially boost your treatment acceptance rate by 5-10%.
You’ll be rethinking your entire social strategy after this!
Ready to revolutionize the way you connect with patients? Check out the video or read the transcript below.
Shannon:: I’m going rogue here. I just want to talk real talk. I’ve grabbed our campaign strategist, Dominique, to discuss social media because I think it sucks, to put it bluntly. But I really want to understand it. Many of my doctors come to me, Dominique, weighed down by the necessity of social media. They know they have to do it, but I want to understand what they truly need to do with social media, especially since it looks a lot different in 2024 compared to the past five, seven, or even ten years. There are three different ways people should pay attention to social media. Today, I want to talk about one.
Dominique: What if I talk about all three? Has Nikko gone rogue too? Who knows?
Shannon:: Let’s go. Give me the lowdown.
Dominique: Right, so about social media… it can seem airy-fairy, and you wonder what’s actually happening. Honestly, it’s not just about platforms, but understanding the psychological processes people go through before making a purchasing decision and how social media impacts them. The top of the funnel, for example, is where content and videos reach new potential audiences and leads, such as patients. These are people who might not know who you are yet and are in the early stages of making a decision. They might have recently moved or are considering a dentist, or they have questions that need answers. That’s the first segment. Does that make sense?
Shannon:: Absolutely. It’s important for doctors to lightly understand these segments to strategize effectively.
Dominique: Exactly. In dental social media, the first segment involves creating valuable content. By valuable, I mean content where you’re sharing your expertise and personality, letting people see your heart and vibe, and answering their questions. Think about where the consumer is at and the questions they have about services. What are their options? For example, regarding dental implants, implant-retained dentures, or how often they should go in for cleaning. There are ways you can provide value to the marketplace. This content can be delivered through ads or organically.
Shannon:: Tell me, what percentage of people on social media are influenced by content from dentists?
Dominique: When you look at how many people value videos, it’s about 96 percent. They say that watching a video helps them make a purchasing decision. People spend an average of three hours a day on social media, scrolling and watching videos. That’s significant. Three hours a day. And we’ve seen a trend across all businesses, including dental, that where the eyeballs are, that’s where the money goes. Where the attention is, that’s where people’s wallets open.
Shannon:: Speaking from a dentist’s perspective, it’s not just about money. It’s about prioritizing their oral health and making a commitment to take care of themselves. That takes some effort because they’ll put other priorities first, like a house remodel or buying a new car. So, top of the funnel is about breaking down and educating them on these higher-ticket oral health services
Shannon:: I’m going rogue here. I just like to talk real talk. I’ve grabbed our campaign strategist Dominique to discuss social media because, frankly, I think social media sucks. But I really want to know because so many of my doctors come to me, Dominique, feeling burdened by the necessity of social media. I want to understand what they really need to do with social media, especially considering how different it looks in 2024 compared to the past five, seven, even ten years. I know there are three different aspects of social media that people should pay attention to. Today, I just want to talk about one.
Dominique: What if I talk about all three? Is Nico gone rogue? Who knows?
Shannon:: Let’s go. Give me the lowdown.
Dominique: About social media, yeah. It can seem airy-fairy, and you’re left wondering, what actually is happening? To be honest, we’re not just looking at platforms, but at the psychological processes people go through before making a purchasing decision. How is social media impacting them? The first level, the top of the funnel, is where content and videos reach new potential audiences, leads, or patients. These are people who might not know who you are, likely in the early stages of making a decision, maybe having just moved, considering a dentist, or having questions that need answers. That’s the first segment, okay? Does that make sense?
Shannon:: Yeah, absolutely. I think for the doctors, understanding these different segments, even lightly, makes sense. Then we know how to move forward.
Dominique: You have that first segment where dental social media plays into, right, by creating valuable content. Valuable content means sharing your expertise, your personality, letting people see your heart and vibe, answering questions. Think about where the consumer is, what questions they have about this service, what their options are. For example, dental implants, implant-retained dentures – people don’t really know which one to choose. There are ways to provide value to the marketplace through content in social media, delivered through ads or organically.
Shannon:: Tell me about the percentage of people on social media really looking at content from dentists.
