This article originally appeared in the July/2020 issue of the Academy of General Dentistry’s AGD Impact magazine.
If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it’s that marketing your dental practice online is more important than ever, but that the message may have changed. The crisis has trained people to reach for their computers for information, products and services instead of heading out to Main Street. It has also reframed how we interact with the world and each other; what is safe and what is not is still a question in many people’s minds.
Were you one of the practices that continued to engage with patients while your practice was shut down? If you weren’t, you have some catching up to do.
In just a few short months, our lives have changed dramatically. How we grocery shop, do schoolwork and visit the dentist is going to look very different for the time being. As we venture back into the public, many are still unsure how to navigate this new environment, despite the dos and don’ts we receive through the news. One thing that provides comfort during these uncertain times, however, is hearing from our local officials, and health professionals like you. Keeping up communication to your audience is critical now more than ever not just for your practice but for the well being of your patients, too.
Chances are if you have been utilizing online patient reviews as part of your marketing strategy, you might get a not so flattering one every now and then. Everyone does. The question however, is how will this affect your practice and what can you do about them.
When we speak to new clients we often find that their website, Facebook, blogs, and other online platforms all look different making it difficult for patients to see they belong to the same practice. There is no branding-the use of fonts, colors and imagery from one place to the next is different, and there is nothing consistent about the messaging. You have to wonder, how would this make a new patient feel about your practice?
Practices often ask us, “Should I continue running an ad on this site?” or “Should I continue spending money on these postcards?” Our question to them is, have you tracked the results of the campaign? One of the biggest challenges with marketing is measuring results. While not all of your marketing efforts can be precisely tracked, much of it can.