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Dentists aren’t detectives, although some diagnostic puzzles may challenge your deductive skills. But one area where dentists can benefit from doing some investigation is their online marketing.
Dentists aren’t trained as marketers. For that reason, many dentists’ marketing violates a lot of the rules that determine good marketing. That may or may not be the case with your marketing. Regardless, here are four mistakes that dentists’ make with their marketing that you should avoid at all costs.
Number 1: Limiting the number of marketing channels
Almost no business needs to be in every marketing channel, but few businesses can do well appealing to their prospects in just one or two channels. Some dentists still ignore the online environment and rely on newspaper ads and postcard campaigns. Today, 90 percent of people who are looking for a dentist begin their search online. At an absolute minimum, you should have a well-written, well-designed, SEO- and mobile-compliant website in addition to offline marketing channels. Depending on the primary demographic you’re trying to attract, you might want to add additional channels like Facebook or Instagram.
Number 2: Having an inconsistent message
Too many dentists have one or more disconnects between parts of their marketing. For instance, they try to position themselves as dental experts who offer extensive discounts and low-price work. That smacks as an insincere come-on to prospects, much like a hotel offering deluxe accommodations for $40 per night. As another example, some dentists focus on patient comfort in one part of their marketing while touting their advanced technology in another part. In yet another channel, they’re pushing appointment availability. Your prospects would have to see different ads in different channels to get an overall impression of your practice.
Number 3: Failing to direct prospects to the website
Research indicates that a dentist’s website is the single most influential marketing vehicle for converting prospects into appointed patients. That makes sense, because no other marketing channel can convey in one place the breadth of information available on your site. For that reason, every piece of your marketing, online and off, should include a call-to-action to visit your website.
Number 4: Not converting prospects to receive additional information
Google says that people consult an average of 10.4 sources of online information before making a purchasing decision. That figure applies to the purchase of services as well as goods. The vast majority of your prospects aren’t ready to immediately commit, so you need to stay in front of them until they’re ready to choose you. By offering something of value on your website, such as a white paper or an article that relates to their dental concern, you can obtain prospects email addresses. That will allow you to send them additional information until they’re ready to choose you.
Again, these weaknesses may not apply to your marketing. But if they do, address them and you’ll not only attract more new dental patients, you’ll increase your marketing return on investment. And what dental practice wouldn’t go sleuthing after that?