Creating Your Dental Practice’s Online Presence

Creating Your Dental Practice’s Online Presence

Online marketing is ever evolving.  20 years ago, in the pre-social media days of the early aughts, an article similar to this one was published in the Dental Clinics of North America Journal. It focused solely on building a community around a practice’s website. Today, that information is as relevant as telling someone to focus their advertising on phone book ads.  You’d probably do better handing-out branded toothbrushes for Halloween.   

Your online presence drives traffic to your brick-and-mortar business and needs more than a flashy web site to thrive. It is a force multiplier. So, why would you not build your online presence to increase your customer base?  

In the Dental Clinics of North America Journal article from two decades ago they said “web technology provides an opportunity for dentists to showcase their practice philosophy, quality of care, office setting, and staff in a creative manner.” While this is still true today, there are more layers to creating your online presence these days. Getting it right makes all the difference in the world. 

 How are you going to stand out from the crowd? Find your online niche.  Trillium Dental, a practice with a location in downtown Ottawa, posts smiles.  What better way to elicit a genuinely happy feeling about your business while also promoting the pearly white results of your labors? It works for Trillium. Try Googling “dentist Ottawa downtown” and see how many pictures of Trillium smiles you get. 

 Another Canadian practice that successfully carved out a unique place for their practice is Toronto’s  Aurora Borealis Orthodontics. They are the World’s only Star Trek themed orthodontic office, which certainly lends itself well to a plethora of space-themed social media content.  

 Plan and create content once you find your online niche. Your content should be engaging enough to convert your viewers / readers into active customers while also providing useful, enlightening, and entertaining information to your existing clients.  You’ll also want a polished product to share on your social media channels, which takes time, planning, and know-how to accomplish.  

 Once you make something, then you have to post it. In a poll of social media users, over half of the people polled stated they were far more likely to use services of businesses they actively follow on social media. Again, it’s that important. Give your clients and potential clients a reason to follow your social media accounts by providing engaging and useful content. What that content is depends on your practice’s brand, philosophy, and the community it primarily serves.  

 After creating and posting our content, it is time to moderate and engage. 20 years ago, you may have been able to set-up a website and walk away. Websites  were static things back then  with the purpose of  providing information and a way to contact the business directly. Yawn. Nowadays, your online presence is a living creature that needs to be looked after.  You need to engage with your clientele and moderate comments and you need to do it regularly, even multiple times a day to stay out in front.  

 Busy practices might find it beneficial to hire someone to build and maintain their online presence or they may want to hire someone to focus exclusively on that solely for their practice.  Whatever you do, make sure you get your dental brand out there. Improving your online presence not only helps your business financially, but allows you a direct connection to your clients and community as a whole. Don’t take it lightly.