When you think of running an independent pharmacy, social media probably isn’t high up on your list. However, while social media isn’t as important as maintaining your inventory, it can be an incredibly powerful tool for growing and maintaining your business. If your pharmacy has considered diving into the social media arena but is overwhelmed on where to start or how to even build up content, we can help. We’ve put together a few suggestions that may help make that decision, and launch, much easier:
- Getting Started
Choose your platform. Start small, with one or two platforms, and work your way up from there. The most popular choices for starting out in social media for pharmacies include Facebook and Instagram. Make sure your dedicated page hosts all practical information about the pharmacy including your address, phone number, store hours, services, and upcoming events.
- Health Tips
You’re a pharmacy, so one of the first things any current – or potential – customer is going to look for will be posts that address a common, seasonal, or local ailment or issue. These posts don’t have to be blog posts but can consist of a simple post and image that gives a few tips on anything from how to prevent sunburn to how to prevent frostbite. Your local economy, demographics, and geography can help give you more than enough material for a few posts each week.
- Holiday Calendar
A really simple way to keep customers engaged is by wishing them well during any holiday season. This tip may not bring in many new customers, but it will be appreciated by existing customers. Word-of-mouth advertising cannot be discounted. Craft a personal message to your customers. This can include a quick note about how your pharmacy, or family, will be celebrating, as well as images that are bright and interesting. You can also include holiday hours in the message.
- Staff Recognition
Do you have a staff member that just got married? Had a baby? Achieved a milestone such as obtaining a degree? What about that new hire that you’re particularly proud of winning over to your team? Consider creating posts that put the spotlight on your employees. By taking the time to commemorate these milestones and achievements, you’re not only building employee morale, but you’re also showing your customers that you value your staff. This helps build brand image and speaks to the quality of service that customers may experience in your establishment.
People love to laugh but, being funny is hard. This may seem counterproductive, but when you hit the mark, it can be an enormous win. Don’t stress over “being funny.” Instead, keep an eye out for anything you can share that is appropriate, and makes you laugh. Odds are, if it makes you laugh, your customers will appreciate the humor as well. Just keep it inoffensive and you should be on your way to creating another draw to your social media presence.
- Product Spotlights
Try to highlight some products that do particularly well in your pharmacy. By making posts about, advertising sales for, and calling attention to these products, you’re opening the door to a conversation. If you stick to items that sell well, these conversations can be overwhelmingly positive. Positive interactions are a great way to ensure repeat visits – both online and in person.
- National Health Observances
Local pharmacies are generally a first stop for someone who is looking for information or resources on a condition. By staying on top of National Health Observances, your pharmacy can provide up-to-date and relevant content to current – and potential customers.
Take it a step further and find other awareness days that can bring a little levity to the generally serious atmosphere of a pharmacy – say, National Cookie Day, or Shake Month. You can even try to coordinate sales with these days, such as offering discounted pricing on protein shakes or nutritional shake supplements. There’s a lot of room to have fun with this suggestion.
Creating a social media presence doesn’t have to be daunting, it doesn’t have to be difficult, and it doesn’t have to take a lot of time. When done correctly, and by keeping your customers (and goals) in mind, all it takes is a bit of basic information and a small amount of effort to increase your pharmacy’s reach, engagement, and sales.
If you’re not a PPSC member yet, join us. If you are a member, make sure you’re leveraging your benefits and maximizing your pharmacy’s success.