Many offices will think that implementing every marketing tactic is the right approach, and for an office with a bigger budget that could be the right approach. However, a smaller office should focus on slow and steady to win the race. I spoke to 2 multi-practice owners, who manage a combined 38 offices and here is their advice:
#1 – Your Website and Google Maps Profile – these 2 items need to be done with care and lots of thought.
Dr. Reem Shafi owner and operator of 18 offices says “it is integral to have one common marketing partner who knows the pains of growing and really gives you suggestions, gives you ideas and really makes you focus on your website. I think focusing on our website and Google maps profile and letting patients know that we’re not just a basic bread and butter dental office is important.”
Your website and Google maps give you great real estate to showcase the unique aspects of your practice and promote your office’s proficiencies.
#2 – Chair time with the dentist!
Yes. Did I just imply that your chair time is a marketing resource? I did. This is your opportunity to meet your patient, get to know their concerns, and familiarize them with yourself and the practice. What a huge opportunity!
“Each new office we acquire, we make sure our dentists sit with the patients for 15 minutes to make mutual introductions,” Dr. My G. Tran, CEO of Streamline Dental Solutions and operator of 18 offices.
#3 – Mailers – target mailings.
“I will take a zip code and divide up the zip code and I will say I will spend three to five thousand dollars in literal target marketing. It has always worked. But once you go beyond that target marketing, it will get you enough patients to at least get day 1 to day 45,” Dr. Shafi.
#4 – The 2 Rs. Referrals & Reviews. Not all approaches work and you have to find the best methods for your patient demographic.
“What works for one office doesn’t work for another office, in certain areas I have a retirement community and so they don’t use text messaging, and they prefer that extra touch and that extra time. You can’t always standardize,” Dr. Tran.
In terms of getting your staff to implement requests for reviews, Dr. Shafi believes incentivizing her team. You can either reward the team members that achieve better results or the team as a whole when they achieve the goals of the office.
Before taking on a big marketing plan and making investments, follow these four core elements and grow the office the right way for longevity.