One of the most important objectives for a Dental Practice is to attract new patients, but this is becoming harder due to increased competition despite the fact that people are now more conscious about their dental health.
Here are a few tips that will help give you that competitive advantage and increase patient enquiries.
People don’t look up local services in the Yellow Pages anymore, they search online. If you want to attract new patients it is important that firstly have a well designed website with your treatment information and contact details, and secondly for your website to rank well on the search engines (particularly Google). The 2 main channels that can achieve this is through search engine optimisation and pay-per-click. Both channels have positives and negatives but if you outsource to a company that has experience in the Dental Marketing industry they will be able to drive traffic to your website through one or both.
Word-of-mouth marketing (WOMM), also called word of mouth advertising, is an unpaid form of promotion in which satisfied customers tell other people how much they like a business, product or service. Word-of-mouth is one of the most credible forms of advertising because people who don’t stand to gain personally by promoting something put their reputations on the line every time they make a recommendation. If your Patients are happy with your service, encourage them to tell their friends and family. You could add a poster in you reception promoting this: ‘If you are happy with our service, please tell your friends and family – if you have any concerns please tell us’.
Your marketing material should include a risk-free offer that gives patients a reason to call your practice. ‘Call now for a risk free consultation!’ In addition, you could offer a special discount on services or a free teeth cleaning. It is not good enough to just list number on marketing pieces — you have to give prospective patients a reason to call. If you do this, you can build a database of qualified prospects who respond to your offer, then proactively educate them. So when they are ready to see a new dentist, they will choose your practice.
Provide educational information that will be of interest to prospective patients. Give them tips and ideas they can benefit from immediately instead of just a list of your services or credentials. Tell prospective patients what to look for when choosing a dentist, how to take care of their teeth, the benefits of using an electric toothbrush, or how flossing will affect their health. Education-based marketing will ensure that your marketing is perceived as valuable rather than as just more annoying advertising.
Your marketing should focus on your patients’ “hot buttons,” or what they really care about when choosing a dentist. All of the problems, frustrations, annoyances, and confusion that patients and prospects typically have when dealing with the dental profession are considered their hot buttons.
These include such items as the level of pain they experience during procedures, how long they have to wait during appointments, and what results they receive. Your marketing copy should address these hot buttons rather than just listing the services and products your practice offers. A good rule of thumb is that “you” and “your” should appear at least twice as many times in your marketing pieces as “we” and “our.”