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What Is Marketing?

Marketing is a lot less complicated than you may have been led to believe.  Although I know I shouldn’t really be saying that.
Essentially, marketing is:
• Identifying your target market (those people who want your product or service, that you can reach easily, and who can afford
your product/service)
• Discovering the needs and/or wants of your target audience
• Developing and then executing a plan to create a relevant and unique offering
• Creating and retaining loyal customers who actively engage with your brand
In other words, marketing is about creating a positive relationship with your target audience.  Most importantly, marketing is essential for your Dental Practice. Without it, your Practice is going to struggle.

Don’t create a product or service that suits you.  If you want to make money, you need to sell your product or service to other people. What they like, want or need is more important than what you want, like, or need. Design everything to suit your prospective patients, not yourself.

Your target market consists of your ideal patients.  Those people who are looking for a product or service like yours to solve their problem.

But make sure you can deliver what your target market wants.  If there is a disconnect between what your target wants and what you can deliver, your marketing plan will fail.

The Bottom Line on Social Media!

People want to buy from social brands.

Consumers are basing purchasing decisions on social content.

Did you know that nearly two-thirds of those who use social media to find information or share feedback about brands have purchased a product
based on social media content. For 18–34 year olds the number grows to 75%.
When asked about brands that integrate social media experiences on their websites, 63% of respondents report they are more likely to buy products and try new things because of the social comments of others.
More than half (54%) reported they would be more likely to purchase a product from the brand. And 79% report that they want to be able to get vouchers & promotions from brands socially.

I hope your Practice is maximising it’s potential on Social Media Platforms!

Social Media Has Changed The Way We Communicate

Patients are no longer required to pick up the phone or send an email to learn more about you, your Practice or service.  They are actively researching, listening and learning about you in real-time.

However, gaining a loyal following is easier said then done. Below are some simple tactics to get more followers!

1. Share Quality Content

While this one should go without saying, it is always worth repeating. Quality content gives people a reason to share, comment and come back for more.

Social Media offers a platform where being a little controversial might be a great way for you to start a dialog. The important component is to always put the needs of your followers first.

2. Use Hashtags

Use hashtags to find people and topics centered around subjects you are interested in.

3. Brand Your Channels

Take advantage of the customisation options including a branded background, adding your professional head shot and filling out your bio.

Take your time to carefully write a bio that expresses who you and your team are, be authentic. Take your offline personality and accurately convey that.

4. Get Engaged

Get involved in conversations and make it a point to stay actively engaged. It’s not enough to schedule a few posts. You must begin to create conversation.

Ask questions and craft them in a way that they are worth replying to.  Reply in kind and open the lines of communication.

5. Don’t Haphazardly Follow

Be strategic in who you follow. What is your niche, passion, favorite pastime or hobby? Follow people that share information similar to what you find interesting.

6. Be Helpful

If you are only using social media to push out your marketing message, you are missing a huge opportunity. It allows you to offer great content that provides a benefit. Share [...]

Engaging!

The next time you’re at any social gathering, party, lunch or dinner with friends, pay attention to those who people are most engaged with.  Then ask yourself why are people so engaged with them? Mainly, you will realise that the people who are the most engaging are:-

1) the most interesting

2) the most attractive

3) the most engaged themselves.
You now know everything you need to know about increasing the engagement between your patients and your brand on Facebook.
Well, there’s a bit more to it like, what is interesting to your audience? How do you make yourself attractive through social media; and when, how, and how often should you engage. If you feel you need some help with your social media management for your Practice contact me at hayley@hayleyironsmarketing.co.uk.

By |September 29th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments|

Social Media & Negative Reviews

By using social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter,  you leave your practice open to negative reviews through these online communities .  It’s easier for upset patients to leave negative comments and these comments are instantly public.

But remember, in all likelihood these people would be spreading the negative to family and friends via talking to them anyway, it would be going on and you would e unaware of it.  It’s best to be prepared with an active plan and presence.

Transparency, accountability, and consistency are your suit of armor.

If you see a negative review from an upset patient, consider what you would do, how you’d react.

 Will you openly chastise the patient with a long-winded defense?
 Would you consider legal threats to silence a jealous competitor that is fraudulently misrepresenting themselves, and your practice?
 Or, would you ignore it like any other somewhat meaningless complaint?

Think about it, and develop a plan of action (or inaction) for that contingency before it happens!

But, DO NOT let that fear stop you from realising the tangible financial benefits of incorporating social media into your dental practice digital marketing plan.

By |September 11th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments|

Facebook Marketing For Dental Practices

Social Media has become a huge part of life for most  people nowadays. A staggering 90% of people trust  recommendations via social media, so it makes sense for a Dental Practice to market its services and treatments where its patients are.  But why should you consider Facebook for your Practice?

Facebook has 1.23 billion active users worldwide
Facebook is the most visited website
76% of users log in at least once per day and spend an average of 20 minutes on the site
At least half of the UK population has a Facebook account
56% of Facebook users are likely to recommend a brand or product after “liking” it

Because of the sheer numbers of people logging in daily, every business has clients (both current and future) on Facebook.  So why would you not want your Practices to be present and actively interacting on Facebook?  The downside is that although social media is touted as being free, it isn’t – at least not in terms of time and effort.  If you’re going to market your business on social media then you DO have to spend time doing it or use the services of someone like myself who can manage it for you.  It has to be done consistently, every day, all year round.

