digital marketing tips for dentists - dental marketing

13 Essential Marketing Tips for Dentists

9 min read

Marketing your dental practice is tough when you’re competing with at least 18,000 others in the field. Whether you’re in general dentistry, kids dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, orthodontia, prosthodontia, or you’re an oral surgeon, a strong dental marketing program can make sure your clinic doesn’t get lost in the crowd.

This is why we created this specialised digital marketing guide for dentists. These tips can help you get more bookings, reach new patients, increase brand awareness, promote new treatments and secure repeat business.

Digital Marketing for Dentists

1. Make sure your website is modern, looks professional, and is easy to use.

Your website serves as the virtual front door to your dental clinic. A modern and professional-looking website not only builds trust among potential patients but also ensures they can easily find the information they’re seeking. 

Key features should include informational articles that educate visitors about dental health, easy-to-use contact forms for inquiries, and an intuitive booking system for hassle-free appointment scheduling. You should also include attractive, professional photography that makes your clinic look welcoming.

Remember, first impressions matter. A sleek, user-friendly design with comprehensive content can be the difference between a potential patient booking an appointment or moving on to a competitor. Regularly update your website’s content, ensure it’s mobile-responsive, and prioritise user experience to make a lasting impression.

2. Highlight your expertise.

Patients want to know they’re in capable hands. By detailing your experience, education, and the history of your clinic, you provide a transparent view into your qualifications and dedication to the field. 

Don’t shy away from showcasing any special training, awards, or accolades you or your team have received. These recognitions not only differentiate you from competitors but also signal to potential patients that you are authoritative and trustworthy. Remember, trust is paramount in healthcare.

As a bonus, emphasising your professional expertise can give you a boost in search visibility due to signals that SEOs refer to as EEAT. This acronym stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness. In essence, are you an actual authority in your field?  If so, Google is much more likely to serve your website in the search results.  

Some great ways to highlight your expertise and authority include: 

  • Listing all credentials or qualifications
  • Featuring any professional awards or recognitions
  • Mentioning your specialisations
  • Displaying testimonials and reviews
  • Using real before and after photos
  • Developing a blog or resources section related to treatments
  • Linking your website to your professional profiles elsewhere on the internet (and vice versa!)

3. Make the booking experience as easy as possible. 

The journey to a brighter smile should start with a seamless booking experience. Opt for a system that minimizes steps and reduces friction, ensuring that patients can secure their appointments without any hassle. Automated appointment reminders, whether through email, SMS, or phone calls, can significantly reduce no-show rates and ensure that your patients remember their scheduled visits. 

The ideal booking system for your dental clinic should:

  • Show available appointment times clearly
  • Set up automated reminders via email or SMS
  • Provide multiple contact options
  • Allow easy rescheduling
  • Offer a mobile-friendly interface

By simplifying and streamlining the booking process, you not only enhance patient satisfaction but also increase the likelihood of repeat visits and referrals. After all, in a world where convenience is king, an effortless booking experience can set your clinic apart.

SEO is crucially important for dental clinics, much as it is for most service industries these days. When people are looking for services, almost 70% will turn to a search engine like Google first. 

But most people don’t look beyond the first page of search results. According to a study, less than 1% do. SEO can help position your clinic website near the top of the search for local dentists or specific treatments you offer. When you hit those top spots, your books can begin to fill quickly!

Begin with well-optimised service pages that clearly outline what you offer, ensuring that potential patients can easily find and understand your services. Don’t forget to include your address and clinic hours prominently on the page to help Google serve your site in local searches.

Additionally, create detailed treatment or concern pages that will be perfect for people doing those last few Google searches before finally making the call to the clinic. By providing comprehensive information on these topics, you position your clinic as both a trusted resource and a friendly voice to answer concerns.

Working with an SEO agency with an experienced team that can add structured data and implement more advanced technical SEO strategies will also ensure your pages get crawled and indexed properly. All of these things are vital for getting top rankings in search.

5. Location signals.

Strong location signals are pivotal for dental clinics since most patients will prefer a dentist located conveniently near their home or workplace.  

