Don’t Wait Until It Hurts

When starting a practice, it’s difficult to justify investing in marketing. If you market the practice before purchasing it, you may worry about the messaging fitting the patient base. If you wait to start your marketing until after you gain ownership, you risk running out of time to craft a marketing plan, budget and strategy.

The practices that are the most successful consider marketing early in the stages of practice ownership, even before the ink is dry. It could take time to research your market, position yourself with the most effective brand and craft a marketing plan. It also times time for certain strategies (such as SEO & social media marketing) to provide a positive ROI.

If I had one message to give to all aspiring practice owners, it’d be the same message many of you have for your patients…

Don’t wait until it hurts.

Don’t wait until your practice is exactly what you want it to be before you market it. Guide your practice by your marketing message. A well crafted brand will help you attract the right employees and patients and will accelerate your practice growth.

Please see the offer below if you’re looking for a starting point.

Dental Start Up Marketing

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Are You Holding Your Google Ranking Back?

Dental Marketing Company

Marketing For DentistsSEO can be instrumental in attracting new patients to your practice. Naturally, you want your practice’s website to be ranked first when someone is searching for a dentist in your town or area.

There are several steps you can take to help your practice get there. This includes:

  1. Get Google Reviews
  2. Have ONE person manage your online presence, not several companies
  3. Add new content regularly by posting blogs
  4. Continually update your website to add on-site ranking factors
  5. Have a customized website created
  6. Obtain organic, high-quality back-links

You may be familiar with several of these tips. Have you ever considered what things you shouldn’t do when marketing your practice? You’ll want to avoid taking these missteps:

  1. For most practices, it does not pay to hire a local directory site to list you alongside other dentists in your town. When you do this, you are actually paying the directory service to outrank YOUR site. A more effective strategy is to improve your Google ranking and leap over these directory sites. Invest in your website, not someone else’s.
  2. Don’t get into the habit of regularly changing your keyword strategy, or having a long list of keywords. This dilutes the strength of your SEO campaign. There are situations where expanding your keyword reach is a smart decision to make, but this usually isn’t ideal when you are getting started.
  3. Never ignore bad reviews. Bad reviews are your enemy when trying to improve your ranking. We can help you. Ask us about our strategies for attaining 5-star reviews.

Talk to our team about strategies for improving your Google ranking. Don’t fall into these common traps. Instead, approach your SEO campaign with a new mindset with success as your goal. Our team has been utilizing SEO tactics since 2008. We’ve made a name for ourselves within the dental profession as a team that gets results. Our clients have achieved top ranking status even in highly competitive areas. Our solutions are tailored to your needs and available for a range of budgets. Contact us today to learn more.

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OK Google, Siri, Cortana, Alexa – I’m Looking for a Dentist

Over the past few years, we have seen an increasing trend of location-based searches, with more than 80% occurring on mobile devices. Due to this, many of the keywords we recommend have been based on “near me” and town name searches that help our clients appear near the top of the listed results for potential patients in their primary area. However, as is so often the case, search patterns are changing. To ensure that our clients, and we, remain competitive, we need to consider the impact voice search will have on the future of online marketing.

Within the past year, over 60% of smartphone users report that they have begun to use voice search. The increased accuracy of modern voice recognition software has caused voice searches to evolve from a rare occurrence to billions of queries every week, and rising. Though currently only about 10% of all searches are voice-based, that number is expected to continue to increase rapidly.

Why does the search method matter? Keyword search results can vary wildly with even minor variations in word choice and word order. Voice search adds a layer of complexity into that mix. Put simply, voice searches primarily involve natural speech, not keywords. This makes voice searches tend to be longer and more detailed than typed queries. As an example, the searches “dentist near me” and “I’m looking for a dentist near me” yield very different results despite occurring in the same location and on the same device.

What’s the next step? Arrange a meeting with us to discuss your 2017 marketing strategy. Depending on your location and local competition, you may benefit from investing in additional SEO techniques designed to embrace new voice search trends. For more information or to schedule your consultation, contact our office.

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Learning to Let It Bounce Off

Today I’d like to talk about a concept that I call “Letting it Bounce Off.” This is one of the most important strategies that I’ve learned in business to keep me strong, on track, and focused on leading my team and my clients to success.

