Staying Ahead: Simple Digital Marketing for Dental Practices
“How are we going to market the practice? Should we put out specials for dental procedures?”
This thought has probably crossed your mind many times a month. Marketing is very important to any business, let alone dental practices. But as time has gone by, the marketing world has evolved. The days of sending mailers and placing ads in local papers are slowly diminishing as the world is moving towards a more digital age.
Marketing alone can be overwhelming; but digital marketing can be even more overwhelming, especially if one is not well versed in the topic. But rest assured, I have some tips that can help you start understanding this new age of digital marketing.
1. The most popular form of digital marketing is social media marketing. Social media is everywhere nowadays and almost everyone has some form of access to social media, whether it be Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, or YouTube. As someone who is looking to market a dental practice, it is crucial to take advantage of as many of these platforms as possible. First off, it is free to make an account for your practice on any of these platforms. All you have to do is set it up and start posting. Further, it helps you engage with your patients or potential patients. On these platforms, you can share before and after photos, do Q & A forums with the doctor or hygienist, create polls, or interview a staff member every month. Whatever it may be, make sure it is unique to your practice and caters directly to your audience, which are new or existing patients.
2. Once you have developed your social media platforms, you can then advance into the next phase of digital marketing, which is advertising. On platforms like Facebook, you can pay for Facebook ads that you can tailor to your practices needs. For instance, you can select the region you want to target, check the analytics, and see who is engaging with these ads. In addition, you can create certain words that trigger your practice to pop up in a search bar. For example, if a patient is searching, “best dentist near me”, if you triggered the word “best” and “dentist” for your practice, then your practice will pop up on that search. Although it isn’t for free, the small monetary investment can yield a big reward in gaining more engagement with your platform and in turn bringing new patients into the practice.
3. If your audience is more traditional, then you can start off with a quarterly newsletter. Quarterly newsletters can be made digitally and can be sent to your existing patients via email. Although this type of digital marketing is targeting your existing patients, it is still important to market to them as well for retention purposes. For example, in the newsletters, you can update your patients on new technology that was brought to the practice or go over the importance of keeping their hygiene appointments. You can use the newsletters as an education tool for your patients. Besides patient education, you can use the newsletters to spotlight a staff member each quarter, that way patients feel like they are getting to know your staff a little bit better besides just seeing them in the office.
Digital marketing is the future and is currently happening in the marketing world. As time goes on and the generations change, more people will go online and to social media to find their providers. By staying ahead and current with these trends, your dental practice will thrive and you will create a better relationship with your existing and new patients.
Although digital marketing is intimidating, by following the simple steps outlined and staying consistent with it, your will grow your practice forward into the future.
Sylvie Haber, Consultant
Sylvie first entered the dental field through her mother, who is a dentist. She grew up attending conferences and many dental meetings. Watching her mother’s passion and love of dentistry, Sylvie grew to love the profession as well. After, she earned her MBA in Healthcare Administration from Loma Linda University. She completed the ADA ‘s Executive Program in Dental Management and also became a Fellow of the American Association of Dental Office Management. Sylvie enjoys seeing dental offices thrive, become more productive and run smoothly under her guidance through management and coaching.
Sylvie can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org