Growing your patient pipeline and acquiring new patients are essential for dentists and dental practices. According to this report, every practice needs at least 20 new patients every month in order to achieve business growth! The question is, with all the competition in the industry, where will the new patients come from? This guide to digital marketing for dentists will seek to answer that.
Step 1: Create your website
You may have the most beautiful brick-and-mortar dental clinic in all of Singapore, but that wouldn’t matter without a digital marketing strategy and website. A great website should have the following:
- A simple but attractive user-centred design
- Is mobile-optimized
- Relevant information about your services in easy-to-understand terms. Nothing scares away a potential customer like complicated industry jargon!
- Introduction to your dentist(s) and staff
- Interesting and informative pictures and videos
- Authoritative and relevant content regarding dental health
- A booking page for patients to make appointments. You can either incorporate this into your website, or direct customers to a third-party booking platform.
- Patient reviews and testimonials
- Online payment capabilities
Step 2: List your business on GMB
For your business to show up on Google searches, it’s important to create a Google My Business (GMB) listing for your dental practice. The panel on the side of Google’s SERP will display everything a potential patient would need to know: address, phone number, operating hours, website, reviews and more. You can also upload images and videos of your office! For a more detailed guide on how to set up your GMB account, check out this post here.
Step 3: Set up your social media pages
A very important aspect of digital marketing for dentists and dental practices is social media. And so, the next step is to get your social media pages up and running! Facebook and Instagram are considered the ‘essentials’ for every business nowadays. And as a dentist, you should definitely also have a LinkedIn page.
TikTok is also another platform that is gaining popularity and becoming increasingly relevant. It’s not just Gen Z using it anymore – older generations like millennials are jumping on the bandwagon too! Getting creative in the ways you connect with your target audience is an important part of digital marketing. Not just for dentists, but for every business out there! And TikTok is a platform with a very active and engaged audience.
If you need some inspiration, check out the likes of @dr.johnyoo, @dentaldigest and @advancedorthodontics!
Step 4: Local SEO
Local SEO is what makes potential patients in your area aware of you and bring them to your practice. When a user searches for “dentists near me”, your SEO rating will determine where you rank on the SERP. Some ways to improve your local SEO is to:
- Make sure that your GMB listing info is up-to-date
- Encourage patients to provide Google reviews and feedback
- Update your GMB listing with events, announcements and special offers
- Ensure that your keywords appear in your site’s meta content, copy, and URLs
- Make sure that Google Maps is included to your ‘About us’ or ‘Contact us’ page
- Get high-quality backlinks with content others would share or link to. You can do that by guest blogging or even engaging social media influencers in your area.
Step 5: Publish blog content on a regular basis
We see a lot of dental blogs that have fallen into neglect. Disorganized blog posts are not just shortfalls amongst dental practices, it is also missed opportunities! Having a blog that’s updated with useful and relevant info regularly goes a long way in creating value for your patients, rank on SERPs, and establish yourself as an industry leader. When it comes to digital marketing for dentists and dental practices, blogging is a long-term strategy that will aid you in your efforts.
Here are blog ideas to help you get started:
- Correcting incorrect assumptions, e.g. ‘I don’t need to visit a dentist because I don’t have a toothache’
- Address common dental issues
- Oral health tips
- Introducing new dentistry techniques
For more details about how having a blog can benefit your practice, click here to read more!
Step 6: Work on your social media game
You’ve created your social media accounts, so it’s time to start posting! But don’t just post about anything – your content has to be engaging and informative. For example, you can create bite-sized infographics, or before and after photos/videos.
Speaking about videos, video content is one of the most effective ways to get your audience’s attention on social media channels. Click here to read more about why video is such a powerful tool in digital marketing! And if you’ve created a TikTok account, then you’re gonna need a crash course in creating videos for TikTok. Although they’re more time-intensive compared to posting a photo, the good news is you don’t need professional equipment to create high quality videos. The combination of your smartphone, a ring light, tripod and microphone will usually be enough!
Step 7: Use pay-per-click (PPC) ads
A surefire way to get your website to the top of Google SERP is to use PPC ads. Basically, you choose relevant keywords that you want to rank for and create a Google Ad with those keywords. When users search for your keywords, your ad will be displayed at the top of SERP, and you are only charged when they click on your ad. In digital marketing for dentists, PPC ads are the opposite of getting traffic through organic means like SEO. But they’re a great way to get great results in a short time!
Step 8: Ask patients for reviews
A steady flow of positive reviews is essentially free marketing. Especially when over 80% of consumers trust online reviews just as much as they trust their friends’ and families’ recommendations! However, we know that getting reviews is easier said than done, so normalize it by training your staff to do so. You can also send them an email after their appointment and request for feedback, while the experience is fresh in their memory. You should also respond to both positive and negative reviews. Those glowing reviews? Make sure to repurpose them for use on your social media channels!