What differentiates the marketing of leading dental practices from those who just dabble?

What differentiates the marketing of leading dental practices from those who just dabble?

Key cornerstones of implant and ortho marketing

During Covid-19 restrictions, some dental practices have struggled to survive whilst others continued to thrive. Of course there was a significant lull during full lock-down but what became clear was that those practices who were on-the-ball pre-covid, were similarly mobilised and active during the crisis.

Now as we start accelerating back to some form of normality, it is clear that those practices who “get it” are continuing to do well; indeed they are prospering even more as other practices fall by the wayside.

So what are the key marketing characteristics which those successful practices exhibit? Let’s take a closer look.

An effective, ethical sales process

Leading practices understand the need for a finely-tuned sales process which turns leads into treatments. All too often, marketers deliver great leads to dentists but half-hearted response from the practice team means that those leads don’t convert. Effective tools and procedures must exist to capture those leads and allow follow-up in a prompt and well-defined manner. Do this too late and/or half-heartedly means that the lead will evaporate. Potentially worse is that your local competitor will likely benefit. The patient journey, right from the start through to treatment and after-care, needs to be exceptional and with the whole team on board.

Similarly your team needs to be able to filter those enquiries which will likely lead to nothing. Whilst we can target marketing efforts to those most likely to take up treatments, some channels will still deliver a lot of speculative enquiries. Some of these will be “golden nuggets” but others will need to be offloaded as the enquirer may be unsuitable for treatment or perhaps have no way of paying. This needs to be done before the valuable time of a TCO or clinician gets wasted.

Creation of compelling content

What I mean by this is that you need to develop web assets which truly reflect your services and how you can make a patient’s life better through having treatment with you. Too often we see dentists running pay-per-click campaigns, radio ads etc and paying thousands of pounds but then neglecting the landing pages and websites where they are directing the traffic. So the primary campaign is working, but the potential new patient is not engaged and compelled to proceed once the ad has been clicked.

So please ensure that the content you develop to help promote your services and convert enquiries is top notch. Please don’t skimp on this – the success rate of a great landing page can be several times that of a poor one.

Matching the marketing budget to the ambition

Only this morning I’ve been discussing pay-per-click for a dentist who has a budget of £200 per month to try to gain new Invisalign enquiries. I’m afraid this is nowhere near enough, particularly as the guy was in a particularly competitive location. In reality he would need several times this amount to start gaining any traction. The same goes for dental implants and indeed any treatment which attracts a premium. I’ve covered the reasons for this in detail elsewhere in our blog, but in simple terms, let’s assume that an implant click costs £3. So for a £300 budget you get roughly 100 clicks. 4 or 5 of these may make an enquiry of which a couple may convert to treatment. So you can likely cover the cost of the investment, but low budgets will not bring in lots of new cases unfortunately.

The ratio of return to investment really does need to be understood before you invest in paid marketing strategies and whilst you can make very good returns, you will need sensible budgets to meet ambitions. With stakes and expenditure high, this is also why you need experts to manage your account to save wasted click budget. Unfortunately Google and Facebook will still spend your money even if your ads and targeting are poor!

Summarising

There are a few key areas which differentiate those practices which are very successful with dental marketing versus those which have a disjointed or half-hearted approach. Three of the main differences are covered above; the sales process, creation of compelling assets to engage new patients and matching budget to ambition. All of those aspects need to be covered if you are to succeed. Of course this doesn’t just apply to implant and ortho marketing, the same principles apply to whatever type of treatments you offer.

It’s unlikely that you will be able to do it all yourself and so you will need assistance, particularly with the web aspects. This is where the team at Dental Media can help with proven marketing techniques – you can reach us for more information on 01332 672548.