With all the disruption in the healthcare space, not as much attention is paid to the dental field. In our experience with other healthcare clients, we see many implications that apply to dental offices or group practices. We talk a lot in other articles about the consumerization of healthcare and how customers, now armed with more information than ever before, are able to shop for healthcare services the way they shop for other products.
What is your practice doing to ensure your services are attractive to someone “shopping” for dental care?
In order to develop a strong plan, it’s most important to first understand what consumers want. Not surprisingly, insurance acceptance, convenient hours, referrals and advanced technology are the highest reported desires of dental consumers. This is really good news, because these are the stones that build a path of your marketing strategy.
Do Some Digital Housekeeping
We consider some digital chores to be table stakes in marketing your practice. But just like in our personal lives, these are the things that can sometimes be put aside. If we assume dental professionals are reading this, you know ignoring a small problem only leads to bigger ones down the road.
Now for the deep clean (so to speak)
Successful marketing programs are built on strong foundations. Now that you’ve done all your chores, it’s time to expand on them.
Identify Entry Barriers and Destroy Them
According to the ADA, over 33% of adults do not have dental insurance. This can seem like a barrier to even getting basic care like cleanings and check-ups. Even those with dental insurance may avoid regular visits because their insurance isn’t great (or they think it’s not). Cleanings and check-ups are a commodity you offer. There is a cost to your business but it’s also the base service on which you can determine the lifetime value of a customer. Developing promotions around these services and building a conversion-based marketing plan around them, sets you down a path of measurable results. The work you have done to build your foundation can now ensure when your promotions are out in the world with paid search or deal sites, that customers can be armed with the information they need in order to make a decision.
Gather your data and DO something with it
You have a social following and you have years of customer data. You may even have an email database and website analytics. But do you have the data management systems in place that can analyze your data holistically and do you have a marketing partner (or even someone in-house) that can look at trends and signals to inform smart promotional marketing programs? If you do, that’s great! If not, you’re definitely not alone. There are no shortage of articles online that are telling you what you need to do in order to secure more patients. But that’s like someone giving you a recipe for brownies but they know you don’t have time to bake. Media partners like us have the experience with healthcare clients and the tools the build your business.