You need a steady stream of new patients to grow your dental practice, and you need to keep them happy to keep the revenue coming in. The best way to achieve this is with dental marketing, but I hear you: you’re a dentist, not a marketer!
So how do you leverage marketing to get those patients through the door and put perfect, pearly-white smiles on their faces? Here are ten tried-and-tested dental marketing strategies that we use here at Mediboost to give our clients the edge…
Our top 9 dental marketing strategies
- Give your practice website a polish
Many Aussies use the internet to look for a local dentist, so your website is likely to be their first impression of your dental practice. A poorly designed site will conjure up images of a back-alley dentist pulling teeth with pliers – not the look you’re going for!
A polished, professional website is essential, but that’s just the start. Let your potential patients get to know you with staff profiles, and add high-quality images and videos showcasing the best of your practice.
Make visitors’ lives easier with handy features like online booking, and keep them (and Google!) happy by making sure your site is secure, quick to load and easy to navigate. And of course, make sure everything works just as seamlessly on mobile!
- Boost your search ranking with local SEO
When searching for something on Google, many people don’t venture past the first page of results. The purpose of search engine optimisation (SEO) is to make your dental practice website show up at the top of those results.
You achieve a higher ranking by optimising your website’s pages to meet Google’s criteria. These include things like fresh content, a great user experience, site security and keyword relevance.
Keywords are the words and phrases people type into Google to find services like yours:
- “dentist in Parramatta”
- “family dentist Noosa”
- “teeth whitening Glenelg”
- Get creative with keywords
When you’ve locked down the obvious keywords, think outside the box. What else might your potential clients be searching for?
Well, as a dentist, emergency keywords are a big one:
- “Mandurah dentist out of hours”
- “Mandurah emergency dentist”
- “Mandurah wisdom tooth emergency dentist”
- “urgent tooth removal Mandurah”
They’re also very high-intent, meaning that people search when they’re ready to take action right now. (FYI: that means they also make very profitable keywords for pay-per-click ads. More on those later!)
- Scoop up even more SEO points with a blog
If you don’t yet have a blog on your dental practice website, fix that fast! Blog posts are great for:
- Bringing in more website visitors.
- Improving your Google search ranking.
- Positioning you as a credible expert in your field.
Here’s how it works…
Say your target audience is searching Google with a key phrase like “how to get kids to brush their teeth”. You write a blog post answering this question and optimise it for this key phrase, and ideally the post shows up in the search results for that key term. A blog means that you can target unlimited keywords and phrases. With every post, you pull in new website visitors that you can turn into patients, your Google ranking moves that little bit higher, and you become the go-to source of credible dental information.
- Captivate with content
Blog posts and other content, such as videos, infographics and e-books, are highly effective ways to engage prospective and current patients alike.
Quality, high-value content can be used in a number of ways. You might offer it in exchange for contact information (AKA a “lead magnet”). You can also post content on social media to boost engagement, encourage shares and drive traffic to your website, or use it in an email to nurture relationships.
- Automate your income with email
How many of your patients only come to see you every two or three years because they “just didn’t get around to making an appointment”? How about the no-shows who lost track of time or forgot to cancel?
This translates to a lot of lost income for your dental practice, but well-timed emails can pull it back. For example, you could send reminders for upcoming appointments, or a reminder to book that six-monthly check-up or annual clean.
Email is also a great way to nurture your patient relationships. On a general level, email can be used to send regular newsletters or e-bulletins offering the latest dental news, tips for good dental health, product reviews, and practice announcements.
On a more specific level, you can segment your patients into lists or add “tags”, then target them with information, emailing special offers or aftercare emails tailored to their needs.
The best part? Email software automates all of these emails so you don’t have to lift a finger.
- Pull in patients with PPC
Pay-per-click advertising, or PPC, works by displaying your ad when people search for a specific keyword or phrase. You only pay when your ad is clicked, hence the name.
Here’s a quick example of how the main player, Google Ads, works:
- You create an ad for your free Invisalign consultation offer.
- You ‘bid’ on key phrases like “Invisalign Sydney”, “how much is Invisalign in Sydney” and so on.
- I search one of these key phrases in Google and your ad pops up in the results.
- I click on your ad and you pay Google for the click.
- If you’ve followed step 1, I’m wowed by your awesome website and I book my free consultation.
Voila – a potential new patient through the door!
PPC sound simple, but it’s actually incredibly complex. If you don’t know the system, it’s easy to blow your budget and end up with very little ROI to show for it. Don’t chance it – call in the pros!
- Zoom in on your ideal audience
Facebook and Google’s ad platforms allow you to get highly specific with your audience targeting. As a local business, you’ll want to target people in the immediate area, but you can go a step further.
For example, mums usually make the family healthcare decisions, so you can target family dentistry ads at local women aged between 25-45 who have expressed an interest in children’s services or products.
- Nurture your online reviews
These days, most of us don’t even order a pizza online without reading the reviews, so you better believe we’re Yelp-ing the person taking a drill to our precious teeth! If you’ve got bad reviews or even no reviews, we’re going elsewhere.
Be sure to claim your business on sites like Yelp and Google My Business and fully optimise your listing (correct details, location, description, etc.).
Want to focus on what you do best?
Running a dental practice is demanding enough. If you’d rather focus on what you do best, drop us an email now or call us at (02) 8073 8330 and leave your dental marketing strategy in our expert hands.