Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Survey of US Dental Practices' use of Social Media.

Henry RK, Molnar A, Henry JC. A Survey of US Dental Practices' use of Social Media. J Contemp Dent Pract 2012;13(2):137-141.

Abstract

Aim: Social media is becoming the way for businesses, including health care professionals, to communicate with consumers. The study examines the use of social media by dental practices in the US. Materials and methods: An electronic survey was sent to 22,682 dentists in the United States. The survey consisted of questions related to the use of social media in the dental practice. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and comparisons were made using a Fisher's exact test. Results: A total of 573 responses were received. Social media was used in 52% of dental practices, the most common being Facebook. The use of social media was most commonly for marketing purposes (91%). Dentists younger than 45 years old were more likely to use social media in their practice than dentists 45 years or older (p > 0.001). Conclusion: Dental practices actively use social media for marketing and communication. Many dentists are unsure how to measure the success of social media in their practice. Additional research is needed to measure the success of social media in a dental practice. Clinical significance: Social media is a common way practices market and interact with their patients. There are some difficulties in determining what appropriate content for social media is and how to evaluate the success.

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