Social media is a powerful tool for medical practices, but how do you know if it’s working? Well, look at it from the point of view of a medical doctor. You are applying a treatment—social media—in order to keep your business healthy. You monitor that treatment with regular check-ups to see if it is working, and adjust accordingly.
This simple check-up will show you whether your application of social media is having the desired effect.
5 SIGNS THAT YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA PLAN IS WORKING TO BUILD YOUR BUSINESS
1) CHECK YOUR VANITY METRICS
Do more people like you? It’s social media, so the social signs are a good indicator of whether you are having impact. Watch your likes, favourites, shares and retweets. Monitor how many fans and followers you gain. Track them to see if they go up. Also, track how they respond to your content. If some things seem to work better than others, shift your content.
Increase in sales is always a good indicator. If you are seeing an increase in volume, then try to determine why. What factors may have contributed? Your social may be part of it. As patients check in, you can also asked what prompted them to come to you.
3) WEBSITE TRAFFIC
Up or down? Where is it coming from? There are wonderful tools for tracking your website traffic, chief among them Google analytics. It will give you a very clear picture of where website traffic is coming from, including your social media.
4) USE THE CHANNEL TOOLS
Is your social media success exceeding the norm? There are many incredibly detailed dashboards that provide excellent metrics in relation to average responses. For example, Facebook Insights will help you monitor and refine your strategy on Facebook.
5) KNOW WHAT PEOPLE SAYING ABOUT YOU
Quantitative metrics are good, but you also need qualitative. What are your patients saying about you? To find out, you’ll need to set up a monitoring system. When your name comes up, you’ll see what people are saying, and you’ll get the opportunity to engage in a two way conversation to either counter negative comments or build on positive comments. There are a number of excellent monitoring tools, both free and paid. To choose the one right for you, define your monitoring goals. A free service like Google Alerts might be ideal, or one like Hootsuite is useful for the broader social spectrum.
USE YOUR CHECK-UP TO BOOST YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA PROGRAM
Your social media program must be nimble enough to quickly evolve based on feedback from your check-up. The check-up metrics should be constantly monitored, and your social media program adjusted accordingly. Take the findings from your check-up, and refine the treatment.
1) BUILD ON YOUR STRENGTHS
Whatever is working, do more of it until it stops building ROI. Refine the strong performers to keep them fresh. Invest more until the return plateaus.
2) IF IT ISN’T WORKING, FIND OUT WHY
You may have the right medium, but ineffective content, or weak creative. Or you are on the wrong platform for your target market or message. Adjust and monitor. If you don’t know why it isn’t working, some of the social media channels have excellent information on their sites. Or you can engage outside consultants.
3) EXPLORE OTHER OPTIONS
Social media is constantly evolving. Keep your eyes on new opportunities. Watch your competitors to see what they are doing. Try a different platform.
4) BE PREPARED
When your social media is working and your traffic is building, make sure you are ready to turn traffic into sales with an effective financing program.
Finally, make sure your social media plan is part of a bigger integrated marketing strategy. Build it in conjunction with all your other tactics, like your website, your blog, your email marketing, your website, your client management program and your financing program. The synergy of a carefully considered and well executed strategy will magnify its strength considerably.