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Are you ready to start implementing social media into your marketing strategy, but you're not sure how to get your team involved and excited? This is for you!
Throughout my time inside of veterinary practices and working as a Social Media Manager, I've had to try different approaches in getting teams to be open about being on camera and getting involved with our marketing efforts - the tips I'm sharing here are all ones I've implemented and have had success with in doing so... Let's dive in!
Tip 1: Watch the Timing of Your Requests
If Social Media Marketing is brand new to your team, you may see some hesitation as it is, so trying to add in a quick, last-minute, in-action photo probably isn't going to be received well. Here are 4 of my best takeaways when it comes to getting team members on board:
Be aware of where your team members are at in the moment. Has it been chaotic in the practice, or are they heading out for lunch? Don't add the pressure of grabbing a photo for social media right at that time.
Be mindful of the current state of the day and the workload - have you had several walk-ins, emergency surgeries, or an overbooking? It's not the best time to ask for social media content.
Plan ahead - Objection often comes from a lack of planning and preparedness. Give team members a heads up on when you may be planning to take some photos of patients receiving care or needing photos of team members themselves. If the team is aware that they will be having their picture taken, they may want to feel more "put-together" instead of having their hair in a messy bun and looking overwhelmed - give them that opportunity to get ready.
Get your team involved in various ways - Ask them for help in taking photos. Give them details and time - express what it is exactly you are looking for and when you would like to receive it. Allow time for turn-around vs immediate execution so they can plan ahead, too. Perhaps help them by planning ahead, looking at the schedule, seeing if a patient is coming in later in the week, and suggesting that appointment as an opportunity for a photo op.
It's important to take into consideration what all the team is doing and has going on before adding on more tasks - allowing time margin for deliverables and being clear on what it is you're looking for will reduce the overwhelm and urgency, increasing team willingness.
Tip 2: Make Social Media Fun
Remind the team that social media content is supposed to be a true reflection of the workplace, so it shouldn't be picture-perfect. Try making a game out of some of the requests by offering incentives.
As an example, maybe you need five photos for content for an upcoming event or promotion. Instead of just taking the photos, talk with management and see if you can provide a $5 gift card to the first five people to get you an image of a certain species receiving a specific treatment to support that event or promotion. This is a great way to initiate involvement, especially if Social Media Marketing is brand new to your team members.
If you're looking for more ideas and ways to make social media fun, be sure you're in my Facebook Group: Veterinary Social Media Managers.
Tip 3: Compromise and Be Flexible
Practice give and take. When asking team members to do something new, there's bound to be hesitancy and maybe a little pushback. It's important that we build trust with the team and make sure that they are comfortable with having their photo taken and published on social media - ask their permission to take their photo or video and if that photo or video can be shared. If the answer is "no," then be respectful of their decision and maybe try asking at a different time or through another approach.
Once you have permission, start small. Ask to record 30-45 seconds of video footage of a treatment being done. Show them what you've captured so they know what is going to be shared on social media and they don't feel blindsided.
Take into consideration what your individual team members are passionate about. If they enjoy a specific procedure or treatment or a certain species, allow them the opportunity to choose what they'll say or do while you're taking photos and videos. You could even offer to have them record themselves in an environment they are comfortable with.
If you have someone on the team who chooses not to be in photos, have them get involved in other areas - maybe they're taking photos or videos, or they're looking at the schedule to see what patients are coming in next week and putting a list together, or they have an idea of a topic to highlight. Just because they don't want to be on social media, doesn't mean they can't have a role in the process.
Tip 4: Be Transparent
Explain to your team members what you're doing and why. It's important to make sure they know exactly what photos have been taken of them and how they're going to be used. You don't want them ever to feel that photos were captured without their knowledge or published without their permission.
If they feel involved every step of the way and can see the results of what's being done, they'll likely start providing content without even having to be asked!
Now that you have the insider tips on how to get your team involved and excited about Social Media Marketing for your clinic, it's time to start implementing!
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