As patients are trading in their phone books for Google reviews, it is important to begin or expand your digital marketing to reach new patients. Software Advice found that “77% of patients use online reviews as their first step in finding a new doctor.” Sometimes old school is cool, but when you are losing potential patients to digital friendly offices- it is time to rethink your strategy.
1. Define your practice
Whether you are a corporate or a local dentist office, it is important to be consistent. A clear message sets your practice apart from the competition and defines the office’s brand personality. Your logo, credentials, and patient reviews are an essential part of the office’s brand personality. Yet, according to BOP Design, “45% of a brand image can be attributed to what it says and how it says it.” Choose your language carefully and your tone strategically when writing for your business.
2. Know your audience
Unfortunately, your target audience is not anyone who walks into your office. The most successful digital dental marketers understand their target audience’s values, oppositions, and hobbies.
One of our thriving Lucent Spot clients implements the four-minute rule. Here’s how it works: for the first four minutes with a patient, engage in simple chit-chat about their weekend, summer plans, or other special life events. Remember, avoid “tooth-talk. For example, if your typical patient spends their weekends with family, update your advertisements to family-oriented topics and images. Likewise, if your patients are Baylor football fans, consider adding posters and fan gear around the office. After a few weeks, your typical patient will be easily recognizable. Appealing to your typical customer will attract similar clients and intrigue existing patrons. Overall, knowing your audience can increase the effectiveness of your office and digital marketing.
3. Commit to a social media platform
It can be tempting to put your dental office on every social media platform possible. There are convincing arguments for this; however, a beginning dental marketer should commit to one platform. By choosing one platform, you can focus on growing a following, increasing engagement, and attracting new patients. Lucent Spot recommends beginning with a review website such as Yelp or Google +. The more online reviews of your office, the more patients you will attract according to Vendasta. Concluding tip: running one social media network extremely well is worth more than managing multiple platforms with little-to-no content.
4. Be personal but professional
Additionally, Vendasta claims that the top qualities that customers look for when reading reviews are: “reliability (27%), expertise (21%), and professionalism (18%).” Take time to answer customer reviews on Google + and Yelp to showcase your unique skills and brand personality. It is easy to say you are the best dentist in town, but when a patient writes it in a review, capitalize on it! Thank them for the review and point out the competitive features of your office such as little to no wait time, customer service, and expert staff.
Before you run to your computer to create social media accounts and answer Google reviews, remember that the plan is just as important as the execution. To make it simple, we created a digital marketing infographic that you can download for a quick, free reference. Know your brand personality, understand your audience, choose a medium, promote your advantages, and wait for the new patients to roll in!
What type of digital marketing strategies has your practice tried?
Let us know in the comments section.