IN THIS RECURRING FEATURE, we look at the marketing efforts of our readers and tell them if they’re making the grade. Marketing expert Joy Gendusa and DE Chief Editor Chris Salierno, DDS, provide a constructive critique of direct mailers, websites, social media, and other marketing efforts. Apply their advice to stretch your own marketing dollars - and grow your business.
THIS MONTH, we’re pleased to feature Midtown Dental Clinic of Richland, Washington, the practice of Kristina Bunch, DDS, and Chris Kleist, DDS.
Referrals are Midtown’s biggest new patient generator, and the No. 1 way they attract so many referrals is simple: patient reviews. Let’s look at how they do it.
Ratings and reviews: A+
Happy patients are usually more than willing to provide a good review. They just need to be asked! Midtown gets this and proactively solicits new reviews.
They put their logo on everything. Great for branding.
Providing a link is a great way to boost action and conversion. The easier you make it for patients to leave you a review, the more likely they are to do it.
Why the mystery? You’ll generate more interest with a specific prize (as long as it’s good).
Joy:You should feature reviews on every channel that brings you new patients: Google, your website, your postcard, and your social media profile. Driving people to Facebook to review Midtown makes sense, because Facebook is a big part of the practice’s referral machine.
Five stars based on 114 Google reviews - that’s impressive! Even though they’re No. 3 on this list, I’m more inclined to choose them because they have almost twice as many reviews as the next guy.
According to Google, between 100 and 1000 people on average are searching for “Richland dentist” per month. Google returns 36 practices in its local results for that search, so great job by Midtown for earning its way to the top three!
Joy:High review volume makes Midtown more attractive to prospects, and helps boost its local search ranking. Reviews are one of the top five factors in ranking local search results!1
Facebook is by far the most popular social media network; 68% of American adults have a profile.2 If you’re going to market your practice on social media, Facebook is where you want to be.
Chris:Photos of your team members on social media are a fantastic way to resonate with your audience. I especially like how they reference being able to book more appointments. Midtown has welcomed a new person to the team, shared a photo of a positive dental visit, and reminded us about scheduling a visit, all at the same time!
Seeing photos of the real people behind the practice makes prospective patients feel more comfortable. They want to know who they’re trusting with their health.
It’s great to see patients smiling!
This is really good engagement for an organic post! To get that kind of reach, you need to consistently post quality content. Midtown posts almost daily. Plus, comments and likes extend the relevance of your posts - the more people comment, the more people see it.
Midtown pushes new RateABiz reviews to its Facebook page, which keeps its content fresh and the practice’s good performance top of mind with followers.
These posts would get more interaction if they included photos. Photos, videos, and questions are the top three drivers of Facebook engagement.3
Chris:Actively requesting and sharing positive reviews is a solid strategy. You’ll drown out the occasional bad one (we all get them), and more importantly, you’ll encourage people to declare how much they like you to their friends and family.
|According to Facebook Insights, Midtown’s posts reach about 9,000 people within a five-mile radius of the practice - but there are more than 33,000 households in that area.|
Joy:To reach all Facebook users, consider running a Facebook ad. To reach all households, think beyond digital. (I vote postcards!)
Direct mail: B-
|No doubt these cards make Midtown’s patients feel good and encourage loyalty, but they’re clearly designed for people who have already chosen the practice.|
Joy:There are 33,000 households within a five-mile radius of the practice. Not all of these people are searching Google for a new dentist, and only 9,000 of them are seeing Midtown’s Facebook posts. A direct-mail postcard like this is the perfect way to reach all potential patients, so that when they’re looking for a new dentist, they’re already familiar with Midtown and much more likely to choose it.
|This chart shows Midtown’s average monthly new-patient numbers compared to numbers from a real dental practice that runs a consistent, targeted direct mail campaign.|
Midtown currently averages 30 new patients per month. With an external marketing strategy, they could be bringing in an additional 60 to 170 new patients, as we’ve seen in my previous articles.
All in all, Midtown’s internal marketing gets an A+. But they are missing a huge piece of the marketing puzzle: new patient acquisition!
1. 2017 local search ranking factors. Moz website. https://moz.com/local-search-ranking-factors. Accessed May 31, 2017.
2. Greenwood S, Perrin A, Duggan M. Social media update 2016. Pew Research Center website. http://www.pewinternet.org/2016/11/11/social-media-update-2016/. Published November 11, 2016. Accessed May 31, 2017.
3. Rayson S. How to improve Facebook engagement: Insights from 1 bn posts. Buzzsumo website. http://buzzsumo.com/blog/how-to-improve-facebook-engagement-insights-from-1bn-posts/. Published February 7, 2016. Accessed May 31, 2017.
Joy Gendusa is the founder and CEO of PostcardMania. Using just postcards, a phone, and a computer, Joy built PostcardMania from a one-person startup into an industry leader. PostcardMania serves 73,792 clients, including 5,025 dentists! Need help promoting your practice? Call one of PostcardMania’s dental marketing consultants at (844) 269-1836, e-mail Joy email@example.com, or visit postcardmania.com/dentaldesigns.