You’re already a talented and invested physical therapist. You’ve probably got a steady stream of patients who trust you and are seeing results. What’s next? How can you grow your client base and keep your patients healthy, even after their sessions are wrapped up? We suggest physical therapy social media marketing.
You don’t need to be a trained marketing professional to develop your online community. In fact, sometimes that authentic novice approach can help your business stand out among all the cookie cutter stick-to-the-book traditional tactics. So, in between sessions, give a few of these channels a try.
If you’re not on Pinterest already and think it’s just for crafters and bakers, it’s time to get reacquainted. Pinterest was the fastest growing social network over the past year, and it has qualities that you won’t quite find on Facebook. “At their core, the difference between Pinterest and other social networks is why people use it,” Kevin Roose explains, “— to plan for the future, rather than exhuming the past or analyzing the present.” On Pinterest, health-and-recovery-minded users, like your patients, plan for the future by pinning wellness tips, healthy recipes, and inspirational quotes. “Pinning says ‘I want this.’ It’s aspirational.”
Your physical therapy practice can be a hub for such holistic aspirations. Of course you’ll have boards dedicated to PT-specific topics (i.e. Knee Pain, Spine Rehab, Shoulder Problems, etc.) and other subjects that would be a perfect fit for Pinterest‘s “Health & Fitness” category, but you should also tap into the most popular categories like “Food & Drink.” For example, you could pin anti-inflammatory foods, therapeutic teas, protein-rich smoothies, and so on. Latch on to another popular category, “Women’s Fashion,” by pinning workout gear that your active or working-to-become active clients would be interested in. Think beyond the walls of your practice and consider the entire lifestyle of a person on the road to wellness. The topic“Physical Therapy” has 1.78 thousand followers; start showing a few of them why your PT brand is worth following.
Don’t freak out just yet—you don’t need to write a novel or post every day to have a quality blog for your practice. You also don’t need to be a tech wiz. With platforms like WordPress, Blogger, and Tumblr (the second fastest growing social network over the past year), it takes minutes to set up a blog and begin participating in one of the biggest trends in marketing: content marketing. Content marketing is an approach which focuses on creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract and engage with an audience. Blog posts are an excellent vehicle for such content, whose keyword-rich format can also help your business by improving your search engine optimization.
Okay, enough jargon. Think about what your client base would find compelling, informative, and shareable. You could write a 300-word piece about five ways to improve shoulder mobility. You could invite a guest blogger (i.e. a patient) to share how PT has changed her life. You could ask your chef neighbor to type up her favorite smoothie recipe and share a few tips on healthy eating. Compile a list of your top ten favorite outdoor activities in your city. Host a giveaway, like a free resistance band, for a randomly selected commenter. Are your own ideas flowing yet?
Facebook & Twitter
You have a Facebook Page, right? Maybe a Twitter profile, too (if not, we can set these up for you)? These platforms are easy to get started on and are an effective way to build and engage with your online community. Like with other digital tools, it comes down to sharing high-quality, relevant content and interacting with your audience in a meaningful, authentic way. Since Facebook and Twitter are typically more well-known than the other channels we’ve mentioned, we won’t go too in-depth on the mechanics, but do know that having an active presence on these sites is becoming more of an expectation than a bonus for businesses. If a patient is in a work meeting and has a quick question (“Is the office cancelled today because of the snow?”), they’re probably going to pop on over to your (hopefully existent and active) Facebook Page or Twitter profile for real-time, up-to-date info. Trying to build up a collection of testimonials? Encouraging people to review you on Facebook is a great way to do so. You can then take these positive reviews and highlight them on your other channels, perhaps after turning the quotes into mini works of art with some free, easy design programs (i.e. Canva).
Be patient with yourself as you experiment with what works for your audience. You may be surprised by what resonates (or doesn’t), and just as your practice was built brick by brick, it will take time to develop your online community. Trust that the new growth you’re cultivating online will circle back to a more enriching experience at your clinic, for you and your clients.
How We Can Help
[note_box]E-rehab.com publishes regular, fresh, and engaging content for its members. From videos to memes, we provide a variety of content to compliment your social media marketing strategy. Contact us us to learn more about how we can help you with your social media marketing.[/note_box]