In this episode of Dental Marketing Mastery, we run through an example dental office marketing plan we did for a multi-specialty practice.


Podcast Highlights

  • Setting the dental office marketing foundation
  • Specialists
  • Dealing with a capacity increase
  • Getting this practice to the “next level”
  • Magazines for a specialized audience
  • Hitting the top 20% of the market
  • Trifolds, Magazines, and multi-niche advertising
  • Setting up online dental appointment scheduling and review management
  • Setting up lead capture and appointment capture
  • How to promote both the practice AND its niches
  • Marketing as a specialist

Podcast Transcription:

Hello, and welcome once again to the Dental Marketing Mastery series. This podcast is brought to you by and New Patients Incorporated. I’m Howie Horrocks, the Founder of New Patients Incorporated, along with me once again, as my friend and partner and the President of New Patients Incorporated, Mark Dilatush.

Howie: Hello, everybody. Welcome once again to our podcast. Mark is on the other end of the line here, aren’t you, Mark?

Mark: Hey Howie, how are you?

Howie: I’m good, man. I’m real good.

Mark: I’m building an ark. I haven’t seen the sun for six days.

Howie: I feel for you. It’s what it’s what I felt like when I lived in Seattle for 30 years.

Mark: I know that’s March and March and April on the East Coast.

Howie: It’s gloom.

Mark: I know.

Howie: Listen, now, we were talking earlier, and you said that you built a dental office marketing plan, something that came up just today and you thought it’d be interesting to share it with our audience? Why don’t we talk about that?

Mark: Um, okay. It should. It actually should apply to everyone, even though it’s certainly an interesting and unique dental office marketing plan. So let me give you the background. I’ve got a dentist who purchased a family practice, the original owner wants to kind of go out on his own and do more or, focus the practice on I forget which it was either six months miles or sleep apnea. And the rest of the bread and butter general practice. Really nice family practice in an average US market and, you know, a suburb of a city we are all familiar with.

Howie: I think I know who you’re talking about, and which city it is. But yeah, okay.

Mark: Yeah, it’s trying to be secretive. You can. I’m not very good at it. So, but this dentist also just purchased or actually started. So, let’s see, nine, 2009, eight years ago, started a practice about five and a half, six miles away. And that one has evolved into a really nice, multi specialty, multi specialty practice. With you know, it’s got GPS in it, but it also has periodontist oral surgeons, and they need a little more room. So, they’re going to build a new building.

Hopefully break ground, perhaps this summer, and, and complete in the spring of 2018. And I thought, wow. And they’re planning on having, you know, over 25 opportunities in this place. So, this dental office marketing plan was actually for both of these offices, it was pretty clear what we were going to do with the, with the general practice. It’s, you know, I’m not going to call it a cookie cutter marketing plan, but I’m going to call it you know, let’s start out with the foundation. Let’s make sure the internet, your offline and online, are married, they’re budgeted properly, and make sure that we’re delivering messages to the right people, whether we’re doing it online or offline. That’s pretty standard. You know, for someone who doesn’t have an orchestrated, organized dental office marketing plan. That’s pretty much what we do for everybody who inquires.

Howie: I mean

Mark: Yeah,

Howie: it’s it we call it a template. Yeah.

Mark: Yeah. I mean, it’s

Howie: Customizable template.

Mark: It doesn’t make any sense to get fancy when building the foundation has worked really, really, really well, for 27 years, you don’t want to get too fancy and move off of, you know, what works.

Howie: We hate to change something that’s working.

Mark: Yes, yes. Changing something that working makes zero sense. So, this other office though is the one about five or six miles away is and as certainly with their, with their growth plans, is very intriguing. Because we have a general practice, we have three specialists there and now soon to be five. And they have this enormous transition going to happen this time next spring, where they’re basically going to triple the capacity of the office. And in one week, one week, the old office is, you know, moving over to the new office, and you know, they’re going to triple capacity.

So I’m not to mention the logistics of pulling something like that off, you know, let’s put marketing on the side, you have to manage a facility that large and a team that large equipment that large and whatever and rooms, and I mean, there’s just a million things that you have to manage. So, kudos to them, hmm, they already have a very successful practice, they just want to make it more successful.