Start by optimising your Google Business Profile. This improves the chances of your being found when someone searches for “dentist near me”. With a well-optimised profile, your business can also appear when people query specific dental procedures and treatments in your area.

Additionally, integrating structured data on your website can further boost local signals, making it easier for search engines to understand and showcase your clinic’s location and services.

6. Choose the right CRM.

Choosing the right CRM for your dental clinic is absolutely vital.  A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is more than just a tool.  It’s the backbone of effective patient engagement in today’s digital landscape. When you choose the right CRM, you will be able to provide an unparalleled patient experience.

A robust CRM can automate and streamline tasks like email responses, appointment scheduling, and follow-ups, freeing up valuable time for your staff. Beyond operational efficiencies, a CRM serves as a platform to nurture relationships, allowing you to engage with your patients as a community, which will foster loyalty and trust. 

Modern CRMs also come equipped with a suite of marketing capabilities, including email marketing, social media integration, lead management, and in-depth marketing analytics. By leveraging these features, you can craft personalised patient journeys, ensuring that each interaction is meaningful and drives patient satisfaction.

Some quick tips on choosing the best CRM for your dental practice:  

  • Look for a CRM that offers features tailored for dental practices, such as appointment scheduling, treatment tracking, and automated reminders.
  • Check for integrations with other tools you use, like billing software, email marketing platforms, or patient feedback systems.
  • Consider the ease of use, navigation features, and the amount of training required to use it effectively.
  • Ask whether it’s scalable. You’ll want something for the long haul for when your practice grows!

7. Create engaging content.

Content marketing is a powerful tool to connect, educate, and inspire, and for dental clinics, a great content program has the capacity to resonate with both current and potential patients.

Start by addressing specific procedures and treatments, but also broaden your scope to encompass the general concerns and curiosities patients might have about oral health. Educational articles can serve as a valuable resource, demystifying dental processes and empowering patients to make informed decisions.

Patient testimonials, on the other hand, offer a genuine window into the experiences of those who’ve been treated at your clinic, building trust and showcasing the quality of your services. Highlighting smile journeys or transformations provides a visual testament to the efficacy of your treatments, allowing potential patients to see real-world results and the potential for their own transformations.

But don’t stop at written content. Videos that offer a glimpse into your clinic’s environment, the cutting-edge technology you employ, and the warmth of your staff can provide a virtual walkthrough, helping to alleviate any anxieties and setting expectations for a comfortable visit.

Engaging content not only positions your clinic as a thought leader in the dental industry but also fosters a sense of community and trust among your audience, ensuring they think of you first when considering dental care.

8. Leverage paid social media.

Paid social media campaigns offer dental clinics a unique opportunity to reach their target audience with precision. By leveraging the advanced targeting features and audience insights tools available for Facebook ads, Instagram ads, and TikTok ads, you can ensure your messaging reaches the exact demographic you’re aiming for.

Highlighting promotions or introducing new technology in your clinic through these ads can spark interest and drive enquiries. Tapping into seasonal specials, such as discounts for wedding season smiles or back-to-school dental check-ups, can also resonate with specific audience segments, making your campaigns timely and relevant.

Paid social media also allows for direct engagement with potential patients, fostering a sense of community and keeping your clinic top-of-mind when dental services are needed. By strategically investing in paid social campaigns, you can boost bookings, enhance brand awareness, and stay ahead of the competition.

9. Capture paid ad leads with well-designed landing pages.

With any kind of paid search advertising, a purpose-built landing page for lead capture is a must. For your dental clinic, a well-designed landing page acts as the bridge between interest and action, ensuring that the investment made in paid ads translates into booked appointments and engaged patients. By optimising every element, you can maximize conversions and ensure a strong return on investment.

Keeping the design simple ensures that potential patients aren’t overwhelmed or distracted, allowing them to focus on the core message. Relevance is key. Ensure that the content on the landing page aligns seamlessly with the ad that brought the visitor there, maintaining a consistent narrative.