As your success continues to improve and people start to learn what you’re doing differently, you’ll see some people start to get “scrappy.” The truth is that you are your only competition. However, people who think they are your competition can sometimes do unethical things. We’ve all been victim to this at some point in our lives. Maybe you let an employee go and they wrote a bad review on Google while posing as a patient, or you had someone move in down the street and use a very similar business name to try and capitalize on your following and your brand. I hear these stories all the time, and I’ve got the solution for you: stay focused on you.

You need to stay focused on your brand and your mission, and you need to let these things bounce off. If someone is doing something illegal or actually lying to your clients or patients, you definitely should consider getting the advice of an attorney. However, don’t let it consume you, don’t let it drag you down, and don’t let ruin your day. Don’t even let it ruin a minute! Just let it bounce off. Once you embrace the fact that nothing in life is personal and everyone is just doing the best that they can, you can really harness this strategy. It will make you a stronger parent, friend, spouse, business leader, and a better person in general. So remember, what others say about you is none of your business, and when the competition starts to get “scrappy,” just take it as a compliment.

 

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The Problem in Starting With Why

WHY?

This has been a topic of many lectures, books and conversations in 2016. Simon Sinek’s book spread like wildfire in the dental industry. It’s difficult to admit this to some of my colleagues, but I didn’t love the book.

Now, before you judge me too quickly, hear me out please.

In my opinion, the premise of Start With Why encourages entrepreneurs to keep focused on their “Why” in order to be wildly successful.

Throughout the book, Sinek regularly mentions that he is not referring to branding. However, he is. He talks about the core of a product or service. He references Macintosh and how the “Why” is apparent to the employees of this company.

Sinek is a genius in my mind, not because any of his teachings are revolutionary, but because he rebranded branding! He simplified it, but left out VERY important elements in the process.

He took the topic of branding, which most people don’t fully grasp, and called it “Why”. He argues that everything should point back to your purpose. He argues that in everything you do, you should start with your “Why”.

Yes, the above is true, but it’s a half truth.

Now, this might sting a bit, but… it’s not about you. Simon played you by making you feel important and special. He’s so smart that he realized if he can promise you a simple way to success, that you’d eat it up. He was right and his message was wrong.

Truth: Success does not come by simply focusing on your purpose.

I disagree when he implies that the reason Macintosh has delivered such impressive results is because Apple employees buy in to the company’s mission or “why”. This simplified notion likely has Steve Jobs rolling in his grave. I promise you, the level of success achieved by Macintosh was because of the entirety, evolution and emotion of its brand.

Apple is successful because of powerful marketing strategy. Period. Apple does NOT sell computers and phone and tablets. Apple sells individuality and innovation. I’m typing this on my new MacBook Air, while sipping my Starbucks White Chocolate Mocha with 2 pumps, while my iPhone plays my Pandora mix.  I bought these  because of what they offer me. They fill my emotional needs. They make me feel important. They speed up my work flow. They offer me energy, individuality and contribute in some way to my self-esteem. I buy things for how they make me feel.

Your product, solution or service must serve a large enough need of others. You may have the strongest WHY in the world, but if you are the only person with that need or passion, it won’t matter. Have you ever had a friend approach you with a business idea that he or she was very excited about, but you thought was a terrible idea? You thought to yourself, “No one is going to need or buy that.” Effective marketing includes research which evaluates demands, trends, demographics. There’s so much more than your why.

You buy things that make up your IDENTITY. Whether you buy name brands or refuse, you are branding yourself with the things you buy and the people with which you do business.

I’ve spent my life obsessively studying branding, influence and marketing. Starting with why is a great concept because it’s simple. The more important lesson from the success of this book is to keep your marketing message simple and focused on one topic and it will become more memorable and thus more effective. Sinek knows that a complicated book with many facets wouldn’t break through clutter, just like complicated marketing messages don’t work.

I believe the book has opened up a discussion about marketing, but it oversimplifies success. It’s fluffy. It’s a false promise that you can be wildly successful, if you can get others to buy in to your why. The book itself proves my point. The book does not sell information. It sells something deeper. It sells a false promise that if you just focus on your why, you’ll be successful. I respectfully disagree.

Instead, start with you.

Yes, you have a great product, great service, a great team. You are in dentistry or consulting or coaching or accounting to help people. We should all be here to help people. Start with YOU. You is your customer. Instead of focusing on WHY, unveil the true needs of your customer. Provide a real solution to a real problem. Do it better or differently than you competition. Connect emotionally with your target market through effective marketing – like that thoughtfully produced by Macintosh. What is your customer’s why?

Perhaps Sinek is right. Perhaps you should start with why. I just plead that you don’t end there.

 

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