How to Run a Social Media Contest for Your Dental Practice


How to Run a Social Media Contest

Everybody loves to win. And you, as a dental professional, want to win over potential patients and grow your practice. Social media contests are the best way to kill 2 birds—entertaining patients and drawing them in. It’s a win-win.

What’s in it for you? Social media contests bring value to your practice by:

  • encouraging community engagement
  • increasing your social following
  • building brand awareness
  • creating user-generated content
  • driving more traffic to your website


Example of Dental Social Media Contest

Here are 6 simple steps to running a successful social media contest:


  1. Pick a contest. Some contest ideas that will help liven up your social media feed include:
    • Caption this—post a picture and elicit captions from your patients.
    • Ask a question—generating comments is easy.
    • Short essay—pose a question and ask for answer to be 20 words or less.
    • Photo—share your best smile, your kids with missing teeth.
    • Before and after pictures—use for teeth whitening, braces.
    • Giveaways—require they fill out a form to grow your email list.
    • Seasonal—back to school, stocking stuffer, New Year’s.


  1. Be clear on instructions. If you’re doing a contest where patients post photos, make it clear that they are to include a hashtag, e.g. #smile2019. State the parameters and any fine print, including restrictions, when winners will be announced, and any other guidelines.


  1. Announce the prize. As you consider giving away gift cards or your services, remember that you don’t just want entrants. You want entrants that will convert to patients. So what will do the trick? What will bring the patient to your practice?


  1. Set the time frame. When determining the length and frequency of the contest, find the sweet spot between creating an urgency in the minds of the entrants and allowing for the prize sit in the backs of their minds. Contests with smaller prizes can be short and run more often while large prizes can stretch contests out longer, allowing for more entries. Decide what works best for your practice.


  1. Get the word out. Once you’ve chosen which platform you’re using to run the contest, promote it on your other social media channels. Send out email blasts with links. Advertise at your practice.


  1. Announce the winner! (Remember to obtain written permission to post them on social media.) Announcing the winner will keep the contest going even after it has ended, reminding followers of the prizes, your practice, and the value your brand offers. Encourage patients to stay connected on social media to hear about the next contest.


Most people think going to the dentist isn’t all fun and games. But it can be! Have a blast while increasing engagement and boosting your following. Social media contests are trending across platforms more than ever because, well, who doesn’t love a little fun?

Need help with your practice social media? Let’s talk!

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(800) 840-5383


*** PBHS is the ADA Member Advantage Endorsed Provider for Website Design and Marketing. PBHS was founded in 1977 and works with over 8,000 practitioners. Since 1995, PBHS has developed websites for practices throughout the world. PBHS is a privately held company headquartered in Santa Rosa, CA, with offices in both New York and California. PBHS can be reached at 3785 Brickway Blvd Suite 200, Santa Rosa, CA 95403 (800) 840‐5383. or email at [email protected].

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