You went to school to become a dentist. Between classes, internships, residencies, specializing, and continuing education, you’ve worked hard to perfect your craft. What you weren’t taught, however, was how to run a business. When you finally decide to relinquish some control and let more qualified people help, you should get an immediate return on investment, right? Wrong!
Do you plant a seed and expect a beanstalk to be towering outside of your window the next morning? Of course not. There are many variables. And whether we’re speaking of a billing company or marketing professionals, they are the ones who know exactly what it takes to make your practice the best it can be. Should you decide to work with a marketing company, here are some of the stages that must be completed before you notice a difference in your practice.
Gathering the Data and Planning the Strategy
You can’t toss your magic beans out the window and just hope for the best. Each practice is different, so marketers need to figure out what separates you from the dentist down the street. For example:
- What are the primary services you offer? How is your practice different from your competition?
- What marketing channels do you use, and how often do you use them?
- What are the long-term goals for your practice? What type of patient are you looking for?
- Do you have a plan in place for reputation management?
These are a few examples of what a marketing agency will need to determine before it plans your strategy. Depending on the data that is collected, your marketing agency will determine what will give you the biggest bang for your buck. Such as:
- Too few (or negative) reviews? Then a review campaign will be essential to establish and maintain a positive online reputation.
- Losing current patients? Patient retention will be your priority. You’ll need to learn what it takes to keep your patients and make them love you enough to refer you to their friends and family.
- Are your current patients hesitant to commit to treatments? A targeted email campaign might be what the doctor (or marketer) ordered!
Each individual dentist, location, specialty, and focus is a variable in a comprehensive marketing plan. To effectively address each and every need, data collection and strategizing are necessary and take time.
Designing, Writing, and Messaging
No need to climb the beanstalk alone! Once an ideal strategy is determined, your marketing agency will get to work designing eye-catching graphics, writing website and social media copy that is 100% unique to your practice, and ensuring that your messaging is consistent. Its experts know what colors, images, and wording will appeal to your ideal patient. They will make sure your website, social media, and email content are customized for the needs of your practice and that your messaging is consistent across all of the platforms you use.
If stealing the Goose that Laid the Golden Egg didn’t work, then come up with a better plan! The secret to an effective marketing campaign lies in constantly reevaluating and tweaking the strategy. A marketing company worth its salt (or weight in gold) will reevaluate its plans on a regular basis. As your patients, team members, training, and competitors change, so will your marketing strategy. Once you’ve handled the challenge of reputation management, perhaps you’ll need to focus more on new clear aligner patients. Whatever the case may be, your marketing company will A-B-C: always be changing (what works for you)!
Here’s the Thing
Should you expect your marketing company to prove itself within a week? No. A comprehensive approach takes time. Sure, it could dump templated copy on your website and post stock images on your social media sites. Both take no time at all, but they don’t help distinguish you from your competition. An effective marketing strategy takes time, and a marketing agency that invests time in your practice is interested in your long-term success.
With more than a decade of experience in corporate dental laboratory marketing and brand development, Ms. Ulasewich 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 business owners 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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