Are you doing everything you should be to get more new patients for your dental practice? From online and offline marketing to customer service and reviews, here are 7 things you can do to attract more patients and grow your practice.
1. Turn your front desk staff into marketing agents. They can encourage patients to review your practice online, engage with your business on social media, or give out business cards to friends, family and co-workers.
2. Spread the word. Word-of-mouth is a top way that patients find new dentists, but today word-of-mouth means more than just verbal communication. Online reviews and ratings give patients’ opinions added weight among prospective patients. Gathering and managing online reviews can be time-consuming, but Lighthouse® 360 simplifies things by automatically collecting reviews from happy patients and posting them to relevant review sites like Yelp. You even get your own page on RateABiz.com to showcase your positive reviews. Bonus: Getting reviews helps boost your practice’s rank in search results, too.
3. Target your advertising. Based on the target demographics of your patient base, determine the best places to advertise. If your patients are seniors, that might be in a community newspaper or other local publication. If your practice focuses on children’s dentistry, ads in parenting magazines or on parenting websites would be a smart choice. Since most patients prefer dentists near where they live, focus on advertising in local rather than national media.
Related Article: How to Market to Dental Patients of All Ages
4. Use SEO. Search engine optimization (SEO) will boost your practice’s presence among patients who use the internet to find dentists (that is, just about everyone). In one study by the Local Search Association, 80% of consumers used search engines to find local businesses and services. Combine organic and paid search for best results. Organic search means using keywords your patients use when searching for dentists on your website, particularly in title tags, meta tags, headlines and subheadings. Paid search, such as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, can also surface your practice to online searchers. Gain the local edge by using locally oriented keywords (such as your city or neighborhood) in your ads and on your website.
5. Get social. Some 48% of consumers use social media to look for businesses. Lighthouse® 360 integrates with your practice’s Facebook page so it’s simple for your staff to add posts, photos and reviews to Facebook directly from the Lighthouse® 360 portal. The app also enables easy uploading of photos to your website, so you can create attractive, appealing photo galleries to persuade potential patients of your practice’s professionalism.
Related Article: The Do’s and Don’ts of Marketing Your Practice With Photos
6. Deliver standout service. Providing excellent customer service to existing patients is the best way to spur referrals and positive reviews that will attract new patients to your door. Regularly review procedures with your front desk and hygiene staff to make sure everyone knows what’s expected of them throughout the patient’s visit.
7. Stay in touch. Ask your patients if they’d like to sign up for emails from your practice. When they agree, send them email newsletters, special offers and updates on a regular schedule. Be sure to include social media and review site icons and links so patients can just “click” to follow you on social media or write a review of your practice.
Related Article: 4 Tips to Make a Great Impression on New Patients
At the end of each newsletter, ask patients to forward the newsletter to anyone they think might be interested. This is a great way to let prospects know what your practice has to offer, and it comes from a trusted source—the friend or family member that forwarded your email. Lighthouse® 360 has professional email templates you can use to create attractive emails targeted toward different types of patients, such as first-time patients, cosmetic dentistry patients, or pediatric patients’ parents.
By following these seven steps to successful practice marketing, you’ll find your office attracting more new patients than ever before.