A great dentist in the neighborhood is just as important as a local bakery with tasty bread. Everyone needs to take care of their teeth, and there are at least a few dental clinics in every larger or smaller city. So what makes some dentists have a queue with bookings two months ahead, and others struggle to get more patients? Are the quality of service, integrity, and affordable pricing the only success factors? Or maybe you need some help with your marketing? Here are some simple and effective ways to get more patients into your dental clinic:
Google Ads advertising
You probably realize that if you run a dental clinic in SW Calgary, you probably won't be interested in a patient from Toronto or Kelowna - and neither will they. The key to effective advertising is to reach the right audience, in the right place, at the right time, which is exactly what Google Ads is about. This advertising channel can be an enormously profitable way to get more patients, especially if you're not competing with many other dental clinics in your area. Even if you are, there are ways to explore what your competition is missing and seize these opportunities.
Positive Google reviews
You certainly have a lot of satisfied and constantly returning patients. Some of them don't even have to be asked to leave a positive comment about your service. However, most of them are usually so busy with everyday activities that they simply don't think of it. Try to encourage satisfied patients to leave a positive review for you on Google or social media. You can encourage patients by handing them out a thank you card with the address of the page where they can leave their opinion. Many patients, when choosing a dentist, are very influenced by the opinions of others. So try to keep the reviews as great as possible - even a single negative review can have big repercussions for future bookings at your clinic.
Get more patients to book using visit reminders
Make sure that your patients don't forget about scheduled or routine appointments. Patients who make appointments one month in advance don't necessarily remember about them. Automated texts or e-mail reminders can help your patients with remembering their appointments.
Include underused keywords in your SEO strategy
High search engine rankings of your dental clinic is the dream of every practice owner. Search engine users most often only look at the first 10 results, so it's important to rank high. Because competition for these rankings can be fierce, it's important to research keywords that might be underused by other dentists. For example, you can experiment with adding "urgent", "emergency", or "open Sunday" to some commonly searched dental phrases. It's entirely possible that your competition is not taking advantage of these keywords.
Use Instagram for posting and advertising
Instagram is the most popular photo-based social networking site in the world. It is also a great place to promote your work. Make your photos attractive and in good resolution. Use hashtags to tag your photos, thanks to which you will reach those patients who are really interested in the type of services you offer. Potential patients also love to see "before and after" results. Dentistry has an aesthetic dimension, so take advantage of this and keep your social media profiles updated regularly to get more patients.
Get more patients with newsletter marketing
Today's tools for creating professional email newsletters are definitely different and more advanced than those available even a few years ago. You can create engaging content and send it to your patients on a regular basis, just make sure that you obtain their consent first. Sending out monthly newsletters with your latest blog post works especially well. With a little work, you might be surprised that you can get more patients into your dental clinic using a simple but consistent newsletter marketing strategy.
As you probably know, many successful marketing strategies work to slowly build interest over time and ultimately lead to conversions (a booking of your service). The decision to choose a dentist is almost never spontaneous. The patient usually first looks at reviews, services, photos, and then decides whether to come in. If he or she has visited your website first, you can take advantage of Retargeting campaigns (called remarketing in the Google Ads system). This marketing method allows you to show your ads to people who visited your website, as they go about their daily internet activities. Remarketing is a very cheap and effective method to get more patients, by keeping your brand in their mind until they're ready to make the call to book.
We all use our mobile devices these days, so a mobile-friendly dental practice website is an absolute must. A patient visiting your website should be able to quickly and efficiently navigate, access your contact details, and be able to make a quick phone call with one click. When preparing your Google Ads (formerly AdWords) campaigns, remember about patients who search for information mainly over the phone. Today, most of the traffic to dental practice websites comes from smartphones.
Getting more patients into your dental clinic can be hard, especially in areas where the competition from other clinics is fierce. You can certainly learn to improve your marketing strategies and start seeing results. At some point, you may need to get help from a specialized marketing agency, giving you more breathing room - marketing takes up a lot of time. Do not give up. If you have the resources, refer to our marketing recommendations above and start implementing some of them. If you're struggling, feel free to reach out to us, and see what marketing services we offer for dentists. We are based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and work with dental clinics nationally and in the U.S.
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