Most obvious statement of 2020: COVID-19 ruined everything.
As dental providers, you’re dealing with A LOT:
- Catching up with patient appointments after reopening your office.
- Continuously telling your community it’s safe to visit the dentist.
- Educating everyone that routine dental care is still important.
And I bet you’re telling yourself this:
“I’ll put marketing on the back burner until we go back to the old normal. Can’t even think about it right now.”
It’s time for a #truthbomb:
That kind of thinking will cost you your dental practice. Here’s why:
People are scared. Everyone is living in a constant state of the unknown. They’re thinking:
- What’s going to happen?
- Is it safe to visit the dentist?
- Will I catch COVID if I go in for my routine cleaning?
Marketing is your channel to communicate with your patients, empathize with them, and kindly educate them.
When done correctly, marketing is what will get your dental practice thriving.
How? In this blog post, I’m going to share 13 dental marketing strategies you have to do to thrive in the “new normal”:
1. Implement “Marketing with Love” into your campaigns
When people hear “marketing,” they automatically think of the pushy car salesmen trying to get you to “buy, buy, buy” that run-down Honda (they would call it rustic and old-fashioned).
Marketing isn’t a sales pitch – to an extent. You do have to promote yourself and your services, but you can do so without coming off as a sleazy salesperson.
In this COVID era, people are hungry for genuine connections. They want to buy from brands whose values align with theirs.
This is what we call Marketing with Love. It’s empathizing with your patients, not their wallets.
Marketing with Love turns dental skeptics into raving, loyal patients.
When you’re planning your marketing campaigns:
- Think about the problems you solve for your patients.
- Put yourself in patients’ shoes. How are they feeling? Why aren’t they calling your office?
- Identify their barriers and obstacles.
- Create authentic, trust-building content.
Every piece of content you publish into the world should:
- Provide a value of service.
- Be generous.
- Be authentic.
Think human, first. Little carrot, second.
2. Build and engage with your community
Be the inspiring leader in your local community. Really think about what they need. What valuable information can you share with them?
There are many ways to show your support:
- Reach out to local leaders and offer your services. You could provide free dental services or donate electric toothbrushes.
- Support your neighboring small businesses with cross-promotions or by tagging them on social media.
- Build up your connection with your industry networks.
- Start social campaigns and share your knowledge.
3. Blog consistently
We’re constantly getting more information about COVID-19:
- How it’s airborne.
- Masks limit the spread.
- Its severity on anyone with pre-existing conditions.
It’s a lot to take in and it’s hard for people to decipher what’s true and what’s not.
Be their credible source and share the facts. Blog about it.
This benefits you in two ways:
- You’re building trust with your readers.
- People will continue to come back to your website, which Google loves.
Harmony Dental is an excellent example of using a blog to provide updates to their community. They have a comprehensive blog post about the connection between oral health and COVID-19… Opens in a new window to Harmony Dental’s website…. It lists:
- Why visiting the dentist is crucial for oral and overall health.
- Proof that people with periodontitis are more likely to die from COVID-19.
- How Harmony Dental is keeping their patients safe.
We published this blog a month ago, and people are spending over 5 minutes reading it.
You don’t have to blog about COVID. There are so many topics to post about, including:
- Sharing your favorite healthy recipe.
- Sharing your favorite exercise routines.
- Tips on how to pass the time for anyone stuck at home.
4. Start a social campaign
Now that the whole world is embracing working from home, they’re spending more time on social media.
Get a slice of the pie and post on social. But post engaging and valuable content.
This could be:
- Fun opinion posts (Would you rather go camping or glamping? Pumpkin spice: Yay or nay?).
- Informative, trustworthy articles.
- Videos of you updating your followers on how you’re keeping everyone safe.
- Being transparent and vulnerable on how COVID-19 has affected you and your team.
- Giving shoutouts to local leaders and first responders.
- Tagging local businesses and sharing how amazing they are.
- Sharing photos of your patients and what you appreciate about them.
Having an active social media presence breathes life into your online presence, which will turn those followers into forever patients.
5. Make authentic videos
People crave authenticity. They’re sick and tired of being sold to. They’re savvy and can sniff a sales pitch a mile away.
Combat this by creating videos.
Videos featuring people build trust and familiarity.
And, it works:
- Social video generates 1200% more shares than text and image content combined. (SOURCE… Opens in a new window to Biteable.com…)
- Video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80%. (SOURCE… Opens in a new window to Unbounce.com…)
Now, if the very thought of putting yourself on camera makes you… sweaty, you could always be the one behind the camera while you get the rest of your team to amp it up.
It’s easier than you think.
Here are 5 quick tips for successful smartphone videos:
- Wipe your lens (you’d be surprised how greasy those suckers get!).
