The average dental practice start-up cost can range between $453,330 to $591,115, depending on size and location. So, if you’re opening your own dental practice, you’ll need a consistent stream of new and loyal patients walking through the door.
Top 10 dental marketing tips
Marketing is a key to the success of any business including a dental practice. Having the best prices and services isn’t enough. A dental marketing plan is required to have long term success to cover the initial start-up costs and continue growing.
Local awareness Facebook Ads
Using social media is a smart place to market because let’s face it most people are on social media every single day. In fact, the average active daily users on Facebook is 1.49 billion.
Local awareness facebook ads allow you to be specific about who you are marketing your practice to. It wouldn’t make sense to market to someone 5 hours away. These ads allow you to reach a local audience that lives close enough to make your practice their primary dental facility.
One of the main goals when marketing to prospective patients is for them to not only find your practice but also book an appointment. Having the person pick up and call the office to book their first appointment is the ultimate goal in the marketing plan.
Facebook and Google Ads have whats called click to call ads. These ads can be used on cell phones, tablets, and desktops. You have the option of creating call-only campaigns with this option or adding a call button feature to an existing ad.
Facebook demographic targeting
If you have not used Facebook ads yet for your practice there is an enormous amount of demographic targeting available to use. This can be the location but there are more options such as targeting a potential patient by options such as (but not limited to):
With this type of targeting you can be specific. For example, you can choose to get your ads in front of women who live in your area and recently searched a paediatrician.
Facebook Messenger Ads
This recent ad feature that Facebook released allows the messenger app to communicate with businesses. You are able to use “Send Message” as a call to action on your ads and then this would take prospective patients to the messenger app.
A business is also able to set up their Facebook messenger with automatic follow up messages with those that interact with the business messenger feature.
Patient referral bonus
This marketing tip is a great way to grow because it’s word of mouth marketing. Word of mouth means that a current patient recommends your practice to a friend or relative. Since that friend or relative already trusts them, it’s a fairly easy close.
The person referring the new patient can receive a discount from your practice or a dental product as part of the referral bonus. This can also be offered to employees that send referrals to your practice.
This type of advertisement is great because it allows you to reach people that have visited your website in the past. It will show ads focused on engaging and re-capturing those potential patients that looked t your practice already.
Another way to use these ads is collecting email addresses in your clinic and uploading them through customer match on Facebook or Google Ads to re-market to existing customers. This ad can be used to bring previous patients back to your clinic for a teeth whitening or a cleaning.
Every couple of weeks clear your desktops cache and Google “dentist in (insert your town). You want to make sure you are not only appearing on a local search but also if you have any reviews. Encourage patients to leave a review online because potential patients look for reviews online when making their decision on whom to choose as their dentist for themselves and their family.
Does your practice have an online presence? This means that potential patients looking for a new dentist in their area can Google and find your clinic. Once your website is up and running you will want to regularly look over the site to make sure the content is up to date and appeals to your target audience.
The friendlier and more welcoming your website is the more likely they will call you.
This type of marketing allows you to get in front of potential patients physically. You can host themed events in your office showing the community that there is a fun side to your practice as well. There is an unlimited amount of options with your event.
Some event ideas include an information seminar with free beverages and snacks, BBQ, customer appreciation day, new customer appreciation day, etc. The key to this type of marketing is to be real, friendly and visible.
To add to this type of marketing is creating a Facebook business page to share the fun events coming up and share photos and videos of past events. Potential and existing clients can see the culture your dental facility has and the goal is for them to want to be a part of it.
Use videos to engage with your new and existing patients through your website and social media platforms. A video is more engaging than plain text because they allow people to connect with you. You can do a “meet the dentist” video to show who you are and that you are a real person.
Another video idea is showing a tour of your practice and even some video reviews from existing patients.
Over to you
Once you begin to apply the 10 tips above to help your dental marketing plan you are on your way to more new patients and happier existing patients. The goal is to continue growing and not hit a brick wall in your business. With high start-up costs staying in business long term becomes a necessity.
If you are looking for more ways to drive better results you get from dental digital marketing, click to read our dental marketing guide.