When Marketing in Social Media, Don’t Break These 3 Golden Rules.

April 21, 2024
Peter Griffith, President of Mentum LLC

Here’s the big yawner everyone already knows but we will say it anyway – social media can be a powerful marketing tool for healthcare practices and groups. If done right.

Three Golden Rules for Social Media

On behalf of everyone at my agency and every creative person I know, let me say we all hate rules. But after a long enough track record of doing it right (and many times wrong!) we have found three ‘golden rules’ in social media marketing that, when broken, produce disastrous results. These apply for any brand, but especially for urology practices.

So here they are. And we warned you from the start – break them at your own peril.

Golden Rule #1

Use the right tool for the job.

In the same manner that pounding nail with a pair of scissors would yield horrible results, trying to post a message about yearly prostate exams on a predominantly millennial age, female biased platform would be just as futile. It’s important to remember it doesn’t matter how funny or creative or helpful your post is, it just won’t work if it’s posted in a place where the audience can’t connect with it. So before you hit submit, let alone launch a social media campaign, understand what platforms would match up the best for you. The LinkedIn audience is very different from the one on Instagram. Twitter is completely different from Facebook. One size does not fit all. We’ve often taken a client’s message and intentionally created 5 different posts of it for 5 different platforms to get the results we wanted.

SUMMARY: When creating any post on social media, know what the pros and cons of each platform are that you’ll be posting it on. Don’t try and force a square peg in a round hole. Use the right tool for the right job.

Golden Rule #2

Give your brand the right beat.

In every great song, there’s a rhythm or beat that that keeps you hooked until the end. If that beat is too choppy or chaotic, you’ll go to the next song. If it’s too slow, you’ll do the same. Think of all of your posts collectively as if they were a song’s beat. How frequently you post is as important as what you post. Too often we see practices start out strong, posting like crazy. Then, after a month or so, nothing. They break the beat (and our rule) and lose their audience.

The rate or frequency of your social media posting should have a rhythm that’s not too choppy, not too chaotic, not too slow. That doesn’t mean you have to post all the time, the exact same day or even at exact intervals. Every great musician will tell you that pauses are the most important notes. Why? Because they make the notes that come after them stand out. Make a calendar and look at the rhythm of all your posts. Look to see if it has a beat people won’t tune away from.

SUMMARY: Create a beat for your brand that everyone will literally ‘like’. Then keep playing it. Don’t be the musician (or brand) that gets a third of the way through their song then suddenly gets up and leaves the stage.

Golden Rule #3

For the love of Pete, DON’T SELL!

This rule intuitively goes against everything you want to accomplish. After all, the goal is to fill your appointment books or get patients to try out your new procedure or increase a service that has been slumping, right? But here’s the thing – nothing gets scrolled past faster or un-followed more, than blatant, hit-you-over-your-head sales pitches from companies on social media.

Think about why you go on Facebook or Twitter or here on LinkedIn. You want to get away for a bit. Escape. Maybe find out what people are up to. Personally, professionally, mindlessly. Social media is like a good party – you want to be able to easily slide from one group to another, one conversation to another, without being trapped or sold something. You are there making connections, friendships, deeper relationships. The good news is, there are so many creative ways to create content to connect people with urology practices that are either funny or poignant or heartfelt or chock-full of emotion that the task isn’t hard. In fact, it’s one of the parts of our jobs we look forward to.

SUMMARY: Creativity is king. Using the ‘hard sell’ in social media won’t get you anywhere. Publishing bland, boring, blasé content will get you those same kinds of results. Make them laugh so hard they can’t breathe. Make them cry so deeply they want to hug you. Surprise the hell out of them. If you make someone really feel something, you’ll make them really do something.

That’s it, really. Easy-peasy, right?

In the twenty or so years of doing this, these are the top three rules we found make the biggest impact on getting the best results for urology practices from social media campaigns. Can rules be broken? Sure. Should you break these? Only at your brand’s own peril.

Pete Griffith

Pete Griffith

President / Founder

Pete started Mentum after two decades of working as a Creative Director at some of the world's largest advertising agencies. His need to create exceptional work is driven 60% by the college tuitions of his three kids, 9% so he can go scuba diving somewhere he hasn’t been before and 1% to be able to afford a good bowl of ramen. The rest equally divided by both the desire to make people laugh and the fear of being laughed at. If you’re interested, his official resume can be gawked at here.

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