Is dentist internet marketing all that different from that of any other business? While you will use the same tools as everyone else, how you utilize them is very important. That’s where Customer Relationship Marketing comes in. Today we’re going to examine how this marketing strategy can take your dentist internet marketing to new heights.
What Is Customer Relationship Marketing?
If you haven’t heard of customer relationship marketing, also known as CRM, don’t worry. The core concept is quite simple. It’s a marketing strategy that aims to strengthen relationships with existing customers while also attracting new ones.
Other marketing strategies tend to focus on how the message is delivered. In contrast, CRM places its emphasis on who the message is for. Ultimately, the message itself is shaped by your customers.
Why Is CRM Crucial for Dentist Internet Marketing?
A 2018 study showed just how crucial customer relationships are to the use of word-of-mouth recommendations. People aren’t likely to recommend a dentist unless they have a highly positive experience and feel that their relationship is valued. What’s more, word of mouth has consistently proven to be the most persuasive method of advertising.
People simply trust their friends and family more than they trust an ad or a post on Facebook. This is even more true for dentists, who often have to work with children. Parents are protective and want to be sure their children will be in good hands.
How CRM Helps Your Practice Grow
Forget flashy ads and clever slogans. It should be clear by now that putting the customer relationship first is going to give you better results as a dentist. But just how does it work?
Here are 6 ways that applying a CRM strategy to your marketing efforts will yield results for your practice. With each, we have a few tips on how to put the strategy into practice:
1. Retain Existing Clients
The bedrock of CRM is your existing clients. You want these people to be as happy as possible so that they go on to recommend your practice to others. Make them the focus of your marketing by sending personalized communications.
For example, if your client’s daughter just got their first cavity, send a follow-up message a few days after that filling. Include a few tips for prevention or even mail some stickers to the house. This is using your data on your client to go the extra mile.
It might take a little more time to do, but the results will be well worth it.
2. Improve the Quality of Feedback
Now we want to start thinking about how to make the business more appealing for others. This is where your clients’ feedback is paramount. Go for a more personalized approach and put your customers first.
One good tactic is to ask clients for a brief interview before they leave. Even if it’s only five minutes, taking the time out of your busy day to listen to a client and really hear their opinions will leave a lasting impression. Be sure to take notes and have a list of relevant questions made beforehand.
Couple that with a discount for their next visit and you’ll have one satisfied customer. Turns out that dentist internet marketing can also happen offline!
3. Attract New Clients
Use that feedback to attract new clients. Once you know what your customers like, you’ll know exactly what to highlight about your practice. CRM doesn’t mean that you stop making other types of promotional materials, such as videos or local ads. It only means that you change what you talk about.
So for your next video or Instagram post, focus on your customer relationships. Let potential clients see what they’re missing out on, and how your practice will welcome them into your family. Speaking of social media, we need to talk about how you can employ it wisely while staying true to the principles of CRM.
4. Useful Social Media
Most businesses use social media as a soapbox. They blast out announcements and information to as many people as possible. While that’s certainly a valid use of the platforms, a customer relationship strategy needs to think a little bit differently.
For starters, you need to create a back and forth with your clients. If they’ve liked your Facebook page or follow you on Twitter, ask everyone a question. Engage people and make them more relaxed about interacting with your social media accounts.
Think Before You Post
When it comes to images, whether on Facebook or Instagram, you need to think carefully about what aspects of your business you want to show. Try to get pictures of happy clients before they leave. Show off your comfortable waiting areas and the games for children to play.
Always ask yourself who each post is for. Consider your demographics and the types of customers in your local area so that your posts have a purpose. Crystal Clear Digital Marketing recommends combining your data with publicly available data on your neighborhood for the best results.
5. Promote New Products, Services, and Locations
If you’ve followed each of these steps so far, then surely your existing customers are happy and are singing your praises to lots of potential new clients. The next step is to maximize your profits by promoting other products and services.
Retail is often an afterthought at most dental offices, but why not stock some toothbrushes and toothpaste? Whitening kits are also a great idea. Avoid the mistake of marking them up much higher than the pharmacy down the road. Instead, try to get a deal for your clients.
Smarter Service Marketing
Instead of just announcing that you have a new service to provide, target specific individuals. Naturally, certain treatments are going to be more applicable to some people than others. Send out emails to the people who are most likely to require that particular treatment.
Telling everyone about everything turns your marketing material into unwanted spam. A precise approach to dentist internet marketing avoids this and will be more effective. Crystal Clear Digital Marketing always aims to put out the perfect amount of content: never too much and never too little.
Expansion Plans and CRM
Naturally, you want your business to grow. However, opening another office or franchising your practice is a big decision that you need to make carefully. This is where your customers can help guide your decisions and you can take advantage of the opportunity to strengthen your relationship with them.
Start by plotting the addresses of all your customers on a map and mark your current locations. Your goal is to figure out where you can benefit the most existing customers while also reaching out to new clients. Research shows that customers rarely travel more than 10 miles to visit the dentist, so if you can reduce the distance for a significant portion of your customers, do so!
Once you have a few potential sites selected, survey your customers and the local area. Not only will your decision be an informed one, but the public will appreciate you taking an interest in their needs.
6. Save Money Versus Traditional Advertising
CRM can have a remarkable impact on your business. However, it doesn’t have to have a remarkable impact on your expenses. In fact, compared to traditional advertising methods such as TV ads, radio ads, and print ads, CRM is often much cheaper. Why is that so?
Focusing on fewer people reduces advertising costs significantly. Instead of printing 50,000 postcards to mail to the entire neighborhood, you can send a few personalized letters to the homes of existing clients. Rather than put out an artificial ad for TV, you can film a candid video for Instagram with a willing customer.
The Biggest Cost: Time
Truly effective implementation of CRM doesn’t require a heavy financial investment, but it does demand a lot of time initially. This is because you have to also train your staff to understand the principles of CRM. Remember that the in-person experience is your biggest advertisement.
You should arrange to have a few training sessions and spend a day observing your workers. You may need to make some changes to your staff to get the right attitudes in place. However, once your entire staff is on board and on message, effective CRM will become second nature.
Some of the most effective strategies, like writing personal letters to clients or setting up a fun waiting room full of video games, are time-consuming at first. But the reward is worth it.
Start Your Customer Relationship Marketing Campaign Today
If you’re not sure how to start an effective CRM campaign, or you’d simply like to leave the marketing to the experts, then call Crystal Clear Digital Marketing today. We’ve helped dozens of medical practices to grow and become more successful than ever with our holistic approach to marketing. Our software systems also can streamline aspects of your practice and make it more efficient than ever. Call us now to see how we can help you.