Will dental PPC work for your office? How do you know? What steps do you take to find out? In this episode of Dental Marketing Mastery, Mark and Howie go into the nitty gritty of PPC.
- Defining acronyms
- Bidding for position and understanding your search market
- Realities of PPC
- Understanding your competition
- Having people who manage these campaigns
- The first 90 – 120 days of dental PPC: gathering data
- Getting definitive recommendations and statistical proof
- Capturing data and remarketing
- Moving your money into good click sources
- AI vs. Humans
- Finding the PPC spend bell curve
- Should you do it yourself?
- Promoting individual niches
Hello, and welcome once again to the Dental Marketing Mastery series. This podcast is brought to you by DentalWebContent.com 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. And it’s a Monday morning and we’ve got Mark, my buddy on the other end of line, how you doing, Mark?
Mark: Hey, Howie, I’m doing fine. Thank you.
Howie: Wonderful, wonderful. We’re going to do something a little different today, aren’t we? We’re going to be talking about dental PPC, pay per click.
Mark: Yes. And in our normal, traditional, well, I don’t know if it’s normal and traditional we try not to get bogged down with techno babble when we talk about technology. So yeah,
Howie: It’s easy to go into the weeds on that.
Mark: It is, it’s really everything in technology has an acronym. Like short, there’s they shorten everything up. It’s amazing. It’s almost military. But,
Mark: Okay, so let’s go in, let’s just dive deep and let’s first start with some terms so the uninitiated will become initiated. PPC stands for Pay Per Click um, most people recognize that as Google AdWords. Although there are other Pay Per Click opportunities on the wide world of the internet. The most popular by a factor of 27 billion is Google AdWords. If you Google anything in your life, um, if an advertiser was looking to sell things to people who were typing those words into your search screen, in Google, when you hit Enter, and the search result comes up, you would see sponsored ads, it’s kind of a green color on my computer.
And those businesses who were bidding for position of those ads would pop up. there could be one ad, which normally means there’s only one-person bidding for those positions. There could be two, three, maybe four, I think I saw one the other day, we actually had five, which is kind of unusual for Google. Google doesn’t want to just put a whole bunch of ads in front of you.
So, they normally put three or four, and then they’ll place, if it’s a local search, they’ll place the map, right? they’ll have the map. And they’ll have little balloons with locations, and they’ll have the Google business listings inside the little box. And then underneath that, normally, your organics will start sometimes they put more sponsored ads below the map and then the organics start. So now, we understand that this is specific to dentistry.
What we’re about to tell you is not applicable to any other business or any other industry. We don’t work with any other business or any other industry, we only work with promoting dentistry to the masses for our client offices. But what I am about to tell you is applicable to dentists who look at the opportunity of advertising in Google AdWords as a potential use for a portion of their marketing budget.
So, let’s first now some of this is going to sound let me let me back up a little bit. Some of this is going to sound like I am negative toward Google AdWords and some of its going to sound like um amazingly positive about Google AdWords. Which kind of makes sense because our job as your dental marketing firm is, is to know what your risks are when you place your money there.
There are positives and negatives, pros and cons with every advertising avenue, everyone. Okay. So, having said that, Google AdWords sponsored ads assume that the consumer has to know something about what they’re after. In dentistry’s sake, it is very possible that the majority of people, for instance, typing in dental implants my town into their good Google search page, already know they’re a candidate for dental implants. I want you to think about that for a second. You are bidding on position, so that people who already know they may or may not be in the market for dental implants, may see your sponsored ad, that’s what you’re bidding on.
Okay, you’re probably not introducing the idea of dental implants in front of a person who doesn’t know anything about them. Because almost zero consumers will type in dental implants. Um, because they just not aware of them until they are diagnosed, and treatment planned. Okay, so there’s a very, very interesting distinction there. So just think just keep put that in the back your head, because there’s other words that you can bid on to like, loose dentures. The word implant isn’t anywhere in there. Okay. But you can use implants to support loose fitting dentures. Right? Everybody listening to this podcast understands what I mean. Now, here are the realities of dental PPC. And you’re probably going to like, half of them, you probably won’t like the other half.
