Do you run a dental office that just isn’t getting the traffic you’d like it to? Does your practice need more clients in order to stay afloat? If you answered yes to both of these questions, it might not be the services you offer that are to blame. It’s most likely the way you market those services. When you find your patients deserting and going to your competitors, or seeking out other practices for specific treatments, it’s time to hire a dental practice consultant.
What is dental practice consulting? This marketing field focuses on maximizing your dental practice growth to turn it from a high cost operation to a lucrative business. A dental consultant can work with you on everything from dental office management to dental marketing ideas to get customers into that exam chair!
Before talking to a dental marketing consultant, try some of these easy dental marketing ideas yourself to give a boost to your business. If you need more, hire a consultant to develop a customized strategy for your practice.
1. Give your practice a personal touch. Nothing puts customers at ease more than having a dentist welcome them when they sit in the exam chair. However, even new patients need to be wowed before their appointment dates. Try personally calling patients to welcome them to your practice, and follow up with them after their first visits. For existing patients, make sure to send reminders for their next appointments and thank them for coming to you. Having great dental hygienists is an important component of a practice, but don’t leave all the customer service to them.
2. Add new treatments. If you notice that treatments like whitening are in demand in your area, and you don’t offer that service, then clearly you should consider a change. Cosmetic dentistry is big right now, so procedures like whitening, veneers, dental implants, and other changes in appearance are all excellent to offer your patients. If you don’t have some of these services, see if you can get the necessary training and equipment to provide them.
3. Improve your web presence. This is one of the few dental marketing ideas that works for any business, but with a dental practice it’s just as important. Having a well-crafted website that gets updated regularly to include new or relevant information, such as pricing and procedures, is essential when trying to attract new clients and keep your old ones. In addition to your practice’s website, branch out to other parts of the web. Social media is a great way to find new clients or have them find you. Get a Facebook profile and update it with timely information about dental treatments and good dental hygiene tips.
4. Offer incentives. Giving patients rewards for making regular visits, providing feedback, and connecting through social media is a great way to engage with them. Remember those follow-up calls mentioned in suggestion #1? Try something like entering patients into a drawing when they complete a survey — or refer a friend. For young patients, find ways to reward them when come to the office. Even giving kids stickers or small toys after cleanings is a good way to help get them through their checkups (not to mention Mom and Dad will thank you for making the appointment easy for them).
If you still need better ideas for advertising or useful techniques for interacting with patients, contact a dental practice consultant. Have questions or suggestions for other marketing strategies? Leave a comment below.