There are a few dentists in the United States who are absolute masters of marketing a dental practice. That’s a few out of some 120,000 dentists.
Odds are, you’re not one of those fortunate few. In fact, while you probably know a thing or two about promoting your practice, you’d be better off letting someone else handle the whole thing while you focus on seeing patients and solving their dental problems.
Them’s Fightin’ Words… Or Are They?
If you bristled when you read that you shouldn’t do marketing, that’s understandable. But consider this simple truth – no matter how good you might be, you’ll never reach the level of expertise of someone who does marketing full time; someone who routinely stays abreast of the latest changes in online marketing and the best practices.
As well, if you take your hourly rate and multiply it by the number of hours you spend overseeing or actually doing your marketing, you’ll see that you’re losing money. And increasing your stress level unnecessarily. And likely costing yourself time with family, friends, and just for yourself. That’s time you’ll never get back.
There are other reasons to not handle your own marketing:
- You’re never sure of what you’re getting in return. Unless you have mechanisms in place to accurately track the source of every new patient opportunity (NPO) – and the time and bandwidth to review that data and adjust your marketing appropriately – you’re wasting money every day.
- How many calls to your practice go unanswered? Dental offices can be very busy places. Your front office team is often juggling questions from patients in the practice, dealing with insurance snafus, and trying to answer the phone. True, many callers can be placed on hold, but how long will they stay on hold? Once those new patient callers are gone, you won’t hear from them again.
- How many of those NPOs is your front office converting into appointed patients? Every qualified NPO that is isn’t appointed is a complete waste of your marketing investment. While you might think you know how well your front office is performing, the fact is that you’re not monitoring every new patient call. You’re in operatories most of the day.
Dental Practice Growth Requires A Comprehensive Approach
You’re a skilled clinician who spent four long and expensive years in dental school to prepare to do a dentist’s job. That’s how you make money, and it just makes sense to focus your efforts on the clinical side of things.
However, if you hire a number of different firms to provide different aspects of your marketing services, you’re not home free by any means. Multiple vendors mean that somebody has to coordinate and supervise those vendors. That’s another time suck that should be avoided at all costs if you hope to grow your practice.
Whenever possible, you should look for a comprehensive practice growth partner that handles all different aspects of the attraction, conversion, and retention stages of your new patient funnel. For the sake of simplicity and your time, that partner should do virtually everything in-house to avoid miscommunication that can cost you money and new patients.
That practice growth firm should also provide the tools and resources to accurately track each marketing channel and provide performance hard data.
Ideally, you’d have a single point of contact with that partner. At most, you’d need to devote an hour or less per month to your marketing.
How does that sound? If you’re liking what you’re reading, have a look around SmartBox’s website – because what you need in a practice growth partner is exactly what we do for dentists every day.