Mark: Okay. So, all right. So, here’s every market, every individual dental market is its own little dental PPC, Google AdWords world. What works for Dr. T in Seattle, is not necessarily going to hold true in Orlando, Florida, or South Bend, Indiana, or McKinney, Texas, or anywhere else in the country. Really, I mean, it’s duplicating the end result, duplicating the cost per click, duplicating the calls per click, duplicating all of the metrics that are measurable, is not universally applicable Market to Market.
Not like many other media types that we use to promote our client offices, that’s not good or bad, you just have to understand going in that if that’s true, which it is, okay, then you don’t really know how easy, how hard, how much money you’re going to have to spend, how much competition you have in your market area for the search terms that you want to promote for, until you actually do it. Now, I want you to think about that. Isn’t that pretty much the way all advertising is? I mean, does anybody really know exactly what they’re going to get? Before they advertise anything? I mean, we got it down to about a 10 to 15%, um, predictability, index.
Howie: Yeah, we can predict pretty well in the in the channels that we’ve been operating in last 27 years, but this one?
Mark: Well, it’s just not. It’s, it’s just not possible, I can tell you the average acquisition costs for Invisalign patient, you know, nationwide.
Mark: But I can’t do it for South Bend, Indiana. Can’t do it. Even if I had a dentist in South Bend, Indiana, if I add another dentist in South Bend, Indiana the costs go up and the cost per clicks go up, because now there’s two people vying for the same thing. Okay. So, here’s what this means to you. If you’re going to put PPC money out there, if you’re going to put Pay Per Click money, or Google AdWords money, we have a whole a whole division of humans that do nothing but manage these campaigns. So, if you’re going to do this, then you need to understand going in at the first 90 days, maybe even 90 to 120 days is an enormous gathering of data. The data basically tells us at that point, how viable your market is for that specific thing.
But when I say thing, I mean like implants, or Invisalign, or just general dental patients or emergencies or whatever topic that you’re…whatever dental topic that you’re trying to promote whoever you’re trying to capture that’s typing into that Google search form. Whatever that topic is, the first 90 to 120 days is. Is we are now getting a baseline for the dentists out there who love research? Most dentists are kind of research oriented, right?
Mark: First 90-120 days of a PPC campaign is, is statistical baseline. You should expect that. You should expect to get a few calls, yes, but you should also expect that whoever’s handling this for you, at the end of the 90 or 120 days can give you definitive recommendation and honestly statistical proof of whether or not you should be promoting that topic in your market, how much it’s going to cost and how much your competition is but spending on the same topic, based on the data you accumulated over the first 90 to 120 days.
Howie: Wow, that sounds really cool. You know what, Mark, let’s take a break right now and let our folks think about that and hear what we have to say on the commercial break. And we’ll be right back. Don’t go away.
COMMERCIAL – Hey Mark, we should tell people about this new product, we have NPI Command. Ah, well, new, probably new to the podcast listeners, but not new to the customers who use it. So let me go through the finer points. NPI Command is the system we use, it’s an artificial intelligence system that creates decisions on where dentists, our clients, should put their pay per click money when they do Google Pay Per Click ad campaigns.
If you’re someone who’s already done them, and you’re probably frustrated by the cost of the negative clicks, well, if there’s an artificial intelligence platform monitoring your negative clicks, you can see immediately how doing these on an artificial intelligence platform will allow for a faster build, and the faster allocation of the advertising money to the places that are bringing in good clicks. Because with every PPC campaign, there’s sources of bad clicks and sources of good clicks. And the whole idea is to throw all your money in the good ones and pull your money from the bad ones. So NPI Command is our PPC department. And it’s not just a department of humans, it’s an artificial intelligence platform as well.
Howie: Okay, we are back. While this was getting interesting, you were talking about the amount of data gathered during the initial start-up there of a dental PPC campaign, right?
