5 Simple Online Marketing Strategies for Dentists

dental online marketingThe right Internet dental marketing strategies have been proven to grow a dental practice and attract new patients. With over 5,000,000 searches for “dentist” online, it’s now more important than ever to have a viable web presence.

When considering your online dental marketing practices, it’s best to start out with the basics and build on your relationship with your patients. Ask them where they spend time socially online, what kind of emails they would like to see from you, and what kind of online interactions they might enjoy seeing from your practice.

Then start small, building from one dental marketing interaction to the next.

Here is a list of 5 simple online marketing strategies for dentists:

1. Be listed in Google Places.
Make sure you have a business listing on Google Places. Go to www.google.com/places to claim your free Google Places listing. This is a quick way to ensure your business information shows up in local search. Google Places offers an area for photos of your office, hours of operation and links to your website.

2. Have a fully optimized, SEO-friendly website.
Make sure your business website was designed in the last 4 years, content is new and optimized for your particular keywords — especially geo-targeted keywords.

3. Make sure your dental practice is listed in online dental directories.
It is important to submit your dental practice website and contact information to local business directories and dental directories. These provide powerful link-building to your website.

4. Capture email addresses for email marketing.
The greatest asset your business has is your patient base. Your email list is your connection to that patient base. You can increase sales and revenue with email marketing, while investing only a small amount of time and money.

5. Have a Facebook Fan Page and involve your practice in social media.
Social media is all about connecting with your patients. A dental Facebook Fan page is a great way to provide updates from your office staff, educate patients on new procedures, and promote fun events happening in your office. It’s another way to engage your clients in a way that makes them loyal to your business. Go to Facebook’s Create a Page to begin interacting with your patients on Facebook.

These 5 Internet dental marketing strategies help you expand your customer base, connect with other dentists in your area and get the word out on your dental practice. Being engaged with your patients online helps you understand who they are, what they like and what services they would recommend. You’ll notice behavior patterns in your patients in the way they interact with you online and gain information that will help you be build a dental practice your patients will love.

Are you using any of these 5 online marketing practices to grow your business? Please share your experiences with us!

Dental Practice Marketing: Is Yellow Page Advertising Dead?

yellow pages advertising for dentistsSome dentists feel they don’t get quality patients from the Yellow Pages anymore, concluding that, running a display ad isn’t worth the cost.

With that being said, a majority of dentists are still advertising in the Yellow Pages as part of the overall dental marketing plan.

One Georgia dentist said, “I don’t really get qualified patients from the phone book, just people looking for cheapest deal or same day emergencies.”

The Wealthy Dentist decided to ask dentists if they are still getting patients from the phone book. Even in the age of the Internet, dentists still aren’t quite ready to give up advertising in the Yellow Pages, even if they aren’t getting many new patients.

Here is how the dentists responded to getting patients from the phone book –

  • 19% — Yes, absolutely.
  • 15% — Here and there.
  • 30% — Very few.
  • 36% — None.

dentists who are getting patients from phone book

Yellow Page advertising makes sense if you are a rural dentist, or if your dental patients are over 60. But the suburban dentists who responded to this survey were the majority of Yellow Page advertisers.

Yellow Page Advertising by location

Here’s what dentists had to say about Yellow Page advertising –

Money is a factor

“Horrible amount of money wasted. My $600 per month bill went to $128 when I went to a simple listing and Internet listing.” (Indiana dentist)

“The Yellow Pages are pricing themselves out of the game!” (South Carolina Dentist)

“What a waste of money!” (Virginia dentist)

“I have spent considerable money there in the past to no avail. I think we generally had a net loss.” (Florida dentist)

Patient quality is an issue

“Honestly, without being judgmental, the people who come from the phone book tend to be less interested in quality dentistry, and less likely to remain faithful to our practice.” (Illinois dentist)

“We get only off hour emergencies looking for prescription drugs.” (New York dentist)

“It attracts mostly druggies and bad debts.” (Minnesota dentist)

Still used by older patients

“We get just a certain older demographic.” (Nevada dentist)

“My patient population is older and still depend on phone books.” (Texas dentist)

“We get new patients only if they’re old and scared of the Internet!” (New York dentist)

“Yes. Older patients — over 65.” (Virginia dentist)

Yellow Pages work

“Patients still look us up in the Yellow Pages. I think it depends on the demographics and age of the patient.” (Suburban dentist)

“They are a very motivated patient if they are looking up dentists in the Yellow Pages.” (Texas dentist)

“We track all our calls, and the ads are very effective with a low cost/call and a high ROI.” (Urban dentist)

“I believe people still keep their main local directory near the phone for quick, familiar use and access. Being visible with a well designed ad demonstrates a successful, viable business.” (Georgia dentist)

“This is unique to our region of the Waikato in NZ where 76% of people still use the Yellow Pages to look for Dentists. This probably reflects the rural aspect and farming community.” (Urban dentist)

It’s dead

“The paper-based phone book model is dead. I even asked our Yellow Pages rep when the last time he opened a phone book (unrelated to his job), and he didn’t have an answer for me. Focus your marketing online unless you are trying to attract potential patients over 80 years old.” (Indiana dentist)

“It is possibly as useful as a buggy whip.” (Suburban dentist)

“The phone book is DOA. Most everyone use the Internet to look up phone numbers and see display ads.” (California implantologist)

Is it misguided for dentists to think that Yellow Pages advertising is dead? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.

