Internal Marketing: Targeting Your Existing Patients

Too often dentists focus on bringing in new patients, that they forget there is already a captivated patient population in front of them. It’s a ‘can’t see the forest for the trees’ situation.

What is Internal Marketing
When you hear the term ‘marketing’, the first thing that comes to mind is likely ads, websites, and similar media. These are external marketing strategies. While internal marketing is very simply selling services to and encouraging referrals from your existing patients.

How Do I Market Internally?
Internal marketing is all about stirring up excitement with your current patient population. You’re generally aiming to grab the attention of your patients and stir up conversation to achieve word-of-mouth advertising.

What Strategies Can I Use?
Internal marketing should be interesting and should focus on creating a commodity. You want patients to say to themselves, “Oh! I want that!” or “Wow! Look at that. I should look into that myself.”

Here are some simple ways to market:
● Your Team.
Your team is THE best internal marketing asset you have. Provide them with the training and knowledge they need to inform patients of all services offered, risks/benefits, costs, and payment options. And this isn’t the sole responsibility of your hygienists–every staff member who talks to patients–on the phone or in-person–should know this information backwards and forwards.

The best way to get your team up-to-speed on internal marketing is to hire someone to do an in-office workshop. Practice consultants are often ideal to provide this and a number of other helpful and worthwhile services. They’re worth the money, trust us!

● Before-and-After.
Most of us enjoy flipping on our favorite DIY show and seeing the dramatic before-and-after. Captivating transformations can be used in dental marketing, too.

Consider sharing patient before-and-after case photos (with signed release waivers, of course). A general dentist can highlight in-office or take-home whitening treatments. An orthodontist may showcase inspiring before-and-after cases, and an oral surgeon may focus on some dramatic corrective jaw cases. Make it your own–you know what your patients are looking for, target that!

Share these photos using a newsletter, social media, and quality flyers or framed posters throughout the office. All of these items can quickly and easily be sent to your patients, even the ones who have been quiet the last year or two (what a great way to bring them back in!).

● Amenities.
Who doesn’t check out the amenities at a hotel before booking? Providing patients with a warm, welcoming and calming experience will help them feel relaxed when they sit in the exam chair. And relaxed patients are happier patients, and happier patients tend to be more agreeable patients.

Consider providing more than just water and a carafe of coffee made 6 hours ago. Put in a single-cup coffee dispenser, offer multiple beverage options like tea, hot cocoa, and an assortment of coffee.

Give the lobby and exam rooms a makeover. Apply a new paint color, bring in new furniture or reupholster what you have. And, please, ditch the tired, dated paintings and framed prints! Instead, opt for some modern, clean artwork instead. Don’t be afraid to bring in a professional designer if you don’t have the eye for it.

Identity Dental Marketing offers monthly Internal Marketing strategies to address topics that contribute to practice growth. For more information visit

If you’re ready to step up your marketing game, with internal and/or external marketing, contact Identity Dental Marketing today for your FREE marketing planning session.
Contact us today to get started

Join Our Free Facebook Group