Archive for Dental Marketing

Intelligent Dental Marketing

Intelligent dental marketing should be performance driven. Any form of marketing that isn’t performance driven should be left to those who have money to burn. Few dentists even take the time to measure how well their marketing is performing. If you don’t measure how well something is doing, how can you know if it is an effective use of your marketing budget?

Another problem is that your dental marketing cannot be outsourced effectively unless the interests of your practice are aligned with that of the marketing firm that you are using. When you pay for marketing upfront rather than based on results. The firm you are using has less incentive to do a good job, than if their pay depends solely upon producing results. So if you are interested in truly intelligent dental marketing, you should look for an alignment of incentives between your practice and that of your marketing agency.

Bigger isn’t always better. Your patients don’t care how big your practice is. They care that there dentist knows their name and genuinely cares about their dental health. A big flashy marketing firm may seem like the way to go. But often your practice will be viewed as just another number. But with a small firm, the odds are greater that they will view you and your practice as a person, not a number.

Are you a marketing expert or a dental expert? How many hours have you spend learning marketing as compared to learning dentistry? Unless you spent an equivalent number of hours learning marketing, odds are good that you are not a marketing expert. So it pays to hire an expert, then you can do what you do best and they can do likewise. But obviously it comes down to trust, but again it does hurt if your marketing expert is only paid when they generate results.

Truly intelligent dental marketing is money well spent and the most intelligent form of dental marketing is one that is based solely upon results. The best form of marketing for your practice is the one that brings in the most patients per dollar spent and where you don’t have to pay for it unless it produces results.

Do you even know exactly how much it costs to acquire a patient from each form of media that you use? If you don’t, calculating this number is a good place to start.

Does your practice employ performance driven marketing. Marketing that you don’t pay for unless it produces results?

Dental Marketing Strategy

Most dentists don’t think that they have the time to worry about developing an effective dental marketing strategy. You are probably too busying providing the highest quality of dental care to your patients to have the time do focus on marketing your dental practice as efficaciously as possible. But I assure you that if you don’t make the time to create a dental marketing strategy that works to bring in a continuous stream of high value dental patients, the time will be forced upon you. Eventually your dental practice will stop growing and start to decline, and then you will have more and more free time to focus on what went wrong.

So what is the hallmark of a great dental marketing strategy?

It consists setting aside time from your busy schedule of performing dental care and using that time to develop a well thought out dental marketing plan. If you don’t have the time, make the time. If you have to, actually book an appointment with your self, just as if you were seeing a patient to work on your dental marketing plan.

Key Components of a Dental Marketing Plan

The very first component is the main goal or objective. What exactly do you want to accomplish? If you are like most dentists your goal is probably to grow your practice. But you need to be specific, how exactly do you want to grow your practice? What is the profile of your best and most valuable patient? Focus on exactly want you want to achieve.

Now if you already have all the patients you can handle, you’re probably thinking that you don’t need to have a marketing plan since you don’t want to grow your practice. But even if you have all the patients you can handle, wouldn’t you like to have a higher profit margin per patient? Well all you need to do is make sure your marketing plan focuses on attracting your best type of patients and as natural patient turnover occurs you will find that your practice becomes more and more profitable without increasing your caseload.

Now what dentist doesn’t want to earn more while working less?

A Dentist Can’t Manage What He Can’t Measure

The second critical component of a dental marketing plan is a mechanism for measuring the results of your marketing efforts. Essentially you want to know if your marketing efforts are on track to generate the goals that you have set. Ideally, you will want to know on a day to day basis how well your dental marketing efforts are performing.

Now you might think that this level of measurement and tracking is expensive. But it is exceptionally cheap when you compare it to the cost of ineffective dental marketing. Tracking your offline advertising is as simple as getting a call tracking phone number for less than $5 per month. And measuring your online advertising can be done with a number of free internet analytics software packages.

So there really is no excuse not to measure the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns.

Dental Marketing Tactics

Finally we get to the place where the rubber meets the road. The tactics you will employ to promote your dental practice are critical if you want to succeed.

I don’t have time to describe every possible tactic that you can use to get more dental patients. But I will say that you should focus on tactics that generate immediate, measurable responses from the patients that you are targeting.

Any tactic that doesn’t do this should be thrown out the window of your dental office, unless you’ve got money to incinerate.