Dominique: When you look at how many people want videos, it’s 96 percent. They say watching a video helps them make a purchasing decision. On average, people spend three hours a day on social media, scrolling and watching videos. That’s crazy. Three hours a day. This trend is seen across all businesses, and dental is not immune. Where the eyeballs are, that’s where the money goes.
Shannon:: And just to speak to that a bit, because you’re in marketing and always thinking that way. But for dentists, who are service providers, it’s about prioritizing their oral health. It’s a commitment they have to make, and they often put other priorities first, like a house remodel or a new car. So, in terms of the top of the funnel, it’s about educating them on these higher-ticket oral health services and helping them see this as a priority, right?
Dominique: Exactly. But what you’re talking about, the prioritization, is actually more middle of the funnel. It’s about becoming the go-to person, the authority. When they’re ready, you want to be the dentist they choose because you’ve provided value and established trust. People purchase based on the value they anticipate receiving. The key is to provide enough value upfront so that when they’re ready to move forward, they feel confident in their choice. In marketing, every digitally-focused small business, including coaching businesses and financial agencies, is doing this. They understand the impact on their bottom line.
Shannon:: So, for dentistry, what’s the percentage of dentists actually embracing this?
Dominique: For dentists, almost none. Dentists are generally afraid of marketing. You can find generic, unbranded content, but almost no dentist is producing valuable content around high-ticket services. I challenge any dentist or office manager to find a local dentist who’s producing such content. It’s rare.
Shannon:: It’s like 1 to 5 percent. That’s so small. I’m trying to direct doctors on how to best use their time and resources in social media. Considering only 10 percent of their competition might be doing this, it’s a huge opportunity to capture a significant market share in a competitive landscape.
Dominique: Like you said, the focus is where people’s attention is. It’s not on billboards or banners. If you want to reach people, it’s through social media. For dentists specifically, I’d say 80 percent of the market share is open for the taking. Ads are one thing, but let’s go beyond that.
Shannon:: We want that market share.
Dominique: Let’s grab it. We’re talking about producing valuable content, and it doesn’t have to be highly produced. It’s about being genuine. Are you sharing your expertise? Do you show that you care about your patients? Most doctors do. They have a story, a reason why they’ve persevered through tough times, and are still serving their patients. It’s about sharing that story and the expertise they’ve already accumulated.
Shannon:: And I think there are many barriers in dentistry, like fear and cost. And you corrected me earlier about the top of the funnel. Could you tell me a bit about the middle of the funnel?
Dominique: Right, so that’s more top of the funnel. People who don’t necessarily know who you are. Now, let’s consider scenario B. This involves someone who has been referred to you, maybe by another person, or through your other marketing efforts like paid ads, organic SEO, and so forth. Whenever people are going to check you out, whether it’s through referrals or otherwise, they’ll go to your website and your social media. They want to see if you seem likable and legitimate. If your Facebook looks outdated, with only 25 followers and a post from last May, it looks unprofessional. It’s a reflection of your practice, just like your banner or logo outside. People are looking to see if you are an authority, if you are who you say you are. A few scrolls down your social media should tell them that.
Shannon:: They’re looking for someone current, with some technology, talking about relevant things. They want to confirm that you are who you say you are. That’s it, right? They’re not there to be entertained.
Dominique: Exactly. You don’t need to be a TikTok doctor, posting content every day. That’s not the goal. Most people don’t even want to follow their dentist. It’s about using social media as a tool for reassurance and legitimacy. We’re looking for shortcuts in our decision-making, so a few key posts on topics like dentures, smile makeovers, or before-and-afters, can be enough. They just want to see how likable and authoritative you are. Maintaining a decent, current presence is key, not posting every day.
Shannon:: Right, keeping a decent, consistent flow.
Dominique: Because, ultimately, as you mentioned before, people are desperate for connection, especially after COVID. They’re looking for genuine interactions, not just services being pushed at them. They want a connection.
Shannon:: Exactly. It’s the smallest things that can create that connection. Anything else on the middle of the funnel?
Dominique: About the funnel? I would just say that having those videos and that content allows you to create a connection and break through the noise a little bit.
Shannon:: Break through the noise. That is valuable. That’s what social media should look like in 2024, just a little bit. It’s not too overwhelming every day.
