Being a dentist is a pretty tough gig. For starters, most people who come to your office really don’t want to be there – in fact, some of them are downright terrified of being in the dentist’s chair. It’s estimated that 30-40 million Americans are afraid of visiting the dentist. And if you have a lot of child patients, it can be a serious hassle to get them to sit still for even the most routine examinations.
Despite all of that trouble, you still need patients to come in every day. Your practice is a small business, after all, and small businesses need customers to make money and keep the lights on. But how do you attract new patients when there are thousands of rival dentists across the country?
The answer is simple: marketing. I know what you’re thinking – now I have to become some sort of marketing whiz just to make a little money? But I promise you it’s not that bad. By just following these few simple tips, you can become a successful inbound marketer for your dental practice.
Revamp that website
Many small businesses treat their website as an afterthought these days, but that’s a tremendous mistake. Americans spend a lot of time on the internet, using it to do anything and everything: pay bills, connect with friends on social media, read the news, watch TV shows and movies. So why wouldn’t they use it to help them find a dentist?
If they come across your website during their search, don’t you want to make a good impression? You need to ensure your website is neat, professional and easy to navigate. Additionally, you need it to feature content to help drive traffic to the site (we’ll discuss that more in a moment). So unless you have a hygienist who happens to moonlight as a web designer, you’ll probably have to hire some outside help to plus up your website.
Start a blog
A blog is one of the critical components of inbound marketing. You need to start writing a blog that features entries related to the dental field and popular dental topics. These topics need to be relevant to your potential patients, because if your blogs are optimized correctly, they are going to start showing up in online search results. The potential patients then follow the blog article to your site, and hopefully begin the process of becoming a lead.
Convert those visitors into leads
So how do we turn visitors into leads? With more content. You must create content offers that are informative but more in-depth than your blog articles. They have to be more valuable than your blog articles, because you’re going to ask your visitors to provide contact information in exchange for them. Once they’ve given you their contact info, they’ve unwittingly agreed to become a lead for your practice. You can then reach out to these prospects and attempt to convert them into new patients.
In order to help boost your traffic and spread your content, you need to be active on all social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+ and LinkedIn). You can post links to new content on these sites, and connect with your current patients as well. A strong social media following will also give you the chance to reach your fans’ friends and acquaintances, which can present more lead opportunities.