Productivity


If you run a busy dental practice, you probably know that building an online presence is very important for your practice to succeed. However, you probably also know that doing that is far easier said than done. There’s tons of effort, strategy, and planning that go into having a strong presence online, and even after you “achieve” your goals, the work is not over. You have to consistently put in effort to maintain your rankings and follower count.

Which brings us to the harsh truth about building an online presence that we’re going to focus on in this blog post:

Online marketing success often does not come quickly or easily.

Why are we telling you this? Because first of all, we believe it’s important to be honest. A lot of the people reading this blog are dentists. They are not marketing professionals. They likely do not know the inner workings of the various social media platforms. Many people just starting out on social media think that they just need to post content every once in a while and the followers will come. However, it isn’t that easy.

Building an online presence is about more than posting photos on Instagram once in a while or posting a reminder to your Facebook followers to book an appointment at your practice.

Unfortunately, there are complicated algorithms at play that all but ensure only a tiny portion of your fans are seeing your posts. Hashtags are great, but just like fashion, trends change all the time and the hashtag list you’re still using from last year is probably outdated and ineffective at this point.

So how do you succeed online?

Consistent effort and strategy.

If you don’t post consistent content on social media (and your blog) and have a strategy in place for doing so, building an online presence is going to be a very tough uphill battle.

The only way to “beat” the algorithms is to share enough content that your followers will see it, whether it’s yesterday’s post, today’s post or tomorrow’s post… because they probably won’t see all three unless they’re already highly engaged with your page.

However you can’t share any old photo or post and call it a day. Your content needs to be strategic. You must have a consistent voice and brand, as well as consistent photo styles in order to build a feed that people will want to follow. Constantly changing up your style online is a sure fire way to confuse your followers.

On top of that, mixing up your messaging is crucial. If you post salesy sounding posts like “book an appointment” and “come see us for this service” all the time, people are going to get sick of it and guess what? They’ll unfollow. Instead, you have to build a strategy where you mix up call to action posts, informative posts, fun, more lighthearted posts, behind the scenes photos, etc. Take your followers on a ride instead of boring them or selling to them all the time.

If you need content that will make building an online presence a breeze? We can help with that! We specialize in show-stopping content that disrupts the norm on social media. Would you rather be “just another dental practice” or would you rather be the practice that gets people EXCITED about dental care? We can help get you there!

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When it comes to online marketing, emails often are an afterthought. Sure they’re not as fun as Snapchat or as robust as a landing page or even most blog posts, but they do have a lot of value. However, sitting down to write emails to each of your clients one-by-one is unrealistic. That’s why having a good stash of email templates for dentists is a game-changer.

Email templates allow you to quickly hit the “send” button without spending too much time customizing your message each time. Just save these templates in a place where you can easily copy and paste, and then all you have to do is fill in the placeholders with the relevant information!

Email Template #1 – Cleaning Reminder

The most basic email you can send is the six month cleaning reminder. You might already have a system that automatically emails patients in your system when it’s approaching six months since their last cleaning. If so, that’s great! If not, create a template that your office staff can use to email patients their reminder. Bonus points if you make this email a little more fun and playful than the usual boring reminder email they’re used to getting!

Email Template #2 – Treatment Plan Reminder

Similar to the cleaning reminder, this email template is a great tool to encourage patients to come in and start their treatment plan. This is perfect for patients that have come in and discussed services such as crowns, implants, Invisalign, etc.

A lot of times, our patients will put off these services because they’re not looking forward to the appointment, so a little nudge can be really effective at getting them to book that appointment. Include a button right in the email to your online scheduler, or if you don’t have that, make sure your phone number is front and center so it’s super easy for them.

Email Template #3 – End of Year Benefits Reminder

This is our absolute favorite email template for dentists. Many of our patients end the year with some unused health benefits and we all know, if you don’t use ‘em, you lose ‘em. Send your patients a reminder email a few months before the end of the year to remind them to make the most of their benefits. Remind them of your services or any specials you have going on and encourage them to call for an appointment. This can be a great way to fill up your calendar and keep your patients happy!

Email templates for dentists can be a game-changer, not only for getting patients through your doors, but also for your marketing budget! It costs almost nothing to send an email, and if you have these templates saved and available for your staff, it takes very little time to execute.

