The hardest part of dental marketing is the same as the hardest part of everything else — getting started.
With everything that goes into running a successful dental practice, it’s a wonder that dental professionals even have time to breathe. Not to mention, coming up with effective dental marketing ideas. And with so much to do, it’s easy to delay things that you might see as secondary to patient care, such as blogging on your site and staying consistent on social media. Although a dental practice is built on clinical expertise and effective management, a dental practice thrives with smart marketing strategies and a strong online presence.
Getting started with dental digital marketing is easier than you think, and it doesn’t require a large time investment. In fact, most of our clients using our marketing tools report that they spend only about 10 to 20 minutes per day on it. If you just don’t know where to begin, try these 25 simple things you can do to build your online presence and help new patients find you.
Take one per day, and you’ll have a stronger, more attractive online presence for your dental practice within a month! With just a small, consistent effort, you’ll get a taste of the different ways digital marketing can help you grow your dental practice.
- CREATE FACEBOOK, GOOGLE & HEALTHGRADES PROFILES FOR YOUR PRACTICE Start building your practice’s online presence on the platforms your patients and ideal prospective patients use most frequently. Create or claim your practice’s profiles on Facebook, Google, and Healthgrades.
- FULLY COMPLETE OR UPDATE YOUR ABOUT PAGES Update team photos and contact information on all social media About pages, and fill out any blank fields. Add whatever content or images needed to let prospective new patients know that you’re welcoming and want them as new patients — and, that you’re ready and anxious to make them part of your practice family!
- DESIGNATE AN IN-PRACTICE “SOCIAL MEDIA DIRECTOR” You don’t need to hire a new, dedicated marketing pro to be effective in your social media marketing, but you do need a designated “champion” to take charge and lead your team’s efforts. Choose a team member who is willing to learn, take initiative, and get everyone organized.
- SET A PATIENT REVIEWS GOAL WITH YOUR TEAM As a dental professional, you may see other practices with dozens of positive patient reviews and think “How can I get there?” Make it a step-by-step team effort, and set clear, attainable goals. (Two per week is a good place to start!)
- TRAIN YOUR TEAM ON YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA & HIPAA POLICIES In all social media marketing efforts that involve patients, their comfort and privacy come first. Train your team on a few simple guidelines, and you can be sharing photos and videos worry-free and in total compliance with HIPAA. Download a sample social media policy you can adapt to your practice.
Just having social media pages isn’t enough — you need consistent, high-quality content! Build your brand by sharing content that provides value to your followers and showcases your practice culture.
- SNAP & SHARE A TEAM PHOTO Our client practices consistently report that one of the best ways to kickstart social media engagement is by sharing photos of team members. When patients become familiar with your team and are engaged on a personal level in return, you build the relationships that allow your practice to thrive. Learn more about creating engaging content in our free ebook.
- DO A FACEBOOK LIVE BROADCAST Facebook Live is a simple, effective way for anyone to create engaging video content. All you need is a phone!
- SHARE A CURATED ARTICLE Not everything you post has to be made from scratch. If you see an article online that is relevant to your patients and fans, create a post linking to it and write a few sentences about why you feel it’s important. This is a great way for a doctor who’s pressed for time to participate!
- HAVE A FLOSS RACE Give two team members identical boxes of floss, and share a video of them seeing who can unravel it the fastest! Letting your patients and fans occasionally see your team having fun is a great way to strengthen their relationship with your practice. Get more ideas for fun team activities.
- EXPERIMENT WITH A NEW APP New apps come out every day that offer quick and easy ways to create fun, shareable photos and video clips on your phone. Try TikTok, or Dubsmash, or browse the top free apps for more ideas!
INCREASE YOUR VISIBILITY
All major social media platforms are now using content-sorting algorithms that limit the reach of business posts. Do these few simple things to help ensure that you reach as many people as possible.
- GET VERIFIED Verifying your practice’s online profiles is a quick and easy way to gain more credibility and make your practice easier to find. Take a few minutes to get verified on Google and Facebook.
