If you’ve not done much marketing on the Internet, it’s time to get on board. There’s not a huge investment, and if you have time and determination, you can do it yourself.
1) Get a website
A professional and user-friendly website does not have to cost thousands of dollars, but it can. While most of our clients have a website and a blog site, some just have a blog. It functions as their primary website. This is totally acceptable. If you chose to go with a custom website that is not a blog, be sure that your web design company has experience and results with search engine marketing. If your site is not built to be search engine friendly, it will be slow to move up the Google rankings, where potential patients can see it. In fact, it may stay stagnant on page 10 for eternity. SEO is very important. Blogs through WordPress are inherently SEO friendly.
2) Get a blog and post regularly
If your dental website is a blog, then you don’t have to have a separate blog. Without a blog, you limit your potential for ranking high on Google’s SERPs (search engine results pages). You see, a blog is considered news by Google, so it gets priority over traditional website pages. Additionally, every blog entry is archived by category and date, so over time, the blog site accumulates a huge library of dental articles. This is also great for search engine optimization (the things Google looks at when indexing websites). Your blog should have original content posted weekly, at a minimum. Posting daily will yield better results. In the blog posts, be sure to include links from keywords (cosmetic dentist, one-visit crown, Invisalign clear braces) to related information on your main website or other blog posts. The original content in your blogs, the number of blogs, and the links in your blogs factor in to your Google SERP placement.
3) Get a newsletter
Specifically, you should get a customized dental e-newsletter that looks professional and is distributed quarterly, at minimum. Start by sending your newsletter to your patients’ emails. Also, add an opt-in form on your website and blog so that interested people can subscribe. In the newsletter’s text, include links to your website and blog. Each newsletter should have interesting, timely information about your practice, dental health, and community involvement, if applicable.
4) Get a brand
Your brand should actually come first, but it can be created after the fact and retro-fitted to your website, blog, and newsletter. A good marketing company will interview you and determine the best image (logo) to convey the essence of your dental practice. Integrate your logo, tagline, and message into everything you publish – online and in print. The logo should also be included on your signage and, of course, your business and appointment cards.
5) Send out press releases
These days, you can submit dental press releases to online PR distribution services for free, though some charge a fee. Be sure to include your logo and links back to your website and blog. Newsworthy information for a press release might include opening a new office, offering a new service, volunteering in your community, hosting an event, or starting a new blog.
If you do these things, your dental practice will establish a solid presence online, and I am here to tell you, online marketing works. MDPM practices what we preach. We receive calls every day from our blog and online marketing efforts, and you can too.
If you’d like help with your online dental marketing, call us. Blog websites, through the end of 2010, are $999, and blog posting starts at $199 a month for weekly posts. We also offer newsletters, logo design, branding, and press releases. Call today for a custom online marketing proposal for your dental practice. You can reach Jill at 972.781.8861.