Over the last few years there have been more and more rating sites popping up all over the internet. Sites that allow patients to talk about their experiences and rate their dentist based on their experience. This has a lot of positive kick back but can also lead to very negative results. It becomes very important to be proactive in your online reputation management.
Making sure that all the information on these sites is up-to-date is a big factor. People want to have the most recent information and on most of the sites this will be up to you to update. Another important step in managing your online reputation is to make sure you are responding to the negative reviews. You want to make sure that you are getting to the bottom of a negative experience. Responding to positive reviews is also a great idea, always letting your patients know that you are grateful for them.
We are in the thick of the holiday season and it isn’t too late to send out those Holiday cards to your patients! The holidays are a great time to connect with your patients and thank them for their business and for supporting you throughout the year. These cards are meant to be much more personal than just an e-mail or a social media greeting.
With that in mind these cards shouldn’t be an advertisement for your business they should be a thank you for the year. Avoiding those logos and sales messages will show your current patients how much you appreciate their business and could potentially lead to more referrals. These cards are more personal and because of that you should take time to hand write them or at least use your real signature, just that gesture alone goes a long way in showing the patients just how much you actually care.
While content creation has become a major marketing trend, it also presents a challenge for organizations. As more high-quality content becomes available, supporters will become increasingly selective with what they choose to read and watch. Personalizing your communication with potential clients will set you apart from others who are also sharing content and showing up in their inboxes. It’ll also help you build relationships and humanize your brand. You want to be able to make a connection with your consumers and create impact.
Your website says a lot about you and your practice. In the internet age it is the first thing that a potential patient will see and it is the impression that they will get of you. There is more to a website than just having your photo and your services though. You want to create a website that is going to make the patients experience easier and in turn better. There are a few ways that you can accomplish this.
Including patient forms on your website is a great way to help make your patients experience quick and easy. It makes it a lot more convenient for your patients and takes the load off of your front office. Insurance forms and HIPAA forms can be downloaded and filled out by patients ahead of time so that time can be saved when they come to your office.
You can also make it easier for your patients by creating a well planned website that allows them to find information quicker. Providing all your services, the insurance you carry, photos, bios and contact info all accessible on the site. This can help to give the patients more information at their finger tips and reduce calls to your office.
You can use your site to show your expertise. Adding a blog to your site will allow potential and existing patients to see what is going on in your office, what services you offer and it gives you a chance to show off your knowledge. Studies show that people are more likely to recommend doctors that they trust, and a blog will allow you to gain that trust.
A dental practice is a in a unique position of having many different types of patients. Patients that are young, old, high income, low income. Where dental practices fail is not trying to market to all those different types of patients.
- Market all of your services. Not every patient is just coming in for a cleaning. You have patients that need those regular check-ups, people that need crowns and cases. You’ll also have patients that come in for emergency procedures. This wide array of patient needs requires that you promote each service that you provide. This will allow you to get your practice name out there for many different things and reach those many different patients.
- Open up to different demographics. When you are creating content for marketing you want to make sure that you aren’t focusing just on one demographic. You will want to reach many different demographics from where people are located to their age, a child will respond differently to content than an adult will and you will need to create different content for each age group.
- Do research. In order to market to the different types of patients you’ll need to understand each type. You’ll want to research what motivates them to choose a dentist, how they find information about dentists, etc.
A responsive website is a design that allows your website to change in order to fit the device that you are using. So your website can change to fit a mobile platform, tablets, and computer screens. The obvious benefit is that you don’t have to create a dedicated mobile site. Instead you can focus on one website that will look the same on each platform.
Another benefit is the customer experience, a responsive site will allow the customer to see every part of your site, there won’t be anything blocked, links won’t be hard to click on. They also won’t have to scroll as much or resize anything.
It is also a benefit to have the responsive site instead of the dedicated mobile site because it’s much more cost effective. Not only are you not spending more on an extra site but you won’t have to worry about separate SEO campaigns. With the responsive site you can use the same SEO for your desktop and mobile where if they were separate site you would have to do campaigns for both.
Overall the major benefit of the responsive website is that it is easier. Easier for you as the practice owner and easier for your patients and potential clients that will view the site. Talk to CXC Dental today about getting that responsive website if you don’t already have one.
A great way for you to get your practice out there and boost your google ratings is to have a blog. Whether it is once a day, once a week or once a month, blogs are shared and looked at by many people. When writing a blog you want to keep it short and sweet, but make sure that the content is engaging. It’s also important to add photos to draw in your potential patients. Here are a few ideas for blog posts to get you started.
- Lists. As you can tell from how CXC Dental writes our blogs we LOVE to write lists and that’s because that’s what people like to see. It is a quick read, easy and effective read. So using lists such as “Top 10 Best Practices for Keeping Your Gums Healthy” or “Top 5 Reasons People Choose Veneers”.
