What’s the Most Effective Dental Marketing Tactic? (Video)

Dental practice marketing with internet videoDental marketing success relies on choosing the most effective ways to promote your practice.

Dentists can market themselves in all kinds of ways, including dental websites, new patient mailings, TV ads, and social media.

Direct mail marketing is the most important, but now we’re putting more of a focus on growing our online dental marketing,” said a Minnesota dentist.

“If you don’t ask for referrals, you don’t get them!” advised a Massachusetts dentist.

Jim Du Molin and Julie Frey discuss a survey that asked dentists about their most effective dental practice marketing tactics.

Two out of three dentists in this survey said internal marketing is the most important.

There’s nothing like referrals from your current patients.

Next was internet dental marketing, which one in five said was most important to them. Only 7% said direct mail marketing was the most beneficial, and another 7% voted for traditional media like newspaper, TV and radio ads.

Of course, Jim is biased in favor of online dental marketing.

“Word of mouth is always number one, and under that would be focused direct mail. Internet marketing is catching up, but the quality of the patients is always less,” said a Massachusetts dentist.

“If you treat your patients like you would treat your family, then the best ‘marketing’ or good word of mouth takes care of itself! We really only market our practice by being active in our community and being very good to our patients, and we get about 30 new patients every month,” said an Alabama dentist.

“How do you define important? The internal is the most important, but the internet brings most of our clients in a new business,” said a Missouri dentist.

“Internal marketing and word of mouth clearly bring in the BEST new patients for us. We receive the most new patients from internet and direct mail marketing. Printed phone book marketing is fast becoming one of the least important marketing vectors for us because the return on investment is getting smaller and smaller,” said an Ohio prosthodontist.

Analyzing your ROI is the best way to determine which of your dental practice marketing efforts are most effective.

Bottom line: use any marketing avenue where your profit ends up being greater than your expenses.

Dental Practice Marketing Campaigns (video)

Dental practice marketing campaignsDentists picked direct mail as their most effective avenue for dental practice marketing. Other favorites include yellow pages advertisements, TV ads, and dental websites.

“Sixty new patients per month with the new dental sign!” said one dentist.

“A mini dental implant ad can help many people with denture problems," offered another dentist. "Oh yeah, and my campaign brought in thousands in restorative revenue."

“My radio ad with dental website support led to over 200 calls in 4 days!" boasted an Illinois dentist.

Read more about this dental patient marketing survey: Dental Marketing Campaigns

Oral Surgery: Patient Discovers New Foreign Accent After Procedure (video)

oral surgery English accentOral surgery patient Karen Butler came out of sedation from her surgery with more than just a slightly puffy face — she awoke with a new, thick foreign accent too.

As the Oregonian first reported last week, Butler seems to have developed Foreign Accent Syndrome, a rare speech abnormality where people suddenly develop a foreign accent. She’s the first known case in Oregon, said Dr. Ted Lowenkopf, medical director of the statewide Providence Stroke Center.

Mrs. Butler appeared at her oral surgery appointment with an American accent, but upon recovery from her surgery, discovered, “I sounded like I was from Transylvania.”

Here is the interview and video showing her voice before the surgery and her voice after –

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

For more on this story see OregonLive: Ore. woman wakes from surgery with British accent.

Why Dental Marketing Requires Long-term Thinking

Dental Marketing Requires Long-term Thinking Sometimes it’s frustrating to hear that dental marketing results will take time. When dentists spend thousands of dollars on something, it’s only natural to want a return as soon as possible.

But marketing is really more of a marathon than a sprint.

The best results come over time.

It’s not unheard of for an advertising campaign to produce an immediate return, but that’s usually the exception to the rule. We hope for short-term response, but we plan for long-term results. Keep this in mind when you choose among your dental marketing options.

Once you pick your method, give the media enough time to produce. In most cases, the approach of “I’ll do this for a couple months and see how it goes” is a mistake and a waste of money.

Why are dental marketing results better over the long run?

One of the main reasons is because patients are likely to need multiple exposures to a message before they respond. Radio advertising provides a good example. Radio is a frequency medium, which means it works best when your ad makes repeated impressions on the same listener.

It can be expensive to make multiple impressions on a listener, especially in the larger markets, so it’s important to buy a station that you can afford. If you can’t afford to commit for at least six months, then you need to pick a less expensive station or put off radio until such a commitment is realistic.

