A strange thing has happened now that going online has become crucial for us all: patients are surfing the net in search of what’s happening offline. People want to know what’s happening in the ‘real’ world. They are sceptical of sales pitches and carefully constructed online reputations. They do more research for each and every purchase. What does this mean for us as practice owners? Don’t shy away from transparency – grab it by the horns!

Ultimately it’s about your patients feeling connected to you and wanting to spread your practice story. Here are some tips on to make patients connect with and speak for your practice:

1. Yes, we are open.
Be open with your online presence and show the human side of your practice. Set up a tablet on your front desk which displays your Practice Facebook Page at all times. Instruct your front office staff to ask each patient to like the page. This ensures the patients see regular updates and posts and increases the potential viral spread of your practice.

2. Target Practice
Make sure you are delivering content, such as photos, blogs and health tips, appealing to your target market. Give them what they like and they will share. Post behind-the-scenes shots of team meetings, renovations, etc. These are things your patients wouldn’t normally see online or offline.

3. Reach Out
Contact other influencers in your industry and begin building relationships. You can then share your networks and broaden your reach. Offer guest blog posts to colleagues; get together with others and contact a local media outlet about doing a news story on a trend in your industry.

4. The 80-20 Rule
You’ve probably heard that 80 per cent of consequences stem from 20 per cent of causes. When it comes to online connections, the same ratio can help nurture existing relationships and create new ones.
So get out there and network, online and offline, and reap the rewards.