Dental Marketing: The Real Facts About Dentists Using Facebook Pages

With more than 500 million active users now on Facebook, The Wealthy Dentist decided to conduct a survey asking dentists if they have a Facebook page for their dental practice to support their dental marketing efforts.

Facebook is now used by 1 in every 13 people on earth and is beating Google in terms of traffic.

60% of dentist who responded to this survey have a Facebook page for their practice, while 40% do not.

Suburban dentists use Facebook pages more than urban dentists, with rural dentists not using Facebook pages at all.

Of the 60% of dentists who are using Facebook pages, the average number of “likes” for a page is 158. The highest number of page “likes” reported are 821 and the lowest is 5.

Here are some dentist comments on Facebook pages —

“Facebook provides easy interaction with patients who are active users.” (Minnesota dentist)

“We have had giveaways every other month like a gas card, free teeth whitening, and an iPad on Facebook.” (General Dentist)

“Just starting to use it. Giving away a Kindle for Christmas for one lucky new Facebook Fan.” (West Virginia dentist)

“Electronic email seems to be more effective. They don’t have to like you to get postings, even though the can unsubscribe.” (California dentist)

“I am not sure exactly what Facebook’s value in marketing does for a practice.” (California orthodontist)

“I have a Facebook page because people feel dentists should be involved in latest social media…” (Illinois dentist)

“I am not sure I want one.” (New Jersey dentist)

“Yes, I think if it’s done correctly, it will be another way to market my practice.” (California dentist)

“I haven’t seen much benefit, despite the 1-2 time a week postings.” (Nevada dentist)

“I don’t have a clue about how to set it up.” (General dentist)

“We use it for referrals, trivia, giveaways, etc.” (Utah orthodontist)

“I don’t have time to maintain it and it’s not helpful if you don’t spend some time on it.” (Texas dentist)

As a dentist, if you want to increase your dental marketing influence, a Facebook Page is an additional option; it’s not something that’s going away anytime soon, and we anticipate that it’s something that will continue to grow.

We will continue to keep you updated on how a Facebook Page can assist your dental marketing efforts.

Do you have a Facebook Page?  What are your thoughts?

Dental Marketing: Social Media For Dentists Explained

Dental Marketing: Social Media For Dentists ExplainedSocial media is slowly being adapted by dentists looking to expand their dental marketing reach.

Marketing statistics company Hitwise reported that one in every eleven visits to Internet sites in the U.S. were to Facebook last month, with the site itself accounting for one in every five page views.

But some dentists are hesitant to take part in this new “social media revolution” claiming that keeping up with the different social channels is confusing.

Recently Douglas Wray posted an image on Instagram (the photo-sharing service for iPhone users) of all the major social media services as compared to donuts (yes, he spelled it “donuts”).

The image has now gone viral.

Here at The Wealthy Dentist, we thought we’d provide our dentists with our own version of the “donut social media” definition . . . dentist-style.

SOCIAL MEDIA FOR DENTISTS

Dental Marketing: Social Media For Dentists Explained

The value of social media comes from using social media as a communications channel. With a few simple dental marketing tools, a dentist can offer patients a new level of customer engagement reminding them of your services whenever they are online.

Please feel free to share this and let us know your thoughts!

Dental Marketing: Some Straight Talk About Google Plus

Dental Marketing: Some Straight Talk About Google PlusMore than ever, your dental marketing plan needs to include Google Plus.

The new Search Plus Your World algorithm seems to be leading to continued consumer adoption of the top brands on Google+.

Digital marketing agency BrightEdge Technologies is reporting that the top 100 brands on Google+ have grown by over 1,400% in the past month.

The number of people including the top 100 brands in their circles went from 222,000 to over 3.1 million. The majority of the expansion was limited to the top 10 brands on Google+, which taken together account for over three million users.

Google CEO Larry Page estimates Google+’s general user base at 90 million. Some reports say Google+ users are predominately male and account for approximately 67% of Google+ users.

Google recently announced its plan to link user data across its Google+, video, and other services to create a better user experience. The plan is to provide Google users more targeted search result, while assisting businesses in locating potential customers.

For example, if a potential dental patient uses Google to search for dental implants, then the next time they sign into YouTube, they might see recommendations for videos featuring dental implant technology, dentists performing implants and ads for dentists who perform implants in the potential patient’s geographic area.

Imagine what this experience will be like when these search results also include recommendations from friends within their circle for a dental practice that specializes in dental implants not far from where the potential patient lives.

Google likes to report that those users who agree to see personalized ads from Google are 37% more likely to respond to those ads.

What does this mean for dental marketing? It means that having a search engine optimized dental website that integrates with Google+, so that prospective patients easily find you, has now become more vitally important than ever before.

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