As full-time dental marketing solution providers, the top question we get from dentists of all types is: “How do I grow my dental practice?” Which typically means, “How do I get new patients?” Unlike dental school where there was usually one best answer to every question, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. However, there are some dental marketing solutions that are better than others for certain types of practices and markets. On this page we’ll introduce them along with ways to evaluate your practice’s current marketing situation. Once you know your current marketing situation we’ll show you how to measure your current methods and prioritize which dental marketing solutions are most likely to help you grow at a pace and a price that satisfies you.
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The first question you need to ask yourself after “How to grow my dental practice” is what is my current marketing situation? Knowing this will make it easier to pick the best dental marketing solutions that fit your situation.
If you are just starting a new practice or considering it then you need to focus on foundational dental marketing solutions like building a website and creating your practice’s brand or personality. You’ll need to do some competitive research, so you understand who your best potential patients are and what perceptions or competitors are keeping them from you. We call this stage 0.
If you are struggling in your practice to bring in enough patients to equal those leaving, then your situation is different. You should focus on dental marketing solutions that can get you results quickly like Pay per click ads (PPC) and generating positive online reviews. We call this stage 1.
If you are stagnant or slow growing, then you have a little breathing room and can take a more long term approach like Search Engine Optimization (Dental SEO) which offers the most consistent payoffs but takes several months to get going. We call this stage 2 & 3.
If you have a rapidly growing dental practice then your marketing situation is enviable, but there are still great ways to improve and become more efficient in your marketing spending. You should focus on evaluating a broader selection of dental marketing solutions to find those with the best return on investment (ROI.) We call this stage 4.
If you are a multi-practice dentist or have multiple locations, then your situation dictates a need to reproduce successes across multiple locations and scale those successes with efficiency. We call this stage 5.
No matter what your current marketing situation, you’ll want to think about your long-term goals. Some dentists want to reach stage 3, some stage 4 and a few reach for stage 5. Either way you’re more likely to reach those long-term goals if you make measuring your progress and the success or failures of your dental marketing solutions a regular habit. One of the most important things to measure is your practice’s patient lifetime value. This is the net revenue a patient brings to the practice over the entire time they are treated at your practice. Once you have this average you can judge the cost of each dental marketing solution vs this return and prioritize those that bring in the best return. It’s simple but it’s the most concrete way to grow your dental practice.
Once you’ve established your current marketing situation, your long-term goals and put into place a process of regularly measuring and prioritizing dental marketing solutions then you are ready to evaluate the top ones. Traditional marketing such as radio, newspapers and events have a shotgun approach, reaching large numbers of potential patients but only a few of which may be ready to look for a new dentist or a specialist. It is also difficult to measure the results you get from them. Digital marketing can be easier to measure and be faster to launch. Some digital dental marketing solutions like SEO and PPC also offer a more accurate approach as they can be targeted towards those who are ready to find a new dental practitioner right now. Digital methods like SEO and email are very efficient and can lower your marketing costs over time compared to traditional methods. Ready to learn about these digital dental marketing solutions in more detail and pick the ones right for your practice? Click a link below.