As an ‘alternative’ wellness practitioner, you’re likely used to being viewed as someone who uses unproven methods that don’t work. Although not true, unfortunately, this is a common misunderstanding among many.
What’s true is this: we view the health of our patients through a different lens. We have a different set of tools in our toolbox. We march to a different beat.
For the most part, life as an alternative wellness practitioner is rewarding. But this past year, many of us experienced something new that maybe we haven’t quite encountered before – straight-up censorship.
Let’s step back into 2020 for a minute. The pandemic was rearing its ugly head, and the world hunkered down. Many were forced to close up shop and as a society, we turned to digital living. People started chatting and sharing more on social media.
Long story short: Bad information got mixed in with the good, and the accepted party line became the ultimate standard. The result?
Facebook threw the baby out with the bathwater. They started cracking down on health-related content. And you bore the brunt.
Since then, it’s been pretty darn challenging to share your health advice or expertise online. But guess what? Your patients still want to hear from you. They’re still desperately looking for answers.
So, how can you still serve your patients and grow your practice without relying on Marky Z and his community standards? I’ve put together three highly-effective strategies to help you do just that.
1. Build Your Email List
It sounds like a no-brainer but it bears repeating: building a following only on social media is like building a house on rented ground. You never know when the law of the land will change.
That’s why I urge every practitioner I work with to develop and nurture their email lists as much as they can AND grow their social followers as well.
Here’s the thing. Email marketing gets you $42 for every $1 spent. That’s a 4200% return on your investment.
Did ya catch that last part?
So, let’s work on getting your email list hopping. Here are three easy steps to get started:
- Create a reason for people to give you their email addresses. This is called a lead magnet, and they can be sooooo much fun to make.
- Ask every new patient for their email address when they fill out their patient paperwork. And verify the emails of your existing patients as well.
- Talk about joining your email list everywhere – in your blogs, on your podcast, when you guest speak, while you’re at community events… You get the idea.
I know this goes without saying, but a list is only good if you actually email the people on it. So, make sure you show up in their inbox with consistent, value-driven emails. (BTW, we can help with that.)
2. Leverage Other Platforms
Late last year, Facebook reported a first. They announced that they lost about 1 million daily users between the third and fourth quarters. What caused the mass exodus? Facebook said it was due to stiff competition from other platforms.
My friend, that’s great news for you! It means users are willing to try new platforms if it means a better experience. Wondering which ones to try out? Here are four Meta-alternatives that have some special magic to them.
- YouTube. Did you know 92% of internet users are watching videos each week? Or that about 30% are watching live streams and educational videos. So, instead of creating videos or going Live on Facebook, consider hopping over to YouTube.
- TikTok. This fun, video-based app is what brought about Facebook’s decline in users. It’s especially useful if you work with younger patients. Today, about 47% of their users are Generation Z. That number is expected to eclipse Instagram’s Gen Z audience by 2025.
- WhatsApp or Telegram. Both are text-based platforms you can use to freely message content-related information, audio, or video files. It works for individuals or with groups. So, if you have a Facebook Group and are looking to make a switch, this might be a good fit.
- Clubhouse. This popular audio-based app puts a unique spin on social platforms. It allows users to meet, chat and share ideas. And it’s pretty simple. You can create and join “rooms” (basically like a conference call) and get to participate in conversations of interest.
While Facebook remains a platform powerhouse, it’s starting to show some chinks in the armor. If you’re not ready to throw Facebook out entirely yet, that’s OK. Start building your network on one of the other platforms and slowly make the transition over.
3. Drive People to Your Blog or Podcast
Want to speak freely but not kick social media entirely to the curb? Try housing your main content outside of social media and driving people to it. I’m talking about if you have a blog**, a YouTube channel, or have started a podcast for your practice.
Think about it… Hosting your content on another platform means you can speak a LOT more openly about topics you’re an expert in – topics your patients want to hear about. Plus, all those visits boost your SEO, which can expand your reach even more.
So, after you write that post or publish that podcast, remember to also promote it.
- Send a quick note to your email list and let them know to tune in.
- Go Live and dangle that content carrot for your viewers.
- Create teaser posts with hook-worthy hooks your readers can’t help but check out.
One important note: If you promote your content on social media, make sure to language your captions carefully. You still have to play by the rules… sorta.
**Don’t have a blog? We can help with that, too.
Market Your Practice Without Facebook
Yes, Facebook is a powerhouse. And it will probably be that way for a long time. But it’s not the only way you can grow your practice.
I know it can be scary to branch out and try something different or unfamiliar. So, before you do, why don’t you let us at Clinical Catalyst take a look at your marketing first?
We’ll lift the hood and take a look inside your marketing to see how well it’s working. We’ll then give you our expert opinion and specific actions you can take to improve your online presence stat. It’s entirely free with no strings attached. All you have to do is fill out this short form to get started.