Are you finding it hard to bring in new customers to your dental practice in spite of spending a lot of money and time on dental marketing? Unfortunately, most people end up wasting their market budget on conventional marketing methods that don’t yield results.
According to Dental Economics, over 90% of consumers use search engines to find businesses in their local area, and this includes people looking for dentists and general doctors. Trust is important in business, and people want to interact with your practice before they physically visit your practice. If consumers are unable to find you online, you’re likely to lose out to your competition.
Here are some expensive marketing mistakes that are costing you, patients.
1. Failing to Have a Marketing Plan
Not having a marketing plan could cost your dental practice. You can have the best practice, use thousands of dollars in advertising and still get zero results. How many customers do you want to acquire in a year, what marketing strategies do you plan to use? These are some of the questions your marketing plan should answer.
Creating a marketing plan is essential as it tells you when one strategy is not working so that you can change and try out new marketing methods.
2. Failing to Optimize Your Local Page
Google takes into consideration the location of a searcher when displaying search results. This means that if a prospective patient searches for a dentist, he/she will see the dentists available in the local area.
If a potential patient searches for a local dentist and your Google + account is empty or contains negative information about you, chances are he/she will turn to other listed dentists. Google plus accounts are tied to your Google Maps Listing, and this is how patients quickly locate your practice.
Moreover, Google looks at the consistency of your online practice information when ranking your site. Good reviews from multiple websites are also an important ranking factor for local SEO.
If you haven’t claimed your local listing, it’s time you did as this could help patients find you.
3. Trying to Be on Every Social Media Platform
Everyone seems to be on every social network out there, why should you be left behind? A lot of people believe that you need to be a part of every social media network for you to acquire new customers. Unfortunately, this could end up being a time sink that doesn’t pay off.
You need to choose a social media platform that works for your practice. Facebook and Twitter are the most common platforms. LinkedIn is also a great platform to list your services.
4. Your Website is Not Properly Optimized
It is estimated that about 80% of people research a business online through a search engine before making any contact directly. Unfortunately, some dental practices don’t see the value of SEO. Having a website that uses duplicate content, contains spammy links or uses too many keywords could hurt your ranking on search engines. Most dental websites miss the basics like optimizing their image alt tags, Meta description, and their title.
5. Spending Money on Wrong Marketing Channels
One of the reasons your dental marketing strategy is not working is because you’re spending money on the wrong ads. Yes, ads placed on billboards, fliers and the local paper may work to some degree. However, these old-fashioned marketing methods are losing ground to digital marketing.
With traditional marketing methods, you have no idea how many people view your ad and how many converted to customers. Digital marketing allows you to track and target the number of people landing on your ad and responding through scheduling a consultation.
6. Failing to Track Results
Are people visiting your site but not calling for consultation? The only way to know what’s working and what’s not is to track results of your campaigns. You can track your results by using Google Analytics, a tool that tracks all your SEO efforts. With these results, you can make the necessary changes to make your website effective and improve on user experience.
7. Sending the Same Information to Prospects
While mass email campaigns can be effective, not everyone is interested in the same information. You could end up being labeled a spammer by prospects who find your information of no use.
To counter this, you need to identify your target audience and tailor your message to fit these target segments. Some of the people you could target include adults, children, teens and brides.
8. Inconsistent Branding
If your online brand is different from your offline brand, you could end up losing prospective patients. Having consistent branding and colors across all platforms will help people recognize you. Moreover, consumers tend to develop a brand royalty and the only way for them to do that is to ensure that the message remains the same.
9. Copying the Exact Marketing Strategies of Your Competitors
Just because your competitor decided to use YouTube to market their services, this doesn’t mean that you should also launch a YouTube Channel and market your services. The only way to be different is to think of other creative marketing methods. You could market your practice through local events or conferences.
SEO is also an excellent way to market your services online. Create engaging, yet actionable content and use different link building strategies to get on the first page of Google.
10. Ignoring Email Marketing
It’s estimated that at least 91% of consumers check their email daily.
What does this mean for your dental practice?
It means that you need to collect the emails of your site visitors not only to deepen your relationship with prospective patients but to maintain your relationship with existing clients. Moreover, you can provide special offers on your dental services.
11. Ignoring Content Marketing
What do people find when they first visit your site? Failing to have useful and engaging content on your website could end up being a costly mistake. Content marketing is the only way for prospects to understand your services and how they would make their lives easier.
To create engaging content, you need to share personal stories, add video in your content, use photos and write catchy headlines.
Doing Your Own Dental Marketing?
Most dental practices attempt to do the marketing themselves, but end up failing miserably. What’s more, this results in loss of both money and time. It would be more profitable to spend time servicing new patients that your marketing agency acquired for you rather than spend the same time trying to learn a new discipline or to acquire new patients.
You won’t find a one fits all formula to market your practice. Be careful not to repeat these dental marketing mistakes and more importantly, be consistent, track your results, pick the right marketing channels, and seek advice from dental marketing experts.
Are you ready to appeal to patients who will stay, pay and refer your services to friends and family? Visit our dental seo page to learn more about how you can market your dental practice.