This post comes our friend, Dr. Fanar Swaida.
Any dental practice must understand the importance of marketing if it wants to thrive and attract new patients. However, knowing that you should market your dental practice is one thing -knowing how to do it is quite another. Unfortunately, there is no single answer to this, and a combination of different marketing strategies will often yield positive results. Here are 5 of the best ways to attract patients—and more importantly, retain them—which you absolutely must be on top of in the digital age.
#1 Establish A Good Website
A website is a necessity for modern dental practices. However, it must be optimized for search engines (SEO) if you want to rank highly on Google. So, for all of the services you offer, whether its wisdom teeth removal or dental implants, you should create a page specific to each service since this will help not only position yourself as an expert in each of these services but it will also help you rank on search engines more easily by having a page dedicated to each service. Your website won’t be much use as a marketing tool unless you appear on Google’s first page.
What Is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
SEO is the practice of improving the quality and quantity of traffic through organic search. This is when visitors find your site naturally by using relevant keywords rather than through pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. Thus, your website should be optimized for the key terms that your patients search for, such as “dentists in [your] city”, or “wisdom teeth removal in [your] city”.
Potential patients will type in these search terms in Google, and if you can rank for it in your local area you will receive a steady stream of clicks that are potentially new patients. Your online visibility is crucial. SEO ensures you can be found in Google’s search results when people are looking for a dentist or dental service in their local area.
Besides being a good marketing tool, a website also
- makes you look professional
- showcases your services
- encourages people to contact you
- can display testimonials or reviews
- integrates with Google maps so people can find you
- integrates with your social media accounts
# 2 Claim Your Google Listing
93% of consumers have found a local business via the internet during the last year. Your Google listing is an online billboard for your business. It is free and claiming it signifies you are a credible business, helping you to get found in the search results.
When potential customers search for businesses online, they want to establish trust, and they want signs that the business is real, open, and active. Filling out your Google profile listing with office hours, contact details, services, photos, and even customer reviews are proof that you are a viable business, and are likely to be seen as reputable by consumers in your local vicinity, as well as out-of-town visitors.
#3 Set-up and Use Social Media Accounts
Establishing a good online reputation using social media is incredibly important for connecting with new and existing patients. You don’t have to establish a presence on every social media platform, but choose at least one to get started with. Setting up a business page on, for example, Facebook can help people find your business and learn more about your services.
You can interact directly with your customers and they can reach out to you to find out more or to chat about your services. Posting regular updates, offers, and other information that personalizes your business can help you build a community, and is a powerful way of increasing awareness of your business and its reach.
It is possible to integrate social media accounts with your website so when you publish a new blogpost it is automatically disseminated across all of your social media platforms. This ensures your message is consistent and reaches your prospective new clients.
#4 Train Staff to Handle Prospective New Patients
Even the best marketing strategy can fall flat if your front desk—the first point of contact for prospective patients—does not handle calls correctly. Turnoffs that cause patients to take their custom elsewhere include:
- long hold times
- the inability of your staff to answer questions on your business or services
- misinformation or confusion
- a slow or unsatisfactory appointment system
The right approach from your staff, who have been trained to answer new patients’ questions with confidence and reassurance, must be part of any successful marketing strategy that aims to put patient experience at the forefront.
#5 Deliver Quality Patient Care
An effective marketing strategy must always deliver quality patient care. By providing quality care, patients will keep returning, are likely to leave positive reviews, and will recommend you to their family and friends.
Quality care does not just encompass the services you offer and delivering good treatment outcomes—although these are, of course, important. All aspects of what you offer form part of the quality of your services. You must be prepared to put all aspects of your services under scrutiny and look at the patient’s journey through their eyes.
How comfortable is your waiting room? Do you offer a welcoming environment? How is your customer support? Do you send out appointment reminders? Patients appreciate it if you are proactive and if you can make them feel important, they are more likely to be loyal – which will enhance your standing and attract new patients who have heard about your good reputation.
By understanding and adopting a marketing strategy for your dental practice you will continue to attract new patients. They are the lifeblood of many dental practices, but maintaining quality services will ensure you keep all of your patients satisfied—both the new and existing ones.
About Dr. Fanar Swaida
Dr. Fanar Swaida is a passionate and highly experienced dentist in Mississauga Ontario Canada. After graduating from the University of Western Ontario and the University of Toronto Faculty of Dentistry, Dr. Swaida continued his formal education through multiple courses and mini residencies in a variety of dental specialties. Dr. Swaida tries to be available for his patients even during his off time and his number one priority is to make all of his patients feel comfortable and safe when they come to Rockwest Dental Clinic Mississauga.