- BOOST YOUR BEST POST THIS WEEK Making small, strategic investments in boosting your Facebook posts will help you reach the audiences that will grow your practice. Learn the basics of boosting in our free paid social ebook.
- RUN A PROMOTION OR GIVEAWAY Doing frequent, small prize giveaways is an excellent way to show patient appreciation and keep people coming back to your page! Even the chance to win a $10 gift card is enough for fans to Like, comment, and share with friends — which helps new patients find you.
- OBTAIN A GOOGLE REVIEW FROM A PATIENT Getting positive Google reviews is one of the best things you can do to grow your practice’s online reputation and visibility. Build a consistent flow of favorable patient reviews by following the strategies in our free ebook.
- REQUEST A FREE GOOGLE MAPS VISIBILITY ANALYSIS It’s time to take an honest look at how your online presence compares to those of other dental practices in your city. Can new patients find you on Google Maps? Request your free analysis from My Social Practice.
MAINTAIN AN ACTIVE PRESENCE
Social media marketing isn’t something you have, it’s something you do. Find a 15-minute window in your workday you can consistently devote to keeping up your practice’s social media presence.
- RESPOND TO ALL REVIEWS, COMMENTS, & VISITOR POSTS Show patients and fans that you’re available and listening by responding to any reviews, comments, or posts they leave on any of your profiles. Even a simple “Thanks! We appreciate your feedback!” will let them know you care.
- UPDATE YOUR BUSINESS DETAILS & DESCRIPTIONS AS YOUR TEAM & PRACTICE CHANGE Nothing is more frustrating to prospective patients than outdated contact information. Make sure the essential details about your practice they need are always up-to-date.
- COMMIT TO POSTING DAILY When you provide content that is meaningful and valuable to your audience, you shouldn’t hesitate to share something daily. Without recent and relevant content, you miss opportunities to get fan interaction and turn patients into advocates for your practice.
- SWAP OUT YOUR FACEBOOK COVER IMAGE Replacing your Facebook cover image with something new or holiday-related is a fun and simple way to keep your page looking fresh.
- OBTAIN A CALENDAR OF COMMUNITY EVENTS Small or large, your dental practice is a valuable part of your local community with enormous potential to do good. Seek out simple ways your team can serve the people around you. Community involvement offers incredible opportunities to grow your business while helping those in need.
OPTIMIZE, LEARN AND GROW
Social media platforms are constantly being refined, and you should be doing the same for your online presence. Monitor the buzz about your practice and stay up to date on social media trends. It will help you take advantage of valuable opportunities to improve and grow.
- LEARN FROM OUR CLIENT EXAMPLES My Social Practice is honored to work with so many thriving dental practices that truly understand how to use social media. Learn from them in our monthly spotlight blog posts.
- ASK FOR PATIENT FEEDBACK Use social media or send an email to occasionally ask patients and fans what they appreciate or would change about your practice and social media pages.
- CHECK YOUR STATS Use Facebook and Instagram’s analytics tools to see which posts are your most popular. You can get more information on social media stats here.
- CATCH UP ON MAJOR SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS Social media is all about “what’s new.” Follow a few tech and pop culture news sources like Mashable and Buzzfeed to help you stay current. Trending hashtags on Facebook and Twitter can also help you tap into popular topics.
- USE GOOGLE ALERTS IN YOUR REPUTATION MANAGEMENT Google Alerts is a free, yet powerful way to know when you and/or your practice are mentioned online. Learn how to set it up here.
About the Author: Natalie Marinos is an expert dental marketer and a key member of the dental marketing team at My Social Practice. My Social Practice is a dental marketing company located in Salt Lake City, Utah. Natalie is passionate about helping dental practices grow. If you’d like to book one of the members of My Social Practice’s speaking team, you can do that HERE. Interested in learning more about the benefits of SEO for dental practices or our dental websites service, you can learn more here. Also please read our Google My Business reviews.