7 Social Media Myths for Chiropractors and Wellness Professionals
Whenever there is a fundamental change to the way that consumers behave old-school business owners have a tough time adapting. The sudden rise of social media over the last 5 years is no different. I like to compare their desire (or lack thereof) to adapt to this new environment to the 5 stages of grief. First they deny that the change took place, then they are angered by it, bargaining is the third step, followed by depression, and then acceptance. If this sounds like you then this article is intended to help you move onward and upward.
Myth #1 “Only teenagers use the internet and social networking websites.”
According to the Pew Research Center 87% of adults aged 30-49 and 74% of adults aged 50-64 use the internet. The average age of a social network user is now 37 years old. To be more specific, the average Facebook user is 38, the average Twitter user is 39, and the average LinkedIn user is 44. These stats are a far cry from the myth that social media is dominated by teens. These social networking users are easily within the most common age group of people who use chiropractic care on a regular basis.
Myth #2 “My clients don’t use social networking websites.”
In late August of 2011 the Pew Research Center reported that 65% of adult internet users now say that they use social networking sites. 51% of consumers said that they were influenced web ads on social media websites that showed which of their friends also liked the advertised brand. 48% were influenced by web ads on social media sites that appear as news feed update and 46% of consumers were influenced by standard web ads on social media websites.
Myth #3 “No one pays attention to online customer review sites.”
In addition to their homes, people are accessing social media websites from their place of work, their car, in restaurants, in airports, and at school. 58% of those social networking users use the Facebook app, 39% used the Google maps app, and 19% use the Google search app. People are now making decisions on which businesses to visit in transition – if you aren’t taking full advantage of these opportunities then you are potentially missing out on a lot of business.
Myth #4 “My clients don’t trust online customer review sites.”
Online customer review sites like Yelp, Google Places, CitySearch, Bing Local, and Yahoo Local are becoming a very important aspect of internet marketing. 50% of U.S. consumers are more likely to use a local business after reading positive online reviews. 64% of consumers search for online reviews before making a purchase decision. 85% of consumers more likely to purchase products/ services when they can find recommendations online. Taking online customer review sites seriously is critical towards maintaining a solid online reputation.
Myth #5 “Online customer review sites don’t influence a person’s selection.”
This statement should send a cold shiver down your spine. If you ever hear an advisor, a mentor, or a friend utter these words then you should stop the conversation immediately. 87% of consumers say positive reviews online have reinforced their decision to purchase a product or services recommended to them. 80% of consumers say negative reviews online have made them change their mind about purchasing a product or services recommended to them.
Myth #6 “Old fashioned word of mouth recommendations are more important than customer review sites.”
Social media is the new word of mouth. 83% of web shoppers say that they want to share purchases with friends online. 67% of web shoppers said that they buy more when online friends recommend a product or service. The takeaway is that social media is driving commerce. This is especially important for chiropractors who rely on word-of-mouth to produce patient referrals.
Myth #7 “There isn’t anything I can do about what people are saying about me online.”
You can shape the conversation about your business by following up with customers immediately after the sale. You should make complaining easy, preferably through a suggestion box in the office or a telephone call. Make a complaint form readily available to your customers on your website. If you receive a complaint follow up immediately. If your situation spills over to a review website, respond to the negative reviews quickly – never ignore them.
Having a tough time with social media? Did you know that ChiroPractice specializes in social media marketing for chiropractors, wellness, and fitness professionals? If you are having a tough time generating buzz for your business give us a call at (877) 244-7601 and we’ll get you where you want to go!