101 Guide to Social Media Success for Independent Optometry Practices

Digital media has overhauled marketing as we used to know it in the past 10 years.  Today well over 50% of the population consumes news, advertising and general communications through mostly digital channels.  With this in mind, it is more important than it has ever been to have a strong online presence. 

Unlike print advertising, social media has benefits such as cost effectiveness (most platforms are free unless you chose to utilise paid advertisements), an exact detail of how much traffic is generated through each post, and the ability to completely control all customization of your content.  We realise that it’s hard to stand out on your socials, so we have put together a 101 guide to Social Media success.

Where to Start

There are many social media platforms to select from, and you may hear of people that hold accounts on every platform that is trending, however we believe that this is counterintuitive as it can be too hard to keep up with them all.  Choosing 1 or 2 platforms to feature on and focusing your energy into them is best practice.  And let’s be honest here less work and stress for you, a no brainer really!  We recommend the use of both Instagram & Facebook.  Although they have some similarities, Facebook is known for its longer written content and link sharing capability, whilst Instagram has a strong focus on the visual components of a post. Both of these platforms are free, have large audience capacities and are relatively simple to use.

Consistency is Key

As said in many walks of life, consistency is key, and it couldn’t be truer here too.  Infrequent posting not only disengages your audience, it also effects your algorithm, meaning that you will be less likely to pop up on someone else’s page as a page of interest to follow.  Consistency drives traffic online and subconsciously informs your followers that you are a reliable and passionate business.

Through some careful planning, social media consistency is easily achieved.  By setting aside a small amount of time once a month, you can plan your posts a month in advance.  Posting 2-3 times a week is a great way to make your business stand out online. 

Handy Tools

There are some handy tools to help you to do this, particularly if like us, you struggle to remember what day of the week it is half the time.   Facebook has an inbuilt feature that allows for post scheduling and automatic posting of scheduled content to your page.  Instagram although doesn’t have this option, is compatible with programs such as Planoly and Buffer that allow you to schedule your posts to appear when you want them too without needing to login and post them yourself.  With a monthly posting plan scheduled in this way you will only have to remember to plan each month and schedule your posts in before the month hits!

Spice things up with variety

You’ll find if you take a look at pages with large followings that along with regular posts, they will also utilise a wide range of content.  Although your reason for having a social media presence may be solely to boost sales, it is important that you use the space to talk about other things too.  We find that content surrounding education, promotion of your local community, product posts from suppliers and staff/patient profiles can help bring a sense of personability to your social media platforms.  An easy way to achieve this is to treat your page as you would any customer who walks in the door.  Take time to chat to them generally, provide them with an expert opinion, invoke a sense of trust and then give them professional product guidance – all of these things are just as important online and ultimately the same end goal is achieved – a sale.

Video - the cool kid on the block

On the topic of content range, video is rapidly becoming one of the best tools in the social media game.  Video is eye-catching and requires less effort from your audience as they don’t have to actively read to understand your post, they can just watch.  Some great ways to integrate video into your socials is to showcase things like; what goes on behind the scenes, introducing new staff or the unveiling of a new product range.  By using your own imagery and video footage you create a sense of realism for your audience.  Just make sure that you utilise good lighting and you are producing clear, quality visual content.

Embrace your inner chatterbox

Lastly, it comes with the name ‘social’ media, and thus, the way to success on these platforms is to be just that – social.  Take time to regularly check your DM’s and respond to them accordingly.  Reply or react to comments made on your posts.  Throw out some love to your suppliers, fellow local businesses and clients online in this way too by commenting and liking their posts often.  All of these actions not only shows that you are engaged with your business and that you care for your community and following, it also prioritises your page in algorithms so that you appear as a follow suggestion on other people’s profiles.

 

We know that social media can be hard and inspiration a little difficult.  So, if you are stuck for ideas, take a look at fellow similar business pages, lean on suppliers by sharing some of their free content and visit our Support Hub where you will find even more free content to get you started or out of your idea rut!

If you find after attempting all these ideas that social media management is just not for you, don’t worry, social media couldn’t get any simpler with our Eyebenefit Social Media Program!  Our marketing experts create a monthly calendar full of click ready content and schedule these posts to appear on your Facebook page twice a week for you – easy right?  You can choose to layer your own content on top of this to complement our posts or you can simply leave things as is for us to do all the heavy lifting for you.  If you would like to know more or wish to join this program, just reach out to our team via the form below, they are ready to help!

Other posts you may be interested in...

New Year, New Benefits, New Campaign Opportunities!

Every year as we bid the year that was a fond farewell, we welcome in the fresh slate a new year brings. During this time, we promise ourselves many things, personally, professionally, physically and mentally. Whether you are a new year’s resolution person or not, you can’t deny the fresh energy that seems to come following the festive season break.

Why not channel this energy into your customers with a New Year Rebate Reset Campaign.

Read More »

SMS & MMS Marketing

You can’t deny it, the digital age has created extraordinary convenience when it comes to getting a reminder, asking a question, or simply getting a message or offer across. SMS or MMS messaging is quick, simple, reaches a wide audience and is super cost effective.

With that in mind, we thought we should share some of our hot tips for creating a successful messaging campaign!

Read More »