It is essential for dentistry offices to keep their marketing tools up to date to stay connected to existing customers and add new patients to their rosters during this unprecedented time.
As of 2019, there were approximately 61 dentists working in dentistry per 100,000 people in the United States, according to the ADA. Yet the appointment calendars at dental offices aren’t booked solid, maybe because one in five adults reported that they had not visited the dentist in the last few years, the ADA said.
To help add new patients and leverage sales, dental offices need to combine traditional marketing techniques, like appointment reminders and new mover marketing, with new apps and social media platforms. As technology evolves, dentists need to stay abreast of new ways to tell people about their business.
While you are busy complying with new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and ensuring the safety of your employees and patients, don’t slack off on your marketing plan. Here are the top 10 marketing tools to help your business flourish.
New technology can help patients connect with your business virtually. A chatbot is artificial intelligence software that simulates conversation by using text and video to answer questions from potential patients. Chatbots can answer simple questions, allowing you to improve operational efficiency and engage customers.
Navigation tools are a quick and easy way to put your business on the map. Both Waze and Google Maps enable you to target drivers who are on the go near your practice. Ads can be tracked in real time, letting you know exactly how many potential patients engaged with your ads. Waze offers branded pins, similar to a store sign, to inform and remind drivers that your practice is near their route. The navigation platform also provides a promoted search that can include your office’s logo.
Popular social media platforms offer shoppable posts, which is a great way to turn people who follow your practice into loyal patients and expand brand awareness. Both Facebook and Instagram include shoppable post options. They are easy to set up, especially if you are already using social media to promote your practice. To generate results, make sure your shoppable post targets your ideal patient and reflects the values of your practice. Keep in mind that one of the hallmarks of social media is its ability to let users provide feedback. It’s important for you to engage with social media users on their posts.
Nearly all customers use online media when researching products or services in their local area, according to recent data. Yelp publishes crowd-sourced reviews of local businesses and garners 178 million unique visitors per month. At least 82% of consumers say the content of a review has convinced them to make a purchase, Podium reported.
Target millennials by using an all-in-one service that allows them to find your office and book appointments online. Zocdoc allows patients to choose from a list of in-network providers who have available timeslots in the next few days. Online booking services can help you fill last-minute openings in your calendar, as almost half of Zocdoc appointments occur within 72 hours of booking.
The United States Postal Service’s Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) is an affordable option designed to blanket certain neighborhoods with your message. If you choose a fair company, such as Our Town America, EDDM postcards are inexpensive and easy for customers to handle. In addition, EDDM postcards can target specific demographics, which may be a beneficial way to add new patients.
New Mover Marketing
Add new patients by targeting new movers. New mover marketing greets new residents with a welcome package of proven offers from local businesses. It is a great way for businesses to help new community members become loyal customers.
Our Town America only partners with one dental practice in any specific ZIP code, allowing you to lock out your competition so you are the only dentist reaching out to new movers in your chosen ZIP codes. We also can track redemptions and send a second mailing to achieve results.
Never underestimate the value of growing your business by gently reminding patients to schedule their next visit. Reminders can be made by telephone or with colorful postcard mailings.
Keeping in touch with patients via email is a cost-effective way to engage existing patients. Email is a great tool to remind patients to book an appointment and to send out new safety guidelines to reassure patients your office is complying with CDC recommendations.
Now more than ever, dentistry offices must establish themselves as a key resource in their local communities to connect with patients. Sponsoring a children’s sports team or taking part in a school career day are excellent ways to make your practice top-of-mind.
Combining traditional marketing efforts with new tools will allow you to concentrate on treating patients and serving the community.
Mr. Plummer Jr. is president, CEO, and CTO of Our Town America, which has been the nation’s premier new mover marketing franchise for 48 years. A US Army veteran and Certified Franchise Executive, he has more than 15 years of experience as a senior-level franchise executive and IT professional in the direct marketing industry. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.