Dental Marketing Chatter: Online Ads & Advertising

Just this morning, I read three articles about online ads. They seem to be a popular subject right now, and for good reasons.

Too Many Ads above the Fold
Have you visited a website with so many advertisements that you can’t find the text that drew you to the site? Sometimes the text is broken up into one or two paragraphs per page, so you have to scroll through 6 pages of advertisement onslaught just to read the article. Well, Google has heard these complaints en masse, and the company is doing something about it. Google announced last week that websites with too many ads above the fold (that is, on the top portion of the page before you have to scroll down) will be penalized in search results. Dentist websites and blogs don’t usually have many advertisements above the fold, so you probably won’t be affected from a business perspective. You will, however, find that those pesky ad-riddled websites become easier to read.

The Magic Formula for Attracting New Patients?
If I sold a Love Potion No. 9 that guaranteed you new patients every month, you’d surely buy a gallon. In dental marketing, we create strategies based on data, trial, and results. The Internet is so new, dentists’ markets are so different, and SEO criteria changes so rapidly, that testing and amending seems to be the best way to find success. A study by Sesame Communications found that dentists who engage in three strategic marketing tools received over 80 new calls per month, and about a quarter of the calls came from potential new patients.  What’s the magic formula? Great SEO for high rankings, plus Facebook and social media engagement, plus Google Adwords.

Sesame Communications is a dental website company, and the results of their research would prompt dentists to do more Internet marketing. I don’t know how the tests were conducted, so I can only share the results with you. And, I have to say, I agree with the results. Doing more online marketing will get you more new patient calls. It’s not rocket science. I do think, however, that the quality of your website and social media posts, and the content in your ads will play an important role in success of failure of this strategy. While this magic formula may not work for all dentists, if you’re unhappy with your current ROI from online marketing, this trio may be your most promising next step.

Online Ad Sales Leave Print Ads in the Dust
According to research by eMarketer, online ad spending jumped nearly a quarter in 2011. This and other data has led the company to project that online advertising is on track to generate about $40billion in sales in 2012, while print marketing will fall behind at $34 billion. These predictions show an increase in online ads of more than 20% between 2011 and 2012. eMarketer suggests that by 2016, print will fall below $8 billion, and online ads will grow to over $60 billion. As with the study mentioned above, this research was conducted by eMarketer, an Internet marketing company. To read more about the study, visit their website here.