Howie: They’re going to they’re going to the next level is

Mark: They are going to the next level, right. Which brings me to the dental office marketing plan for this other office, which was really it’s almost multi tiered. It’s also deployment timing, is multi tiered, it’s very odd that we get one of these where we sit back and, you know, put our, you know, take a five hour energy and get all of our brains cells moving in the same direction and, and really build something that is multifaceted, multi tiered.

So, from that level, it was interesting. So between now and then between now and when their capacity increases, their focus is on big cases, whether it’s implant cases, or cosmetic denture cases, or Invisalign cases, or what have you, there focuses on more of the big case dentistry, because they have tons of they have plenty of bread and butter dentistry to keep the GPS and the office busy. But the specialty side does need a little more little more boost. And their current internet strategy is terrible to missing. Sometimes terrible is worse than missing.

Howie: Yeah.

Mark: But so, we’re, you know, obviously, we’re gonna rebuild that. And that that’s going to take so one aspect of this podcast would be you know, if you’re planning a transition, like this, or like almost any transition, even if you’re a dentist who’s looking to open a new practice, you know, building a website, getting it coded properly, getting the initial SEO setup done.

I mean, you’re looking at 60-75 days, in most US markets, you can competitively position for not the majority of the search terms, but, you know, a third to a half of the search terms of the most popular search terms used by the local dental consumers and probably 90 days 60 to 120 days somewhere in there, so you’re, you’re seven or eight months out. So even before they open this new mega office, um getting their internet set up rock solid driving patients in, um, becomes a priority.

Howie: Then we, don’t we have a mail campaign going from them to?

Mark: Well, yeah, the offline side is actually the magazine itself.

Howie: Oh, yes.

Mark: Yeah, it’s actually because what they have there is a beautiful list of specialties that work really well with seven inside pages of a magazine because then you can just list out seven reasons to choose me. Okay.

Howie: Yeah.

Mark: And they all happen to be you know, those specialties. So, um, and, and it’s a fee for service office, right? So, you know, they need the targeting, this is not a carpet bomb. Certainly, they wouldn’t want a carpet bomb anyway because you’d be wasting half your money. So,

Howie: They have a very specialized audience here.

Mark: Exactly, exactly.

Howie: Yeah

Mark: We will probably hit the top 20% of that market. I’d love to be able to do top 40 if I can talk them into it before they expand but at least a top 20.

Howie: Yeah

Mark: And that will keep the specialist nice and busy until the new office opens. And then I told him because they they’re going to add an ortho and a pedo component. And I told him that you know, the summer months this is another aspect of this dental office marketing plan. That’s different. Adding specialties definitely changes your dental marketing plan definitely changes your deployment and your deployment. Timing definitely changes the budget, so it changes everything. I’m still going to add an ortho and maybe a pedo component when they have this new place when they have all this new space and which totally makes sense.

So, at that point, you know, you and I both know we’ve always promoted pedo in the in the months that the kitties are home from school, or the weeks in the case of spring break and fall break when the kitties are home. So, you have this incredibly robust offline promotion going on simultaneously with online promotion. Um during the summer months, mostly, I mean, there’s some in December and some in the spring during spring break, but most of its done in the summer time. Yeah, simultaneous with that you have going after the top 40 with trifolds and going after the top 20 with magazines with a coordinated multi niched Facebook advertising campaign, all being driven into specific landing pages with convenient online scheduling buttons on every page. This is a this is a

Howie: This is like being an orchestra conductor.

Mark: Exactly. exactly. Right. So,

Howie: You know what I think right? Right there. Let’s stop and take a little commercial break. Because I want to come back to this. Let’s explore a little more about the whole orchestra pit idea here and how this how we’re going to deal with this this unusual situation. But I think it’s a situation that a lot of dentists would love to be in.

Mark: Well, I think that’s the direction of dentists. That’s where the direction of dentistry is going.

Howie: Exactly. All right. We’ll be right back.

