With a wealth of resources at our fingertips, many people are making healthcare choices informed by the information they access online. It’s now the norm for the dental patient journey to begin with a mobile search, long before they set foot into your dental office.
Digital marketing technology has evolved to allow healthcare professionals to map out and follow their patients’ journeys to provide a better new patient experience — and to keep them coming back as regular patients for many years.
Here’s how digital marketing can help you reach patients throughout the patient journey:
Attracting new patients
Getting a reliable stream of new patients to your office can be challenging, but it’s absolutely necessary if you want your business to grow (or even keep a steady pace). On average, a dental practice will lose around 10% of its patient base each year by normal attrition, so you’ll want to focus on ways to bring in a regular stream of new patients.
Here are a few ways you can start attracting new patients:
- Learn about your unique audience. Really get to know your patients and what their needs are so you can better serve them and offer content they are interested in.
- Know your local competition. To come up with the most impactful dental marketing ideas, take a look at what your competitors are doing. Find out what they aren’t offering their patients that can give you a competitive edge to attract a portion of their audience.
- Target your audience with a combination of SEO and paid search methods. “Near me” searches are common when looking for a new dentist, so optimize your site for local search. Use a healthy combination of paid search methods and SEO to maximize your results.
- Engage on social networks. A consistent flow of content will help to get you noticed and generate buzz surrounding your practice. Good communication and relevant content may be exactly what your prospects are looking for.
- Retarget users to your website with display ads. After your prospect has visited your website with the intent of making an appointment, you don’t need to leave it up to chance and hope they visit in person. Use display ads to effectively create more awareness to get your practice back in front of them.
Communicating once they become a patient
Retaining patients is just as important as earning a new one — and in the long run, it’s less costly. Set up a new patient email campaign to launch once a prospect becomes a patient. This will be your opportunity to introduce your practice and welcome them into it.
And don’t stop there! Continue to communicate with your clients long after they’ve become patients. Offer ways to connect with you and stay up to date on what’s going on in your practice. Send out regular monthly email newsletters and maintain an engaging social media presence to build ongoing relationships with your patients.
The key here is to emphasize the importance of communication and make your new patients feel like a part of your practice, not just a timeslot on your daily calendar.
Following up post-treatment
Dental patient marketing doesn’t have to end once your patient leaves the chair. Follow up with patients post-treatment to ensure they have the best experience possible. In your follow up, ask your patients to leave a review in order to boost your online reputation.
More than 85% of consumers prefer — and are more likely to trust — businesses with higher ratings and reviews, so consistently monitor their feedback as part of your reputation management and look for ways you can improve.
Dental clinic digital marketing is a great tool to help your practice gain visibility and become more accessible to your patients, but there’s a little more to it than that. You want your patients to not only love their experience but to rave about it — to tell their family and friends.
Turning your patients into raving fans can be challenging, which is why our team at UpSwell can easily get you started with our free marketing assessment. Get in touch with us to find out how we can help earn you more business and success!