10 Top Ways Dentists Can Engage Dental Patients on Facebook

10 Top Ways Dentists Can Engage Dental Patients on FacebookMany dentists worry about the number of Facebook followers when they really should be worrying whether their followers are reading and enjoying what they are posting on Facebook.

The difference between Facebook and other dental marketing efforts is that a dental practice needs to invest a little bit of time on Facebook.

This small amount of extra time can go a long way and can even provide a rewarding experience as dental patients begin to provide feedback and communicate directly with you and your dental practice.

It really doesn’t require more than an hour a week, but you have to know exactly what works on Facebook so you aren’t wasting your valuable time and dental marketing efforts.

The Top 10 Ways Dentists Can Engage Dental Patients on Facebook

1. Ask questions.
Asking questions of your dental patients is a great way to engage them on your dental marketing Facebook Page. Ask them fun questions like what their favorite dental chair is in your office, or what they think of recent changes to Facebook (there are always changes to Facebook that you can ask them about). Facebook users love discussing Facebook.

2. Share personal stories with photos.
Share images of you and your office staff on Halloween when everyone is dressed in costume, or St. Patrick’s day when everyone is wearing green, but use these fun images as a way to engage your Facebook fans into sharing what it is about your dental practice they enjoy.

3. Hold a contest.
Create a contest strictly for your Facebook fans. Maybe host a Facebook trivia contest where your fans are asked to guess something about their favorite dentist… your favorite color, your favorite restaurant, your favorite hobby, etc., and offer a prize to the winner. Maybe, if they guess the right answer to your favorite restaurant, you can team up with that restaurant to offer the winner dinner for two as the prize.

4. Cross-promote neighborhood businesses.
Is there a local restaurant where you always enjoy lunch, or a place you like to take your children? Why not promote their Facebook Page? Do some of your patients have businesses you enjoy?  Think about talking about them and their business on your Facebook dental marketing page.

5. Post Facebook content when your dental patients are online.
Most dentists post their Facebook updates during the work day — not before 6:00am or after 6:00pm. Marketing research has discovered that content posted outside of 9:00am – 5:00pm timeframe had higher user engagement rates than posts made during the work day. Many working moms like to visit Facebook before their kids are up in the morning or after they have gone to bed.  Think about offering them something during these hours.

6. Share employee recognition.
Is there an employee whom your patients seem to love? Do you reward your employees on a regular basis? Think about sharing this recognition with your dental patient fans on Facebook.

7. Highlight your community service.
Does your dental practice sponsor a local baseball team or high school football team? Think about posting their game schedule or their losses and wins and ask your fans to attend their games in support. Ask patients to upload photos of the games they attend.

8. Use check-in deals on Facebook.
Facebook allows people to check-in to a business using the mobile Facebook app on their smart phone. To encourage your dental patients to use this app and make an appointment with your dental practice you can create a check-in deal for your page. Maybe you offer those patients who use this mobile marketing app something extra at your practice like a teeth whitening treatment they can use within the year.

9. Offer dental care tips.
Post dental care tips detailing ways in which your patients can take care of their teeth to avoid cavities, or gum disease. Think about all the ways you can help your dental patients protect their teeth, or offer signs of dental problems to watch out for — especially with their children.

10. Ask your followers for content.
Ask your Facebook fans for sugar-free recipes — or for ways they have convinced their small children to brush their teeth before bed. Ask your fans to offer up solutions to common issues with dental care. Highlight and talk about the best solutions from your fans.

Sit down and think about how you are utilizing Facebook for your dental practice and come up with a plan for interacting with your dental patients online.

I hope this inspires you to engage with your Facebook fans in new and compelling ways that add to your dental practice bottom line.

Dental Marketing: How to Set Up a Google+ Dental Practice Page

Dental Marketing: How to Set Up a Google+ Dental Practice PageGoogle has launched Google Plus For Business which now allows dentists to create a Google Plus Page for your dental marketing.

Google Plus For Business is a set of tools that can help you grow your dental practice and enhance your dental marketing efforts.


Setting up your Google Plus Page is simple, just a few steps and you are ready to go.

Step 1: Create a gmail account.

Go to mail.google.com to create a new account. You will see a bright red button on the upper right to create a new account. Make this gmail account your practice name, or geographic location. Stay away from personal names and think of this as an office email address.

Step 2: Create your profile.

This simply involves choosing a photo that will represent this gmail email account.

Step 3: Go to: https://plus.google.com/pages/create

This is where you will create your Google Plus dental practice page. You will be asked to choose your business type and enter your main office phone number and Google will attempt to locate your dental practice.

Step 4: Edit your profile.

This is where you will be asked to create a tagline for your dental practice and then upload a business photo for your page.

And your Google Plus dental practice page is done!

Next you should think about the way that you want to engage visitors on Google Plus with more product-focused content.

Maybe you use your Google Plus page for only sharing special price promotions for people who join your circle. Only offer these promotions on Google Plus so that people have a reason for connecting with you on Google Plus. Offer something they can’t get anywhere else from you.

Some ideas for promotions are —

1. Special giveaways.
2. Free treatment with a scheduled appointment in a certain number of days.
3. A discount on an office visit.

Google Plus supports hashtags, which when clicked will take people to a search for that keyword on Google Plus, as well as any other content tagged with that hashtag. You could create a promotion-specific hashtag like #freeteethwhitening to promote on Google Plus with users in your circle.

Why do you need a Google Plus dental marketing Page?

Because eventually not establishing a page will likely become a missed opportunity in organic search. When potential patients use Google to search for a dentist, they will not only be able to find your practice through search within Google Plus if they use it, but also on Google’s search engine itself which translates into more ways to be found on the Internet.

