Help your customers and fans find you on Instagram with these dental hashtags
Walt Disney once said, “of all of our inventions for mass communication, pictures still speak the most universally understood language.”
In just a few years, social media – and especially social media with images – has changed our world. Social media is an all-in-one communication and connection tool. When you approach it as a business asset, the blend of images and “interesting things” on Instagram, combined with strategic dental hashtags can be an unparalleled way to reach your audience.
With a minimal budget, your dental practice can use videos on your website, and interactive mediums like Facebook to attract and engage with current and potential patients. To this day, Walt Disney is right; pictures are the language of communication. That’s why Instagram is such an excellent medium for promoting your dental practice.
If you’re going to use Instagram, however, you still need to approach it as a business decision. With a little strategy, and the right dental hashtags, you can have a phenomenal return on your investment by attracting more visibility to your practice.
What are hashtags
Back in the old days, we called it a pound sign. Now it’s a hashtag (#) and that little symbol is the key to categorizing and finding what you want on Twitter and Instagram. This is also one way your patients and future patients locate you online. For instance, if you want a dentist in Toronto, an Instagram search for #TorontoDentist leads you to, among others, Leaside Dentistry. Their Instagram account is a mix of before and after photos, fun memes to showcase their personality, and practice news.
How to use dental hashtags
When you peruse an Instagram account you’ll see a picture followed by a short description, and often followed by a series of hashtags. For instance, if you have a great picture of your hygienist holding a cute, smiling puppy, you can post the picture on Instagram and use hashtags like #smile, #dentalfun, #puppiesofinstagram, and #dentallife.
You can go wild with hashtags on Instagram, and even make up some fun ones while you’re at it. You can also use these same hashtags on Twitter, but to a lesser degree. One or two hashtags within the context of a sentence are sufficient.
Instagram pros will tell you that instead of clogging up your photo description with hashtags, they’re just as effective if you post your image, and then write a comment using all the hashtags you want to target. Your image will show up the same as if you posted them in your description, but without all the pile of hashtags clogging your message.
Bonus tip: While making up a hashtag, or using one like #puppiesofinstagram may bring you a lot of traffic, it probably won’t bring you the audience you need. If you use hashtags unrelated to your business, make sure to use them in conjunction with hashtags that are relevant to your target audience.
The dental hashtags you need to use
Before we list any specific hashtags, it’s important to state that any hashtag comes with a simple caveat. As a business, you need to think strategically about what you post and how it attracts your audience. A dentist in Topeka may have 4,317 Instagram followers because of their remarkable sense of humor. However, if those fans live everywhere except Topeka, that Instagram account isn’t making the most of their posts.
1. Your location
This isn’t one particular hashtag. Rather it is a combination of your location plus the word “dentist.” For instance, you might use #MiamiDentist if you’re in Miami, or #DCDentist if you’re in Washington D.C.
You can also use common names for your location. A dentist in San Francisco could use #SFDentist, #SanFranciscoDentist, or #BayAreaDentist. They should also use #SanFrancisco, to attract other people in San Francisco. Maybe they weren’t looking for a dentist originally, but you can draw them in with your fun-loving posts.
Bonus Tip: Use this hashtag in conjunction with any other hashtag you post. You want to ensure your local audience can keep up with your posts!
It’s no secret that what you eat has a direct impact on your dental health. #CleanEats is a very popular hashtag for fresh and healthy foods. As a dentist, you can offer ideas for foods that have a positive influence on oral health.
This might seem obvious, but it’s easy to overlook the obvious. The #Dentist hashtag has over 1.5 million posts, meaning it’s busy, but if you post regularly, you’re sure to get some visibility with it.
Show off your funny side with the #DentalHumor hashtag. Just keep the humor positive. Avoid posts that might have any possibility of making a patient feel uncomfortable.
Good oral hygiene is part of a healthy lifestyle. The #HealthyLiving hashtag is devoted to exercise, healthy food, and inspirational quotes. Use this in conjunction with more dental-specific hashtags and you could reach a larger audience.
The #OralHealth hashtag is a blend of humor, health tips, before and after images, and lifestyle posts. While this isn’t as busy as some of the other dental hashtags, the niche factor could work in your favor if post tips and tricks for good oral health.
Believe it or not, #toothbrush might be a much better hashtag than something more seemingly relevant than #smile. As a hashtag, #smile has over 205 million posts. For a dentist, this presents a two-fold problem. For one thing, a hashtag that popular moves so fast that it is unlikely many people would see your post. The second issue is that very few of the #smile posts are related to anything in line with a dental practice.
#Toothbrush, on the other hand, is busy, but not overwhelmingly so. Most of the posts with this hashtag are related to dental topics and oral hygiene.
Bonus Tip: The most active hashtags aren’t always the best ones for your brand.
The #HealthyTeeth hashtag has it all: cute dogs, cute kids, humor, and oral health tips. Both dental professionals and nonprofessionals grace this hashtag with some fun pictures.
If nothing else, this hashtag just sounds fabulous. Say it out loud and try not to smile. This is a niche hashtag that’s popular enough to draw some visibility, but not so popular that you would get lost in the crowd.
10. Community hashtags
If you sponsor a charity 5k, use the associated hashtag to promote your involvement while giving props to organizers and other sponsors. Think along the lines of giving general health tips as a part of #HealthyLiving approach to an upcoming #Charity5K.
Bonus Tip: For Twitter, add a hashtag or two in the body of your text to maximize your use of space, like we did in the sentence right before this!
Instagram is more than just dental hashtags
Always remember that what you post on any social media channel is part of your professional image. Your goal with social media is to engage current patients and attract new patients. Bear that in mind with anything you put online. Use apps like Canva to make quote posts and create dental tips, post micro interviews with your staff, or let your staff rotate Instagram duties throughout the week. Before and after photos can be nice if the photos aren’t off-putting, but focus on inspirational posts that get people in the door.
Do you have good Instagram hashtags to share with our community? Share your thoughts in the comments. We’d love to know what works for you.