In this day and age, most small businesses and service providers have found success using digital marketing as the basis of their campaigns. As a result, more and more money is being invested into the web-based side of marketing. The dental field is no exception in this. They are, in fact flourishing with this medium of advertising and being found. With a comprehensive digital marketing plan, offices, such as local cosmetic dentist, Susan Hollar, have discovered that this is how their new and existing patients are interacting with them. We sat down with Susan, and asked her how digital marketing is integrated into her practice.
How long has your practice been committed to online and digital marketing?
We had our first website over 10+ years ago. We saw that technology would one day translate into potential patients using the web as a means of locating and researching doctors before ever talking to them.
What channels does your practice participate in and how effective are they at getting new patients?
We use a variety of SEO, SEM, social media and marketing automation like SMS reminders and confirmations at our practice. They are all effective avenues at promoting our practice, spreading the doctor’s brand name, and at the end of the day, attracting new and knowledgeable patients.
What would you say, are your most effective digital marketing strategies?
We think the nucleus of our digital marketing efforts is the website. It is our main source of referrals with about 75% of all new patients citing that they found us through search and our website. We always try to keep it updated with our most current information on both our office and Susan’s on-going continuing education and credentials. From what our patients tell us, they are most interested in the doctor’s credentials, accolades and education. They want to make sure that the dentist they are choosing is best in class. The other most talked about portion of our website is the before and after pictures. Patients tend to let “the work speak for itself”, so we provide high quality, professional pictures of past patients and their transformations.
With the emphasis on our website, we have also made sure that it shows up on search engines when potential patients are looking for our services. We devised our SEO campaigns to attract patients that are looking for quality cosmetic services, so we try and not target things in general dentistry (that is not what we offer).
Does your practice participate in social media, and if so, what types of posts get the strongest response from your patient base?
We tend to stick to Facebook, because it serves as a good platform to share with our patients what is happening with the doctor and the practice. We tend to get the most reaction to our Before and After pictures, especially the more “dramatic” ones. Patients like to see what we can accomplish through cosmetic dentistry.
How do your patients feel about your automated systems, like SMS reminders, etc?
Most of our patients like it and it allows us to get their responses in a more timely manner. We have noticed that many patients who won’t return phone calls, will send a return text to confirm appointments. This has saved our front office countless hours and have created a more efficient scheduling and confirmation routine.
What other channels besides digital marketing does your practice use, and how do they compare against it?
We place ads in magazines and local publications, but that effort accounts for less than 25% of our new patients that come into the office. Digital marketing is by far our best return on investment and serves as our main outlet for advertising.
Do you think the effort and investment is worth it? Would you recommend other dentists in your field to concentrate on digital marketing?
YES and YES.
To learn more about Susan Hollar and her practice, her website can be found here.