Back in the pre-internet era, dental marketing in Atlanta involved the use of flyers, brochures, billboards, coupons etc.
Since the advent of the internet, these traditional marketing methods have largely been pushed to the background as digital marketing has taken over.
Most people in the United States use the internet to locate local businesses, which has made it all the more important for businesses to build visibility, establish a brand image, and attract customers.
But then, even traditional marketing focuses on the same goals, so what’s the difference between traditional and digital marketing?
How Traditional Marketing Differs
It is critical for any business today, even dental offices, to adapt themselves to the internet.
Going digital has never been more urgent. However, it is a fact that many traditional businesses, including dental offices, still rely upon traditional marketing methods to attract customers.
The marketing techniques used by them consist of and are often limited to giving out flyers and placing ads around their area.
The idea is to get noticed by potential customers and to be remembered by them when in need.
But clearly, this is nowhere close to being enough.
There are studies that indicate that 72 percent of internet users look for health information online and 77 percent use Google, Bing, or Yahoo to search for such information.
25 percent have seen an online video on a health issue.
Over 80 percent have searched online for specific information on various ailments, treatments, and other health topics.
34 percent have read user reviews, or have read experiences of other patients who have had similar health issues, whether on websites, blogs, or newsgroups.
What is also clear is that these numbers are increasing each year, as more people, even older men and women begin to use the internet to stay informed.
So when your potential patients have a dental issue, it is very likely that they will be looking for a dental solution online.
That is why it’s so very important that you should have a visibility online, and be noticed by them, as a safe, friendly and easily accessible solution.
In traditional marketing, on the other hand, you hope that your potential customers remember you enough to call you and visit you, rather than actively search for you, as they do with digital marketing.
Yes, traditional marketing has its advantages, but the consumer behavior in the country has changed, which is why you should change too.
You should be searchable and visible to people when they are looking for a dentist online, it’s as simple as that.
Digital Marketing Strategies
It is a fact that digital marketing can no longer be ignored as search engines such as Google and online directories such as Yelp have taken the place that once used to belong to the Yellow Pages.
That’s why it is so important for you as a dental practitioner to get on the digital marketing bandwagon with the 7 digital marketing strategies given here.
#1. Get a High-Quality Dental Website Developed
Your website is where your digital marketing begins.
Your clients will first visit your website and then decide to visit your dental clinic or not.
If they find your website done unprofessionally or boring, that creates a poor impression and may cause them to decide against seeking an appointment with you.
But, if your website is designed well, this makes your services all the more compelling to potential clients.
Your website should be responsive and have a high page-load speed.
Here are some of the important things you should include on your website:
1) Your contact information and directions to the clinic.
2) Links to your social media profiles on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
3) Details of your services.
4) A space for customer reviews and testimonials
#2. Learn the Basics of Search Engine Optimization
You should have a very good idea of the basics of Dental SEO such as keyword optimization, content management, and things such as meta title, meta description, ALT texts, headers and so on, as they help you rank better on the search engines.
Here are some tips you could use:
1) Blog frequently, make use of fresh content such as articles, reviews, videos, and infographics.
2) Optimize the titles, descriptions, ALT texts of your content
3) Use promos in your content
4) Work on improving your site loading time
5) Use Google and Bing webmaster tools.
#3. Build Your Local Visibility
Google, Bing, and Yahoo! help you to list businesses such as your dental service locally.
Doing so will help to increase your visibility with people in your area looking for dentists.
You should also list your dental service on digital Yellow Pages such as CitySearch, Yelp, and SuperPages.
#4. Use social media marketing
Social media marketing for dentists is very important for your business as a majority of your potential clients will be on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and other social media networks.
You should invest at least a 30 minutes every day on your social media marketing efforts.
Here are some of the things that you should do on social media:
1) Discuss good dental practices with your followers, fans, and friends on the social media
2) Post the links to reviews and testimonials from customers
3) Always include a link to your website or blog in your social media
4) Post great photographs of smiling clients, staff, and so on.
5) Announce special offers
#5. Work on Your Online Reputation Management
Online reputation management is very important for dentists, as negative online reviews can be quite damaging to your practice.
How important are customer reviews?
52 percent of those looking for local businesses online claim to read reviews by other customers and are likely to be influenced by them.
In fact, 80% of those searching for a business online decide against buying a product or service after reading a negative review.
So, how can you protect your business from negative online reviews?
1) Work hard on your social media marketing
2) Study your competition and find out where you stand
3) Start blogging and take it seriously.
4) Post only real customer reviews on important websites
#6. Use Pay Per Click (or PPC) Advertising
Pay Per Click advertising is a terrific way to get much-needed traffic.
PPC advertising means paying Google (or Bing) a certain amount of money to buy a placement on the search results, which is different from those available to organic or non-paid search results.
You will be charged when somebody clicks on your links and gets directed to your website.
This is targeted advertising at its best as you can be sure that you are paying Google (or Bing) only when people actually visit your site.
#7. Use Tracking, Analytics, and Reporting Tools
It is important to have all the important tracking, analytics and reporting tools at your disposal that analyze your online marketing campaign and offer an excellent idea of the traffic you are getting, breaking it down further, so that you know how each online marketing strategy has fared – organic, PPC, referral and social media marketing.
These tools also alert you about any crawl issues on your website and about things such as the “bounce rate” – how many people visit your site only to hit the “back button within seconds.
They detect how many times your web pages appear in search queries, how many times they have been visited, and how they rank.
We believe that as a dental practitioner, you should focus on what you do best, which is, taking care of the oral health of your patients.
It would take you a lot of time and effort to study and practice online marketing strategies, which is why you shouldn’t do it on your own.
You should trust professionals such as YEAH! Local to take care of your online marketing efforts.
Send an email to info@YEAH-Local or call us at (404) 467-6519 for a free consultation today!