Dentistry and the number of dentists are growing day by day and so is the competition among fellow dentists. It’s true that the population is increasing per year, but the growth in the number of dentists is much more as compared to the population. The jobs for dental surgeons are not much available in the market, that’s why most of the dentists followed private practice. The level of competition is much more in the private sector. One should know the professional skills and techniques to perform well but to show those skills, you need patients. Here comes the role of marketing to grow your dental clinic. Traditional methods are also useful, but it’s an era of digitalization. So if you want to kick off your dental practice, you need digital marketing along with traditional marketing for your dental clinic.
What is Digital Marketing?
Digital Marketing or online marketing is the method of promoting a brand or service or business to connect with potential customers or clients by using internet services. When we use various technologies like mobile phones, laptops, and computers to showcase and promote our business on various search engines like Google and Yahoo, on different social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram to generate more business.
Understanding Digital Marketing
Digital marketing is a new approach nowadays to showcase yourself or your product in front of the community. It’s altogether different from traditional marketing. We used to do marketing earlier by putting advertisements in the newspapers and magazines, by distributing flyers, advertising on radio or television, putting banners or hoardings, etc. But now it’s an era of digital marketing. We can connect with more people nowadays by doing marketing on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, etc. as people are more active on these platforms. Our digital presence is a must, and for that, we should have a business website. It makes it easy for our customers to search us on search engines. There are two types of traffic, organic and inorganic.
Organic traffic means a natural way to rank your website on the internet. It is affordable, long-lasting. If you don’t want to spend much money, you can go for organic methods. If you are just starting your dental clinic, start with organic digital marketing.
Inorganic traffic means paid services like putting ads or pay per click. This method shows quick results and you can get more traffic in small time. It is an expensive method but best for immediate results. It is more accurate in targeting the audience but it is risky too.
We can use inorganic and organic methods both but no doubt organic traffic is better than inorganic traffic.
ROLE OF DIGITAL MARKETING FOR DENTISTS
Digital marketing is playing a key role in everyone’s business in modern times and so in dental practice. As competition is increasing day by day among dentists, the need for digital marketing is also increasing at the same pace. The reasons that why a dental practice or dentist needs digital marketing strategies are:
1. People are spending more time on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. So the need of the hour is that dentist should also promote his clinic or business on these mediums. You can interact with more people through these channels. More interactions mean more engagement and more patients you will get through this method.
2. People don’t have time to ask someone for the best dentist nearby, they rely more on search engines like GOOGLE. The value or importance of Google reviews and feedback of customers has increased now. Everyone checks the reviews about a doctor and clinic before visiting the dentist in person. This is the call for having a website of the dental clinic. If you have strong reviews, your dental clinic will appear more reliable and professional.
3. Digital marketing increases the visibility of both the doctor and the dental clinic on online platforms. People can correlate and recognize you because of your online presence.
4. You can interact with people through your informational articles i.e blog writing. This is a way to help and interact with the community. Your advice and information can help a large number of people and it gives you inner satisfaction too that you are serving the people.
CREATING DIGITAL MARKETING PLANS FOR DENTISTS
No one can win the battle without proper planning. So for growing the business or the dental practice, we also need a proper plan to implement the digital marketing strategies.
1 . Choose the various social media platforms you want to be active on. Try to be active on every platform that is used nowadays. Few names are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Linkedin, and Quora, etc. You can have your business pages on these platforms to enhance your online presence. Try to be consistent on these platforms. Keep posting and telling the audience frequently about your business. If you are posting once in a blue moon, your clients will not feel connected. Brand yourself as a friendly and local dentist and people will start trusting you.
2. Not only on these social mediums but try to be active also on dental platforms like Practo, Lybrate, Healthcare, and 1 mg, etc. Answer the queries of the patients and interact with the other doctors too. This will increase the interaction and will lead to more patient query generation. It will also increase your personal brand value on the online platform.
3. One should have a website of the dental clinic where you can showcase the services provided by you, your patient testimonials, your cases, and regular updates. This will make it easy for your audience to search you online. You can optimize your clinic website through SEO and this will help in improving the Google search ranking of your website. Local SEO is the most important part of digital marketing for dental clinics.
