The Do’s and Don’ts of Marketing for Your Office
With offices reopening all over the country, it’s time to draw in your audience again. But marketing is more than just a campaign promoting a special offer every month. Everything you do affects how you market yourself and your brand.
Have you updated your social media platforms in a while? Do you even utilize social media as part of your marketing strategy?
Did you know that lack of customer service skills in your office can affect how you’re seen online?
Have you checked out any of the sites with your information? This includes such sites as Google and the Yellow Pages and other directories online. Is all the information up to date or is the phone number wrong, or the clinic address?
And what about reputation management?
All these factors are important to the bigger picture and must be considered when it comes to marketing for your office. Here are just a few do’s and don’ts.
Do focus on your social media
Social media was discussed in an earlier post, but too many people have the wrong idea about it. Social media is not just for the younger generation anymore. It’s used for reviews, shopping, ads, seeking out health information, seeking out dental clinics in the area, and so much more. According to Naren Arulrajah, President and CEO of Ekwa Marketing, “More than 25 million of Canada’s 37 million residents were using Social media as of 2018, and that number is expected to exceed 27 million by the year 2023.”
So if you haven’t thought seriously about Social media, now’s the time, especially with most people preferring to search online.
Arularajah provides some key points for social media success (for those not utilizing Social media):
- Take the time to complete your profile. Fill in all the fields, add services offered, practice description, office hours, and any other information you can.
- Choose good profile and cover photos. They should be high-quality images and reflective of your branding. A logo or a professional photo of the lead dentist are good choices for a profile picture.
- Keep it active. You’ll quickly lose your following if the account stagnates. Post regularly, and update your profile as needed if any practice information changes.
- Engage! Respond to comments and messages promptly and professionally.
Don’t skimp on your customer service skills
Even though people are not getting together and talking in large groups, they are still conversing using other means, such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, and even the good old-fashioned telephone. So, this means that word-of-mouth is still a method of marketing that people are using. It also means that people are relying more on reviews to choose their next dental practice.
Seeing as negative reviews can cause some significant damage to any practice, it’s important to make sure that your customer service strategy in the office is gold standard. Customer service starts with your front staff, but it does not end there. Be kind, be patient, exude a positive attitude, and remember to always provide an answer.
It’s important to keep everyone on your team informed about any promos or special discounts, so that when a prospective or existing patient asks, your team will be able to give an informed answer instead of using the dreaded “I don’t know.”
For the more difficult patients, check out my earlier post: https://maxidentsoftware.com/6-suggestions-to-best-deal-with-your-most-difficult-patients/
Do update all sites carrying your information
The new normal has forced most people (me included) to look before we leap, which means we do our research on everything from department stores and chiropractors to Veterinary clinics and dentists. We are looking for places that promote a safe environment free of risk.
The one thing I have noticed on my search is that a lot of dental practices have put their information up on sites like the Yellow Pages or Google, another directory, or even on a website, and the information is now outdated, including phone number, address, and sometimes even the main dentist.
Even worse, sometimes it’s an obstacle course trying to find a dental clinic that has all their information updated.
It is crucial that if you are featured on more than just one platform, take time to update them all so that the information is updated and the same across the board. Visibility is everything when everyone is doing their searching and researching online.
Don’t disregard the importance of reputation management
Your online reputation is what makes or breaks you, and insufficient management can cost you big. Choosing a dental clinic is a big deal for any prospective patient, and no patient wants to do it more than once.
Because of this, prospective patients check out the reviews on dental clinics before making a final decision. I was one of those prospective patients. Negative reviews on your website or on another site, like Yelp, already makes a bad first impression, but what can make the situation that much worse is a negative review that’s been sitting there a while without a response.
Negative reviews are still reviews and it is incumbent upon you to make sure you are responding in as positive and helpful a tone as possible. Keep an eye on the reviews that come in, and encourage existing patients to leave a positive review that will bump your rating.
I know it’s stressful, given the situation you are currently in, with rules and guidelines changing drastically as we all begin to adjust to our new normal. Take it in steps, baby steps if you have to. When it comes to marketing, don’t jump into something new right away. Take some time to review older sites, platforms, and information so that you can make the necessary updates.
Keep your team in the know as you continue to make changes and develop campaigns to attract those prospective patients.
None of us know how long this is going to last, or if we will ever see normal the way we used to, but we are all in this together, and together we will adjust to the changes of a country getting back onto its feet.
For more marketing resources, be sure to check out the following links: