Social media is much more than just posting pictures on Facebook or Instagram. It is about engaging in conversations and building meaningful relationships with your followers. Social Media provides businesses with a fun-loving platform where they can share their warm personality with a vast, yet targeted audience. For dentists, it is a cost-effective dental marketing services asset that is ripe with massive opportunities for growing your practice, improving your reputation and advertising your dental practice online.
Even so, most small business owners still don’t know how to leverage internet marketing best practices to achieve their goals. Hence, they end up making costly mistakes that may have adverse, sometimes even irreversible consequences and impact on their online growth. Since the overall growth of a business today is directly linked to its online growth, it is crucial that you avoid making such mistakes. If you have been trying to establish your dental clinic’s online presence to no avail, you are in the right place. In this article, we are going to look at 6 loopholes and mistakes in digital marketing strategies that, you should avoid as a dentist.
1. Lack of a robust, clearly defined marketing strategy
As the saying goes; failure to plan equals planning to fail. For you to excel in your digital marketing campaigns, you need to have a predetermined plan. Having a well-defined marketing strategy will not only help your business achieve its goals but also grow it faster. On the other hand, a wrong or unclear plan can ruin your online reputation or even stop its progress.
A lot of dentists make the mistake of hiring their social media dental marketing agency in Sydney without a solid strategy in mind. However, this approach never yields good results. For your social media marketing to be successful, you need to define your business’s goals and objectives. A marketing strategy is an integral aspect of any business and should be used to enhance the company’s image and reputation. Here are some tips for developing a digital marketing strategy:
• Set social media goals that are in line with your business’s overall goals. Rowing in different directions inhibits you from making any meaningful progress towards your company’s overall goal.
• Mark out the actions you need to take to accomplish these goals.
• Prioritize these tactics. This can be done by evaluating the value each of them will bring to the business and then prioritize the highest value tactics.
Always remember that the best marketing strategy is in a state of constant evolution. Just like trends and technology continually evolve, so does your dental practice. Hence, keep testing new tactics without losing focus on the original ones. Track the results of each strategy and campaigns as this will help you adjust your future digital marketing efforts accordingly.
2. Allocating the right amount of funds for marketing
Marketing is a crucial business function that can multiply your dental business’s value. It can be the difference between a leader and a failure in the marketplace. Some dental companies focus too much of their time and resources on organic growth while giving little or no focus on digital marketing campaigns. On the other hand, other companies spend too much of their time and resources developing their digital marketing with the hopes of getting excellent results.
Unfortunately, none of these strategies are healthy for your business. While it is possible to achieve some level of growth taking either route, this is not always the case. Instead, it becomes a matter of luck. Once you leave the growth of your business to chance, you are more or less heading or waiting for a disaster to happen.
To avoid making this mistake, you should:
• Have a definite budget for marketing needs to start off
• Avoid overlooking your organic marketing options
• Focus your funds on paid marketing strategies that are working for you
3. Targeting the Wrong Audience
The secret to any successful business is an in-depth understanding of their target audience. Even with carefully calibrated campaigns, if you are speaking to the wrong audience, you will fail. A target audience simply means people who would be interested in the products or services you are offering. Poor audience targeting means that you have not defined your audience well. Hence, you are subjecting people that are not interested in your products or services to your promotions.
Poor audience targeting leads to abysmal results from your marketing campaign. A good example of the wrong audience targeting is trying to sell meat or dairy products to vegans.
Whenever you think of advertising your business, whether online or offline, you need to have a target audience in mind. An audience is everything in digital marketing since effective social media marketing is based on crafting content that is relevant and interesting to your target audience. Such content will prompt communication, leading to social engagement.
How to know your target audience
Experts agree that the best way to understand and know your target audience is by conducting audience research.
Spend some time getting to know and understand your target audience. Find out their pain points, the type of language that best appeals to them and the words they use to describe your business when looking for it online. Getting answers to these questions will go a long way in designing campaigns that will appeal to your target audience.
4. Ignoring Email Marketing
As the popularity of social media platforms and blogging forums soar, so have people forgotten the power that lies in Email Marketing. While many people believe that email marketing is dead, they couldn’t be further from the truth. Today, more than ever, email marketing is going strong. And although email service providers have become smarter in detecting spam emails with fake claims, as long as you are not sending spam emails with fake promises and claims, email marketing can bring you excellent results.
To avoid making this mistake, you should:
• Keep email marketing as a part of your overall digital marketing strategy
• Do not spam your subscribers
One way to ensure your business’s branded emails and e-newsletters don’t end up in junk folders is by carefully crafting relevant emails that resonate with your target audience and amplify their interest in your dental practice. To prevent your emails from going to the junk mail, avoid;
• Sending outdated images and stock photos that consumers are tired of seeing or those that offer no relevant value. Instead, try using eye-catching images that are relevant to your practice and help the story of your brand to come alive.
