Dentists considering a dental practice blog, or social networking, have lots of questions. At MDPM, we consult with our client dentists to help them make the most of their marketing investment – and by investment, I mean their time and budget. These five secrets will allow your dental practice to gracefully engage in digital marketing without wasting your time and money.
1. Make Wise Choices
The first important decision you’ll make regarding online marketing is finding help. Many dentists try to tackle Internet marketing on their own, and they find the task too time consuming. In the end, they throw in the towel or turn to the first warm body who claims to know internet marketing. Learn from their mistakes and make wiser choices! Start by interviewing four or five dental marketing companies. Compose a list of your questions, then take notes during your interview calls. You’re more likely to find a company that syncs with your practice goals if you take time to interview. Also, commit to a plan of action. Once you decide to engage in digital marketing, don’t fall off the wagon.
2. Name a Leader
The best advice I can offer is to name a leader for your online marketing projects. Many dentists turn to a family member or team member to take the reins on marketing projects. Don’t rule by committee unless you want to drag the project out for months (or years) and become very frustrated in the process. Even if a dentist is interested in managing his own online marketing, he should name a right-hand man or woman to help. The helper must come to the table with an understanding and proclivity for social networking and/or blogging.
3. Engage the Team
The leader needs to rally the troops, and the dentist and leader should set a good example. Discipline yourself to post to Facebook daily. Then, set goals for team members, and offer prizes for those who engage. For instance, the employee who posts the greatest number of comments on Facebook in one week gets a gift certificate. You can also incentivize employees for: posting photos, commenting on blog entries, mentioning local events, and engaging with patients on your Facebook page.
TIP: Worried about your team mixing professional and personal profiles online?
Ask them to create a professional profile and use that one at work.
4. Be Consistent
Your leader should have a weekly huddle to hand out prizes and boost morale for team engagement in social networking. Don’t postpone or cancel these huddles. The dentist should be present, as well, to show his or her support for the project. As a team, set goals for the number of likes on your Facebook page, as well as the number of people reached with your page. When goals are met, have a pizza party or pass out $20 bills to all who helped. Be consistent with goal setting, praise, and rewards.
5. Follow Up
Meet with your leader at least once a month to discuss goals, successes, and areas for improvement. You can request that your consultant or marketing firm join you for these meetings and provide direction.
Be smart, consistent, and excited about your dental practice’s dental marketing, and you’ll see success for your efforts. How can you gauge success? Patient retention and new patient numbers are the pudding that holds the proof.
If you’d like to learn more about Facbeook, Google+, blogging, and other digital dental marketing strategies that will bring you greater visibility and success, call Modern Dental Practice Marketing today at 972-781-8861.