Excellent Execution of Your Dental Marketing Strategy

The final and most important component of a dental marketing strategy is execution. You can develop the best dental marketing plan in the world but if you don’t put it into action, nothing will happen. Good execution of a mediocre plan will provide more benefit than poor execution of a great marketing plan. So just imagine how your practice will perform if you combine great execution of a great dental marketing plan. The growth of your dental practice will skyrocket and your bottom line will expand exponentially.

Improving Your Dental Practice’s Marketing Strategy

Whether you are a Honolulu Dentist, Kona Dentist or Dentist in Walla Walla, even if you have a great marketing strategy I assure you it can be improved. How do I know this? Unless you are sitting on a beach on Maui and seeing new patients come in on autopilot, there’s always room for improvement. Want a free marketing consultation? Use our contact form to get in touch.

Cosmetic Dental Marketing

Cosmetic dental procedures are often seen as a luxury, a want, not a necessity. Therefore, they are one of the first things that dental patients cut back on when the economy slows. But the good news is that there are always patients that want to look their best and even in downturns there are still large numbers of patients that can still afford and desperately want cosmetic dentistry.

Cosmetic Dentists Should Market Smarter, Not Just Harder

Since the supply of cosmetic dentists is more or less fixed, while the demand for cosmetic dentistry falls in a downturn, you will have to work harder and smarter to be the cosmetic dentist that the smaller supply of patients are clamoring to see.

Let’s say that there are ten competing cosmetic dentists in your market. When times are good there are more than enough patients for you and all of them. But now times have gotten tougher. This doesn’t mean that all the cosmetic dental patients go away. This means that perhaps there are enough patients to support only eight cosmetic dentists in your market. As long as you are one of those eight dentists there is still plenty of work to go around. And if you are positioned the best dentist of those eight dentists, you will still get more patients than you can handle.

And the mathematical truth is half of those ten dentists are good dentists they are better than average. So your expertise and skills alone will not be enough to make you stand out from the herd. How you portray your skills and position yourself against your competition is what makes all the difference.

The Time to Advance When All of the Other Cosmetic Dentists Are in Retreat

You see, you can read all the bad news about the economy and wonder how it is going to harm your cosmetic dental practice’s bottom line. Or you can take action and employ effective cosmetic dental marketing methods and actually gain market share as your competition retrenches and cuts their marketing budget.

After all, the real time to gain new patients and grow your dental practice is when times are tough and your competition is scaling back. It is much easier and much cheaper to stand apart from the crowd when they are cowering in their dental offices hoping to hang on to their existing patients and scaling back on their advertising and lead generation. It is so much easier to win the advertising and marketing war when your competition has simply decided to call it quits and wait things out. Ad rates are lower and the airwaves and other forms of media are much less saturated.

So What Cosmetic Dental Marketing Methods Should You Employ?

It all comes down to a few words, direct response. It doesn’t matter whether you are thinking about advertising on the internet, radio, television, yellow pages or any other form of media for that matter. All that matters is that your advertising is focused on getting the desired response, which is new patients rushing into your dental practice and clamoring for highly valuable cosmetic dental procedures. Simply put every form of marketing or advertising you employ should have a measurable impact on your bottom line. If you spend a dollar, you better be able to measure the result of spending that dollar and see that it is producing more than a dollar of net profit in return.

So what it all comes down to is being highly strategic about your dental practice’s marketing, tracking every dollar that is spent and every dollar that it brings in. Once you find the right media and message to employ, where each dollar of spending brings in more than a dollar of net profit you need to be bold when your competition is fearful and invest as much as possible in your marketing campaigns that generate a positive return on investment.

By doing this your cosmetic dental practice won’t just struggle through tough economic times but it will actually grow while other practices are contracting. And when the good times return it will be light years ahead of your competition and earning many multiples more than they are.

Cosmetic Dentists: How would you like get more patients from your website?

If are reading this article, chances are you found it through one of the major search engines. How would you like get more patients from your website? In many markets dentists just like you are putting very little effort into optimizing their websites to be well positioned in the search engines, so it would be relatively easy to get your website at the top of the major search engines, where it will gain the lion share of visitors who are looking for quality cosmetic dental care. It doesn’t matter if you are a Kona Dentist, Hawaii Dentist or a dentist in Hartford, if you focus your market efforts into lucrative areas that other dentists are overlooking, you will get more patients, while spending less money to acquire them. Contact us via our contact form if you want to take decisive action.

