The following is a guest post from a dentist and social media friend. In addition to dentistry, she’s got a love for social media and a talent for writing … Enjoy her tips!
Do you have a Facebook Page for your practice?
I’m not here to convince you one way or the other. I’m saying you SHOULD have one.
For those of you who do, or have finally seen the social media light and are about to, I have a few words of etiquette to offer. Not only will these make you seem savvy, they will help you gain Facebook favor as you build your following.
Now, if they seem head-slappingly obvious to you, feel free to act smug and smirk at the end of this post. You earned it.
If not, you may congratulate me on turning on a few virtual light bulbs.
1. Friends and Family Who???
The natural tendency at the start of a Facebook Page is to approach friends and family to get the numbers past one (because you are your very first “fan”, right?). Since family doesn’t usually put up a fight, let’s talk about friends.
To get Likes (formerly known as Fans), your brand new Page allows you to send invites to all your friends on your personal Profile. Which you might do.
But consider this first: you may have friends on your Profile that are mere acquaintances with whom you seldom interact. We all do. So why do you think they’ll agree to ‘Like’ your Page just because you sent them a request out of the blue?
Etiquette Tip: Don’t send a mass invite. Pick and choose your closest friends and invite them. Better yet, send them a private message asking them to ‘Like’ your page and THANK them for doing it when they do.
2. All Take and No Give
How do you feel when you do something really nice for someone, and when it’s time to return the favor, they turn their back on you?
Pretty crappy, I’d guess.
Some of your friends may also have their own business, and set up a Facebook Page just like you. So if they were nice enough to ‘Like’ your Page six months ago, why are you ignoring their Page ‘Like’ request? Huh?
This is, by far, my biggest pet peeve.
Etiquette Tip: Do to others what you’d have done to you. Return the favor. If you choose not to, don’t expect them to Like your business. Unless there’s a valid reason (such as, their business is south of shady or their tag line is “never see a dentist”), be courteous and give them a Like.
Not only is this good Facebook karma, it could very well be a good building block for a future business-to-business relationship for you both. Win-win.
3. Leave the Smut Out Of It
I’ll keep this one short, because it’s common sense, but sometimes not too common.
Etiquette Tip: When commenting on your own or anyone else’s Page, please refrain from profane, derogatory, sexually explicit or suggestive language.
4. I Don’t Care What They Say
Let’s fast forward to when your Page is beginning to get some attention, and hits social media gold: Comments!
And what if the person commenting hears this:
(sound of crickets chirping)
What I mean is, silence from YOU. Facebook is social media. The first part of that is “social”, which means interaction. If a potential patient/customer/person interested in your Page takes the time to comment, do you think they will do it again if their words disappear into an abyss?
Etiquette Tip: Take the time to reply, respond or acknowledge their comment. Make it social. Make it fun, so they’ll come back and do it again, and maybe even tell their friends.
Bonus: If your commenting Like-r happens to be your buddy with a business as well, return the favor on their business wall. Remember, karma!
I’m sure there’s more, but these came to mind the most.
As in real life, follow good etiquette on Facebook and get REAL Likes.
Have you more tips to add to this list? Let me know in the comments, and I *promise* to reply:)
Dr. Ritu Rao is on a mission to create a platform female dentists can use to step up their game. A dentist, practice owner and mom, she’s on her way out of the blogging closet. She authorsBizzyToothMommy – a blog with a fresh take on life on the cusp of dentistry and motherhood. Check it out for straightforward, action-focused support for your business goals, as well as straight talk on personal ones. Pester her on Twitter @RituRao.