Ten Tips to Increase Your Social Media Savvy

Tuesday, Feb 28, 2023 by Cindy Barnes, DVM, CVSMT
5 Min Read
Ten Tips to Increase Your Social Media Savvy

Is your veterinary practice’s social media presence one of those out-of-sight, out-of-mind responsibilities? Not only do social media profiles help market your practice — they help enhance client communication with your veterinary practice. Revive your languishing online profiles and maximize your marketing potential by following these top ten tips for improving your social media marketing strategy.

#1: Choose the best social media platform for your veterinary practice

With so many social media platforms available, you may have difficulty believing that less is more. However, one active and frequently updated social channel is worth five mediocre profiles in various stages of neglect. To choose the social media platform that’s best for your veterinary practice, look at what’s most accessible to the widest range of clients you serve. Important demographics to consider include the average age of your typical client and the geographic area you serve. For most veterinary practices, Facebook or Instagram is a good place to start. 

#2: Curate and compose on-brand social media content 

Your social media presence is one of the best and most economical marketing tools available. Be strategic and consistent about your online posts: 

  • Use your platform to communicate your veterinary clinic’s mission, values, and care standards.
  • Attract and bond clients to your animal hospital by spotlighting team members and sharing fun facts. 
  • Share client testimonials and patient success stories that illustrate your veterinary team’s expertise, skill, and compassion.
  • Add your practice’s logo to every picture and personally designed infographic to boost brand recognition.

#3: Use a conversational tone

Although the information you post is important, how you convey your message is imperative. If you want to engage your existing and prospective clients on social media, skip the dry clinical voice and use a warm, conversational tone. Try reading your post aloud—if the flow is stilted or dull, rewrite the piece as if you’re talking with a friend.

#4: Encourage client engagement with a strong call to action

Client involvement and buy-in can help improve pets’ health, and online engagement is no different. Interacting with your clients through social media can enhance your ability to educate pet owners, inspire positive actions (e.g., refilling parasite prevention), and build and maintain client relationships. On every post, include a call to action (CTA) that offers your clients an opportunity to engage or interact with your veterinary practice, such as:

  • Tell us about/Let us know
  • Like and share/Comment below
  • Contact us 
  • Schedule an appointment
  • Follow the link

Set a reminder to check your social media pages daily—or several times daily—so you can respond to any messages or replies. By continuing a conversation, an increasing number of clients will be drawn in. Clients often end up sharing interesting anecdotes with friends, who may, in turn, decide to give your practice a try.

#5: Post often and utilize social media automation

Actively publishing content and posting to your social media accounts will improve your visibility on followers’ news feeds, search results, and suggested pages for potential new clients. You likely wonder how to determine what number of daily posts is appropriate. How many are enough? According to the social media marketing website Sprout Social, 74% of consumers consider 1 to 2 posts per day ideal. Your success may vary based on the platform and your clientele, so be prepared to experiment until you find the sweet spot between steady views and spam.

If high-frequency posting feels like an unrealistic goal for your practice, try batching your social media posts through social media automation. Dedicate a few hours each week or month to building a social media content calendar, then schedule posts to self-publish ahead of time.

#6: Share helpful information that veterinary clients can use

Lighthearted content is cute and can bring levity to a professional page, but runs a high risk of being overlooked. Rather than having your message lost amid a sea of cat videos and pug jokes, provide real resources and information that pet owners can use, such as pet care tips, short articles on heartworm disease, brief how-to videos, or household toxin infographics. When possible, drive traffic back to your website by promoting related veterinary blog posts or relevant services.

#7: Promote your veterinary social media channels on your marketing materials

To let clients know where to find you, include your social media handles on all materials that you use to market your veterinary practice. Materials may include your website, emails, client handouts, invoices, and business cards. Build your channel’s initial fan base by offering an incentive for liking or following your page. For example, a chance to win a gift card to the local coffee shop. Reward established followers by running a quarterly or monthly contest that requires active participation (i.e., sharing, referring a friend, posting a review, submitting a pet picture).

#8: Mix your media for eye-catching posts about your veterinary practice

The average human attention span is eight seconds, and in large part—attributable to digital content—our focus is shrinking fast. For reference, humans’ attention span was 12 seconds in the year 2000!

Therefore, you need to grab viewers’ attention so that they read—and hopefully engage with—your posts. Don’t panic—this feat is challenging to everyone, including marketing experts. Many social media platforms have marketing tools that can help, such as Instagram Reels, image carousels, and Facebook and Instagram Stories, sharing short videos and grouped images.

#9: Obtain client permission before sharing pet content

Draft a standard photo and video release form in your veterinary practice management software so you and your team will always be ready to obtain a client’s permission before sharing their irresistibly cute or funny pets’ images on social media. Remember, you’ll also need signed consent before posting any procedure-related footage or before-and-after images.

#10: Show clients who you are—avoid stock photos

Stock photos can help you compose social media posts quickly—but they fall flat with most audiences. Current and prospective clients want to see your team members’ faces and personalities on their news feed, not generic actors in scrubs. If your team members are camera shy, start with candid pictures that illustrate their skill, compassion, and dedication.

Veterinary social media is a fantastic way to connect with your clients, promote your practice, celebrate your staff, and share helpful information that can enhance pets’ lives. This powerful marketing tool does not have to be costly and only requires a bit of your time to implement.

Our Shepherd Veterinary Software team recognizes that time is a limited resource for many veterinary practices. As a result, we’ve automated those repetitive and—let’s be honest—boring tasks that can consume hours of your veterinary team members’ precious time every day. Schedule a Shepherd Veterinary Software demo to see our cloud-based practice management program in action. You will be amazed at the amount of time that Shepherd can save your veterinary practice.

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