Less Artificial, More Intelligent, Please

I am a huge fan of working smarter not harder, but sometimes “intelligent” solutions leave me cold.  I’d like to talk about two places where automation is taking a strong hold in dental practices.  Having spent some time at the Autumn trade shows I got to interview a number of these service providers both old and new, and came away with a few thoughts and recommendations.

artificial intelligence

Patient Communication

This is one of the places where automation first took hold in our industry and it’s here to stay.  A number of studies have even suggested that patients prefer to get reminders via text or email rather than with a phone call – regardless of age.  We also know this frees up a huge amount of time spent by your admin team making those calls.

The good news is that most of these services are “plug and play” and the better ones fully integrate with your practice management software.  Were it my practice, I would definitely utilize one of these, with a few requirements:

  • The ability to customize my messages rather than some of the stock texts that are out there.
  • Anytime access to my schedule in case a patient contacts me
  • Excellent customer care and training for my team.

WorkingCat is happy to connect you with some of our preferred providers who have passed our tests and take care of our clients

Social Media

Here is where artificial gets in the way of intelligence.  Let’s first remember why we started social media feeds for our practice in the first place – to engage with patients.  If a company is posting generic content to your feeds, who are you engaging?  While automated social posting can be a big help if you and your team are just too harried/bored/uninterested, it can’t be your only source of content.  If you are going to use one of these services, you MUST participate in your social presence.

  • Make sure that you can steer the topics to match your messaging
  • Ask them to post YOUR pictures/events – or post those yourself
  • Remember to respond to patient comments in our feeds
  • Be sure that all password/logins/admin rights are YOURS – you don’t want to have to rebuild if you discontinue their service

As we head into the brave new world of 2019, let’s stay connected, stay engaged, and make smart choices in how we communicate our brand promise.

See you on the internet!

Plan Your 2019 Social Now

I know, it’s that time of year. The stores have had their halls decked since October, and many of us will spend Friday in a food coma. It’s an easy time of year for social media posting because so many fun things are going on – gifts from specialists, holiday parties with the team, etc.  Suddenly it will be January, and our feeds will be as bare as the turkey case tomorrow night.

Since your social feeds are basically filling themselves for the next 6 weeks, now is a great time to start planning your quarterly themes for 2019.  As a reminder, try to structure your 3 quarterly themes as 2 “dentally” – service you want to promote, and one “non-dentally” – like a piece about something your team is doing in the community or a CE you’re taking.

Remember to reflect those themes in your weekly blog posts and videos that you post to YouTube. Then share those on FB, Insta and Twitter.  These should account for one third of your social feeds.  The rest should be the truly “social” posts:

  • Goofy Holidays – National Taco Day, anyone?
  • VIP patients
  • Surveys and contests – great for building FB engagement
  • Fun things you and the team are doing

Remember whenever you post for a goofy holiday to use the trending hashtag for that day to make your post visible to a wider audience.  And as always, include images with every post #PiscOrItDidn’tHappen.

If you need help managing your social media, or want to learn how to use it more effectively, contact WorkingCat.  We’d love to get to know you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Goodbye to Google+

Google is shutting down it’s social network

Yesterday Google announced a ten month “sunsetting” period for their underused social network in a blog post .   A security review called Project Strobe discovered a bug in Google+ that had the potential to leak personal information from users’ profiles.  According to the analysis no one took advantage of the vulnerability – likely because no one bothered to notice.

Even though G+ was well integrated with the company’s other products like Gmail and YouTube, Google had to admit usage is virtually non-existent.  “90 percent of Google+ user sessions are less than five seconds.” – Google blog

The combination of this potential exposure, and the fact that almost no one is using Google+,  prompted Alphabet (Google’s parent company) to decide to put G+ out of it’s misery.

What should you do if you keep a profile on G+?  Frankly, not much. You’re probably also use other, more widely embraced platforms.  Keep working those and just begin removing you data from G+  Ten months will be plenty of time to download and migrate your data before the platform finally slips below the horizon in August of 2019.