Social media is a powerful opportunity for any business to reach new clients, but the strategies that work for other industries aren’t always the key to success for recovery centers. That’s because there are certain obstacles that rehabs face in building online communities and attracting followers in a public forum. Fortunately, with the right social media strategy, those obstacles can be overcome, and your organization can grow your online presence, raise brand awareness, and attract more clients. Check out these 4 big obstacles to social media success for recovery centers—and how you can overcome them.
Obstacle #1: Stigma of Addiction
For many addicts and their families, there is a lot of shame, embarrassment, or fear surrounding drug and alcohol addiction. People may be reluctant to “follow” or “like” a rehab center on social media who are concerned that someone will see the connection and make judgements about them or their loved ones.
In order to overcome that stigma and increase your number of followers, think carefully about what kind of content you’re going to share. What would a potential client or their family be comfortable reading, commenting on, or sharing? Inspirational stories of recovery and videos that help to destigmatize addiction are two examples of content that prospects may be more comfortable reposting on their own profiles.
Another great way to grow your following is to link yourself to other organizations that your prospects may already be following. For example, try sharing an article posted by another page, then tag them in your post to increase visibility of your own page. Look for ways to celebrate what other organizations are doing—such as an upcoming event or fundraiser—and they’ll be more likely to return the favor when you’re looking for a little social media boost down the road.
Obstacle #2: Lack of Engagement
Maybe you’ve already created social media profiles for a few different platforms but haven’t figured out how to get your followers to engage. Likes, comments, and shares are all important for increasing the visibility of your page, so engagement is key to a successful social media strategy. Facebook pages, Instagram business pages, and social media management apps will allow you to track that activity over time. If your growth has stalled, it may be time to revisit your strategy.
Once again, it’s important to think like your target market. What sort of content will they value? What will they be most likely to comment on or share? Look for opportunities to spark discussions by asking for opinions or inviting followers to tag a friend. The best way to boost engagement is to cultivate an authentic online community. Reply to every comment you receive—even if it doesn’t seem to demand a response. Post valuable content regularly to keep your organization in people’s news feeds and on their minds. Look for ways to truly connect with your followers online, and engagement will follow.
Obstacle #3: Too Overwhelmed
If your experience on social media has previously been limited to your personal profiles, you may be overwhelmed by how much more work is involved in managing business accounts for your recovery center. There’s a lot that goes into finding the right content to share, posting regularly, and tracking results to determine what works.
To simplify your social media to-do list, start by examining what content you already have. Has your recovery center gathered testimonials? Have you created videos about your organization? Do you have blogs that you’ve posted to your website? Have you saved interesting news articles about addiction or recovery? These are all examples of great content you can share without having to create something brand new.
Next, take some time every few weeks to plan upcoming posts, then schedule those posts ahead of time. Some sites (like Facebook) let you do this within the platform, while others require you to work with a third party app. Either way, this approach allows you to “set and forget”—though of course you shouldn’t forget altogether. It’s important to check in regularly to reply to comments and track your progress.
If you still don’t have the time, manpower, or interest in managing your own social media, you can also outsource this responsibility. Depending on your budget and how much work you need done, you can hire an agency or freelancer to do the legwork and provide you with updates. There’s simply too much opportunity at stake to let your social media profiles fall to the wayside, so don’t be above the option to hire help if necessary.
Obstacle #4: Limited Advertising Budget
Perhaps your recovery center has a limited advertising budget, or perhaps your leadership wants you to spend your advertising dollars elsewhere. You may be worried that you simply can’t afford to invest in your social media presence. While it’s true that hiring a full-time staff member or agency can be pricey, you may be surprised to find that social media advertising is very affordable—as long as you’re willing to invest your time.
Advertising campaigns on platforms like Facebook and Instagram are significantly cheaper than most traditional forms of advertising. Plus, you have the power to target your campaign towards a specific audience to get a higher click-through rate and conversion rate. Be prepared to invest serious time into planning content, engaging followers, setting up campaigns, and tracking results, but your hard work will pay off when you attract more clients without putting a dent in your advertising budget.
The Best Social Media Strategy for Centers with Limited Time and Budgets
There is one more way to use online platforms to reach your target audience that doesn’t require a significant financial investment or hours upon hours to get results.
Rehabs Finder is a website and app that puts some of the world’s most effective treatment centers in the palm of your prospect’s hand. Making Rehabs Finder part of your social media strategy allows you to get your name in front of the highest quality leads available—people who are actively looking for a recovery center for themselves or their loved ones.
All you have to do is add your treatment center to be listed in the app and online. There’s no need to plan content, boost posts, or track conversions. Simply put your information on this accessible platform, then prepare to answer calls from new prospects and future clients. It really is that simple.
Register with Rehabs Finder today to make the most of your online marketing strategy.