News You Can Use from New Patients, Inc.
Getting high quality new patients to call your practice is what our company has been all about for the last 20 years. The purpose for these periodic newsletters is to give helpful marketing advice that will assist you in building your practice and to share news about new ways to market your practice.
In this issue we have articles by Mark
Dilatush and me.
We are also
happy to have a guest author for this issue - Vicki McManus from
The Productive Dentist Academy.
By William Howard (Howie) Horrocks
Is There a Boom Coming?
Predicting a coming boom in the current economic climate may rank right up there with the craziest things I've ever done.
But I think it's going to happen in dentistry.
This is of course assuming the economy doesn't completely go to hell in a handbasket (and there are some economists who think we're running out of handbaskets).
Think about this: if there are lots of people putting off dental care due to their own financial stress, that's sort of a ticking time bomb isn't it?
People can put off that smile makeover they really want but they aren't going to be able to put off a dental emergency for long.
If you stay in touch with your target market throughout this recession and (hopefully) the recovery, you will have a better chance at eventually doing the work that is building up in your community. And by "stay in touch" I mean continue to market your practice, continue to remind people who you are and what you can do for them.
The same holds true for your own patient base. It's much less costly to retain your existing patients than it is to attract new ones.
Putting out a practice newsletter or e-letter is a good way to remind your patients that you're still there for them in a time of need. This whole process can be very easy with services like Patient News Publishing, www.patientnews.com Dental Senders www.dentalsenders.com and Smile Reminder www.smilereminder.com
So when an emergency happens or, even better, the economy recovers, people who are familiar with you will be much more likely to call you rather than someone they've never heard of.
Marketing vs. Advertising
Many people think marketing is the same as advertising. It's not. Advertising is a part of marketing but not the whole enchilada by a long shot.
For example, how your practice answers the phone is very much a marketing activity. For the new inquiry, the person who answers the phone is their very first live encounter with your practice.
If that call doesn't go well, then you've lost a new patient. And not only that but depending on how poorly the caller is handled you may end up with a dissatisfied caller who might like to tell others how dissatisfied they are with you.
It's very easy these days to spread bad news. There's a proliferation of review websites popping up all over the web. Sites like Dr. Oz and Yelp are examples. People can and do post negative reviews of every type of business or service. You can post a rebuttal but other than that there's not much you can do. Some people are just malcontents and like to tear others down for any slight, whether real or imagined.
One thing you can do is improve service. And one way you can do that is to improve your office's phone handling skills. You can get Call Source. www.callsource.com
With Call Source you can track where calls are coming from, determine exactly what marketing effort generated the call and also record all incoming calls. You can use the record feature for training purposes to improve phone skills.
We use Call Source with our clients so there's never a doubt about whether the promotion we're doing for them is working or needs tweaking or needs to be abandoned. And there's never a doubt about how callers are handled. This can be a very valuable training tool.
That's all for now. We hope to be seeing lots of you at some upcoming events. Mark and I will be speaking at the DentalTown meeting in Las Vegas April 15th - 17th. www.towniemeeting.com. We'll also be speaking at The Excellence in Dentistry meeting in Orlando April 22nd - 24th. www.theprofitabledentist.com/Orlando2010/.
And be sure to check out our collaboration with Dr. Bruce Baird and Vicki McManus of the Productive Dentist Academy at our Marketing Summits coming soon to a city near you. www.newpatientsinc.com/marketing_summit
Mr. Horrocks is the author of two dental bestsellers, Unlimited New Patients, Volume One, and Unlimited New Patients, Volume Two; Trade Secrets of America's Dental Marketing Guru. His agency, New Patients, Inc. produces advertising campaigns for private dental practices all over the US and Canada. For more information call (866) 336-8237 or on the web at www.newpatientsinc.com
Mr. Horrocks is the author of two dental bestsellers,
Unlimited New Patients, Volume One, and Unlimited New Patients, Volume
Two; Trade Secrets of America's Dental Marketing Guru. His agency, New
Patients, Inc. produces advertising campaigns for private dental
practices all over the US and Canada. For more information call (866)
336-8237 or on the web at www.newpatientsinc.com
As with everything related to promoting the benefits of dentistry to the dental consumer, NPI leads the industry in research, development, and testing. The topic of today's newsletter (Mobile Websites) is no different.
