Technology has changed many things in the modern dental practice. From how we store patient records all the way to the actual treatments we offer, the rate of change is dizzying. It’s even impacted the way we can develop new skills to treat our patients

One of the fastest moving and complex areas of change is in social media. Whilst the various platforms are ubiquitous in the modern world, which are actually useful for the modern dental practice? After all, using any social media takes time, so which should you be investing your time in to engage with your patients? And how should you be doing it?

 

Below we’ll discuss our top three social media platforms to help boost your profile and get your more patients. 

 

twitter logo

Twitter:

 

For the uninitiated, Twitter is a platform which allows you to share Tweets which include text up to 280 characters long, with images, polls, video and GIFs with other users. When you sign up, you’ll choose a Twitter handle which will become your name. For example, our handle is @SmileTubeTV, so if you put that into a Tweet we’ll know you’re talking to or about us and can reply. 

 

Twitter is huge with 330 million active users as of quarter 3, 2017. Twitter is all about interactions, your success or failure on Twitter will be as much about how you interact with others on the site as it will what you put up there.

 

Keeping an eye on the trending hash-tags (think topics of conversation, if hash-tag means nothing to you) and interacting with those in a relevant way can be productive. This means that you need to be sending multiple tweets per day, not just once a month! 

 

Once you’ve mastered the art of 280 characters, you can promote individual Tweets by sponsoring them with Twitter. The average Twitter user is a younger, tech-savvy person, with 80% of Twitter users accessing the service on their mobile and 62% being below the age of 50. They’re also not doing badly financially, with 52% earning above the $50,000 mark. 

 

So, if those sounds like the type of clients you want, AND you can keep it short & sweet, Twitter might be for you. 

 

Pros: 

Free account 

Huge customer base 

You can target and speak to your clients directly 

Large business presence 

Once mastered, it’s pretty quick to do! 

 

Cons: 

Only suitable for small bursts of information 

Time intensive 

Best results come when you pay 

Easy to get drowned out in the noise

 

facebook logo

Facebook:

 

There are around two BILLION users on Facebook in early 2017, yes, you read that right. Creating a free page for your practice couldn’t be easier now and, with about thirty-minutes work, you’ll be away!

 

Facebook is very much a personal platform, so it’s ideal for you to reach out to, and engage with, your patients. 

 

To make the most of Facebook you’ll need to create interesting content, consider competitions, letting people know what you’re doing in the community, updates on opening times, services and promotions. You’ll also need to create regular, new content and respond to people who interact with that content. 

 

Facebook is increasingly not showing content from businesses on the user’s time lines unless that company is paying for advertising, so it may be necessary for you to pay to make the most of the site. However, with the level to which you can focus your adverts and monitor results, these can pay dividends if planned correctly and are not too expensive to experiment with. 

 

Pros: 

Free to setup 

Everyone is already on there 

You can heavily target promotions 

Promotions are not expensive to run 

 

Cons: 

If you don’t pay, you probably won’t get much attention 

Everyone is already on there… including your competition 

You’ll need to post two or three times a week 

Hot times for Facebook are out of hours, including the weekends 

 

linkedin logo

LinkedIn:

 

The leading business social media platform; LinkedIn was designed to be the place to share your business, ideas and company. Since its creation in 2003, the platform has grown to over 467 million monthly users as of Q3 2016.

 

Being aimed at business users, LinkedIn is suited more to business-to-business interactions. Though, business-to-consumer still goes on as a business user is just a consumer with a suit on!

 

LinkedIn is primarily aiming to provide a networking service for business users. It does this by providing a platform for connecting within an industry, looking for potential customers and also sharing content created for the site. This means that successful users create compelling content to attract users and maintain the quality of their engaging content over time. Recommending and interacting with other users is key to success.

 

Posting to LinkedIn can be done too much, with engagement dropping off if you post more than five times per week, so sticking to around twice per week is seen as ideal.

 

Pros:

Free to sign-up

Less is more, daily posting is not advised

 

Cons:

Quality is king, so you need to be able to produce high quality content

Not the best for targeting consumers

To make the most of the site, you’ll need to invest time in interacting with others

 

 

Although there are many other platforms out there, these are the ones which give the best results for the time and money invested. So, what about you? Do you use any other social media platforms? If so, which? And what experiences, good or bad, have you had? Let us know on our social media, Facebook  or Twitter!

 

What students say about our courses
Dr. Andrew Dixon
GDP, working in Whickham Dental Practicw, Newcastle

Got the written confirmation from the exams department (RCS Edinburgh) this week so nice to have a hard copy of the results in my hand!! Many thanks for your guidance over the last year or so. The UIYC was set at a perfect level with just the right amount of content to get you through the diploma.

Dr. Chameera Fernando
GDP, working in Northampton




The print outs will be really useful as I wanted to go over the lectures again and start making notes and memorising the information.

Dr Lucy Nichols BDS MFDSRCS MSc.
GDP, working in New Malden with a special interest in aesthetic/cosmetic dentistry and implantology

The flexibility of doing the theory on-line has been fantastic. Far more convenient and cost effective than other courses. And it's useful to be able to revisit a lecture. Having patients provided and having a relatively local mentor has also been a big advantage over many other courses.

Dr C. Lappin BSc.(Hons), BDS(Hons), FDS RCS(Eng)
GDP, practicing in Belfast


Amazing! This is a very useful resource.

Dr. Andrew Dixon



I really enjoyed being able to complete the course at my own pace but with you in the background giving the occasional nudge so you dont loose focus. Obviously this also makes it very cost effective as there was much less time off work than on other courses. The supply of papers / reading material although daunting at first was excellent and actually essential for the diploma.

Dr R.D BDS Manc
General Dental Practitioner working in Manchester and did the Ultimate Implant Year Course in 2013

The UIYC is a very informative course especially for me who had a limited exposure to implant dentistry. It has certainly improved my knowledge in this domain with its very well structured online theoretical modules coupled with the improvement of my surgical skills via the monthly hands-on practical sessions. I managed to place a number of implants in the space of ten months. The good aspects of this course are that it provides you with patients to work with and it fits around your work schedule. Wished I found this course a few years earlier!

Dr Clair Kilgarriff, B Dent Sc, TCD
GDP practicing in Dublin with a special interest in orthodontics and implant dentistry

Ken Nicholson was my tutor for the certificate year in implant dentistry from the University of Warwick. He was one of the best lecturers I have had in my under and postgraduate training. He is methodical and clear in his delivery. Above all he is open to the viewpoints of others and most helpful in directing a student to further knowledge.

David Magilton BDS
GDP working in Lanarkshire and a current Ultimate Implant Year Course delegate

I thought that the intro to the UIYC was brilliant. We were given the perfect amount of information on this fascinating subject and this has given me a great insight into implant dentistry. It has also made me very keen to learn more and place my first implant. The smiletube site is an amazing resource and I appreciate the hard work you must have put into it.

Dr. Paul Howlett



The Ultimate Year Implant Course has been an excellent programme of education and learning. The flexibility of being able to work through the detailed online learning material at your own pace and when it best suits make it the perfect course to schedule around busy work and family life. In addition the experience gained through the clinical days has been 1st class with superb mentorship and clinical coaching. I would have no hesitation in recommending this course to anyone wishing to introduce dental implants into their clinical practice.

Dr Ramya Balasubramanian
General Dentist working in San Diego


Amazing program!.