Marketing a dental practice is not a full-time job… It’s more like doing two or three full-time jobs simultaneously!
As a dental marketer, you are expected to keep track of digital campaigns, count website visitors, calculate conversion rates, look for opportunities to attract more patients, and stay on top of existing patients’ needs in order to retain them. You must do all of this (and much more) to promote your practice and to STAY in business.
We know it can be overwhelming!
Dental practice marketing is a very competitive profession. Successful marketers have one thing in common- they know what they want to achieve, and they are willing to put in efforts to develop the right habits, helping them achieve those goals.
Quoting Aristotle, “We are what we repeatedly do, success is not an action but a habit.”
So, what are habits?
Habits are behaviors that are repeated so much that they become involuntary. And, once habits are formed (good or bad), they are hard to break.
Common habits of successful dental marketers
If you are new to the journey of developing habits, choose the one that’s the easiest to achieve. Write down that habit (like you’d write down your goals with a deadline) and start working on the action plan. Be patient. Keep reminding yourself to adopt the new habit. Once you’ve mastered one habit, move on to another.
Now let’s take a quick look at the five common habits of successful dental practice marketers:
1. They set SMART goals
Good marketers set goals, and successful marketers set SMART goals. This means settings goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. If you are running a digital marketing campaign without setting SMART goals, how will you know if the campaign was successful or not? Having SMART goals will help measure progress and define success. First, identify your short-term and long-term goals and then determine how you will measure success. What will you be looking at – website traffic, leads, number of new patients, social media engagement, or your bottom line? And successful marketers don’t stop after achieving one goal; they set new ones and keep setting the bar higher.
2. They know target audience as well as competitors
Marketing to people who are not even interested in your service is a waste of your time and money. How do you prevent this? Well, simply by paying close attention to your who your target audience is and what they expect from your dental practice. This also means staying on top of the ever-evolving needs of potential patients. Often, marketers spend thousands of dollars and waste weeks planning what they want to tell potential patients before even considering what patients want to hear. That level of understanding is only possible when you take the time out to know your target audience.
Knowing your target audience is only half the battle. The other half is keeping your finger on the pulse of your competitors. A successful marketer knows who the competitors are and monitors their activities. This awareness allows marketers to develop strategies to maneuver the competition and gain an edge over them.
3. They master the art of storytelling
Patients these days are smart. They know they are being marketed to and try to avoid the hard sell. Instead, patients prefer to be educated and informed.
Successful dental marketers are good storytellers, which makes their campaigns more real. These marketers know how to identify patients’ problems and connect emotions to deliver value and make a lasting impact so people won’t forget them easily.
Good storytelling is all about staying on top of prospects’ minds so that when they search for a dentist, they think of your brand. The idea is to position your dental practice as the solution to their oral health problems.
4. They are always learning
Did you hear the dental marketer who stopped learning and got fired (well, probably)?
Here’s the thing: Patient behavior can change in the blink of an eye. To keep up and be successful, dental marketers have to embrace continuous learning. Read blog posts, download eBooks, subscribe to industry newsletters, network with other marketers, attend conferences – in short, gather all the information they can about dental marketing techniques.
There’s no room for staying stagnant in a highly competitive market like dental marketing. If you find idle time, spend it researching your patients, building personas, and identifying their pain points to tailor your market efforts. If there’s one thing successful dental marketers have in common, it’s this: they never stop learning. They are always curious, learning new strategies and techniques, and staying up-to-date on the latest trends.
5. They are always listening
Following up on what is being said about your dental practice on social networks is important. You will miss a lot of opportunities (and revenue) by not paying attention to what people are saying online about your services, staff, and brand.
What if a patient had a not-so-pleasant experience with your brand and is now ranting about it on Facebook? If you’re following up, the opportunity to jump in and address the concerns will become available. If you’re not paying attention, then hundreds of other people who were on the fence about choosing your dental practice will now choose your competitors instead.
A lot of patients go to social media to ask oral health-related questions, hoping for an expert to give them an answer. If you’re listening, you can respond and ask them to consider your dental practice. Nurturing just one follower on social networks or responding to just one comment may not seem important or worth your time, but all successful marketers know the significance. Though small, people will notice your presence, and it’s certainly better than being absent.
As dental marketers, we understand the plate is full. Brainstorming ideas for upcoming campaigns, keeping up with the latest trends, tracking data, and creating content take a lot of time. Being successful is not easy, but by following some of the habits mentioned above, you’ll be a rock star in no time.
Interested in knowing more? Contact us and we would be happy to help you take your dental practice marketing skills up a couple of notches.