We hope you are enjoying our podcast. Let me ask you do you have a roadmap for your marketing? Why not let New Patients Incorporated do it for you. Our marketing plans have been proven effective for over 27 years for hundreds of practices across lots of different countries. We will give you the marketing data for your area of marketing budget, will show you how to allocate your budget. And then we will show you the proper deployment strategies for each medium. Click on the header where it says complimentary marketing plan when you go to www.newpatientsinc.

Howie: Okay, we’re back. Let’s keep going on this. This is a this is very interesting.

Mark: Yeah, so um, I mean, this conversation with the dentist it there’s two owners, so I told them. Look, you know, unless you’ve been graced by having the most understanding partners in the history of dentistry, I’m sure you have to go back to them and determine what your budget needs to be. Because honestly, that’s what I need. I need a budget. And in all these years, we’ve never had a dentist walk up to us and say here, here’s my credit card. It’s open, it’s unlimited. You guys spend what you want. Never happened, right? And it never will happen. So, what we want is, you know, the doctors, the partners to get together, put their heads together, come up with a number a budget that we can stay under. That’s our job. Our job is to stay under budget.

Howie: Yeah, we get them to, we have to start with a number first. And then we have free rein lot. A lot of clients will just say do whatever you want within this budget.

Mark: Right. Right. Exactly. So yeah, so this big this but right now, it’s not anywhere near our biggest office, but you know, they’re they aspire to get to where we’ve seen offices go in the past. And so yeah, so imagine, let’s just imagine it is, let’s say next May. No, no, next June 20th, 2018, the new office is open, it’s been open for about a month or so. And you know, all the all the guerrilla marketing is done. I’m sure they’ve had their open house and they had two clowns and maybe a rib cook off in the parking lot or what have you. And the marketing.

So leading up to this, leading up to this grand opening is a brand new internet strategy that is now it by now it’s fully optimized, probably going to see their internet properties at least twice on the first page of a Google search probably more on if we can do it, if we can pull it off. I will be the review champion in their in their market.

By that time um, they will have online dental appointment scheduling in this office, um they will have probably 25 to 30,000 magazines on the street 20,000 trifolds hitting the street, six or seven different niche Facebook campaign ads hitting campaign, Facebook users. And as soon as school ends in June, on 20 to 30,000 postcards hitting probably about every two and a half to three weeks, to a very specifically targeted audience of households with the presence of children with certain with certain in common credit worthiness ranges. All of this is all going to happen simultaneously.

Howie: Yeah, Piece of cake.

Mark: Yeah, Piece of cake. And, and the Facebook ads will all have their own individual landing pages where and maybe people can take this on its own and, find it useful. Um, if you do Google PPC ads, or you do Facebook ads, and I’m sure you have seen or heard in dental forums, people talk about gaining leads from the internet. Um, landing pages, yeah, you can capture data, you can capture first name, last name, email address, if you want, that’s a lead, okay. But honestly, what you really want is you want the patient to make an appointment. So, what they need is a phone number, which should be obvious. And a convenient online dental appointment scheduling button. That is integrated real time with your practice management software.

So, if you want to jack your landing pages up and get more out of your online advertising expense, that is certainly one way to do it. Um, I joke all the time. And these are, you know, friendly, friendly jokes, because I have competitors who are friendly, you know, with us. No big deal. Plenty of dentists out there, right? And they say, Yeah, I generated, you know, 120 leads for this dentist I saw It’s awesome. Who’s following up? Who’s following up with them all? He says its nobody, okay. So your answer is always nobody because dentists don’t want leads. They want patients. Right?

Howie: Right, right.

Mark: So if you’re going to convert, if you’re going to take the time to do online advertising, whether it’s Google PPC, or Facebook, PPI pay per impression, which if anybody’s listening to me, you know which way I’m leaning and if you’re going to go try something, go try it on Facebook. And if you want to, if you’re a customer, we manage those campaigns, so just call your campaign manager or your advisor and we can get Devaney in touch with you and she can start your campaign for you. But I’m make sure that if you’re going to put that money at risk that you have the absolute best chance of not generating a lead but generating an appointment. Okay.

