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Dental Marketing Campaigns: Dentists Report Which Ones Really Work
When asked about their most effective dental practice marketing campaigns, direct mail marketing was the top choice among dentists. However, most use multiple marketing avenues simultaneously, including (but not limited to) yellow pages advertisements, TV ads, and dentist websites.
(San Francisco, California) – A recent Wealthy Dentist survey asked dentists about which dental marketing campaigns have been most successful for their dental practices. The clear winner was direct mail marketing. Dentists have also had good luck with Yellow Pages listings and TV ads. One dentist was thrilled with his new dental practice signage, saying, "60 new patients per month with the new sign!"
Dentists cited direct mail marketing as the single most effective method of marketing their dental practices and acquiring new patients. Next up were yellow pages listings and television advertisements, followed by internet directory listings, dental practice signage, and local newspapers.
Survey respondents were less impressed with other marketing avenues. Only one respondent cited dental insurance referrals as an effective marketing resource. These days, if a dental practice wants to stay profitable and competitive, it needs to actively market itself to local residents.
Many dental practices engage in incentive marketing: for example, free cosmetic consultations, or discounts on routine dental cleaning for new residents. Dentists responding to this survey had some luck with website promotions and new patient discounts. One practice even developed a full-fledged points system to reward their good patients. "Points are given each time a patient comes on time for their appointments. Once they have enough points, they get to pick a prize ranging from kids' toys, grocery store gift cards, movie tickets, etc. The toys are displayed inside a glass case in the waiting room to entice our children patients."
For some dental practices, a well-designed advertising campaign can bring in lots of new patients. "My radio ad with website support led to over 200 calls in four days!" raved an Illinois dentist. "A mini implant ad can help many people with denture problems and many more with restoring their existing teeth," commented an Idaho dentist. "Oh yeah, and my campaign brought in thousands in restorative revenue!"
The best dental marketing, however, is something you can't
buy. "Referrals from satisfied patients are the best resource. It's that simple, and if you treat people well, they will refer you patients just like them," explained a Florida dentist. "We give our patients a referral card (a little bigger than wallet size) that contains our logo and company information is stapled on the front side of our gift bags that we hand out to patients (with their toothbrush and floss). We always remind them to give out these cards to anybody who needs a dental office. This has worked great so far," exclaimed a Canadian dental assistant.
Direct mail marketing can be a goldmine for dental practices. "Most effective for me was a single postcard – very simple, with my photo," commented a Michigan dentist. "We sent out a personal holiday card with a short letter of thanks and future exciting information to present and past patients we hoped to reactivate," said a Minnesota dentist. "We had a huge response of reactivation and new referrals from present happy patients."
Of course, proper targeting is critical to the success of any marketing campaign. "In an area exclusive, I invest in personal contact with new residents," said a California dentist. "We distribute neighborhood flyers monthly. And we keep track of which neighborhood produces the best visitors," said one dental practitioner, highlighting the need for quantitative analysis to determine the success of any campaign.
"I'm not surprised that dentists love direct mail marketing," said Jim Du Molin, dental consultant and founder of The Wealthy
Dentist. "However, if you don't do it right, it won't work. I've spent 27 years testing and optimizing direct mail campaigns. The right tweaks can double the success of your program!"
"However, I would have expected more dentists to cite internet dental marketing," continued Du Molin. "Direct mail requires spending a lot of money at the post office, and websites let you reach more people for virtually no money at all. It's clear to me that dental practice website marketing will be the next big thing. Some dentists are already there; the rest will have to either catch up, or get left behind."
Visit www.thewealthydentist.com/surveys.htm for additional information on this and other Wealthy Dentist surveys in the areas of dental implants, cosmetic dentistry, sedation dentistry, and dentures.
The Wealthy Dentist is a dental marketing and dental practice management resource featuring dental consulting expert Jim Du Molin. The site’s weekly dental surveys and newsletters are viewed by thousands of dentists across the United States and Canada. The Wealthy Dentist is a sister company of the Internet Dental Alliance. IDA is the largest provider of internet dental marketing campaigns, dental websites, email newsletters and online find a dentist directories in North
Jim Du Molin