I have made a presentation called “From Apps to QR Codes: Social Media Marketing for the O&P Professional” at a couple of state meetings this year. One of the first questions or comments I will get when the presentation is over is “Where will I find the time?” or “How do I find the time?” Here are some tips to help answer that question.
Don’t overthink it. You are not writing the Magna Carta here. Social media marketing is quick, timely and most importantly, it is short. Short, meaning few words are necessary. When you are dealing with 140 characters, like on Twitter, you don’t have to worry about writing a whole paragraph.
However, you have to remember to keep your content relevant for the audience you are trying to reach. If you are using Twitter to reach out to patients or payers, don’t write your tweets like you’re Tina Fey or Rush Limbaugh. Stick to the subjects you know your followers would be interested in.
Don’t reinvent the wheel
All your content does not need to be new, fresh, original ideas or information about you or your company. Social media is all about sharing. Sure, you would love to be able to have a brand new “thing” to share several times a day or multiple times a week but if you are already time-challenged that is not going to happen. Sharing is showing that you are caring.
If you specialize in diabetic shoes, sharing the latest information on diabetes management or local diabetes-related events shows that you care about your audience and you know what they are interested in. The key here is to make sure you don’t come across as a lazy sharer. You know what I mean — the person you are friends with on Facebook who can’t ever come up with anything on their own. They simply share everything from prayer requests to the latest recipe from cooking.com. Nothing they post is ever original. Don’t be that guy.
Don’t worry about repeating yourself. Social media is quick, timely and repetitive. The very structure of tools like Twitter and Facebook allow you to recycle without looking like you are recycling. If you are using the tools they way they are meant to be used then your old information is quickly replaced by new information.
In addition, people don’t necessarily read or see every single thing you post, tweet or share on Pinterest or Instagram, every time you make an update. They can’t. There is too much going on. Take advantage of the information overload and strategically use it to recycle your content.
Finally, you do not have to post every single detail at the same time on every social media outlet you use, but you should spread your effort across them over time. Say you have an event coming up. Maybe you have partnered with OPAF (www.opafonline.org) and you are hosting a First Climb clinic. You have shared the details on Facebook. You tweet out the pertinent info and a link to the information on OPAF’s website. You head on over to Instagram and share photos of the place where the event will be held along with the event information. You get the drift. Just make sure you don’t do it all at once.
Remember, everyone is on information overload. Keep it coming, like you are feeding a hungry baby bird.