Dominique: Right, from the three segments we’re looking at, this is the one you kind of have to do. It’s not just about getting ahead and generating new patients. It’s about not losing market share.
Shannon:: Oh my God, yeah, that’s powerful.
Dominique: And the bonus is that it also aligns with your audience. When we put out videos saying, ‘Here’s who we are, who we’re helping, how we’re helping, what we can do,’ we attract more people who turn out to be great clients.
Shannon:: They connect with our message as they hear it.
Dominique: Right. We also attract fewer of those who would just be a paycheck, a sale. We all know those clients, those patients who end up costing more in time, materials, energy, team morale.
Shannon:: That’s become way more important for dental practices now, as they have thinner teams. The more they can enjoy the people coming in, the easier the new patient experience is because they feel like they know them from videos or Instagram. Figuring out how to invest in this or do it would definitely be a positive.
Dominique: Yeah, so about the bottom of the funnel, we started talking about attracting the right type of patients, people selecting themselves in or out. The bottom of the funnel is for patients who are ready to move forward with high-ticket services. They’re looking for the right person, more information, trust. These are the ones digging deeper.
Shannon:: And if they’re digging deeper, they’re looking for bigger services.
Dominique: Absolutely. They’re serious and ready to move forward. If you post a 10-minute video, they’d actually watch the whole thing. So, how does social media play a role here? It’s about short-form, educational, and value-driven videos and content. You’re confirming your authority on the topic. If someone is looking for an implant dentist, they’ll check your Instagram for relevant content. It’s not just what you post, but also how you present it. It’s about providing content aligned with their position in the buyer’s journey. What information do they need? What trust points are important?
Shannon:: Serving them is important.
Dominique: Exactly. Every time we’ve invested a few hours a month to create content with the intention of serving, it leads to more and better sales calls. The clients who come in are more ready to close.
Shannon:: Well, I have to confess, I really hated social media. I didn’t want to do it and fought it for years. But then, it became about being of service, which felt good once I got comfortable with it. Talking to people who thanked me for putting out educational content really shifted my perspective. It’s been 25 years taking care of dental practices, and this adds something new. In dentistry, it can become a daily grind, but being a thought leader and reigniting why you’re a care provider can enhance the relationship with patients. Getting past the notion that social media sucks and that creating videos is hard is a significant shift, but it gets easier.
Dominique: Yes, that connection is crucial. There’s a barrier at first, but remember, you’ve been in this business for 25 years. Even for doctors practicing for over 10 years, it’s about leveraging what you’re already doing. You’ve spent countless hours on continuing education and learning – just putting a bit of that in videos can make a difference. They need to show what sets them apart from the competition, not just aim for filling seats but attracting the right patients.
Shannon:: That’s a great point. They invest so much in their technology and education. How will people know unless they see or feel it through their content? It’s about more than just numbers; it’s about attracting the right patients.
Dominique: Exactly. And when making big decisions, people need multiple touchpoints before they buy. Social media adds those touchpoints, building trust. When offering high-ticket treatment plans, patients are more likely to agree if they trust you, rather than needing a second opinion or delaying. Social media plays a key role in building that trust.
Shannon:: So, give me a synopsis of what social media should look like in 2024.
Dominique: See, social media is ultimately about content creation and videos. It’s about creating valuable, educational content that allows people to meet you, feel you, hear your voice, and provide value by answering questions and giving contextual explanations of how things work, aiding them in their buyer’s journey. It can help you generate new audiences by becoming a thought leader in your industry, which is especially needed in dentistry. It also enhances the effectiveness of your current marketing efforts, including referrals and paid ads, because when people check you out and see an aligned brand, it makes your other marketing more productive and cost-effective.
Shannon:: The other marketing becomes more productive and less expensive.
Dominique: Exactly. You get a better ROI. On the third level, when you create content and videos that showcase your authority and expertise, you’re speaking to those ready to move forward with high-ticket services. You build trust before they even walk through the door. So, when they do come in, they’re almost pre-closed.
Shannon:: I love it. And can we say social media sucks, but we have to do it?
Dominique: Absolutely. Nobody wants to be a TikTok star, but we’ve got you.
Shannon: We’ve got a plan. Thank you, Dominique.
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