4. In case you are new in this field and you can’t afford a website, you should have a free Google business page of your dental clinic. You can put your cases, events, and updates on that page and that will also help a bit in your initial journey of digital marketing of dental clinic.
5. You can also make a Youtube channel of your clinic. You can showcase your cases, services, patient feedback, and many more informational things on that channel. Videos are even more interactive than pictures or words, so you should use this medium of Digital Marketing to promote dental clinics.
6. You can generate more business by putting paid advertisements on Google as well as on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube. You can reach more people with the help of these ads.
7. Get your dental clinic listed on various mapping services like Google Maps and Apple Maps. There are many free online business directories where you should list your dental clinic. Most people use Google maps on their smartphones. Your patients can get your phone number and address on your Google map listing. This will help your potential patients to directly contact you. Ask your patients to give reviews and this will also generate traffic for you.
8. Your content should be a piece of information, a piece of advice, or it can be fun, it can be anything but it should be engaging. People should feel connected with you and your content. This is called BLOGGING in the world of the internet.
9. One can do blogging either himself or herself, or you can hire a content writer or any celebrity or Instagram influencer to spread the word of mouth about your dental clinic. This is called influence marketing.
10. One should be community-focused. You are in a field of a noble profession and so you should always make an effort to give something to the community. Definitely, you will be rewarded with more patients and dental business in return.
11. Create programs to target your patients and create loyalty to your brand. Encourage your family and friends to follow your dental clinic on social media. Slowly start building your presence on social media and see yourself growing.
12. Analyze all the efforts made by you to grow your business through digital marketing from time to time. If something is not clicking, you have to change the strategy or you can take the help of the best digital marketing agency to help you in achieving your goals.
CONTENT IDEAS FOR DENTAL DIGITAL MARKETING
As we know CONTENT IS SUPREME in Digital Marketing, so you should have some brilliant content ideas to implement in your digital marketing pathway, so as to reach the ultimate height of the business.
1. You can write on the various services or treatments provided by you like extractions, dentures, bleaching, root canal treatment, and many more.
2. You can post your patient reviews or testimonials.
3. You can celebrate various occasions like festivals or national days and can post those updates on social media.
4 . You can celebrate the birthday or anniversary of your colleagues, team, or employee and can connect with people by posting such videos or pictures on social media.
5. You can show the before and after pictures of your patient’s dental treatment to show the procedure and its results. (but only after the consent of the patient).
6. You can teach or advise the patients about oral hygiene.
7. People get bored if you post about dentistry every day, so you can post at times some dental humor or motivational quotes also.
8. You can also engage users by posting a video of your dental clinic tour or various methods of sterilization.
9. You can do moment marketing means you can post something related to trending moments like sports events or anything which is getting viral on the internet. When something is already in conversation among people, it will help you too in gaining some leads.
10. You can post your pictures, pictures of your family some time in the relevance of your clinical practice so that your patients feel connected to you
BENEFITS OF DIGITAL MARKETING FOR DENTISTS OVER TRADITIONAL MARKETING
It’s an era of digital marketing and digital marketing is beneficial for Dentists as compared to traditional marketing.
- Digital marketing is audience targeted. We can choose the gender, age group, locality, and society to whom we want to show our advertisement.
- It is highly inexpensive as compared to the older methods.
- The reach to the people is more. We can cover more people in less time on online platforms. So it is a faster and more efficient method of marketing.
- It is easy to measure performance with the help of various analytic tools. So success rate can be easily measured in digital marketing.
- It is more interactive and engaging, so clients feel more connected to you.
- It creates faith among your future patients due to reviews and feedbacks from your previous patients.
Every dentist or dental practice should think of going into digital marketing. It’s high time to get change and to include digital marketing also along with conventional methods of marketing.
You can MAKE OR BREAK your practice and can improve your brand recognition through all these means as INTERNET IS THE KING nowadays.
You can do it yourself or you can hire a digital marketing agency to fulfill your requirements. They will handle your all online channels and you can focus on DENTISTRY completely. Wishing good luck to all those who are including digital marketing in their Dentistry.
I am myself a dentist Dr. Rinku Mittal and I have implemented all this in my dental practice SHUBHAM DENTAL CLINIC. It has done wonders for me and I wish it’ll do the same for you and your dental clinic.