The Basics of Marketing a Squat Dental Practice

There is no one best way to market your practice, there are a lot of variables, but for now, lets assume that you are marketing to the general public (so not a referral practice), and you are a general practice (as opposed to a fully cosmetic practice).

This article will focus on online marketing strategy, not the nitty gritty detail, but it will give you an idea on how to create a marketing funnel, and then you can fill this online or offline.

Look and Feel

This is more about your brand positioning. How does your website and social media look and feel?

Are you using consistent fonts and colours? This matters, it looks more professional.

Hard colours like red may not be the best choice if you want to create a caring look and feel. But red works well if you selling sports cars. Colours and fonts are important. I ignored this for a long time, and as a result a lot of my stuff looked average.

These days, there is a lot of competition, so you have to look more professional.

Overall Structure

We are going to generate traffic from paid adverts, and get people on a mailing list, so that we are able to create a meaningful relationship with them.

That’s it, that’s the secret sauce.

To do this, we will need Advert copy, an offer that no one can resist, a landing page, email software, and a website.

A lot of this stuff is going to be specific to the service you are looking to promote.

Lets assume we are promoting a dental hygiene appointment.

What can we bundle into this? How can we make this better than everyone else?

A dental hygiene session is a low ticket item, and you may not need to build so much online trust to get a conversion (i.e. a paying customer)

Compare this to dental implants, which is a high ticket item, where people need more decision time before they take the next step.

Creating a Great Offer

Lets say that our offer is to have a free dental check up with a hygiene session. This is normally worth £100 or something.

No one wants a free check up, its not exciting for most people so let us talk about the benefits, so these could be:

Free health check so that you can feel confident that your teeth are healthy inside and outside.

Free health check to address any problems when they are small and easier to fix

Free health check to keep your dental bills as low as possible.

I came up with these three in about a minute, and I don’t know which will work best – there is a way to find out, I will explain this in a second.

You can have video adverts (better for creating a relationship) or static image ads, and you can have copy in both to encourage the viewer to take the next step, which is to click the button and check out the landing page.

In general video adverts work better on social media.

But the great thing is that you can test market. This means that you can write different copy, with different images, and send them all out, and those that work better will keep working, and the ones that don’t perform well will be cut and die a slow painful death!

The Landing Page

A landing page can be a page on your website, or a stand alone page.

This page has a single purpose of getting someone who may be interested in your offer, onto your mailing list.

On this page, you need to be clear about what your patient will get. So start with this.

Book your dental hygiene session, get an amazing, bright smile, and a free full health check worth £100, so you can be confident that your smile is as healthy as it is beautiful.

Okay, that’s a bit long for a headline, but it may work as an opening paragraph.

If you really want to get fancy, you can have several landing pages, and see what performs best, and destroy the non performers!

Maybe consider a video of you or a team member explaining this offer (creates a personal relationship!).

If you are going to do a video, make sure it looks good, remember this is your reputation.

Don’t shoot this on your new iPhone because you think it can do everything.

You should think about lighting and sound and script more than the equipment.

iPhones are fine if you get the lighting and audio good.

My advice is to make this a no risk form submission. So no money to book the appointment at this stage.

Maybe just have a call-back request form.

Email marketing system

I use Mailchimp, other systems are available.

You will need to connect the form on the website to your email software, and you should “tag” every enquiry on that form so you can segment your list later.

This means that if you have lots of different landing pages, some people are interested in implants, other in veneers, others in hygiene sessions – you can send targeted emails to different segments.

You should NOT send implant info to hygiene patients in the hope that they will sign for a big plan!

You should always respect your potential patients email address.

Once you have the form submission, then you can ask a team member to call them, and explain the offer, and if the patient is still interested, they can be booked in (and pay deposits).

If not, then stay in touch, and they can become customers at a later stage.

Marketing is a relationship game. With so many scams on the internet, you need to work hard to build trust before someone come to see you, or have a low barrier to entry to come and see you, so that you can build trust once your patient is in the practice.

Marketing for hygiene sessions is nice because its low cost, and it allows potential patients to try your practice before they commit to more comprehensive treatments.

You should think of the free xyz that you give in the offer as an investment in the relationship.

Dental patients normally don’t jump from practice to practice, so if you are able to “get people through the door”, then your patients could have a high long term value.

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