Be sure to watch our Instagram page because we’ll be doing an email challenge in the coming weeks and it will be a great way for you to get acquainted (or re-acquainted) with the incredible power of email marketing!

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If you want to grow your dental practice, social media is a great (and generally free) way to do it. However, with more social media platforms than ever before, it can be overwhelming to know where to spend your precious energy. That’s why we strongly suggest creating a social media calendar.

What is a social media calendar? It’s simply a document that helps you organize your strategy and plan for special occasions so you can coordinate your posts. This document can be “old school” paper and pen or it can be digital. It just needs to be easy to understand, update, and share with the people who are helping you manage your social feeds.

A good social media calendar will help you accomplish three specific goals:

Keeps You Organized

Social media can often get placed on the back burner when things get busy, but you don’t want to forget about it! I don’t know about you, but calendars help keep us accountable. By having everything laid out on one calendar or spreadsheet, it makes the tasks seem more manageable. If things get really busy, you can even use an automatic posting service to do the posting for you!

Keeps You Consistent

By planning everything out on a calendar in advance, you’re more likely to post consistently on all your profiles. Because everything is organized and ready, it makes it easy to post regularly. With social media, consistency is everything. If you’re posting consistently, you will stay in front of your audience even attract new followers. Remember, those followers can turn into customers!

Saves You Time

Setting aside some time to organize your entire social media calendar can save you time in the long run. It may take a little bit to get it up and running, but it will leave you feeling prepared and less stressed when it comes time to start posting. Now you’ll no longer try to frantically throw together social posts at the last minute!

Also, if you’re not the only one working on your business’ social media, a calendar can be a great way to share ideas and work with your colleagues. We all get stuck in a rut from time to time. If your calendar is available for others to work on, you can have some assistance with ideas, which will free you up to do the other things that are on your to do list!

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Marketing a dental practice is not easy. It’s not like you’re running a candy shop or an amusement park. Some people are afraid of the dentist, and for those that aren’t, it’s still not the first place they choose to visit. However, we know that in order to be profitable, we have to get people excited about coming to the dentist — and not just any dentist! We have to make our own dental practice seem the most fun, the most comfortable, and the friendliest place they could choose. That’s where good dental marketing comes in.

If you’re feeling stuck or need a little inspiration when it comes to your dental marketing strategy, check out these TED Talks:

The Little Risks You Can Take to Increase Your Luck

In this TED Talk, educator Tina Seelig shares three (easy) ways we can increase our luck in business. She says, “luck is rarely a lightning strike, isolated and dramatic — it’s much more like the wind, blowing constantly. Catching more of it is easy but not obvious.”

Growing your dental practice is all about taking calculated risks and not all risks are created equal. This talk may change the entire way you look at your professional career.

The Happy Secret to Better Work

Are you happy? It’s kind of a loaded question, but Shawn Achor presents his argument in this TED Talk that being truly happy leads us to do better, more productive work. He says, “75% of your job successes are predicted by your optimism levels, your social support, and your ability to see stress as a challenge instead of as a threat.”

So, can positive psychology help you grow your dental practice? According to Shawn, absolutely it can! Added bonus? He’s surprisingly funny for a researcher 😉

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

This TED Talk by Angela Lee Duckworth is one of the most popular of all time, and it’s not surprising once you sit down and watch it. In her speech, she talks about why IQ isn’t the only thing separating those of us who are successful and those of us who tend to struggle.

Grit is the key factor when it comes to defining who is the most successful. What is grit? It’s passion and perseverance for long-term goals. When it comes to marketing, this is important because some things take a long time and a lot of consistency before you see results. Do you have what it takes to see your goals through even when it takes a long time?

Good dental marketing comes down to sharing thoughts, ideas, and knowledge. Everything you put out into the world should have the goal of connecting with your current and future patients; you want them to see you as someone they can trust and turn to for help. Have these talks inspired you? If you have questions about marketing your practice, please feel free to contact the Dental Soiree team!

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If you’re anything like the team here at Dental Soiree, you spend a good amount of time on your phone! There’s no way around it. These things run our lives… everything from our calendar to our banking account to our travel itinerary is on our smartphones. Being connected is important not just for staying in touch and on top of our busy lives. It’s also a great tool to help you grow your dental practice.

