February 11, 2019
by Dr. Megan Peterson Boyle
To say that dentistry these days has become very competitive would be an understatement.
With dental practices seemingly operating only a few meters apart from one another, the competition for patients has become extremely tight.
Some resort to reducing their regular or cosmetic dentistry costs to attract more patients. Others turn to giving away freebies. Most practices, however, just up their online dental marketing game to get a leg up on the competition.
The problem is, there are so many dental marketing myths going around today, and not a few dentists are falling for them, much to their detriment.
Let’s take a look at some of the dental marketing myths that you, as a dental professional, should ignore.
“You Can Get Instant Results With Online Dental Marketing”
If you come across an individual or company promising you an online marketing campaign that will yield immediate results, run the other way because you are, in all likelihood, being scammed.
Now we’re not saying that quick results aren’t possible. In fact, some dental practices have been lucky enough to hit their marketing goals sooner than they thought. However, SEO and other forms of online marketing that dental practices employ for their campaigns do take time before you can see clear and sustainable results.
Always remember that no one can guarantee instant results in marketing, dental or otherwise. Factors like current market conditions, the level of your presence online, the speed at which you adapt to the constantly changing digital environment, and your location will always dictate your rate of success.
“A Small Budget is Enough for Dental Marketing Success”
If there were only you and one other dental practice in town, then a small dental marketing budget will probably be enough.
But if there’s a dentist’s office in every street corner, a tiny marketing budget is not going to cut it, especially if your myriad competitors are going all out in their dental marketing campaigns.
In a highly competitive industry, a bigger budget is often necessary to help you get your share of the market. When everybody else is spending for more expensive yet faster PPC campaigns while you’re sticking to the slower and less costly organic SEO, for example, you cannot expect to get the results you want, not when they’re getting it faster than you do because they have a much bigger budget.
While less costly or even free dental marketing techniques can get you results, the results you’ll get for investing in superior and properly-focused methods will be more substantial by a mile.
“Word-of-Mouth is the Best Type of Dental Marketing”
This is not a knock on word-of-mouth off per se. As a matter of fact, word-of-mouth is great not only for dental marketing, but for all kinds of marketing for any product or service as well. What we don’t agree with is the myth that word-of-mouth referrals are enough to launch your dental practice into space.
Word-of-mouth works, but it doesn’t have to be the only way to get your dental practice new patients. Keep in mind that just because somebody said this dentist is good doesn’t mean people will immediately take their word of it. At the very least, people would do their research, and how do you think they would get the information they need? Of course, they will have to check that dentist’s website or find online reviews—all components of an online dental marketing campaign.
For word-of-mouth to be fully effective, it must be a part of a comprehensive dental marketing strategy.
“Dental Marketing is a ‘Fire-and-Forget’ Affair”
It is unfortunate that some dental practices think they can just hire a dental marketing company, leave everything to them, and just await results.
If anything, dental marketing should be a collaborative effort if you want the best possible results for your dental practice. You can’t just let the marketing firm do their thing online, while your staff isn’t really being as helpful as they can be when answering phone calls. A dental marketing company can run the most efficient email marketing campaign, but if your billing system isn’t up to scratch, people aren’t likely to stick around.
Dental marketing, at its best, is a partnership, and that is something you must keep in mind when hiring a dental marketing company. You must do some of the lifting yourself to get optimal results.
About the Author
Dr. Megan Peterson Boyle is a cosmetic dentist with Dental Studio 101 in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is focused on providing anxiety-free dental services, including veneers and dental implants. She enjoys spending time outdoors with her friends and family.