Building a dental business
Let’s be frank, most of us don’t want to go to the dentist. Dental visits are not top of our joyful experiences list.
Yet, when our teeth give us no choice, we seek out a dentist. Here’s how to make sure it’s you. Or at least to maximise your chances.
Get busy online
Think about it; a potential client has moved into the area and they have appalling teeth. Are they going to walk the streets looking for signs saying ‘Dentist’?
No, they’re going to do what everyone does these days and let their fingers do the walking across a computer keyboard.
For example, they’ll type ‘Dentists in Paddington’ or ‘Pain-free dentists in Paddington’ into a Google search depending on their level of paranoia.
And if your practice isn’t online and appearing early in that search, you’ll be waiting a very long time before they come through your door. In fact they won’t.
You can have the most inviting entrance to your clinic and you’ll get the odd walk-in as a result. But most people won’t go near you until they’ve checked you out online.
That’s the digital age reality and an engaging online presence is now absolutely critical to your success.
It starts with a powerful website
These days you simply have to have it. But don’t fret, a compelling website with full hosting can be set up surprisingly cheaply and will pay for itself in no time.
Don’t do it yourself; hire professionals. Potential clients will base your worth on the quality of your site – is it uncluttered, attractive and, equally important, mobile friendly?
Does it have professional photos of your practice? Does it have a blog with regular industry and related updates? Does it have testimonials? Is it keyword rich so it will rank high in SEO searches?
All these things are crucial to building a solid foundation online.
Now it’s time to drive traffic to your site
And that means signing up to online local business directories so you start to rank in dentist searches in your precise locality. That’s super important – appearing in a list of Melbourne dentists when you’re based in Brisbane is a waste of time.
So choose relevant directories for your area and make sure your keywords are very location specific.
Yes, social media is important, even for dentists. At the very least, you need a dedicated Facebook page linked to your website. LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram are also worthy sites for building a following and driving traffic to your site, and then through your door.
Ultimately though, it comes down to how you are perceived. And that means seeking unbiased feedback and reviews.
Ask happy clients for a testimonial
The best time to ask satisfied clients for a review is before they leave their appointment. So make it easy for them – give them a card with a web address. Chances are if they’re full of praise for the work you’ve done on their teeth, they’ll share that praise online.
And a favourable review means business.
Give them an incentive to recommend you
Be it a discount off their next visit or something similar for a friend, give your departing happy client a good reason to share their experience on your website with a verified testimonial.
Nothing will sell your dental practice more powerfully than the words of clients, so don’t let a single satisfied customer leave without the ability (and good reason) to spread the word far beyond immediate family.