In dentistry, reputation matters more than anything. But, how do you let potential patients know that you have an excellent reputation? It’s actually not difficult if you incorporate a few different strategies into your marketing plan.
A tried and true way to build trust through marketing is to show before and after pictures on the practice’s website and social media pages. Dramatic before and after pictures often tell a great story on their own, but they can make a much bigger impression when accompanied by the patient’s own account of their experience. By choosing patients who went through a very noticeable transformation, you often also get an emotional account of how their life has changed for the better as a result. A potential patient looking for a restorative procedure will not only see the results in color, but they will also find a relatable story about a highly positive outcome.
A not so traditional way to build rapport with potential patients before they ever enter the office is to give them a sneak peak of what life is like at your practice. Behind-the-scenes videos and photos of staff and doctors interacting with each other and with patients (with their consent, of course) can make someone feel like they already know the practice even before becoming an actual patient. Serious videos and snapshots, as well as whimsical ones, can be posted to social media where they will be liked and shared by the patients who follow the practice. This is an easy and often fun way to show the human side of the practice.
Another way to convey trustworthiness is to get personal. Videos and photos can be posted to social media and the website to tell the practice’s story. Dentists can use videos as a way to talk about what inspires them professionally, the organizations they belong to and community causes they support (whether dental-related or otherwise), and why they love their job. Staff interviews can also help potential patients get a real sense of how dedicated and passionate everyone in the office is. These types of videos and stories have a documentary effect and give patients some great background information to help them understand your practice better.
Last but not least, patients want to know why your practice is different. Post pictures and videos on social media, blog, and devise email campaigns that highlight the reasons your practice stands above the rest. Be careful not to focus solely on the services you offer. Services are not typically what sets a practice apart. Services plus quality, technology, technique, experience, and compassion do, however. If you want to promote a specific service, make sure you also explain why going to your practice will provide the best benefits and results. The main goal is always to make patients feel something positive and to entice them to want more.
Trust is extremely important in the dental field because you are dealing with peoples’ health. When patients believe that they are receiving the best, most reliable treatment from an honest, professional, and trustworthy dentist, they are likely to come back again and recommend their family and friends. Thoughtful and, perhaps, unconventional marketing can go a long way towards building that type of trust — before and after treatment — without having to be physically face-to-face with the patient.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
With more than a decade of experience in corporate dental laboratory marketing and brand development, Ms. Ulasewich-Cullen decided to take her passion for the dental business and marketing to the next level by founding My Dental Agency. Since starting her company, she and her team have helped a wide variety of practices all over the nation focus their message, reach their target audience, and increase their sales through effective marketing campaigns. She can be reached at (800) 689-6434 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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