Mobile Websites - Due Diligence
The first thing we do as a firm when we identify an emerging medium is project the potential impact using consumer numbers. Our work with mobile websites was no different. Here are just a few of the numbers & characteristics we uncovered while doing our due diligence on this emerging opportunity.
1. 67% of the world population has a wireless communication account. This is a staggeringly high number. There are more humans with wireless accounts than wired accounts! If you project this in the US & Canada, that's about 235 million wireless subscribers.
2. 70% - Year over year mobile internet surfer growth. What this means is that more and more people are using their mobile phones to search the internet for things they need or have an interest in. You rarely see 70% year over year growth in any market sector. This is serious growth! The growth is actually expected/projected to expand.
3. 80%+ - The percentage of employers with more than 50 employees that currently use PC internet traffic tracking software to keep tabs on their employee productivity. What this means is that employers are aware that "surfing the net" with the work PC is damaging to their bottom line so they are running workstation monitoring software to keep tabs on their employees. This is important because dental consumers still need to surf the net at work for things they need or have an interest in. Clearly, some of the year over year mobile surfing growth is being fueled by "big brother" watching work PC activity.
4. Cost is not a barrier - Cost is usually where an emerging opportunity becomes nothing but wasted time. There are literally thousands of marketing opportunities out there for every dentist. Unfortunately, only a handful will fit inside a properly defined and managed marketing budget! Here is some good news. The cost of a mobile website with proper optimization is only $3,200. You can fit that number into almost any marketing budget.
Mobile Websites - The Marketing Opportunity
The best way for me to explain a mobile website is to have you actually take your mobile phone and look at your .com dental website. If you do not have a dental website yet, go take a look at www.sanfranciscodentalcare.com
You MUST look at these websites from the dental consumer perspective. Pretend you are a contract worker in the area for at least the next 6 months and need some dental treatment. Pretend you are using your phone to navigate a dental office .com website.
Go ahead, try to navigate a .com website with your cell phone.
How are you doing? Are you trying to figure out where everything is? Have you tired of scrolling left, right, up, and down yet? If you were a dental consumer, how would you rate your experience with your dental practice thus far? Is frustrating the first thing that came to your mind? Probably.
OK, keep your mobile phone in your hand. Don't put it down just yet.
Now go here: http://romeovillesmiles.mobi/
How are you doing with this site? Pretty straight forward huh? Everything is right in front of you isn't it? If you were a dental consumer, how would you rate your experience with this dental website? What if you visited four other .com dental sites and then came to this one? Wouldn't this one be your pick?. Since you looked at a .com site first, easy is probably the first thing that popped into your mind after you looked at the .mobi website. Making it easy for the dental consumer to do business with you is an important (vital) part of an effective overall marketing plan.
Clearly, one of the many advantages of having a mobile website is the way the site interacts with mobile surfers. Mobile websites are better organized, far easier to navigate, and can even connect the mobile surfer directly to your dental office with one click (if they click the contact us link). It will immediately dial the website number.
But is that the only benefit of a mobile website? Hardly. The next advantage is probably the most exciting.
One really interesting characteristic of mobile websites is how the optimization works when a mobile surfer is looking for a dental office (or anything else for that matter). If the mobile website is developed correctly and optimized correctly (which isn't easy to do), when a mobile surfer looks for a dental office - the .mobi website will now position itself in the search ranking higher than the .com counterparts. This can take a bit of work and a bit of time to accomplish but remember what Google and the other search engines are in business to do. They are in business to bring relevant information to the surfer. Did you find the .com site relevant on your mobile phone? Hardly. It was frustrating, remember? Well, Google and the other search engines know this. That's why they give priority ranking to .mobi sites when it is a mobile surfer (rather than a PC surfer) looking for something. Basically, even if your .com site is on the third page of a Google search for a [dentist - your town], your .mobi site will eventually trump your own .com site position as well as everyone ahead of you! This will put the thousands of mobile surfers squarely in your sights!
Zero Media Dilution
This should be the most obvious advantage. You know there are other dentists in your area promoting through the internet with a .com site. You know there are other dentists in your area promoting through the mail. You know there are other dentists placing print ads. You probably have heard a dentist or two promoting over the radio, on TV, or on billboards near you.
