Last week Facebook held their annual f8 conference in San Francisco, and they announced many new features and changes to the most popular website online. Facebook announced an integration with Spotify, an application that allows you to share music between friends. Coincidentally, Spotify is run by Facebook visionary and Napster mastermind, Sean Parker. Another addition that you’ll notice if you’ve logged into Facebook lately is the redesigned of the user interface. The news feed has been moved, or altered, so that there is now a “Top Stories” feed above the basic news feed. This is Facebook’s attempt to prioritize what they think are the “top stories” to each individual user.

So what does this new interface and shuffling of the news feed mean to your practice’s Fan page? Facebook is clearly putting an emphasis on displaying user feeds based on relevance. With your patient’s friends and family members’ messages likely going right to the top of the news feed under the newly added “Top Stories” section, there is growing speculation that  the practice Fan page will lose relevance. After all, in order to put out an effective message it needs to be seen on your patient’s news feed.

These new tweaks to Facebook really emphasize the user-to-user interaction. I’ve brought up the point in the past that the most effective message is not necessarily the one that gets the most eyes on it (in the news feed), it’s the one that gets the most comments, because when a patient comments or “likes” a post of yours all of their friends can then see your post as well. Using this logic, the best way to deal with the most recent Facebook updates is to simply let your patients to the talking for you! Good ‘ol fashioned word-of-mouth marketing is now the best way to utilize Facebook to grow your practice’s presence. The emphasis will be more on how many of your patients are commenting about your practice and less about how many messages you’re putting out every day.

So how exactly do you get your patients to rave about you to their friends? While there are a few automated software’s available, such as PANDA by DoctorBase, you’ll still need a well thought out strategy. If you need help putting together a Facebook strategy then contact Turbo Social Media today, or call 877-673-7096 x2.

Also, click here to download our FREE Facebook report, “Facebook Timeline Success for Medical Practices,” a must-read for all practices.