Spring clean your social media presence

Have you noticed a drop in engagement on your social media platforms? Perhaps what used to generate likes and shares no longer achieves the same results. If that’s the case, then it’s probably time to give your social media strategy a thorough spring clean.

The online landscape is constantly evolving, and with pet owners increasingly turning to social media for information about pet health and care, it’s never been more important for veterinary businesses to stay on top of current trends. A strong social media strategy not only re-engages existing audiences and attracts new followers, but it can also give you an edge over your competitors.

Maintaining professionalism

Positive online interactions can lead to word-of-mouth referrals and boost the reputation of your practice. However, it’s also important to be aware of the challenges. For example, anything posted online is immediately in the public domain and can be easily copied and distributed without consent. It’s therefore crucial for practices to safeguard client confidentiality and uphold the highest levels of professionalism.

Assessing your social media presence

The first step to refreshing your social media strategy is to reflect on what is and isn’t working for your practice. Consider which posts have driven engagement, and identify the topics, photos or videos that resonated with your followers, making them like, comment or share.

Tools such as Google Analytics or Meta Business Suite can help you gather data about your current social media metrics and performance, which you can use to adapt your content or posting schedule to improve performance.

Understanding Social Media

In recent years, there has been a shift in how social media works for businesses. Increased platform diversity, targeted advertising, and advanced measurement tools are now thought to be highly beneficial.

Demographics have also shifted, with younger audiences (20 to 30-year-olds) showing a preference for Instagram, YouTube and TikTok. And while it may not be the most popular among young people, Facebook is still considered a valued platform for broader reach and engagement, with 77 per cent of the UK population still using it.

For veterinary practices, Facebook is still considered to be the ideal platform to educate clients and build community, especially when looking to target people over the age of 30. Instagram is perfect for engaging through images and stories, while a Google Business profile can improve local search visibility and help clients find your practice more easily.

Creating content

When it comes to content creation, it’s important to understand your target audience. Tailor posts accordingly by identifying the demographics, interests and preferences of your followers. Are they pet owners, animal enthusiasts, or potential clients? Understanding their needs will help you create relevant content.

Engage authentically, maintain a consistent posting schedule and be sure to interact with followers promptly. You can use high-quality visuals to attract attention with professional photos and videos of your clinic.

Add value by sharing content on pet health and services and use relevant hashtags to drive traffic and boost comments, likes and shares.

What to post about

What you post on social media largely depends on your goals. Perhaps you want to attract new clients, in which case you may want to share positive feedback or patient stories from satisfied clients.

Maybe you want to build a stronger connection with existing clients, so you take photos or videos of their pets during visits and ask their permission to share them. A playful puppy or cute kitten never fails to attract likes and follows!

Some other ideas for content include:

Education: Demonstrate your expertise by sharing tips and advice on pet care. Topics could include dental, grooming, preventative care and exercise.

Behind-the-scenes: Give followers a sneak peek into the daily life of your practice and the care pets receive. You could also share birthday celebrations and team-building events.

Interactive posts: Get creative with polls, quizzes, and pet-related challenges to encourage participation. You could even run simple competitions to attract new followers and promote engagement.

Local events and news: Keep note of any relevant animal-related news and events in your community. Share relevant stories and participate in conversations with your followers.

Refreshing your social media strategy can help you reconnect with clients, build awareness of your practice and enhance its overall reputation in the community. Whether you use Facebook, Instagram, Google MyBusiness or a combination of all three, you should adapt content to suit the interests of your followers and meet the overall goals of your business. In doing so, you will build stronger client relationships, cultivate a sense of community and boost the visibility of your practice.