Since the launch of Big Buzz over 10 years ago, we have worked with hundreds of dental practices nationwide. Over the past 10 years, the questions we hear most often have remained consistent.
How do I set a specific, quantifiable goal?
The initial need for marketing is generally to increase new patient traffic. Often, it extends beyond that, to hire an associate, grow a specific side of the practice, expand to a second location, etc. At the heart of it all, though, is one uniform, underlying goal: new patient traffic needs a consistent, sustainable boost. In setting this goal, we find it most effective to picture the end result and work backwards. When you are reaching your goal, what will you be able to accomplish that you currently can not? When you are reaching your goal, what will that allow you to do in your personal or professional life? Now, in comparison to current new patient traffic, how many new patients will you need to see per month to make that vision a reality?
Why isn’t my current marketing, or marketing-to-date, working?
Marketing is effective and successful when it is comprehensive and consistent. If you are working with multiple vendors, cobbling together solutions from a direct mail house, an SEO firm, and the local newspaper, they are likely deploying and delivering mixed messages with incongruent strategies. If you can have one team of experts utilizing a comprehensive strategy and working together to deploy specific tactics, your marketing will be infinitely more successful; and, you won’t have to spend your precious time communicating and coordinating with multiple vendors!
Which marketing tactics will provide the quickest and healthiest ROI?
This is the most overlooked aspect of marketing. Throwing darts in the dark will not provide a healthy or sustainable return on investment. Trying the latest and greatest marketing tactic will not provide a healthy or sustainable return on investment. So, what will? Ask the people. Get in the habit of asking your patients regularly how they found you, what types of media they consume, what marketing they pay attention to, and where they look to find other healthcare practitioners. Even more granularly, deep dive with your ideal patients, those who you would love to replicate and attract in droves to your practice. In doing so, you’ll uncover exactly how, where and why they found your practice, and will be able to market directly to more potential patients just like them effectively and assuredly.
Marketing should be an investment, not an expense. Every tactic should be tracked and analyzed on a regular basis to ensure it is driving traffic, boosting awareness about your practice, and ultimately providing a return on investment. When implemented effectively, marketing will run like a well-oiled machine that is consistently bringing in new patients and those visions will become your reality.