As we near 2014, I’m sure you veterinary professionals have personal resolutions in mind. Perhaps you’re a busy veterinarian looking to make more time for family. Maybe you’ll be hitting the gym to work off all of the treats clients brought your animal hospital during the holidays. If you’re like me, you’ll try for the millionth time to switch from vegetarian to vegan, only to fall prey to extra sharp cheddar cheese about two weeks into January.
There’s many traditional resolutions people make, but I wanted to ask veterinarians about their social media resolutions for the New Year. A bunch of my Twitter friends came to the rescue – you veterinarians are good at that – and shared their resolutions. What do Dr. Caleb Frankel, Dr. Andy Roark, Dr. Greg Magnusson, Dr. Dale Kressin & Dr. Rebecca Tudor plan to do with social media in 2014? Read on to find out their social media resolutions & get my feedback on their plans.
Veterinary Social Media Resolution #1: Google+
A very important social media resolution for all veterinarians in 2014 should be to diversify your social media presence, and Dr. Frankel hit on this idea perfectly:
My resolution is to consider adding Google + to VMD Technology’s profile to branch out.
Caleb Frankel, VMD (@VMDTechnology)
What are my thoughts on Dr. Frankel’s resolution? In the ever-changing world of social media, I strongly believe that veterinarians need to be where clients are. Clients are most definitely using Google Search to find your veterinary practice, so adding a Google+ account to your social media arsenal is a must. Even though Google+ might not be the most popular social media outlet in the world, it is incredibly influential for SEO. Everything you post on Google+ is indexed by Google, helping your practice’s blog posts to get found.
Veterinary Social Media Resolution #2: Instagram & Vine
Dr. Roark, who is also a frequent veterinary conference speaker & contributor to DVM360.com, already creates educational & funny veterinary videos. Knowing that he enjoys the video side of the internet, Dr. Roark’s social media resolution makes a lot of sense:
I’m going to figure out how to leverage Vine and/or Instagram as effective educational tools.
– Andy Roark, MS, DVM (@DrAndyRoark)
Instagram, the photo & video sharing sensation, currently gets more than 75 million users on its app or website daily. More importantly, Instagram users are spending, on average, 257 minutes/month on it. Not familiar with Vine? Vine is Twitter’s video sharing app. Five tweets per second include a Vine video. If Dr. Roark is looking to catch people where they are already watching videos, Instagram or Vine both seem like great outlets. After all, my Brussels Griffon is on Instagram (@ArcherBruce), and how can you disagree with a dog’s social media choices?
Veterinary Social Media Resolution #3: Get Social with Client Needs in Mind
A veterinarian with a concise – yet complex – social media resolution is Dr. Greg Magnusson of Leo’s Pet Care in Indiana. His social media resolution has 4 points:
More newsletters, better blogs, less frequent Twitter, & better quality Facebook.
– Greg Magnusson, DVM (@IndianapolisVet)
At my veterinary practice, I’m definitely resolving to blog, blog, blog! A blog is an ever-changing, useful & fun thing to add to your veterinary practice’s website. I definitely agree with Dr. Magnusson on that resolution. Sending an email newsletter is also a great way to catch those clients who aren’t as “social” online. Not only that, but your client email address list can’t disappear like a social media site can. Never a bad idea to make sure you have one as a back-up! Dr. Magnusson’s resolutions really focus on how to improve his connections with clients online, and that one of the greatest things a veterinarian can do.
Veterinary Social Media Resolution #4: Spread The Message of Dental Health
As a board certified veterinary dentist, Dr. Dale Kressin of Animal Dentistry and Oral Surgery Specialists in Wisconsin has put a more educational touch on his veterinary social media resolution for 2014. He has educated with articles for DVM360.com before, but this year he’s using social media to get his dental care message out to other veterinarians:
My 2014 resolution will be to help more veterinarians to better serve dental patients, and to support them through referrals.
– Dale Kressin, DVM, FAVD, DAVDC (@MyPetsDentist)
Pinterest is one of my favorite ways for veterinarians to educate online. I recently helped Dr. Kressin make sure his Pinterest pins were sourced back to his practice’s website. (Watch my video to learn how to make sure your pins are done correctly.) Make sure you visit his Pinterest page to see some interesting work he has done! (I had personally never seen many photos of crowns on dog’s teeth, so Dr. Kressin definitely taught me something with his pins.)
Veterinary Social Media Resolution #5: Put a SNOUT Social Media Story into Action
The last veterinary social media resolution for 2014 comes from Dr. Rebecca Tudor. Dr. Tudor is a veterinary surgeon at Tarheel Veterinary Surgical Specialists in North Carolina. She was inspired by Azzore Veterinary Specialists great social media work, which I covered in a SNOUT Social Media Story. She resolves to put the lessons of Azzore Veterinary Specialists social media success into action:
Coming up with more ways to engage on Facebook. (I) loved what the (Azzore) surgery group in AR is doing, (and I’m going to) try it!
– Rebecca Tudor, DVM, DACVS (@RebeccaTudor)
As staying in your client’s Facebook feed becomes harder and harder, I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to focus on providing quality, engaging content on your Facebook.
What’s Your Resolution?
I love all of these veterinary social media solutions. Do you have one of your own? Write it in the comment section below, or you can tweet it at me @DanielleSNOUT with the hashtag #SocialVetResolutions.
I hope all of you veterinary professionals will resolve to learn more about social media by enrolling in SNOUT School. I send out special social media tips (via email) to those who are enrolled, as well as giving early access to webinars, courses & more. Even better? You’ll get my Ultimate Guide to Facebook for Veterinary Hospitals for free when you enroll! (This e-book style guide is set to release right before the New Year.) I encourage you to take control of your animal hospital’s social media in 2014. The payoff will be greater as you work to connect & communicate with your clients online.
Happy New Year to everyone!