If pay-per-click (PPC) marketing isn’t part of your digital marketing strategy, you’re missing out on an opportunity to target consumers who are eagerly seeking the specific products and treatments that only you can provide. Pay-per-click campaigns, Google AdWords specifically, is a surefire way to bring your practice directly to the search results of the people who need you right now.
What Is Google AdWords?
Most search engines have some kind of PPC advertising option for businesses that are looking for ways to increase their online views. Google’s platform is called Google AdWords. It uses a targeted algorithm that helps your potential patients find you. You only pay when the ad is clicked on, making advertising your practice one of Google’s priorities.
Why Use Targeted Campaigns?
Targeted PPC campaigns help prospective patients find exactly what they need. For example, potential patients who are interested in adult orthodontics will turn to Google to help them find out more about Invisalign. The Invisalign site will pop up in their search results, but above (and sometimes below) the Invisalign link are ads from professionals offering that particular service.
If you have created a PPC campaign that includes the correct keywords, your ad will be among those listed. Now, instead of visiting the Invisalign site and having to search for providers, your prospective patients can click on your ad and learn all about the product, where you are located, and any other information that might inspire them to contact you for treatment.
What Mistakes Should I Avoid?
PPC campaigns are easy to set up, but they require a lot of additional work and optimization to make sure you’re reaching the people you are targeting. To optimize your PPC campaign, avoid the following mistakes:
- Sending visitors directly to your home page or contact page: You want your potential patients to see your home page, though, right? Wrong. Let’s consider our Invisalign scenario. If you send visitors to your home page, they will then have to click around your site to find information about the service they’re interested in. Instead, make sure you direct them to a product-specific or service-specific landing page so they aren’t tempted to back out of your site and find another that requires less work on their part. The same principle applies to your contact page. When prospective patients are curious about Invisalign, they want instant information. They do not want to be forced to join your mailing list and receive messages that do not apply to their interests. Again, an Invisalign landing page with very clear calls to action is your best bet.
- Not taking advantage of negative keywords: You’re going to find out very quickly (if you’re paying close attention) that your ads are being shown for search terms that the search engines think have the same meaning as the ones you’re advertising on. For example, you may be advertising on the keyword “Invisalign braces” and find that your ads are showing for the keyword “knee braces.” The search engines aren’t perfect at determining how your keywords are related to others. This is where negative keywords come in. Adding the keyword “knee” to your negative keyword list will ensure your ad no longer shows for any search terms that contain the word “knee.” You may think that this isn’t that important since most people wouldn’t click on an Invisalign ad if they were searching for “knee braces,” and you’re partially right. They probably won’t, but those impressions will decrease your click-through rate and ultimately your quality score, meaning you’ll be paying more per click than you really should be and possibly limiting your exposure.
- Setting up your ads and forgetting about them: PPC is not a “set it and forget it” marketing tool. To optimize your PPC campaign, you must continuously monitor its efficacy and adjust accordingly. If you’re not getting as many clicks as you expected, maybe your keywords aren’t hitting the mark. If you’re getting clicks but visitors are leaving your landing page, then maybe you need to adjust the content. Google AdWords can only do so much. It’s up to you to make sure you’re aware of what is working and what isn’t.
- Not tracking your calls or form submissions: If you aren’t tracking your calls and form submissions, then you will never be able to make the adjustments required for campaign optimization. By using a unique phone number and form for your campaign, you can easily track how many leads per month you received from your PPC campaign and how many of those leads turned into patients.
Email campaigns, search engine optimization, and other marketing methods are a great way to grow your practice. But imagine how much more you could grow with a comprehensive solution that includes PPC as well. With some TLC, PPC campaigns just might be the tool to send new patients directly to your practice’s door.
With over a decade of experience in corporate dental laboratory marketing and brand development, Jackie 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 practices all over the nation focus their message, reach their target patients, and grow their practice through effective marketing campaigns. When she isn’t helping dental practices reach their full potential, she can be found at the beach with her three dogs or immersed in everything food-related with her large Italian family. For more information, call (800) 689-6434.