It is understandable for dentists with private practices to be concerned about delivering high quality services to their patients. However, to attract new patients, dentists should also focus on dental marketing.
Dental marketing has become increasingly important as there are many dental practices competing for patients in every city.
If you are a dentist looking to grow your dental practice, marketing will help establish and promote your name and services. By marketing your services, prospective patients searching for dental services online will more easily find you.
In today's world, the internet is the primary source for information and communication. You can use the internet to talk or see friends across the globe at any time. Sending messages is easier than at any time and the recipient receives your communications in less than a minute. Most importantly, any information that you need can be found on the internet.
The internet is the reason why traditional information sources such as the Yellow Pages have almost become obsolete. When you need to find something, you can easily go online and perform a Google search. As a result, most businesses now have websites.
Dentists have clinics and offices, which are, of course, businesses. Having a website should be a significant part of every dentist's dental marketing strategy. It is the first thing to consider to create a strong online presence.
While traditional marketing methods still work, and referrals are quite valuable, internet marketing is the most effective approach to promoting your business.
Strong marketing campaigns connect dentists with their patients and makes going to the dental clinic more convenient for patients. Marketing allows dentists to offer new services at affordable rates. Effective marketing can help convert prospects into clients. Internet marketing is effective without the hassle and expenses of traditional marketing practices.
Research shows that most leads that businesses acquire are from Google and other major search engines. Every month, billions of people turn to Google to search for the information they need. Many of these are consumers and prospective clients, including dental patients.
Also, since most people have smartphones, there are mobile users everywhere. A large percentage of online purchases actually come from mobile searches. Most consumers prefer to do their shopping online; patients find online bookings and consultations convenient as well.
With its vast global network, the internet is the best place for any business to attract customers.
For dentists, establishing an online presence is essential in attracting new patients. Building a website is just the first step, though. There are other equally important aspects, like Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which can help generate high ranking results for local searches. SEO may seem complicated, but with the right marketing team and SEO specialists, you can learn to make it work effectively for your business.
With more people aware of your practice's services, you will experience a significant increase in patient inquiries and appointments.
If you haven't begun marketing for your practice, here are a few ideas to help you get started.
If you have a list of competitors in your city, try searching for them online, and you will notice that most, if not all, already have a website.
A website is vital to your dental marketing efforts, as it provides your dental practice a presence on the Internet. With your website, you will have a platform to showcase all your services, expertise, and offerings.
You can create pages detailing the dental services you provide, including costs and which procedures are covered by insurance.
You could also create a page featuring the state-of-the-art equipment you use in your office.
You can also use your website as an opportunity to present your qualifications. With an “About Us” page, prospective patients can gain the assurance that they will be receiving their dental care from a skilled and experienced dental professional.
If you establish a blog, you will have the opportunity to provide audiences with quality content that can answer some of their oral health-related questions and provide solutions for common dental issues.
You can also provide dental health tips through your blog posts to educate current and potential patients.
Of all online marketing strategies, search engine optimization or SEO represents your best chance of making your dental practice more visible and easier to find on Google, Bing, and other search engines.
With organic SEO, you can drive more quality traffic to your website. The more visits to your website, the better the chances of your dental office booking the site visitors for a consultation or a procedure in the future.
Local SEO is one component of search engine optimization that dental practices should focus on. People need dental services near or at their current location, and your local SEO efforts will help guide them to your dental office.
You can boost your ranking in local search results by creating as many online listings as you can for your dental practice. Claim listings with Google My Business, Yelp, and other local business directories. Ensure that your listings contain vital business information such as your exact address, your business hours, and your specialties.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media sites are more than just a platform for people to express their opinions, showcase their talents, or communicate with friends and loved ones.
Social media sites have evolved into incredibly potent business tools.
In addition to accessing billions of users, a social media presence also helps with customer engagement, brand recognition, customer service, and revenue. You can reach audiences belonging to various demographics and build relationships with them through social media.
While you can use your website for similar purposes, the more casual nature of social media makes people more comfortable in engaging with you online through comments and direct messages.
One of the oldest and most effective ways to promote a business is through word-of-mouth. Your satisfied patients will likely recommend you to their friends and loved ones. Encouraging such recommendations will lead to increased inquiries and appointments and one way of expanding such referrals is through dental patient referral programs.
Create referral cards and hand them to your patients as they check out. Inform them how much you will appreciate their recommending your practice and that every successful referral is rewarded with incentives like discounts, free services, and gift cards.
Offering rewards may require a small upfront investment, but the value that each new patient brings will be worth it.
Your dental practice is a local business, and local businesses gain by supporting their community.
One way of showing your support for your community is by providing periodic free dental clinics for its underserved and underprivileged citizens.
If your community holds seasonal festivals or other gatherings, you can participate by having your own booth or by sponsoring contests or similar engagements.
Local youth sport sponsorships also present a good marketing opportunity for your practice. You can financially support a particular team and, depending on the extent of your sponsorship, possibly have uniforms which carry your dental practice's name and logo.
Giving back to the community is more than just a marketing opportunity. It also helps you foster relationships with its members, who comprise the bulk of your patient base.
The more you do to contribute to the community, the more people will recognize and appreciate your presence and impact. Your contributions will make people trust your practice and that trust will play a vital role in its growth.
Dental marketing is possible to do on your own, but it takes a lot of time and effort to ensure success.
To market your practice without compromising the quantity and quality of your work as a dental professional, you should consider partnering with a dental marketing agency.
You will benefit from the online marketing strategies and proven tactics that skilled and experienced dental marketing professionals can create and customize for your dental practice's needs.
Give dental marketing a try and see for yourself how it can help grow your practice.