One good media buyer I know tells his clients, “In the first month, you’re going to lose a (heck) of a lot of money. In the second month you’ll lose a little less. By the fourth or fifth month, you’ll start breaking even. And after six months, you’ll start making a lot of money.”

Now that first part might sound a little bleak, but if you’re planning long term, your investment won’t be evaluated by early results. At the end of the year the aggregated profit over the months should more than make up for a slow start.

I’ve seen dentists get multiple new patients the first day they ran a radio ad. That’s great for morale, but it’s not necessary for a successful campaign. Some of the best campaigns I’ve seen have started slow and built up over time.

Make sure you choose dental marketing methods that reflect this reality, and that your decisions are made for the long-term.

Ed Ridgway has executed dental marketing campaigns for hundreds of businesses in the U.S. and Canada. He is nationally recognized for his ongoing campaigns with many of the top dental practices across the country.

How to Become Recognized as THE Cosmetic Dentist: Part 5

Dr Silverman: How to Become Recognized as THE Cosmetic Dentist in Your Community Last week, I shared with you the fourth step in this series: How to Become Recognized as THE Cosmetic Dentist in Your Community Part 4: Effective Use of a Smile Analysis Form.

Now that you understand how to utilize the information gained in your Smile Analysis Form, you might be wondering, “What’s next?”

You’ve likely heard the expression, “Image is everything.” Well, this is especially true in a cosmetic-focused dental practice. What your office looks like sends a message to your patients about the type of cosmetic dentist you are.

Realistically, we all know that the office atmosphere has nothing to do with the level of clinical skills, however it’s the patients’ perception that matters the most. That perception could inevitably influence their decision of accepting cosmetic treatment.

Step 4: MOTIVATING OFFICE DÉCOR

What type of artwork, posters or other silent motivational tools relating to cosmetic dentistry do you have in your office? Are they of smiling, happy folks who project self-confidence? Do you have a few before/after posters that demonstrate dramatic smile transformations?

Even upscale offices can place effective materials that help educate and distinguish the cosmetic component of your dental practice without impacting the overall appearance of your office.

My suggestion: If you are married to your artwork and do not want to make any changes, let’s look at augmenting what you have. When you send me a few photos of your reception area in jpeg format that I previously offered (in Step 1) make sure I can see the artwork and where you may have some barren wall space.

While we do not want to have clutter, we may want to look at creating a Smile Wall that silently motivates your patients.

Below is an example how you can create your own Smile Wall if space is a premium —

create your own Smile Wall

LifeLike Veneers™ performed by Dr Harvey Silverman, Beachwood, OH

 

Another example is from Dr Mireya Ortega, a very talented dentist from Lake Tahoe, CA. Dr Ortega had me visit her office and do a Cosmetic Dentistry Boot Camp Program for her practice because she wanted to take her cosmetic practice to the next level.

After our Boot Camp Program one of the many things she did was to slightly modify her office décor. She started with one poster photographed during the hands-on training component at Boot Camp (see below) and ultimately created her own Smile Wall —

 

Dr Mireya Ortega Smile Wall

Dr. Mireya Ortega Smile Wall

 

One word of caution: Creating a Smile Wall will be most beneficial when you use these tools as a spring board to power educate your patients about how recent advances in technology can benefit them. Please review the articles I have published in Dental Products Report or in Dentistry Today if you care to learn more about how you might accomplish that goal.

In the next edition of How To Become Recognized As THE Cosmetic Dentist In Your Community Part 6:

Step 5: WHO’S YOUR SMILE CONSULTANT?

About the author:

Dr  Harvey Silverman Dr. Harvey Silverman has successfully coached dentists on how to take their cosmetic dentistry practice to the next level since 1984. If you want information on how the Silverman Institute’s Cosmetic Dentistry Boot Camp Program can take your cosmetic practice to the next level, contact Dr Silverman at (216) 256-4599 or e-mail him at incrediblesmiles@aol.com.

Dr Silverman is the author of Best Cosmetic Dentistry Practices in Dental Products Report as well as Silverman On Smiles in Dentistry Today and is the inventor of the LifeLike Veneer System™ and the EasySmile Tooth Whitening System™ that will be available to dentists in 2012.

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