Mark: Yeah, for those who are uninitiated, the data you collect is, actually, kind of makes you cry. This is this is it accounts for every penny of advertising dollar that you paid to Google, and it tells you the destination and not the destination, the route where the Click came from. Okay. Now, clicks can come from almost anywhere they can come from somebody’s typing into the Google search and in clicking your ad. But a good PPC campaign would capture that user’s data and perhaps remarket to that user um PPC campaigns can also be used for banner ads.
So, if there’s a good solid mix of where your money’s going, then there’s a really good solid output of analytics data in whatever, 60, 90, 120 days, somewhere in there, you’re going to have just gigantic pile of data. And you’re going to notice that you paid whatever $6 to get someone from a banner ad from this source to click, and it really didn’t turn into a call once they got to your landing page, or if they didn’t click the online dental appointment scheduling button on your landing page, and it didn’t turn into an appointment and it didn’t turn into a phone call.
So, you can just click the little button and say, Okay, well, I don’t want clicks from that source anymore. And there will be literally hundreds of them. Okay, there’s a lot more sources of clicks in a Google ad that are that are not fruitful, then there are ones that are. But in that 60, 90, 120 days, whatever it takes in your market, you’re also going to get, you’re going to identify the source of good clicks. And you’re going to see that they go through to a phone call, or they clicked on the online dental appointment scheduling button and it resulted into a patient appointment, you’re going to see that.
So instead of spending six bucks on the bad Click source, you’re going to want to take that six bucks, excuse me, and apply it to the good Click source. Right? Okay, that’s okay. This is what happens when you manage a Google PPC. Now imagine you literally have 1000 Click sources over the sort of over the course of, you know, 30, 60, 90 days of doing this, your step
Howie: That would be that would be confusing for a human to do all that
Mark: That would be, actually it is, yeah, whenever you talk to a doctor who does their own dental PPC, there’s a couple of things you are guaranteed one. Um, they’re tired of doing it. They don’t, they don’t want to do it. They can’t. Here’s what we hear all the time. I can’t keep up with it. And what they’re telling you what they mean is, is I can’t keep up with turning the bad Click sources off so I am. I am focusing my ad monies toward sources of good clicks. That’s basically what it means.
Ok. So now once you get down to a determining that this is indeed a viable market for this subject that I’m trying to promote, and I can promote it for a reasonable amount of money, and these are at least now as of this moment, my good lead sources, and these are bad lead sources. So, I’m going to turn them off, I’m going to funnel my money toward the good lead sources. Once you get to that point. Let’s assume that the answer is yes, we should continue to advertise this in our local market, it is worthwhile, we can continue to pair down the acquisition costs by simply cutting off the bad sources and reallocating those ad dollars to good sources.
Now, here’s where it gets really, really interesting, especially with, with what we do here is we will take that account now up to this point, a human being has been monitoring your bad Click sources and your good Click sources. And they’ve been manually going through the list. Yep, yep, nope, nope, nope. Yep, yep, yep, nope, nope, nope, they’re turning them on turning them off all day. It’s amazing, okay. But after a while, you’re going to imagine that a human being is like, they’re going to go dizzy by staring at these things. And obviously, it’s labor intensive. So, your actual management costs for your PPC campaign gets, it goes higher, anything labor intensive, your management cost is going to go higher. So, here’s what we do.
We get the campaigns to a certain point, and then we load them up onto an artificial intelligence platform. And what the artificial intelligence platform does, is it takes our beginning and it constantly 24 /7/365, every nanosecond, tracks the source of bad clicks, tracks the sources of good clicks, and alerts the human being so that really what the all the human being does is they don’t do the analysis, they don’t have to do the analysis, they just look at the AI’s result. And they’re able to go in, make a human decision on or off and so, what ultimately happens for the client is the source of bad is found sooner, and those dollars are redirected sooner. So, the growth of the campaign and the impact of the campaign grows sooner, and reaches its optimal level sooner.
Now, we can’t tell you that a little lasts forever, but here’s the other side of this. Let’s say your dental PPC campaign for I don’t know, Invisalign, is cooking along really, really well. And let’s say it lasts really, it, for, I don’t know, 18 months, it’s just burning right along, you’re getting six, seven cases a month, you’re spending on a couple grand a month, you’re fine with that everything’s just cranking right along. And all of a sudden, there’s a trend down.