- True Stories. Using a true story about a patient that you helped or simply patient testimonials is a great way to connect with potential patients on a more personal level. People love to hear human stories and it will make you more trustworthy in their eyes. Whether it is a Dentist recalling a particular patient or a patient recalling a specific memory with the dentist and their staff it is something people will be interested to read.
- Information. As we at CXC Dental have talked about the before the importance of putting yourself out there as knowledgeable on social media and your own website is absolutely vital to getting people to trust you. So what better way to get that out on social media than a blog with educational information. Write about why it’s important to floss, or what types of things to avoid eating if you have sensitive teeth. People always want to learn more, and if you make yourself the expert, people will trust you.
- Entertainment. People like to read and see funny things. After all there is a reason that memes have been a very popular thing for years. Using memes, creating funny videos and posting funny images on your blog are a great way to get shares and also show the less serious side of yourself.
- Share secrets. Much like the information blog people want to know “The secret to…” that might be “The Secret to Natural Teeth Whitening” or “The Secret to Avoiding Cavities”. Either way people want to know the best way to do something, avoid something, or gain something. So using “The Secret to…” is a great way to draw them in and give them information.
There are many different ways to find success through online marketing, including social media, blogs, etc. But here are three things you absolutely want to focus on across the board in order to make sure you have successful online marketing.
- Personal Posts. Making original content is one of the biggest things you can do for yourself in order to be successful. People want to see you as an educational leader, someone that they can look to for answer so that they want to continue to come back to your site and in turn your practice. Creating personal and original content for your social media, blogs, etc will help to keep eyes on your site and your practice.
- Press Releases. If you are doing something unique and great you want to show people that you are doing it. So create interesting content and information to share with the media and give them a reason to want to post about you and your practice. Remember how important it is to be creative, use high quality images and give them all the information that they need right up front. This is a great way to not just get the name of your practice out there but also to increase the reputation of your brand.
- Video and pictures. Like we have already discussed before when talking about social media visual media is a huge way to connect with your patients. Using personal pictures, pictures of the office to show the atmosphere and also to show events is huge. When it comes to videos a great way to utilize those is to have informational videos on your site or social media that showcases what kind of services you can provide. Just like personal posts this will show your patient that you are knowledgeable as well as approachable.
Social media is becoming a much more visual platform than before. While people still love informative posts and contest it is pictures that people respond to the most. Which is probably why platforms like Instagram and Snapchat have become so popular. There are a few things people want to see out of your practice when it comes to posts to Instagram.
- You and your staff. Gaining patients and maintaining patients is what keeps a practice alive. The way to gain and maintain those patients is through trust and making them like you. An easy way to accomplish this is to show your personality on all social media sites. On Instagram you can show pictures of the people in the office and who you are “behind the scenes”. This is a fun look at who you are when you’re not working with patients, and people appreciate being able to see your and your staff’s personalities.
- Contests. Everyone loves a good contest or giveaway. And both you and your patients can benefit from the contest. They a huge engagement drivers, it allows you to get more followers and in turn more eyes on your practice. Who doesn’t like to win stuff?
- Education. Show them pictures of the tools that you use and educate them on what they are used for. This can help to make those tools a little less scary. People are also very interested in learning about the technology behind the tools that get used.
- Your patients. Taking pictures of happy patients is guaranteed to get you those likes and shares you want. Not to mention it is going to show those looking for a dentist that you care about your patients and you are proud of your work.
- Outside of the office. Seeing you or your staff outside of the office is very interesting to those people that only see you inside of it. Posting pictures of you at events, having staff outings or just things you find interesting is going to make the patients feel like they know you better. If they feel like they know you better they’re going to trust you and recommend you to others.
It might not seeming like your staff and marketing are one in the same especially since CXC Dental is here to help you when it comes to creating that brand that you want as well as the marketing materials to get your name out there. However we cannot be in the office with you and your patients. So it’s important to keep in mind that your staff has a huge impact on your marketing.
What I mean by this is that you and your staff are the ones that provide the experience to the patients and your community. In order to function at your best as an office you and your staff’s morale needs to be high. In order to keep the morale high it’s important to keep your staff motivated and well lead.
Well lead means that you are making sure of a few things. For instance if you have a new hire you want to make sure that the rest of your staff is aware of their own responsibilities to make sure the new hire is getting all the mentoring and education they need about the practice. If you have an office manager you want to give them power to make decisions and give them trust so they will in turn trust you and there can be a healthy relationship between you and the rest of your staff. Rewarding your staff is always important as well, whether it be through small pay increases or any type of token that shows they are appreciated.
In the end having a happy staff can only help in all aspects especially marketing. If you and your staff can show that you have a positive, fun environment where you all respect one-another they are going to want to come back and beyond that they’ll refer you to their friends, family, co-workers, etc. Aside from getting those great referrals you will also see your positive reviews grow. Happy staff makes for a happy practice and happy patients.