George O. Waring IV, MD, FACS’s, “Presbyopia’s Coming of Age” blog focuses on surgical and technological innovations in presbyopia correction. Waring is founder and medical director of Waring Vision Institute in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina.

BLOG: Use social media to build your brand

Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are wonderful tools for branding, awareness and education. To use them effectively, you first have to define your practice brand and then create posts to complement and extend that brand.

Two key principles have worked well for our social media strategy. First, we watch for those ideal “social media moments,” using photos and videos to highlight emotion or excitement around the ways that we can change people’s lives. This can be anything from treating a serious eye condition to a holistic health and wellness approach to eye care or the magic moment right after a refractive procedure when the patient realizes how well they can see without glasses.

Secondly, we use social media to promote the practice’s investment in advanced technology. For example, we built awareness in the community about advanced laser vision correction by documenting the LASIK journey of a local radio personality. We captured the treatment and immediate postoperative results on Facebook Live and featured the celebrity talking about her experience. She shared the videos on her Instagram page, too, and it was great to see her fans chiming in and amplifying our message.

Other pearls:

Keep verbiage in your posts brief, but be thoughtful about every word, including the hashtags.

Make sure that any patients featured have signed photo and video releases.

Posts should have some educational purpose, not just checking a box that you posted something on Facebook.

It is appropriate to assign a young staffer to lead social media marketing, by providing enough guidance or supervision to ensure that posts are in line with the practice philosophy and brand.


Disclosure: Waring reports he is a consultant for Johnson & Johnson Vision and a member of the Johnson & Johnson Vision Optics Advisory Board.