Remember, there’s a bell curve, there’s a top, there’s a ramp up of a bell curve, there’s a top of a bell curve, and there’s the backside of a bell curve, one of the keys to advertising and one of the keys to managing a doctor’s marketing budget appropriately, is being able to see the beginning of the down curve and pulling the doctors money out of it before it goes all the way down the backside.
Okay, so. So that’s the other piece of this with the AI platform is the AI platform says, okay, trending down, trending down, trending down, that alerts, the human being the human being doesn’t have to do the analysis, the human being just looks at, you know, let’s say the last 80, 90 days makes a human decision to either get a hold of the client and say, You know what, we need to pull this money out of this subject and move it to a different subject, or make a whole different decision all together.
Here’s, here, here’s, I guess, your takeaways. If you’re going to go into dental PPC, we will tell you that it really depends. And I know this is vague, but it it’s honestly vague, it really depends on your market. And in order to really determine whether or not your market is, is going to be a viable market for the dental terms that you’re trying to promote in your area, you do have to commit 90 to 120 days to it. If you do commit that, in an average market, you’re looking at a couple grand a month. Right? So, don’t you know, that’s another lesson to learn a couple of lessons one, please don’t try to do this yourself.
All you’re doing is bidding that the clicks up for every other dentist in your market. Please don’t put $300 a month into it. If you’re going to put three or 400 bucks a month into it, just take our advice. Take your spouse out to a really nice meal. Go for a walk on the beach. Hey, save it up and take an airplane ride somewhere. Okay, cuz you. Good put it this way. Google loves you.
Mark: Okay, you’re just sending them money. Right? And you know, who else loves you is your competitors. Because your competitors are spending five grand a month. And they’re getting all the patients. Okay, so anyway, don’t do it yourself. And if you are going to do it, understand going in that the first 60, 90, 60-120 days is really beta collection.
Howie: Yeah, it’s testing, right?
Mark: It’s testing, its data collection. You know what else? It is? It’s, it’s making you aware of it, are your calls from these ads being answered? If they are being answered? What’s the quality of the interaction? Are they scheduling? Or are they or is that Click source sending you potential new patients who aren’t even calling your office for the subject you’re after, maybe have to change up your keywords, maybe you have to change up your key phrases, right? There’s a whole bunch involved in this. And it will definitely be to your advantage to understand what’s involved before going into it.
So, I guess the bottom line is, is dental PPC campaigns absolutely can work. They should almost never be your, the only you do to advertise. I think that’s kind of ad that’s taken way too much of a risk. But they can promote individual niches really well. In some markets, you can get a good solid, reasonable cost acquisition cost for a new patient. So, they are absolutely viable, but they are also, they take a level of expert of very refined expertise. And in our case, this AI platform, if you’re going to manage, you know, volumes of PPC campaigns anyway, PPC doesn’t have to be as confusing as some people make it.
Oh, here’s another thing you want to look forward to is you’re going to want to have if you’re doing your own. You already have Google Analytics and you have access to the transparency, you can see the good clicks, the bad clicks, you can see well. You probably can’t see if they called and you probably can’t listen to the call. But whatever PPC, whoever is managing your dental PPC campaign, make sure that you can see touch, feel, listen to everything that’s going on with your campaign. Because there’s a lot of dentists out there who are spending 3, 4, 5, 6, $7,000 a month. And there’s no accountability.
There’s no visibility, they can’t see what’s going on, they just trust the person they’re sending the check to. Um, so anyway, that’s dental PPC. I know a lot of you listening to this are in it. You might be in it on your own, or you might be in it, you know, being managed somewhere else. That’s fine. As long as it’s working, and you can see it working, then we’re all good right, Howie?
Howie: Right. Well, thank you very much for tuning in with us today. We’re certainly glad and happy that you’re in our audience. So, we look forward to being with you again next time. Thanks a lot. Bye now.