Marketing has evolved dramatically in the past few years. With the Internet, businesses can interact with potential clients before ever speaking to or meeting them. Websites and blogs are information-based marketing tools, rather than mass-media based tools. In some ways, Internet marketing is like the yellow pages in overdrive.
Websites and blogs don’t rely on the hit-and miss tactics of television and radio commercials, print ads, and direct mail. Let’s use a TV commercial as an example. When running a television commercial, you’ll choose your time slot based on the programming, time of day, and viewer statistics – you’d determine the right position for your advertisement based on when your target audience will most likely watch the station. Then, you’ll pay a premium rate for the most coveted time slots and a lesser amount for off-peak times. Another consideration is the number of viewers you’ll reach with cable, local stations, and national stations. The point is, you try to get a memorable image of your brand in front of your target audience, hoping it will stick. Furthermore, a TV commercial is one-way. You put your information in front of the viewer. The same is true of radio, print, and direct mail marketing.
Let’s compare these to Internet marketing with blogs and websites…
On the web, your information is indexed by search engines, like Google. When a potential client needs your service, he types keywords into the Google search feature. The results page (SERPs) lists businesses that have websites, blogs, and profiles that match the searchers keywords. The higher your domain names appear on the SERPs for keywords you target, the more likely the searching party will click through to your site.
Websites can be optimized for search engines (SEO) by having original, informative text, metatags in the code, keywords throughout headings and text, and links to related information. These are just a few of the many factors that go into a solid SEO strategy. Domain name selection, popularity of a domain, incoming links, overall web presence, and longevity are also important factors.
Why blogs are beneficial to marketing:
Blogs are optimized in much the same way, but Google views blogs as news, not just an information source. Therefore, blogs get more credit than websites. If a blog and website were the same age, had equally-ranking content, keywords, incoming links, etc., in theory, the blog could rank higher than the website.
Also, blogs can feature a subscribe feature, so you can collect emails of people who subscribe to your blog. If your information appeals to blog visitors, you may build up a good list of subscribers. With a subscription, blogs are sent directly by email. In this way, blogs can be much like newsletters. Your front desk associates can even ask if patients want to be signed up before they leave your office! The subscriber can your emailed blogs on to friends or post it on Facebook.
Blogs create a deep online presence. Each blog you post goes into your archives on a page of your blogsite, then it remains there forever. You’re creating an encyclopedia of blogs, categorized by subject, and over the years, the buildup of original content can be quite impressive – to potential patients and Google!
On SERPs, Google likes to show a domain only once for a particular keyword phrase. With multiple domains (websites, blogs, and microsites), you have the potential to show up many times on Google’s SERPs. We have seen this theory proven again and again for our clients with multiple domains!
For more information about blogging for your dental practice, call Jill at 970-781-8861 or email [email protected].