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Marketing for the Dental Industry
Ten Marketing Tips for the Dental Industry
For most dentists, marketing can be a subject of uncertainty and frustration. Once upon a time ago, dentists didn’t really need to do a lot of marketing; however, that is not the case today and will not going forward. Today the vast majority, 93%, of patients do their research online before scheduling an appointment at a new dentistry. Today’s dentist is playing a popularity contest with each and every patient to choose them.
We’ve compiled a checklist of proven dental marketing tactics, some of which won’t cost you a dime, that you can start using now to bring in more new patients than ever before.
Let’s get right to it.
1. Define Your Target Market
As a general practice, you may offer supplementary premium services such as corrective/cosmetic work or orthodontics. For each campaign, you will want to focus on just one of the many services you offer. This forces focus and provide a much better approach to analyze the progress of the campaign. This could be a specialized campaign on veneers. Whatever the service of choice, you will want to develop the persona that best reflects your ideal patient.
2. Front Desk Training
Scheduling new patients for a dental practice can and should be more of an art than a task. If done as the latter, you will not stand out positively from the pack but could standout in the opposite way of intention. You don’t want to spend all this time and effort in developing your perfect, specialized campaign, get the fruit from your efforts, and lose those leads because your receptionist isn’t excited about the marketing aspect of scheduling production. The skilled receptionist can turn inquiries into scheduled appointments, while the untrained will merely pass on the requested information and not generate the opportunity to bring in your next lifetime client. It never has to be a hard sell, but it does have to be more than just answering a phone. Sometimes a short 1-2 hour sales training will help, others a new patient phone script or intake procedure checklist can do the trick.
3. Facebook is your Friend
Using Facebook ads can offer a quick marketing boost to the other end of your telephone line. Often Facebook ads are excellent ran simultaneously with your direct mail campaign. Facebook allows you to upload your mailing list and target the same household. Furthermore, DentistryIQ.com says 44% of patients research their healthcare provider online before contacting for their first appointment. Your Facebook ad is a great way to generate referrals and motivate those out there that need your services, and have just forgotten about it in their busy lives that we all live today.
4. Correctly Pricing Your New Patient Special
Cheaper doesn’t always attract the most suiters. Most people want anything for less, but usually, things involving our bodies, don’t have the same appeal to “cheap out” on. I would suggest running an A|B test to learn more about your ideal clients before going too far in either direction. Nonetheless, most clients will see value in a service if offered correctly, opposed to slapping on a sales sign of “January Special Price of…”.
5. Defined Goals and Outcomes for each Campaign
Knowing where you currently are and where you want to be is half the battle that most do not even care to document on the onset of making marketing investments. It is a prerequisite to measured success.
6. Provide Bonuses or Prizes for Staff
Providing a bonus to your staff if they reach your new patient goal, is a great way to kick of each quarter (or each month for that matter). Most practices do provide some incentives based on production and objectives within the office, but keeping those goals aligned with your staff’s capabilities and your desired outcome can be cumbersome, but a requirement for optimal results. One of our dental clients increased his new patient numbers 110% in one month by solely offering better prizes to his staff for referrals.
7. Invest In Good Design and Videos
You would not want a graphic designer performing a simple extraction, would you? The same goes for your marketing design. Professional, pleasing designs can catch the attention of even your most stubborn audiences. Ditch the stock photos and create a video of a 360 view of your office and staff.
8. Email Lists From Data You Already Have
Using the email list you already have in your possession may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many just are ignoring this opportunity. Sending newsletters, tips, and links to your web content are a great way to stay on your existing client’s mind and further the goodwill you possess with them. Quarterly newsletters seem to be the best timing for the dental industry.
9. Ask for Reviews (or better yet Video Testimonial)
92% of consumers trust recommendations given by people they personally know. In a local business, there is no better marketing task that if executed correctly can provide such a significant boost in new revenue. Every practice has that excited patient that always arrives enthusiastic each time they come in. Start there and build the momentum for more. Everyone gets a lousy review from time to time, most of the time the person placing the negative review only wants to be heard. Blue Carrot Creative offers a way to both generate more good reviews but also learn about a bad experience before placing a public review online. Responding to less than stellar reviews immediately is a requirement.
10. Targeted Coupons to Existing Clients
Every dental office has a slew of patients that could use some work, but either doesn’t schedule it or forget about it. Send specialized campaigns to each group listed in your unscheduled treatment report from your Practice Management Software (PMS). Blue Carrot Creative can take your lists and do all the rest for you, providing detail analytics on the results.
#11 (BONUS) Get Personal
More than likely, the majority of your clients have a good/great connection with at least someone in the office. Send updates on vacations taken, new pets and children to the family, new hires, etc. as part of your social and newsletter campaigns. Your team will become celebrities, and you will harness the benefit with more referrals and new patient applications.
Are you ready to start a few marketing campaigns that produce real bottom-line results? Blue Carrot Creative specializes in ROI Marketing, Review and Reputation Management, Email Marketing, Social Media Management, and Advertisement Management services. Call now for a free consultation!