Excellent Marketing Support Now, Pay Later
We are getting into the festive period frenzy of special offers and deals – from holidays to furniture to any number of potential gifts. But it’s refreshing to know that for business planning, marketing advice, branding, website and patient communications, your costs can be spread over several months.
Following the expense of practice refurbishments and equipment upgrades for CQC and HTM 01-05, or the launch of a new practice, cash may be tight but the need for finding new patients, promoting treatments, attracting high value cases and increasing referrals never goes away.
It’s important that dental practices choose a flexible agency to support them – not just in terms of high quality advice that eliminates costly mistakes or media planning and buying that saves them money.
Smile Marketing works with you to plan and budget in a way that suits your cash flow, whilst allowing you to benefit from marketing right away. There are several ways we do this.
- From our proposal, you can simply select paying in 12 equal monthly instalments on the agreed contract value. There is no minimum contract value.
- For the larger marketing investments, maybe for a new practice launch, re-brand or change in practice strategy, we can recommend a finance company that allows you to spread payments as part of an unsecured ‘working capital’ loan.
And remember, for retainer clients a proportion of our fees are based on practice results, whether new consultations, cases, income or bottom-line.
For more information contact us or call Steve Davey on 0845 287 3051.
Let your patients do it for you!
Your happy patients are your brand ambassadors. There’s no one better to boast about your excellent dental treatments than your current patients!
Testimonials and case studies show potential patients how brilliant you and your team are from a credible source, people with nothing to gain for inaccurate information.
Although rational people know that you will only use positive testimonials they won’t react rationally – people tend to react emotionally. Other patients encouraging words can give potential patients the confidence to try your practice, especially if they can relate to the patients giving the testimonials.
Most of your patients will be happy to be quoted on a few words if you ask them. To increase the credibility of the testimonial it’s a good idea to display their name underneath – with their permission of course!.
You should encourage willing patients to note a specific treatment, the procedure and the difference it has made to them. Backing this up with a before and after picture is a great way to add a visual element – but avoid any gruesome dental photos, run them by a non-dentist first!
November is Mouth Cancer Action Month run by The British Dental Health Foundation. The aim of the campaign is to get more mouth cancers diagnosed at an early stage by raising awareness of the risk factors, signs and symptoms, whilst encouraging people to discuss them with their dental professional.
On Wednesday 19th November, Patient Plan Direct will be hosting a ‘Blue Wednesday’ which will involve a ‘dress in blue’ day amongst other activities. In the run up to the day they will be working hard to fund raise and reach their goal of £1,000 before the 19th November.
If they hit the target before the 19th then Simon Reynolds, Commercial Director of PPD, has personally promised to come to work wearing nothing more than some skimpy shorts and full blue body paint – something like this but without the muscles and with a bit more hair…
This is a fun way to support a very worthy cause within dentistry, with the aim to raise awareness of mouth cancer and the risks it represents, a disease which has increased by 50% in the last decade.
If you would like to contribute to Blue Wednesday and Mouth Cancer Awareness then make a donation via our Just Giving page.
For more information about the cause get in touch on 0845 287 3051.
We often talk of “thinking outside the box“, which is now a bit 90′s isn’t it?
Sure, breakthrough thinking and new ideas are the lifeblood of really successful businesses – and dental practices are no exception. I talk to numerous practice owners and business owners from several industries, however, and they are often so busy looking for new out of the box ideas that they miss the clear opportunities staring them in the face – the “in the box” profit opportunities.
A great example of this is attempting innovative ways to bring in new patients when you have an under-tapped patient list. In other words, putting too much emphasis on new patient acquisition and not enough emphasis on internal marketing.
At Smile we regularly encounter these situations, they all amount to under valuing the potential of your patient list:
- Not enough communication with patients
- A recall process that isn’t robust and doesn’t include all patients
- Giving up too soon on patients coming back for treatment
- Poor recall letters and emails - I see many that are ‘cold’, matter of fact and unfriendly
- No newsletter to ‘up-sell’ your treatments - many of your patients simply do not know everything that you offer
- Little or no ‘ownership’ of recall within the practice
- No segmentation of your patients - they are not all the same!
- A practice website that lacks key patient information (treatment, team, prices)
- Patient plans and membership schemes that are not well promoted
These are all “in the box” issues that can be addressed and are guaranteed to help build income and patient retention.
And here’s the thing. Generating income from your own patient list almost always costs less than finding new patients.
For a FREE practice marketing Health Check call 0845 287 3051 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To celebrate this incredible year for Smile, as well as our 5th anniversary, at Dental Showcase this week (Friday 10th & Saturday 11th October 2014) we’re offering a FREE 20 minute consult over coffee for any dental practice looking to improve their marketing performance.
Our MD Steve Davey will be at the Showcase to answer any questions as well as providing these FREE consults, so either get in touch via email email@example.com or call 07974 748550 to make the most of this offer.
If you’re looking to really improve your practice marketing and your practice income, we can help you create a break through marketing plan. We can help you in all stages of your marketing campaigns, from concepts and creativity to print, web and social – not forgetting response analysis!
Don’t let this opportunity pass you by, this is your chance to win more patients and higher-value cases. Call Smile on 0845 287 3051.
Smile Marketing, the renowned agency dedicated to the dental profession, is celebrating 5 years in business following its launch in October 2009.
With an obvious need in the industry for a full service agency that was able to provide a wide range of business growth and marketing services, the Smile team, led my MD Steve Davey, embarked on a mission to fill the gap in the market.