If you leverage the tech that’s already at your fingertips, you can spend less time trying to accomplish #allthethings and more time doing the few things that really are going to make a difference. At the beginning of 2018, there were 3.8 million apps in the Google Play store and 2 million apps in Apple’s app store. Rather than be overwhelmed by all these options, we encourage you to download the three apps we outline below for the ultimate productivity boost.

Evernote

If you can only download one app, you should definitely choose Evernote! If you’re like me, your mind is running a mile a minute and ideas are always flowing. Evernote is the best way to capture your lightning when it strikes. This app keeps all your thoughts in an organized, easily searchable platform.

The best features of Evernote come in the labeling and categorizing aspects. You can easily keep your blog ideas separate from your dinner party planning notes or your ongoing list of hot new places for drinks. Get started with Evernote for free and upgrade to Pro or Premium based on your needs.

Canva

Now that you’ve captured all your ideas with Evernote, it’s time to make them POP! Of course, we’re passionate about attention-grabbing images, and Canva makes it easy to create your own with simple drag-and-drop functionality. You can use your Canva graphics on social media, and even in your freebies, eBooks, or emails. It can be overwhelming at first, but start small and you’ll get the hang of it quickly.

Smart, stylish templates take the guesswork out of creating the perfect post, and with the numerous fonts available, you can choose the perfect look for your brand. You may be using Canva to increase your efficiency, but the true upside is not sacrificing style. All the handy options they provide allows you to remain consistent in content and message. I call that a huge win!

Buffer

Being consistently present on social media and in your potential patient’s feeds is vitally important. It can be time consuming, though. Buffer is a great option to manage all your social media accounts from one site. See who is locked on your thread, determine what type of posts get your target audience excited, and watch your followers grow.

When you want to show up online as an ever-present social media guru, Buffer is the app you need. You can schedule content so you’re showing up even when you’re spending time with your family or at the gym. Does your most recent blog post need some attention? Post it to all your accounts at once in Buffer!

At the end of the day, working to grow your dental practice and make sure it’s successful should be your number one goal. These apps help streamline and improve your efficiency so you can grow your dental practice without sacrificing your sanity.

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Chances are, you’ve run into a bot while using Facebook Messenger already. So many businesses are using bots to interact with both potential and current customers on Facebook and it makes sense. 80% of adults and 91% of teens using messaging apps every day, so it was only a matter of time before the traffic became too large to manage without some kind of automation.

Is this something you’ve considered implementing? Have you wondered whether bots can help grow your dental practice? Let’s dive in a little further…

How Facebook Messenger Bots Work

You might think you have to be one of those “techy” people to be able to successfully use a bot, but there are actually a lot of companies out there that create user-friendly tools and programs so people like you and me can easily get a bot set up and running.

Sometimes, bots are used to reach out to a targeted demographic to announce a sale or special offer. Sometimes, the bot acts more as like an assistant, helping people that have reached out via Messenger with a question or request.

For example, I’ve seen a hair salon use a Messenger bot to guide a potential customer through the process of booking an appointment. When I saw this, it clicked that this is definitely a great way for a dental practice to utilize this technology, too. Available dates and times are displayed for the customer (or patient), and once a time slot is selected, it would be removed from availability. The bot can even send an appointment reminder via Messenger. Pretty cool, right?

Share a Special Offer

One of the more popular bots out there, ManyChat, boasts an 80% open rate when it comes to their Facebook Messenger marketing service. If you want to promote a special offer or new service, this is definitely something to consider. It does take a little more effort to set something like this up, though.

You would need to have a list of people that are interested in hearing about your services, kind of like an email list. You would them put them into this bot “funnel” while of course giving them the option to opt out at any time. Unlike email, you don’t have to worry about your messages getting lost in a promotions or spam folder, and you don’t have to agonize over the perfect subject line. Just craft the message and let the bot handle everything else!

Will Bots Help Grow Your Dental Practice?

There are over 1.3 billion Facebook Messenger users (as of December 2017) and 30,000 bots already handling all kinds of tasks for businesses. There’s no reason why this tech can’t help you grow your dental practice, especially if you feel like you’re losing perspective patients because you’re too busy to respond to everyone’s inquiries.

Some have free trials of low monthly rates, so there’s little to no risk involved with trying it out. You never know, it could end up becoming a super effective part of your social media strategy!

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