Hopefully you read our feature on social media in the March issue of The O&P EDGE. Perhaps you thought, “Great ideas! I’ll have to start a Facebook page for my company.” Have you done it yet? Good for you if you did… If not, here is how Facebook works.
One of the easiest ways to get involved in social media is to create a Facebook page for your business. A business page on Facebook will get your name out there for users, customers, and interested parties who are searching for it on the Internet. A photo of the building’s façade, your logo, and other business-relevant images can be uploaded and will be seen as a thumbnail in the Facebook “news feed.”
Here’s how Facebook works: Users sign up for a free account and then make connections with other users on the service by “liking” them. Liking a Facebook page is not too different from subscribing to a company’s newsletter. Users will “like” a page to stay updated on that user’s events, promotions, and news or to show their appreciation or endorsement. When someone “likes” your page, anything you post to it will show up in his or her news feed. The Facebook news feed drives “word-of-mouth” marketing so that your message is shared across your Facebook network.
There are many ways you can use Facebook to promote your firm. The key to Facebook success is giving visitors a reason to come back to your page frequently by adding fresh content regularly. Post information about new prosthetic and orthotic services and upload images from your office or from manufacturers. Let your visitors know when you have attended a conference or seminar by uploading a video or photos from the event. Upload a photo of a new practitioner you’ve added to your team or let people know when you’ve opened a new office. Include staff birthdays or anniversaries. Patient success stories (with their written permission, use first name, last initial) are inspirational to read. Post links about people with amputations in the news or sporting world. Your focus should be on providing valuable content so that customers seek you out. When you post interesting content, your visitors will share or “like” your message with their friends. This can create an incredible network to drive more followers, e-mail subscribers, and ultimately business. It also increases search engine optimization (SEO) for your company on the Internet.
When someone “likes” your page, he or she can also post comments to your business’ “wall” on Facebook . You would naturally expect that all comments are going to be about the wonderful services and products you provide, but if there is a valid negative comment posted, you can quickly address the situation and answer it right there on your wall. Your other Facebook visitors will appreciate how quickly you resolved the issue. In the case of undeserved negative comments, you can remove them from the wall at any time or change your privacy settings.
Facebook pages also can get picked up by web search engines and give you, your company, and your website even more exposure. Include the Facebook logo on your website and in your e-mail signature, post a sign in your waiting area or at your reception desk, and promote your Facebook page in all of your marketing.
Facebook’s Help Center for Business Accounts can help you create a presence on Facebook. For more information, visit http://www.facebook.com/help/?page=721
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