• Emailing your subscribers several times a day as it will leave them feeling piqued. Instead, let them choose how often they want to receive your emails. This can be done by giving them an option to decide whether they want to receive daily, weekly, or monthly messages when they subscribe to your online form.
• Disembodied texts. Sending odd, irrelevant emails that provide wrong personal or geographically targeted messages only go to show your audience that your business has no clue about their needs. For instance, do not send an email about a discount in Transylvania to a subscriber living in Egypt.
• Only email those who subscribe to it
• Send relevant emails with Call to Action buttons
If you are still not getting patients to your dental clinic, the high chances are that you have made the mistake of not including a call to action. Remember that the human attention span has dropped considerably over the years. When sending out emails, it should be clear about what you want them to do after reading the texts. In most cases, you only have a few minutes to catch the subscriber’s eye.
It is crucial that you have a strong call to action on all your emails. As a dentist, your main aim is probably to get them to book an appointment. You can do this by incorporating links that send them to your landing page to make an appointment if need be. Also, make sure your phone number is always reachable.
5. Underestimating the Significance of Mobile
According to various researchers, at least 60% of the world’s population today access online services through their smartphones. However, it is shocking just how many businesses still don’t make mobile a priority. They tend to forget that each of these users could be a potential appointment or merely a follower. The more you ignore or exclude mobile based users from your marketing strategy, the more you are losing out on a big chunk of potential patients and followers.
To avoid making this mistake, you should:
• Make mobile a consideration in everything you do online. Otherwise, you will be risking missing out on the chance to connect with an enormous segment of the potential audience. Failing to consider mobile marketing means alienating a huge chunk of potential patients. This is a mistake that can cost your business the success of your digital marketing campaign.
• Allocate sufficient budget to promote your clinic to mobile users.
• Include Call to Actions for mobile users. A call to action allows your mobile users to call or email your clinic or book an appointment for a dental checkup.
• Create a website that is responsive to mobile viewing as well as landing pages.
6. Buying Fake social media Followers/Likes
When you create a social media account for your dental business, you automatically start with zero followers. Everyone, even social media influencers start their social media accounts from scratch. So, this should not bring you down. One mistake most dental businesses end up doing is buying fake followers and likes to build their accounts fast. Doing this will only increase your follower count, but not your reach to potential clients.
Most of the times, these fake followers are bots and not even real human beings. They will not be able to interact with your posts or share them accordingly. Hence, buying fake followers and likes on social media will only grow your numbers, but not help you attain the level of growth you want. In fact, this will only hurt your growth.
Here is how you should grow your online following;
• Post good content about your dental practice that increases your followers naturally: Great content can deliver up to 3 times as many leads and followers to your business, for 62% less cost than most traditional lead generation methods.
• Post consistently: Prospective patients tend to judge your practice based on your online presence. If your social media pages are active and have interesting, yet relevant content, prospects get a better sense of who you are.
• Engage with your audience: Another important factor patients tend to look at is how you interact with your audience. Once you take the time to respond to a comment, review or just engage in any way with your followers, it shows that you are not just after business, but also forming lasting bonds with your followers.
• Encourage patients visiting your clinic to follow you: One of the best ways to increase your social media following is by going to people who already know you. Encourage your patients to follow you and if possible leave a review on your social media pages or website.
• Stay up to date with the latest trends: Posting about current topics, or using trending hashtags can also help you drive up your page’s engagement rate since such posts have a better chance of being like, commented on and shared. However, try as much as possible to always stay on the topic by sharing things that are relevant to your practice and dentistry at large.
Social media marketing is becoming the holy grail of marketing. Its infinite boundaries offer dentists endless opportunities to grow. Still, it is crucial that you utilize them well. Successful social media marketing needs a lot of enthusiasm and dedication to get a solid foothold online. Use the knowledge provided in this article to draft a new marketing strategy or to improve what you already have. Even though sustaining your company’s social media marketing success is not an easy task, your business will grow exponentially with exceptional planning.
Kristan ‘No Mistakes’ Johnson
P.S. when you’re ready, here are 4 ways I can help you grow your dental practice:
1.Register for our next pitch free webinar
Join us for a pitch free private training and learn how to attract and retain high-value repeat patients, increase annual revenue and live a freer, happier life than ever before. Click Here
2. Join The Dental Collective and connect with dentists trying to grow too
it’s our new Facebook community where smart dentists can connect and share on the way to getting more patients, income and independence. Click Here
3. Grab a free copy of our latest practice case study
It’s the exact strategies we used to help a local dentist get more patients and grow from 1 to 3 dental chairs in under 6 months. Click Here
4. Have me and my team work with you privately
If you would like to work with our team to devise and implement your growth strategy and go from struggling to booking, just reply to this message, put “Private” in the subject line, and tell a little about your business and what you’d like to work on, and I’ll get you the details.