But we bet there isn't a dentist within 50 miles of you that has a properly constructed and optimized mobile website!
Shhhhhh. We won't tell anyone J
Which dental practices should consider a .mobi site?
This decision really comes down to priority use of your available marketing dollars and what type of market you serve. If you work with NPI, you know we can do any type of promotion. Which promotion you invest in next, really comes down to where the investment fits into your overall marketing budget and budget allocation. The investment is $3,200 with very little ongoing expense.
Here is a general list of what we consider pre-requisites prior to investing in a .mobi website for your dental practice.
• Dental practices in or very near densely populated metro centers
• Dental practices in or very near large clusters of large businesses
• Practices that already have a solid .com website and good ranking position
• Practices that already have at least one successful external promotion (like a mail campaign)
• Practices with extremely tight marketing budgets
• Practices without a solid .com website and good ranking position
• Practices in light density suburban/rural areas
In other words, a dental practice in rural Indiana that already has their marketing budget fully allocated - can wait a while before getting a .mobi website. However, a dental practice in NY, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Chicago, basically any major metro area - should begin to prioritize a .mobi website higher for their next budget availability.
Ultimately, we are here to tell you that the mobile website market is wide open in 99% of the US and Canada dental markets. If you find a dentist in your area that has a .mobi website, it would be a complete statistical anomaly. Getting into the mobile market first means all of the mobile searches for a dentist will see your .mobi site and have every reason to click "Contact Us" which connects their mobile phone to your front desk. It is sort of like being the only dentist in the area to mail, or the only dentist with an ad in the newspaper, or the only dentist on the radio. Zero media dilution significantly reduces your investment risk and greatly increases your chance for a larger long term return on investment.
As a recipient of our newsletters, you can continue to count on NPI to bring you truthful, researched, topical, relevant, and truly useful information regarding the professional and effective promotion of dental practices.
This topic (mobile websites) is just one of dozens of topics we cover at all of our upcoming Dental Marketing Summits. We would love to see you in our audience. For more information about our Marketing Summits, just click here.
Mr. Dilatush has
a unique combined background in dental technology, dental practice
management, practice marketing, and dental business analytics, which
was built over the past 23 years in dentistry. He and his team are
responsible for building client marketing plans that pose the least
risk to client marketing budgets with the highest potential return.
Howard Farran said of Mark, "multitudes of dentists have benefited
from the wisdom and integrity that Mark brings to every project. His
thoughtfulness and sincere approach has aided scores of dentists in
finding their path to greater dental success.
Video (tm) from New Patients, Inc. Customized video for your website!
Impression Video by New Patients, Inc.
is a way for potential new patients to actually meet you when they
visit your website for the first time. This GREATLY reduces the barrier
of distrust and begins the process of "trust." Trust is the
first thing you have to accomplish when you want to attract new
patients. You can convey this with words but that can only take you so
Think about it.
Let's say you need some kind of medical care. Your physician refers you
to three specialists and gives you their websites so you can go home
and look for yourself. Two of those sites are all text and maybe a
poorly done educational (too long) video.
But on one of
the sites, the doctor him/her self immediately introduces
themselves to you and directs you to other points of interest on their
website. When you click on those other points of interest, they (or
someone else from their office) pop up again and help you with timely
Which one of the
three specialists are you most likely going to call first for a
Now let's say
you weren't referred but you're just searching for a new dentist, which
dentist would you most likely call for the first consult?
understand the main benefit of First Impression Video. You are going to
convert more of your website visitors into more new patients!
After all, what's the use in having lots of web traffic, if you don't
convert that traffic into new patients?
learn more about First Impression Video, email Mark at
firstname.lastname@example.org, or, call us
You can also visit our website and download a First
Impression brochure. Go to www.newpatientsinc.com
and click on the First Impression link at the top right.
We hope you've
enjoyed our newsletter. Please let us know if there's a particular
subject you'd like to hear about. And we always appreciate your
Plan Built For Your Practice
We will prepare a customized marketing plan for your practice
- Demographics report
- Complete budget
- Marketing plan
Absolutely No Cost or Obligation (and you won't be hounded
with sales calls).
New Patients, Inc.
The ad agency
exclusively for dentists
Oquendo Business Park
5935 Edmond Street Suite 105
Las Vegas, NV 89118
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