Using Social Media To Win Your Patient’s Hearts and Minds

by Meghan Kelly

Feb 14, 2024

Posted in Services

Formada Co-Founder, Meghan Kelly, is pictured in black and white, surrounded by a colorful illustrated design. She smiles to the left of the camera's view.

Do Health and Medical Practices Need Social Media?

In our experience, health and medical practices greatly benefit from having a presence on social media. 

It might feel like, with all of the other things that your practice is responsible for, that including social media into your list of to-dos is a bit overwhelming. And it can be, without the right plan in place. 

But with the right combination of goals, strategy, execution, and accountability, your practice’s social media presence can become your strongest vehicle for showcasing your culture, expertise, and approach to care. 

Here are a few tips to help you create your ideal social media strategy!

Set Goals

Even if this seems a little obvious, you’d be surprised by how many businesses forget this critical step. What is it precisely that you want your organic social media content to do for your practice? 

Create brand awareness? Are you trying to drive traffic to your website? Or are you simply looking to grow your number of followers? 

You need to be very clear-eyed about your intended goals and how you’ll measure your success. Not every effort is designed to help you quickly book appointments. Assess accordingly!

Create A Content Calendar

Another trap that many businesses fall into is scrambling at the last minute to create content for their social media. 

This can be easily avoided by creating a content calendar. The benefit of a content calendar is multi-fold. One, it removes the aforementioned scrambling, but it also gives you a reason to be thoughtful about what types of content you want to put into the world. 

For instance, you want to create a video how-to on one of your most-discussed procedures? That means you need production time. 

Thoughtful, relevant content takes time to produce. Having a calendar helps you identify the different themes your practice can explore, while also giving you the opportunity to work ahead of schedule. 

Additionally, if something timely or newsworthy happens related to your practice’s work, you can adjust your schedule to address this topic, while having that already produced content in the bank. 

Planning a head pays off!

Appoint A Lead

Having a point person lead your social media efforts will help you avoid those, “I thought you were gonna do it” situations that can sometimes arise. 

Presumably, your practice doesn’t have a social media manager on the payroll, nor do you have your own marketing specialist. This means that you’re assigning them tasks outside of their normal duties. 

Setting goals, creating the content calendar, generating content and publishing posts, interacting with your audience and assessing performance takes time and effort. 

In fairness to them and in the spirit of achieving your social media goals, consider how you can compensate them for this extra work. (And it is work!) 

Their success will do wonders for your practice. 

Focus On A Single Platform 

This is about not spreading yourself too thin. It’s also about finding the right space where your patients’ needs and interests align with the structure of the platform. 

For instance, if you’re looking for a simple way to showcase what’s happening in the practice, provide updates, and share success stories, then Facebook or Instagram might be the right fit. 

If you’re most interested in creating how-tos, sharing medical breakthroughs, or establishing authority in your specialty, then TikTok is likely a better choice, 

Are you focused on recruiting? Then LinkedIn is the right fit for you. 

Choose one platform. Get really good at it. And if it makes sense to expand, then do it while making your primary platform the heart of your social media strategy. 

Show Your Culture

Medical and healthcare practices can be scary places to those of us who don’t spend every day working there. 

Social media is a great way to feature the team, communicate your approach to care, and cultivate a comfortable, people-centric aspect of your brand. 

Give folks the opportunity to ask questions. Post content that offers emotional connection. Make people feel safe, supported, and even excited about choosing you for their care. 

Flex Your Expertise

People want their choices validated. 

They want to know that their care is in the right hands. This is where you can cite studies, link to medical journals, talk about breakthroughs and advancements in the field, or even create videos that validate information or debunk misinformation. 

At the end of the day, what this content does is communicate to the end-user that you have their best interest at heart, and that you’re committed to providing the best possible information and care to everyone in your community. 

Tell Them What To Expect

Remember when I said that sometimes medical and healthcare settings can be scary for some? Well, creating “What To Expect” content is the perfect antidote. 

Give your audience resources as to how they can streamline the check-in process, where to find paperwork on your website, even a tour of your facility, its parking, and what an appointment will look like. 

It shows that you care and that you’re looking at things through their eyes. 

Tell Patient Success Stories

Now, of course, we don’t mean in specifics. We’re not encouraging you to violate HIPAA. 

But what we are doing is giving you permission to toot your own horn and talk about how good your team is at providing care and helping people live their best lives. 

People want to know that they’re going to be okay. Provide them with stats, put on your storytelling hat and paint a picture for them — give them a reason to feel secure in your care!

Team Announcements

Do you have a new hire? Is someone celebrating a work anniversary? Did a team member earn a new certification? Has the entire team completed annual training?

Then tell everyone on your social media! People can only feel like they’re a part of a community if they know the people in their community. 

What’s more, these team announcements also show your commitment to the ongoing improvement of you and your team. You want to be the very best that you can be in providing care. This adds additional value and credibility to your practice. Shout it from the rooftops!

Engage With Commenters And Don’t Be Afraid To Block!

It’s noticeable when a business or practice page has an active comment section but the page itself doesn’t interact with its audience. 

Creating a dialog is a great way to further the conversation, and it’s also a great way to address praise and criticism, the latter of which can naturally feel a little uncomfortable to deal with. 

But here’s the thing: It shows that you care about your patient community, and that you’re not afraid to address someone who feels that maybe you didn’t get it right. 

That said, if it’s clear that you’re dealing with an individual who has made it their personal crusade to comment negatively on everything that you post, then it’s perfectly reasonable for you to block them. 

Constructive criticism is one thing. Harassment doesn’t need to be tolerated. Empower your social media point person to understand the difference and respond accordingly.

Be: Human. Curious. Consistent. Courteous.

Social media is an incredible vehicle for growing your brand and creating a stronger community. 

We specialize in working with medical and healthcare-oriented businesses to harness the essence of what makes them unique in order to create personalized marketing strategies, including those related to social media.

If you’re interested in learning more, then we’d love to talk to you. Reach out to me today, and let’s talk about how we can help you achieve your goals!


Get in touch with the Formada Team