Your Patients are Online and Mobile. Are you prepared to meet them there?
In the old days, marketing a dentist’s office was fairly straightforward. Once your office was established, you begin to market yourself by joining the local chamber of commerce, having someone create some direct mail postcards and maybe take out an add in the local newspaper. Sometimes you even ventured into the world of radio and TV commercials.
Today, the modern dentist needs to understand that patients are searching for just about everything on-line and more importantly, from their mobile device. To be prepared to meet the challenges of todays dental marketing plan, you must:
- Develop an on-line presence that helps you get found by those looking for your services.
- Make sure that you are optimized for a mobile audience.
Having a website is old school. Having a website that helps you grow your practice is the sign of a modern dental maketing plan. There are three critical components to an effective on-line presence that are mandatory for a dental practice to succeed:
- A website that is designed to get found on-line.
- A solid on-line reputation management strategy.
- A well thought out Social Media strategy.
For your website to get found it needs to be designed with a solid Search Engine Optimization foundation, an effective content marketing strategy and a Blog. In fact, without a blog, which is essentially a small business content marketing strategy, your website is NOT optimized for search engines.
I understand that blogging scares you. No problem. If you don’t want to do it yourself you can hire folks that can do it for you.
Additionally, your website must be designed to encourage engagement once you are found. If you don’t have the essential elements of an effective website in place, it will not matter that you have effective SEO. The people that find your site will very quickly leave your site.
Reputation management isn’t very difficult to understand. Referrals and testimonials have always been a big part of marketing any professional service practice. The challenge nowadays is managing your reputation on-line.
Thankfully there are really awesome services that help you manage your reputation on-line. Additionally, there are really awesome consulting firms that can help too.
Social media isn’t everything. But it is something. Your biggest concern is going to be selecting the networks that matter most and learning how to properly engage your audience on each network.
Again, thankfully, there are good people out there that can help you get started and help you manage your social media presence on an ongoing basis.
Optimized for a Mobile Audience
There are many ways for you to optimize your marketing strategy for a mobile audience. From a dental marketing perspective, the essential components of a mobile marketing strategy will include:
- An website designed to be viewed on a tablet or smart phone.
- Email optimized to be read on a mobile device.
- Text message reminders to help keep your appointment spots filled.
- Content that is optimized to be consumed on a mobile device.
- A mobile video strategy
- Mobile Ads and Mobile Ad networks
A website that is optimized for a mobile audience is very simply a website that provides the essential elements to a visitor that is on the go. You don’t want your audience sifting through pages of information on their mobile device. You don’t want your audience to squint.
Critical components of a website optimized for a mobile audience will include your contact information, and maybe a click to call button, images and videos.
There are a number of ways to optimize your site for a mobile audience. Essentially, you can have your own site created with responsive design. You can have a completely separate mobile site with a unique domain. Or, you can sign up for a service like Hubspot that has a mobile option built into the service.
The rest, email, text, content and mobile advertisements are going to depend largely on your current systems and your overall marketing mix.
If you would like to learn more about marketing your dental practice, please do not hesitate to contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.