For further help or advice please contact me at hayley@hayleyironsmarketing.co.uk

 

Benefits of Social Networking on Facebook

In today’s world if you’re not ‘on-line’ then you’re seriously lacking the cool factor.  Most people, when they want information, head straight for the internet. With the increasing popularity of Facebook people now head straight to Facebook if they want to know more about a business.

VIRAL MARKETING:
Viral marketing is word of mouth on speed. Take advantage and get your name out there fast and to lots of people. Create an excitement about your Practice that will result in people not being able to resist wanting to be your Facebook friend and patient.

BRAND AWARENESS:
Do you know how your patients view your Practice?  Tell people more about your Practice by using  Facebook.  It is easy to use and people will like reading about your Practice and your brand.

CUSTOMER FEEDBACK:
Facebook is a comfortable and user friendly platform that people are happy to use which is why it is a great way to get patient feedback. Use your wall to ask questions and see what responses you get.  It also gives you the opportunity to speak directly to patients about any of their comments.

Humanise Your Practice:
Put a face, or many faces, to your Practice. This will allow your current and future patients to see you and know exactly who they’re dealing with. Placing photos of Practice events, employees performing their jobs or happy patient pictures will humanise your Practice to those looking for dental services.

TARGETED ADVERTISING OPTION:
Facebook also has an option for businesses who want to reach an exact audience and connect with real people. Facebook advertising is a newer element to Facebook and is a paid service which is quick and easy, targeted to your exact demographic and tracked so you can see the [...]

It’s All About Balance

Is your customer service house in order, do you have a high-quality offering and are you committed to continuous improvement? Yes?  Then you have nothing to feel sheepish about and should be advertising this on Social Media!

Everybody is raving about the benefits of being on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn, but is it working for you? No? Then maybe the following relate to you……..

 

 *You sell too hard, and too soon – We’ve all walked into a shop and been pounced on by a sales assistant, right? It’s not great. It feels clumsy and obtrusive, despite the fact that the assistant probably had the best of intentions. Doing something similar on social media is worse. At least when you walk into a shop there’s a chance you want to buy something. If I decide to connect with you online there could be a host of reasons why I’ve done so. Wait until you have a clue what they could be before you start with your sales patter. Buying online may not be one of them. Yet.

 *You want me to validate myself – OK, so nobody likes a spambot, but you’re a business; do you really expect that people should be willing to jump though a virtual burning hoop to prove that they’re real before you decide whether to follow them? Really? Doesn’t a quick glance at their profile tell you all you need to know at this stage? My advice is to drop the validation service if you’re a business; it sends out a message of mistrust from the outset.

 *You don’t know me – The biggest mistake you can ever make when trying to sell to anyone is to not have taken the time first to [...]

Tips On How To Use Social Media For Your Dental Practice

Have Conversations – Participate in and create discussions that are stimulating and informative. Spreading ideas and providing respectful and thought provoking debate can get you noticed.

Build Relationships – The most loyal of patients are people who know and trust you.

Don’t Pitch – No one likes a salesman.

Listen & Be Helpful – If you are listening to what people have to say about their likes, dislikes, needs and desires, you will know better how to serve them. You might also know how to help them solve a problem.

Provide Value – Whenever you do post something, make sure it’s something of value. Whether it’s a witty status update that brings a smile and leaves them with a little piece of your personality or a quick blurb and link to a relevant article, make sure you’re not only making contact but sharing something valuable. Can it brighten their day, teach them something, get them in on an incredible deal? Then it has value. People prefer value over bottom barrel prices.

No Expectations – Don’t have expectations for how and when people should respond to what you give, building any relationship takes time. They may not need you today but they might tomorrow. The person they trust the most, who is freshest in their mind, gets the business or referral.

Why should I consider Facebook for my Dental Practice?

 

Facebook is Huge….

 

Facebook has 1.23 billion active users worldwide
Facebook is the most visited website
76% of users log in at least once per day and spend an average of 20 minutes on the site
At least half of the UK population has a Facebook account
Facebook users are likely to recommend a brand or product after “liking” it

The answer to the title of this blog is that, simply because of the sheer numbers of people logging in daily, every Practice has patients (both current and future) on Facebook.  So why would you not want your business to be present and actively interacting on Facebook?  The downside is that although social media is touted as being free, it isn’t – at least not in terms of time and effort.  If you’re going to promote your business on social media then you DO have to spend time doing it.  And it has to be done consistently.  Your social media marketing also has to be closely integrated with your website and email strategy.

Don’t use your personal profile to promote your Practice.  A business page should  be set up via your personal profile, so if you don’t already have a profile you’ll need to start one first.

Start building your likes – invite your Facebook friends and email contacts to begin with.  Hopefully at least some of them will oblige!

Post updates regularly and consistently.  Experiment with different times to see what works best.