Post your comments about yellow pages dental marketing to our blog. Read the phone book marketing survey press release.
There are many different avenues for dentists seeking to actively market their dental practices. The telephone book has historically been a valuable source of new patients. Given this, our most recent poll asked dentists: As part of your dental marketing, does your practice advertise in the Yellow Pages with a display ad?
Of the dentists responding to this survey, 61% responded yes: their dental practice markets itself through the Yellow Pages. The remaining 39% reported that their practices do not do any telephone book marketing.
Read the dentists’ comments for more insight into their thoughts on dental marketing and the yellow pages.
A dentist's geographic location was highly correlated with their yellow pages advertising. Rural dental practices are far more likely than urban ones to spend money on phone book advertising. In fact, 3 out 4 rural dentists reported taking out yellow pages ads, whereas less that 1 out of 2 urban dentists did.
Though the difference was small, specialists responding to this poll were actually more likely than general dentists to take out ads, dispelling the notion of specialists as dependent on referrals for new patients.
Is it tasteful to advertise in the phone book?
- "It is in poor taste to do so." (Georgia dentist)
- "I think it's fine as long as it is done tastefully." (Illinois dentist paying $400/month)
The ethics of the phone book
- "Keep 'em professional! Ohio has new rules regarding the advertising of specialty services by a GP, so be careful to disclose 'general' dentist (not 'family, or cosmetic, or implant' dentist)." (Ohio general dentist)
- "Not a fan of Yellow Page ads. Seems demeaning to the profession." (Colorado dentist)
- "Life would be easier if no dentists were paying for advertising." (California dentist)
It's 2007 – ever heard of the internet?
- "Waste of money – today, people use the internet for information and finding local dentists." (New Jersey dentist)
- "Pushes patients toward website." (Missouri dentist spending $2500/month)
- "Antiquated and worthless compared to well positioned website." (Washington dentist)
Rural and urban areas are totally different
- "I have the same ad in two different regions of Massachusetts, urban and country. The ad in the country accounts for 50% of new patients. The urban ad less than 1% of new patients." (Massachusetts general dentist paying $1000/month)
- "Our office is in a suburb of a large city. We find we have the best results with the Local Community phone book." (Minnesota dentist)
Dentists have to stay competitive
- "Mandatory. Line listings = Losers!" (Texas dentist paying $1200/month)
- "It's a necessary evil… You have to at least be in the yellow pages in order for patients to find you. We just have an 'enhanced listing' which means they put a box around our name. The number of full page ads dentists place is ridiculous!" (Michigan general dentist paying $275/month)
- "After 15 years of not doing it, we are now feeling the heat to participate with other dentists in our area who have placing ads." (British Columbia dentist paying $550/monthly Canadian)
Always track your calls and watch your ROI
- "You absolutely must have a way of tracking incoming calls from yellow pages to determine if it is a benefit for your particular office." (Ohio periodontist spending $2000/month)
- "It has gotten to be so expensive for any print advertising that we have had to be more selective due to poorer ROI. End result: decreased profits, less patients, and we have egg on our faces." (Nebraska dentist)
- "May not even be necessary. We are tracking calls from the display ad, and rates are amazingly low." (Florida pediatric dentist spending $1500/month)
The phone book may be becoming obsolete
- "Less and less effective year by year." (Connecticut general dentist paying $300/month)
- "Marketing in the yellow pages is a dying trend. I still can't make myself stop, but I question if it is wise use of my marketing budget." (West Virginia general dentist paying $850/month)
- "Until this year, I've always had ads in 4-5 different books. However, I believe people are moving away from using the phone books, so am
now running ads on radio, TV, and a website tied to Google." (Arkansas dentist)
Worth every penny
- "Even though the cost is high, it pays for itself over and over month after month." (Florida dentist paying $9000/month)
- "I believe it has been worth the expense so far." (Louisiana orthodontist paying $1200/month)
- "We have a lot of calls from our ad in the Yellow Pages. Since we live in a more rural area, the ad price is not as bad as in large cities and so it has been worth the cost – so far!" (West Virginia general dentist paying $725/month)
- "The yellow pages are definitely becoming more flexible in their pricing with the internet becoming the resource of choice. You can definitely bargain with them." (California dentist)
It's for informational purposes, not marketing
- "It should be only a small fraction of one's marketing plan, more for public access to your phone number and address than for actual marketing." (pediatric dentist paying $300/month to be in 4 books)
- "In our yellow pages, there are hundreds of dentists listed. We use an inline ad mainly to give info to patients who are referred to us." (Virginia dentist)
- "Not the best marketing tool these days, but still probably necessary, if only for your own patients to find you." (New York general dentist paying $280/month)
Sometimes the new patients aren't the right ones
- "I used to use Yellow Pages, but with very poor results, Yellow Book seems to be much better. I think we have to be in one or the other just to be available somewhere." (Massachusetts dentist paying $200/month)
- "It brings patients, but not necessarily the high fee ones. The rest is up to your internal marketing." (Malaysia dentist paying US$200/month)
- "Advertising in the Yellow Pages has never attracted the right kind of patient for me; they have always been very price sensitive and not quality-conscious." (California dental implantologist)
- "I don't feel that the kind of patient we are looking for is reading the yellow pages.. we are an internal marketing practice and believe our own
existing patients are the best referral source." (Michigan dentist)
Everyone seems to be doing the same thing
- "How many 'We Cater to Cowards' offices are there anyway? They all begin to look the same after a while!" (Texas dentist)
- "Everybody does it, thus it offers no differentiation." (Texas general dentist)