Category Archives: Internal Marketing

Is Your Dental Practice Showing the Love?

What kind of relationship is there between your practice and your patients (past, present and future)? As with any relationship, communication is key – but how you communicate could mean the difference between a “one night stand” and a lasting love story for the ages!

Data from Responsys shows that an orchestrated consumer experience is the key to building a lasting practice / patient relationship. When every interaction is about making the patient happy, they know you care and the feeling slowly becomes mutual.

Is your communication methodology up to par when it comes to cultivating long term relationships? Here’s what the data can tell us about what patients want:

Patients Love to be Wooed

Just like the box of chocolates or bouquet of flowers, giving your patients that extra something special “just because” can have a significant positive impact on how they feel about your practice!

  • ŸNearly 75% of all consumers surveyed say they can see themselves in long term relationships with brands that offer rewards for customer  loyalty.
  • ŸNearly 60% say they sometimes choose one provider over another simply because of a special offer or targeted marketing they have received.
  • ŸHowever, less than one third of consumers say that the brands they love send them offers or promotions that interest them. What a waste of an opportunity!

Your practice can take advantage of these facts by offering new patient specials, existing patient discounts, incentives for patient referrals and so on. Be careful, though – one size does NOT fit all and many patient / practice “break-ups” occur because of poor communication (sound familiar?)

Send the Right Messages at the Right Time

An extremely large percentage of consumers leave even a well liked brand due to overly aggressive or poorly targeted marketing.

  • ŸOver a third of US adults say they stopped using a product or service due to the brand sending them a constant barrage of content that was in no way pertinent or useful to them, that was disruptive or that was poor quality.
  • ŸOver half of those adults say the brand in question sent these message over and over on multiple channels.
  • Ÿ33% of consumers say they have stopped using a brand because the marketing was too “generic” and appeared to be mass produced instead of tailored to their needs.

You can make your marketing more effective and less disruptive by carefully sorting your patients into groups and targeting each group according to their needs, past experiences, recent interactions and future worth to your practice.

Don’t let your love affair with your patients wither on the vine. Court your patients carefully, with respect and devotion (no stalking!) and you’ll see a significant improvement in long term relationships for your practice!

Check out this terrific infographic for more on brand / consumer relationships:

It’s all about the “little things”…

I’ve been a Hilton Diamond Member for many years and spent thousands of dollars at their hotels. And yet, this little “Guest of the Day” certificate and mug of treats made me feel like I really mattered to this Hilton property in North Carolina. Your patients probably won’t remember your clinical credentials.  What they will remember are the “little things” that you and your team do, before, during and after their visit to the practice. I’m amazed at how many practices I visit that don’t consistently do the following three things:

1. Have the doctor place a brief introductory call to each new patient two days before their first visit.

2. Send a handwritten thank-you card to every new patient after their first appointment.

3. Nominate and contact a “patient-of-the-week” just to thank them for being a patient.

Remember, your patients want to know that they matter to your practice. Clinicians are sometimes more inclined to write a “big marketing check” before they look within at the little things they could do to stimulate new patient flow and increase patient retention. Start practicing these three simple things and watch the difference it can make in your practice.

Real Beauty For Pizza?

Domino’s Pizza launched it’s “Real Beauty” campaign for pizza this week…Read the full article here. The campaign includes a website called Show Us Your Pizza where you can upload pictures of your freshly delivered Domino’s for a chance to win $500. They’re doing two things: 1) Trying to show that their pizza doesn’t need to be “retouched” to look good and 2) Effectively engaging customers with an effective web/social media strategy.

What about a “Show Us Your Smile” campaign? Wouldn’t it be great to have patients upload their own smiles along with those of friends/family etc. While the jury is still out on the success Domino’s will have, Dove’s Campaign For Real Beauty has proven that the female consumer is far more responsive to REAL people. Use those pictures in your marketing materials and I’ll bet it will make a powerful impact with both new and existing patients.