Howie: Right. I mean, it only makes sense, man, if your if your web presence is doing its job. At some point, the person that’s staring at the screen is going to want to make an appointment. So, let’s make it as easy as possible by just giving them a button. That’s right on the same page they’re looking

Mark: Right Exactly.

Howie: Ding dong, why past the whole lead thing and go right to an appointment?

Mark: Right. Yeah, because the lead thing gets old really fast.

Howie: Yeah.

Mark: I got 1000 leads. Yeah, it’s cool!

Howie: But I’ve got nobody to contact in it.

Mark: Exactly. So um, so anyway, so this this is going to be on this is going to be a really big deal. And not so much from a business standpoint. But from now, can you imagine being one of our campaign managers, we have two folks back at the home office, I give them a shout out their names are Megan, and Wendy. And that’s what they primarily do is they sit there and make sure that all these spinning plates have sticks on the end of them.

Somebody holding on to all the sticks, because in between all those projects, are designers, print facilities, letter shops, I mean, there’s just so many details and so many different people and mail lists and chopping the mail lists up by dropping oh my goodness, there’s just so many details in a marketing plan. Just even a regular dental office marketing plan, not just this one.

Howie: Yeah, this is like 10 x, you know,

Mark: yeah, yeah. These are the people behind the scenes who you probably if you’re listening to this, and you’re not one of our customers, you know, probably wouldn’t you probably think me and Howie do this from a tree fort somewhere. And everything happens on its own, but that’s not the way it works.

Howie: The good old days.

Mark: No, the good old days, yeah.

Howie: The tree fort.

Mark: I love my tree fort.

Howie: Or bass boat.

Mark: Yeah, right. So, um, anyway, I guess the bottom line is, is there is a way to promote your whole practice, there is a way to promote your niches, there is a way to do both simultaneously, there is a way to lift off a specialty practice on its own, there is a way to simply manage the marketing and the new patient flow for just a general practice. That’s whenever doing 100,000 a year, there’s a way to do all of it. All of it requires thought all of that requires planning all of it requires you to know what works and what doesn’t work and all that stuff.

But there is a way to do it all and it can all be done within a budget. And the within a budget that the owner of the practice sets, not your marketing company. And I just thought this was just an interesting, a really interesting and I would even go as far as say challenging, right?

Howie: Yeah.

Mark: There’s going to be, you know, we got lots of moving pieces on and I’m going to guarantee you that if they break ground this summer. And they say, yeah, we’re going to be open next spring and April, that they’re not going to be open in April. All of our schedules are going to get blown out, you know,

Howie: they’ll have to be adjustable.

Mark: Exactly right. So, and all those contingencies have to be put in place. Um, none of this is impossible. It’s all it’s all absolutely possible. I find it interesting that this is actually a trend among I’m seeing a trend. And I’m gonna say it’s hundreds of offices, but I’m, I’m seeing a hell of a lot more owner, dentists now who are talking to me about, okay, I’ve got eight ops. Now I want to go to 20. And I want to add this special test, but this specialist and this specialist, because eventually I want to be the dental practice that does everything. which basically is the only you know, which is the main reason why someone would call me because they don’t even have to think about stuff we don’t do. Because we do everything.

Howie: Right all under one roof.

Mark: All under one roof, right, which is a which is very popular, right with the dental consumer and I’m just having more and more of these conversations. Yeah, these aren’t consolidators, either. These aren’t. These aren’t, this isn’t corporate dentistry. These are these are wet finger dentists that are looking out into the future and building out you know, where they believe the markets going? And these are not insurance Mills. No, this guy’s hit this guy his feet from service in both of these offices. Right. So um, anyway, I just wanted to share that with Howie before the podcast today. And I thought it was really, really interesting. And if it’s a trend I keep seeing then this is going to get more and more and more interesting as we go.

Howie: Yep, absolutely. Wow, that was cool. What I like to do it at some point is revisit this as they this particular practice gets going and you know, maybe we can drop in on him every now and then

Mark: Sure.

Howie: and share that with our audience. I think that’d be a really interesting. Anyway, thank you all for listening, and we will be back with you again before you know it. Goodbye.

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