- Shoot horizontally, not vertically.
- Try to shoot in a quiet area, if possible.
- Make sure your device is charged.
- Inexpensive video tools are your FRIENDS! Consider investing in a tripod/ring light combo like this one … Opens in a new window to Amazon… (pro results for less than $40!).
6. Do SEM and PPC ads
The Internet is littered with noise. It’s hard to put out your message and get others to see it.
One of the best ways to get your message heard and seen is doing SEM ads or paid advertisements.
SEM ads are one of the most profitable marketing strategies to generate higher ROI. And they lead to more search visibility.
7. Use webchats and online booking widgets
Post-COVID: We live in a new age where people work remotely. That means more people rely on the Internet to get what they need.
And they want their questions answered fast.
- Do you offer Invisalign?
- Do you have openings on Monday for a dental cleaning?
- Do you accept my insurance?
- How much does in-office teeth whitening cost?
- I need to make an appointment.
But here’s the kicker:
They don’t want to get on the phone to get those questions answered.
Give those potentials leads what they want and use a webchat and online booking service.
This will turn those website visitors into customers. It shows potential patients you offer stellar customer service 24/7 by adapting to their every need.
8. Update your website’s messaging
This goes back to our first tip about Marketing with Love and empathizing with your community.
Make sure your website’s content reflects your patients’ barriers and how you overcome them.
- Did they recently lose their dental insurance? You could talk about financing options and offer an in-house membership plan.
- Are they unsure whether or not it’s safe to visit the dentist? Tell them what you’re doing everything to keep everyone safe.
- Are they scared? Suffer from dental anxiety? Talk about how you make everyone comfortable.
Update your website’s messaging based on your answers and patients’ needs.
Here are some excellent examples of our current clients changing their website messaging:
9. Update your Google My Business profile
Do you have a landing page on your website detailing how you’re keeping patients safe?
You can link to that page directly from your Google My Business profile. It’s another way to gain website visitors’ trust, get them on your website, and convert them to patients.
Side note: Make sure your hours, images, and phone number are all updated on your GMB profile. This will not only give people accurate information to contact you, but it helps your rankings as well.
10. Offer virtual consultations/teledentistry
People LOVE virtual consultations because of how convenient it is to get their smile questions answered without leaving their homes.
Not to mention:
And you’ll love it for many reasons:
- Many insurance providers are covering ADA Teledentistry codes as a covered service.
- You generate more leads in a HIPAA-compliant manner.
- You connect with more leads, reducing chairtime so you see more patients in a day.
There are many providers to implement virtual consultations into your practice. Here are our favorites:
- NexHealth … Opens in a new window to NexHealth.com…
- Doxy.me … Opens in a new window to Doxy.me…
- RevenueWell Virtual Visits … Opens in a new window to Revenuewell.com…
11. Implement a text marketing strategy
You most likely have a texting system that reminds current patients of appointments or to leave a review.
Sending a text message is giving you that first-class access to your patients.
So, why not take it a step further?
Use it to share your knowledge and provide them timely content.
- Share the blog post about COVID-19 protocols.
- Send a video of yourself with an update on the dental office.
- Announce the launch of your in-house membership plan.
- Share you offer virtual consultations.
This is just another marketing channel to build trust and show you’re a generous leader in your community.
12. If you do paid ads, use retargeting
What is retargeting? Retargeting is a way to build brand awareness and reach your audience who’ve expressed interest in your office. When someone visits your website or social media profiles, that person will start seeing your paid ads as they browse online.
This is retargeting at work. It’s reminding people of your brand and message. Before someone makes a purchase, they need to hear your message at least 7 times. It’s an excellent marketing strategy to convert website visitors into patients.
It’s a crucial component for your Google and social ad campaigns.
13. Do a long launch marketing strategy
Do you offer a product or an educational course?
Put it online and create a long launch campaign around it.
This is an excellent way to create another source of income for your dental practice.
Once it’s set up and launched, it’ll sell itself over and over again – without your constant managing over it. You can focus on running your dental practice.
Stay on top of marketing strategies (ones proven to work)
These 13 dental marketing strategies listed above will help grow your dental practice.
But, just like dentistry, marketing is an ever-changing world and requires a lot of commitment to stay on top of trends. And, how do you know if it actually works?
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could ditch the guesswork?
At Roadside Dental Marketing, we’ve got your back.
We’re giving you everything you need to get the ball rolling and build a grin-making empire with the Marketing Plus Package.
Whether you’re refreshing your social brand or starting your community expert voice, you’ll have all the tools to successfully market your dental practice – that’ll speak to people, not their wallets.
And it’s so easy to implement – like brushing and flossing your teeth.
Click the image below to learn about our Marketing Plus Package and never get left behind in the marketing world again!