How to Increase Brand Awareness and Build Community using Social Media

By Amanda Davidson, Account Marketing Specialist

#ClinicalPractice #Technology

Is your hearing care practice passionate about continuing to work on developing relationships with patients? Social media can be used as a marketing tool to build community and increase brand awareness. Patients want to receive hearing assistance from professionals that they trust, which means building a positive brand image is key.

Every 1 in 3 patients uses social media to seek health-related information1. Practices that are using social media are more likely to acquire patients because of the easy accessibility of their company information. Hearing care practitioners can easily grow their connections and patient prospects by fully utilizing everything social media has to offer. Because of this, it is important to make sure that your practice is not spreading your online presence too thin by only being reachable on one social media platform.

How can hearing care practices reach a larger audience on social media?

You should be deploying social media content evenly across a multitude of different platforms. This ensures that potential customers will be able to find information about your practice no matter which social media platform they prefer to use. We recommend that audiology practices utilize the following social media platforms to help identify potential customers and build awareness: Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

Facebook

Facebook is the world’s largest social network with over 2 billion users2. Its users are comprised of various demographical backgrounds but it is most popularly used by millennials and older generations, which makes it a great tool for hearing care practices to target potential customers.

Creating a business page is the first step in establishing brand awareness on this platform. On this page you can share all different types of content including product images, new technology videos, or industry-related news. The opportunities are endless!

Facebook is also fantastic for promoting events. The Facebook Ad Campaign tool can be utilized to boost visibility of your posts for events. This is because there are advanced targeting features that allow you to focus your posts on a certain demographic.

As an avid social media marketer, I use Canva regularly to create content for different platforms. Canva is a graphic design platform that can be used to create social media graphics and other visual content with thousands of free templates. If you have time and want to create your own posts, this is a good option for you. Here is an example of a Facebook Post that you can easily create yourself:

Pro Tip: Check out Canva for some easy design help!

From this post, you can see that content does not need to be event or product-focused. In this example, users who identify with having trouble hearing may further engage to schedule a hearing test. It is important for your post to include a Call to Action so that the interested patient knows which steps to take to further engage. There are countless ways to engage your audience on Facebook by sharing various practice-specific content, product/feature-specific content, and content promoting services that you offer!

Instagram

Instagram enables users to connect with brands through the sharing of photos and videos. Although half of these 1 billion users are between the ages of 18-293, some older demographics also use Instagram. While there are users that use Instagram to look up businesses and find information about them, the majority of engagement on Instagram comes from who is already following you. A great way to further engage with your established community is to post content surrounding new products or features. This is because a patient of yours may see a post for a technology upgrade and become interested. Here is an example of an Instagram post promoting free demonstrations of new technology that you can create yourself: 

Pro Tip: Check out Canva for some easy design help!

In addition to content surrounding new products and upcoming events, you can further engage with your existing community by posting practice-specific content. An example of this is posting an Instagram story about someone in your office celebrating a birthday. Showcasing the behind-the-scenes of your practice can show your patients that your practice is relationship-focused3.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a professional online networking platform that is used more by older demographics. As a hearing care practice, having a company LinkedIn profile is important for developing relationships with other businesses for referral programs. It is a phenomenal tool to network with people in your industry.

Having a company page will allow you to share news, products, and updates about your practice to followers of the hearing care industry. Posts that include an image or video have shown that they perform the best3. Posting regularly about practice-related updates will increase brand’s visibility and in the long-term help increase your credibility.

Also, engaging in other industry-related content can help you form more professional connections. There are many ways to do this like commenting on other industry-related posts or sharing articles that your practice identifies with.

How does patient-to-patient communication on social media benefit your practice?

Community is built on social media, and users are easily influenced by other’s experiences and opinions. Patients who have a great experience, or bad experience, may take to social media to share. 42% of consumers use social media to view health-related reviews, and 32% use social media to post about their own health experiences1. Patients with positive experiences that share good reviews could lead to a new patient becoming interested in your practice. This initiates patient-to-patient communication which in the end leads to a creation of patient community. Patients can participate in communicating through these created networks to not only further educate themselves on complex health issues, but can also feel empowered to manage their condition because of increased knowledge that there are other patients with similar experiences!

More and more hearing care practices are utilizing social media, and here’s why:

Many practices are already using social media to their benefit! If your practice is not participating in using social media or is not fully utilizing all that social media has to offer, you could be putting your practice at risk by losing potential patients to other practices with a stronger digital presence. Having a strong social media presence will help increase visibility of your practice and draw in more patients. Because potential patients are taking to social media to find health-related information, it is essential that practices continue to build their online presence and grow their digital brand.

Ask your account manager for one of our Phonak Marketing Communication Kits! Marketing Communication Kits contain brand-related content that you can use to post on social media, along with other marketing strategies you can utilize for all of our products.

Sources:
1. “How Modern Health Care is Being Revolutionized by Social Media [Infographic],” SocialMediaToday.
2. “Facebook Reaches 2.38 Billion Users, Beats Revenue Estimates in Latest Update,” SocialMediaToday.
3. “Facebook vs. Instagram vs. LinkedIn: Which one is right for you?,” PLANN.