Based in Ashburton near Exeter in Devon, the agency has now supported over 60 practices – incl. Orthodontists, Periodontists, Endodontists, Implantologists, Referral Centres, Dental Spas, Labs – and other businesses in the industry since its 2009 launch. With clients spread across the country, from Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow and London to Bristol, the South Coast, South Wales and the Channel Isles as well as Dorset, Somerset, Cornwall and Devon, the company is now entering a new phase of expansion. Steve commented:
“Support from dentists has been fantastic and this has enabled us to provide a platform for growth which bodes well for the future. In our 5th year, we have entered a period of accelerated growth enabling us to add to the core marketing team in Devon as well as increase our team of consultants and project managers in other parts of the UK.”
“As we have developed the agency, we have forged some very strong relationships with other businesses that also work with dentists. These include Patient Plan Direct, the service-led dental plan company that offers significant cost savings, Albert Goodman, dental accountants with a wealth of experience, Scott Richards Solicitors, whose dental law expertise includes practice purchases and sales, JSP Media, the innovative and creative dental video company and Daneswood, our digital partner agency, who have worked with Smile Marketing on over 25 dental websites to date. Together with our partners, we look forward to supporting even more dental businesses in the years to come.”
To celebrate 5 years in business, Smile is offering a chance to
WIN One of 5 Bottles of Champagne
to all those who like their new Facebook page by 30th October
Smile Marketing offers the full spectrum of business planning and marketing services – to include Business Health Checks, Marketing Strategy, Branding, Design, PR, Advertising, Exhibitions, Copywriting and Social Media services.
For more information contact Steve on 0845 287 3051 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For Your Practice
It’s that time of year again, parents are booking haircuts and buying new shoes for their children, it’s time to remind them about their kids most visible feature – their smile!
It’s another great time of year to kick start a good oral health routine, so remind everyone that it’s in their best interest to ensure their children attend regular appointments and brush twice a day for two minutes – saving them from more expensive dental work in the future.
Do you offer family appointments? Or patient plans with family discounts?
Why not introduce them to your patient list and to the community in your area?
As the time of greatest change in the mouth, the school years are key to long term oral health.
Make sure your local area is reminded of this by by placing an article in your local paper, and include within your web and social media messaging for example.
If you’d like help with growing your practice then call us on 0845 287 3051 for a Free Marketing Health Check. We’ll talk through what you’d like to achieve and how to get there. Then we’ll create a unique proposal especially for you.
Think Social Media is for kids? Think again. The average age of users on Facebook is 34, so if you’re trying to connect with potential patients you need to use all the tools available.
Not convinced? Social Media usage in 2014:
- 89% of 18-29 year olds
- 72% of 30-49 year olds
- 60% of 50-60 year olds
- 43% of 65+ year olds
Facebook is still the biggest social media channel, for every hour spent online in Britain 13 minutes of it is spent on Facebook.
Not sure what to post?
Follow us on Facebook for images and links to share with your patients.
One of the best things you can do on Social Media is get involved, a great example would be to get the whole practice to take on the #icebucketchallenge.
First set a date and time, then tell everyone – online and offline – to come and watch. Make sure you stand by a company sign or the front of your practice, mention your practice and nominate some other local businesses. Once you’ve all been soaked in ice cold water post the video online and include the donation link – remember to donate yourselves too.
Why not contact the local papers with photos and an editorial, or ask them to post the video on their site or Social Media? Ask all your colleagues to share the video on their personal profiles several times. Finally make sure you share the videos once your nominations have completed the challenge (linking to their social media pages of course).
This is just one example of the many things you can do to get your page more likes/followers. We particularly recommend anything for charity or that involves the local community.
If this all seems a bit too much to take on, contact us about how we can help with your PR and Social Media, call 0845 287 3051 or email email@example.com.
Facts from JeffBullas.com
We’re all used to hearing about the world moving into the digital age, but there’s a strong tendency to assume that means we should all be moving away from offline media.
Whilst Facebook marketing, blogs, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube have all become very important as part of your media mix and have a strong role to play in driving visitors to your website, offline media such as direct mail, posters, flyers, door drops and postcards can all work brilliantly in driving potential patients to your practice website.
But remember, if it’s direct mail for example, the copy is king. Great dental copywriting is vital to achieve the results you desire such as a low cost per acquisition if you are looking for more patients or maximising your recall if patients are waiting a bit longer before returning for their next check-up.
As with all media, from Pay Per Click (Google Adwords) and E-Newsletters to bus shelter posters and advertising boards on ferries, an enticing message and a strong call to action (your website address, phone number, Facebook link, email address, etc) make all the difference and can do wonders for the visits to your website.
If you need help with your offline marketing or website get in touch, as here at Smile Marketing we’re experts in all things marketing, exclusively for dentists.
Start your marketing when you have plenty of patients.
This may seem backwards but you have to remember, you are not marketing for today’s patients, or even tomorrows, but for your long term patient numbers. When you have enough patients you’ll have the money to invest in a marketing campaign as well as enough time for the campaign to take effect before you need the patients to start booking themselves in.
Don’t leave your marketing until you are lacking patients.
By then you may not have the budget to produce a high quality campaign and by the time the effect can be noticed in your patient list it may be too late. Save yourself the worry of letting your patient list deteriorate. Keep your practice healthy by getting a Free Smile Marketing health check today, reinvest your practice profits in your marketing to ensure a profitable practice future.