Strategic Dental Marketing

How to Grow Your Dental Practice More Effectively

Beginning with the end in mind is the cornerstone of strategic dental marketing. Lose sight of this and you will win the battle, but lose the war. If you don’t know where you are going, it’s easy to get lost. Are you taking a tactical or a strategic approach when it comes to growing your dental practice. If you rely on tactics you will find yourself jumping from one shiny object to another with little to show for your efforts and the money you spent. But if you think strategically, your marketing efforts will be laser focused and hyper profitable.

What is your Goal for your Dental Practice?

Want to Be Here?

You must always begin with the end in mind, or you may spending a lot of time climbing up the ladder and realize too late that it is set against the wrong wall.

What is your overall goal for your dental practice? Do you want it to remain a 9 to 5 job which pays well, but constantly zaps your time and energy? Or do you want to build a highly profitable practice that will fund a secure, comfortable retirement, one that will allow you to leave a legacy because it almost runs itself, while producing steady cash flow?

If your goal is to build a highly profitable practice, you need to think strategically about how you acquire new patients or you are unlikely to achieve this goal.

Your Ideal Dental Patient

Once you have a strategic goal for your dental practice, you need to put rubber to the road and determine exactly what it will take to get your practice to where you want it to go. The type of dental patients your practice acquires makes all the difference.

Who would you rather have as a patient? Someone with bad teeth and great dental insurance or someone who only needs routine dental care who pays out of pocket and is highly price conscious.

If you don’t know the characteristics of your ideal patient, how are you going to attract them?

Strategic dental marketing is all about first knowing exactly what your ideal client looks like before you spend a single penny on marketing or advertising. Otherwise you are wasting a huge percentage of your marketing budget and you might be attracting patients, but the wrong kind of patients to meet the goals of your dental practice.

A Potentially Weak Link in your Dental Marketing Chain

By now you probably have noticed that I am working backwards from identify your practice’s main objective, to determining the ideal patient to meet that objective. And now the next step is to make sure that your dental practice doesn’t needlessly turn away your best prospective patients.

The last link in your marketing chain before a new patient comes in to see you is your receptionist.

Does she turn off patients with her demeanor? Is she making highest and best use of inbound phone calls from prospective patients? Is she making every effort, to capture the contact information of every caller?

Sometimes things get busy for your receptionist. How does she perform under pressure? Does she remain warm and friendly on the phone or does she revert to being merely professional. Imagine you are a prospective patient and you are greeted by someone who is warm and friendly versus someone who is merely professional. Which would make you feel more welcome?

Do you have several mystery callers call your receptionist once a month or once per week to assess how well she is doing?

Well you might want to consider doing so, because you could be spending thousands on marketing, but if prospective patients are greeted by anything less than the warmest, friendliest person on the planet, you are definitely not getting your money’s worth.

Message versus Media

When it comes to any product or service, there are three things that matter: the market, the message and the media. The most important is the market. Is there a demand for the product or service that you are offering? Fortunately, this is easy to answer, until humans no longer need teeth, I suspect there will be a huge demand for dental care.

So out of message and media, you message is by far much more important. Media encompasses decisions like online or offline, print versus internet, radio versus television and so on. Media is more of a tactical than a strategic decision.

Your message however is highly strategic. Have the wrong message or worse yet have no real message at all and no matter what media you use, your marketing efforts will fall flat on its face.

Go find your local yellow pages book. Dust off the cover, assuming you even keep it around your office. Open it to the dentist section and look at the ads. You know the ads that you and your competitors spend gobs of money on.

How many of these ads all look alike. A picture of a dentist, name of the practice, website url and phone number.

Why should a dental patient choose one dentist over another? I suppose if your name was Tom Cruise, just listing your name might work.

But what sets you message apart from all the other dentists out there? What reaches out and grabs a prospective patient and tells them why they should choose you over all the other dentists out there?

If you can’t answer this question, you are just wasting your advertising dollars.

Strategic Dental Marketing: It’s Easier and Harder Than You Think

Obviously I can’t cover everything in one short article. But if I had to leave you with only one thought, it is to think strategically rather than tactically when it comes to your dental practice’s marketing efforts. Don’t waste your efforts on quick fixes. Tactics are temporary. Strategy is timeless.

If you are a Honolulu Dentist, a Hawaii dentist or even a dentist in North Dakota and you want to talk, you know where to find me.