It’s also crucial to continuously test various elements of your landing page, from imagery to form design, to determine what resonates most with your audience. High-quality images showcasing the latest technologies in your clinic, before-and-after smile transformations, and details of promotional packages can be compelling selling points.

10. Set up retargeting and remarketing campaigns.

The terms

Retargeting and remarketing, though the terms are often used interchangeably, have distinct nuances in the digital marketing realm.

Retargeting typically refers to online ad placements and display ads served to users based on prior engagement on your website. For instance, if a visitor reads a high-performing blog about a specific treatment that’s a specialty of your practice, retargeting ads can remind them of that service as they browse other sites.

Remarketing, on the other hand, often involves re-engaging past visitors or customers through email campaigns, reminding them of their previous interest or nudging them towards a conversion they didn’t complete.

Both strategies are invaluable for dental clinics as they ensure your brand remains top-of-mind for potential patients. By strategically placing reminders of your services, technologies, or promotions, you can recapture the attention of those who’ve already shown interest, increasing the likelihood of them booking an appointment or engaging further with your clinic. In essence, retargeting and remarketing campaigns maximize the value of your initial marketing efforts by nurturing potential leads until they’re ready to take action.

11. Develop referral programs.

Eighty-eight percent of people trust and prefer word-of-mouth recommendations, especially in sectors focused on health and personal care, such as dentistry. You can leverage this by setting up a genuinely rewarding referral program.  

A few ideas to make your referral program truly rewarding:

  • Tiered Rewards. Consider implementing a tiered system where the more patients someone refers, the bigger the reward they receive. For instance, a single referral could earn a discount on a cleaning, while multiple referrals could lead to a free whitening session.
  • Dual-sided Incentives. Make the program beneficial for both the referrer and the referred. Offer both parties a discount or special service. This not only motivates your current patients to refer but also gives the new patient a warm welcome.
  • Run periodic referral specials. Consider offering additional bonuses for seasonal specials that sweeten the deal for all patients, such as back-to-school cleanings or wedding party specials.

Of course having a referral program isn’t enough on its own. Promotion is key! Actively promote your referral incentives on social media platforms and through email campaigns, ensuring that your patient base is well-informed and excited about the benefits of referring friends and family. By fostering a strong referral culture, dental clinics can build a loyal patient base while simultaneously attracting new patients in the most organic way possible.

12. Develop lead magnets.

Lead magnets are essentially valuable pieces of content or offers that you can provide to potential customers in exchange for their contact information. They serve as a powerful tool to attract and capture leads, allowing businesses to nurture these potential customers through subsequent marketing efforts.

For dental clinics, lead magnets can be particularly effective in educating potential patients and showcasing the clinic’s expertise.  Some lead magnet ideas for dental clinics:

  • Downloadable guides and brochures
  • Before and after galleries of treatments
  • Demos of your technology, such as 3D smile design 
  • Seminars and webinars 

Each of these offers a strategic way to capture the attention of potential patients, providing them with value upfront and paving the way for deeper engagement in the future. By offering these resources, dental clinics can build a robust database of leads to nurture and convert over time.

13. Try digital out-of-home advertising for dental marketing.

We also recommend digital out-of-home-advertising for dental clinics.  Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) advertising is a modern twist on traditional outdoor advertising, using digital displays in public spaces like billboards, transit stations, malls, and more. 

For dental clinics, DOOH offers a unique advantage: the ability to visually showcase the transformative power of their services. A before-and-after smile transformation, for instance, can be strikingly displayed, capturing the attention of passersby and leaving a lasting impression.

Furthermore, DOOH can be a strong component of a multi-channel campaign. By integrating it with online ads, social media, and other marketing efforts, clinics can create a cohesive and omnipresent brand message, ensuring they reach potential patients at multiple touchpoints throughout their day.

In essence, Digital Out of Home advertising amplifies a clinic’s reach, leveraging the power of visual storytelling in strategic locations to attract and engage potential patients in the real world.

Ready to kick off your dental marketing campaign? Reach out to our team and let’s get started!