From a dental marketing point of view that’s reason enough to get to know Google Plus?

Is Your Dental Website Easily Found on the Internet?

Is Your Dental Website Easily Found on the Internet?Three out of ten dentists say that it’s not easy for patients to find their dental website on the Internet, this survey found.

On the other hand, 22% say it’s easy for new and current patients to find them online.

In addition, 48% of dentists say they’d like to improve their dental website search engine results placement.

All dentists want their dental website to show up at the top of the search list whenever someone searches for a dentist. A search-engine optimized dental website seeks to accomplish this goal. It involves a well-researched, geo-targeted keyword strategy for use in your dental website’s content.

The result is a more visible ranking for your dental website in the organic search results on search engines like Google, which brings more visitors to your dental website.

Here are some additional comments from dentists on their dental practice visibility online —

“It’s good, I get a lot of patients through the Internet. You can’t get complacent and must be on top of things, it’s ever-changing.” (California oral surgeon)

“I am never satisfied. It takes constant work. I am hopeful that I will get so busy so I can afford to delegate it. I do enjoy the game and play fairly well. If I was in a large market there is no way I could handle it.” (Missouri dentist)

“I’m looking at providers now because it seems more people are using the web as a means to get the things they want and need, including dentistry. Feel I need to give it a try.” (California dentist)

“We must update and change it to keep it current so we will be found.” (General dentist)

“There are only two of us in town so easy to find me!” (Texas dentist)

When local prospective dental patients search for dentists, you want them to find your dental website quickly and to understand what kind of dental treatments you offer. You want to stand out from your competition with a dental website listing that appears at the top of search engines.

Check out IDA’s New Patient Marketing Machine™ that targets the specific categories of high-value new patients you want to attract to your dental website. Each IDA website is targeted at one Primary Dental Market, and optionally for up to 3 Secondary Dental Markets to help your dental practice become easily found on the Internet.

The Most Important Dental Marketing Vector

The Most Important Dental Marketing Vector: Internal MarketingIn a recent The Wealthy Dentist survey, the respondents pointed to internal marketing as their most important dental marketing vector.

As dental practices have been forced to focus on increasing dental practice revenue, one of the key components, it seems, has been internal marketing.

Internal marketing relies on dental patient referrals. If the dental practice lacks in quality customer service, or does not build strong dentist-patient relationships, then any attempts at internal marketing will likely fall flat.

In the most recent the Wealthy Dentist survey we asked dentists what is the most important marketing vector for their dental practice.

67% of the dentist respondents answered that internal marketing is their most important dental marketing vector. 19% responded that Internet dental marketing is their most important marketing vector. 7% felt direct mail marketing was the most beneficial, while another 7% felt traditional media like newspaper, TV and radio were the most important.

Here are some of the comments we received from dentists on this survey:

“Internet and internal marketing are neck-and-neck, followed by direct-mail marketing.” (Arizona 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 dental 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.” (Ohio prosthodontist)

“How do you define important? The internal is the the most important, but the Internet brings most of our new dental patients.” (General dentist)

“Direct mail marketing but with more of a focus on growing online marketing.” (Minnesota dentist)

“Word-of-mouth marketing, with the Internet a close second.” (North Carolina dentist)

“Internal marketing followed by our dental website.” (Pediatric dentist)

“If you treat your dental 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 dental practice by being active in our community and being very good to our patients and we get about 30 new patients every month.” (Alabama dentist)

“The newspaper works well in conjunction with our website and TV advertising.” (California dentist)

Internet dental marketing, but it should be referral from other patients and that does not seem to be happening.” (Illinois dentist)

“Word-of-mouth is always number one and under that would be focused direct mail marketing, although Internet marketing is catching up but the quality of dental patient seems to be always less.” (General dentist)

“Our website.” (California orthodontist)

While there are many dental marketing vectors, they have to be utilized properly to get the desired results. Remember, quality dental marketing combined with a quality dental practice are critical to implementing a successful dental marketing program.

Together, they will grow your dental practice, which ultimately leads to more dental referrals and greater profitability in the long run.

internal dental marketing and communications campaign

Check out The Wealthy Dentist’s full internal dental marketing and communications campaign for a 4-phase program designed to add 10 additional patients per month to your practice.

Festivals Are for Dental Practices, Too!

Editorial
by Jim Du Molin

Summer’s here, and it’s festival time for your dental marketing!

Just about every community has a summer festival of one sort or another. In the last month alone, my little town of Tiburon, California has had a wine festival (we have no vineyards), an arts festival (I’m sure we have artists), an antique auto show (yes, we have cars) and a “Friday Night on Main Street” get-together (people eating and drinking in the street while listening to music). However, I’ve yet to see a “Shark Festival,” although tiburon is Spanish for “shark.” I have yet to see a local dentist take advantage of these marketing opportunities, though I can imagine a giant Jaws-style shark float with big teeth.

On a national level, I can report on at least one great creative approach to festival marketing by a dental office. Dr. Jim Sparaga and his wife Kathy of Machias, Maine, put together a great float for their town’s Wild Blueberry Festival. That’s Dr. Jim driving the tractor with some kids from his practice riding the float. And yes, those are blueberries stuck in the giant smile.

On the other side of the float he had his team passing out balloons. Needless to say, they won first prize for this creative endeavor – not to mention a tremendous amount of local good will and recognition for the practice.

I’m still trying to figure out what the chair on the back of the float was for, but let’s not quibble about the details. If you have done some festival marketing, feel free to email your photos and ideas to Jim@TheWealthyDentist.com.

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