AMARILLO, TX - Dr. William Graves is not afraid of the limelight, while his partner at Amarillo Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, Dr. Paul Wilkinson can do without all the attention.
But these doctors are the talk of the town for the way they have been attracting new patients to their practice.
"We probably get one patient if not two patients every single day from our Snapchat," Dr. Graves said.
Dr. Graves said it was his nurses who convinced him to start recording his patient's surgeries on the social media app; with their permission, of course.
It was a slow start when the doctors began snapping in January 2017.
"The first day we did it, we had like 10 people look at it," Dr. Graves said. "And they were basically my friends."
Once things took off, they exploded. By February AOMS had to hire a social media coordinator, Chriselda Reyes, who said snapping is a full time job.
Dr. Graves said thousands of people were attracted to the drama in and outside the surgery rooms.
"I originally wanted to do just the surgery and then we would do tidbits here or there of some personal stuff or some of the office characters," Dr. Graves explained. "And people really started liking that stuff more. So we have really developed that. So before it was probably 100% surgeries and now it is probably, maybe 50-50...So, no, that really wasn't the vision at first but that's kind of how it evolved."
It is like a reality show on Snapchat, and soon fans could see Dr. Graves and Dr. Wilkinson on their TVs too. The AOMS staff are shooting a pilot about their Smile Again program, which provides free dental work for members of our community that have faced extreme, undue hardships.
Dr. Graves credits their success on Snapchat to the patients who allow them to film their procedures and to the personalities that make up their staff.
"You know as far as like staging," Dr. Graves said. "I don't think up things the night before and come to work the next day and play those stories out. I mean if something is staged, we do it off the cuff so to speak."
Dr. Graves said they snap anywhere from 15 to 20 times a day. Some of their followers include other oral surgeons across the world and students in oral surgery programs at universities. Dr. Graves said some of the universities even require their students to follow AOMS on Snapchat for it's educational value.
You can follow AOMS on Snapchat @amarillosurgery.
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