The past several years have seen a huge transition in the world of dentistry. Rather than the yellow pages or word of mouth, most patients find new dentists online. This is especially true for the times a patient needs a high-value procedure like dental implants.
When somebody realizes it’s time to get implants, it usually comes from an instigating event in their life. This could be an emergency, a rude comment from someone close to them, or an upcoming event where appearance matters, like a wedding. Regardless of the catalyst, almost every patient will start their search for an implant practice online. They will either use a search engine like Google or make inquiries on social media platforms like Facebook. All these fall under the purview of digital marketing, and the savviest dentists know how to attract and convert these patients, connecting them with the life-changing treatment they need.
If you want to get more full arch cases, you need to understand the ins and outs of digital marketing. If you don’t, you may get left behind by dentists who do. Additionally, it takes time to build a successful implant practice. It takes even more time to build a consistent stream of full arch cases. Knowing how to market your practice online will speed up the success of your dental practice by leaps and bounds.
1. Set a marketing budget specifically for full arch implants.
Full arch marketing should not be just one line item in your marketing budget. It requires its own budget. Why? Because full arch cases are different from single implants and dentures. They are higher value cases involving different demographics and a different buying journey.
A full arch marketing budget often includes the following:
- A retainer for a marketing agency to optimize your web presence for full arch cases and manage your ad campaigns.
- Budget for the ad campaigns themselves, usually run on Facebook and Google.
- Money to update your website and boost its SEO for organic full arch searches.
- Graphic design for all of your ads and content.
- Recording equipment and editing for testimonials.
Long story short, if you want full arches to become your predominant implant case, they need to become your predominant marketing budget as well.
2. Identify your ideal full arch patient. A target patient profile to market to.
As hinted at before, the market for dental implants is highly segmented. The three main categories are single implants, denture patients, and then full arch cases. But within those categories are more segments.
The world of full arches has multiple segments. These include but are not limited to:
- Cosmetic cases – smile makeovers for otherwise healthy patients
- Rehabilitative & restorative cases – for failing dentition and associated oral-systemic health implications
- Denture relief cases – for edentulous patients struggling with traditional dentures who are looking for a more comfortable solution.
Each segment has patients with unique stories, decision criteria, timelines, and budgets. You must decide on your ideal full arch patient to target. This also includes the ideal procedure for you to perform.
Some doctors are great at performing all on fours, but they don’t like veneers. Or, perhaps they like veneers but don’t like dentures. These approaches are all acceptable, it just requires deciding which one you want to specialize in, and then developing a niche skill set for.
Then, the dentist should match their unique skill set to their ideal patient. This will ensure they corner the niche on that particular form of treatment and expand their reach. After all, people are willing to travel far and wide if it means they gain access to a renowned specialist.
Once the dentists establish their profile (ideal patient and procedure), then they should align their marketing budget to match. Some dentists may complain that marketing for full arch cases is too expensive. This typically means they aren’t getting the return on investment they want due to a lack of targeting.
When a dentist knows their ideal patient, they will take the time to perfect the art of communicating to them. This will lead to laser-focused marketing with a much higher conversion rate than simply casting a wide net.
Lastly, the budget will usually need to be higher for full arch cases. The area is more competitive, and the decision timeline is longer. It will take time to target the ideal patient and educate them, which often means running longer campaigns and investing more chair time. This quickly pays off, however, after the first few cases.
3. Launch a lead generation campaign targeting your ideal full arch patient.
Your “inbound” refers to your website and social profiles for the most part. These are places where the patient comes to you instead of you going to them. Here are a few ways to touch these areas up to make sure you get more full arch leads. Remember, you have to orient everything on your website and social media profiles to reach your target patient.
Next, come your marketing campaigns. As mentioned before, these mostly occur through Facebook Ads and Google Adwords campaigns. Make sure you have alignment between the lead-generating advertisements you run and the website you direct patients to. If you don’t, the patient will feel a disconnect. One example would be appealing to emergency patients on a Google Adwords campaign and then directing them to your full arch webpage written for cosmetic cases.
4. Maximize your internal marketing opportunities.
A fantastic way to quick-start your full arch practice comes through internal marketing. What is internal marketing? It means taking advantage of the relationships and connections you already have. Almost everyone has people in their life who could use a dental implant or even a full arch. You want to make sure that people in your sphere know to come to your practice.
Ask your employees and patients about potential full arch cases in their lives. This doesn’t mean you have them initiate a potentially awkward conversation with someone about their teeth – it means they keep an eye out and know where to direct inquiries.
This awareness should be combined with incentives for the best results. Reward your team and current patients for referring others to your practice. The better your incentives, the more likely they are to remember to recommend you during a critical moment.
Additionally, utilize your existing connections and relationships to jumpstart your full arch practice. Dentists who specialize in full arches can get referrals from other doctors who don’t perform this complex procedure. This isn’t limited to other dentists, either. You could develop and leverage relationships with other medical practitioners in your community and refer patients to one another.
Bottom line: Think about how you can maximize your existing relationships. This includes patients walking through the door, your team, and the professional connections you have. This often requires developing systems to communicate with your network, especially your existing patient base.
Send communications to your patients to educate them about full arch treatment and get them excited about the possibilities, both for them and for the people they know. This typically involves building and growing an email list and sending out regular blasts.
For more information, here is a simple guide to maximizing your internal marketing opportunities.
5. Build proof into all of your marketing.
Testimonials can include before/after photos, reviews, and videos. The best way to convince prospective patients about your treatment involves showing them the transformation you’ve provided to others. You will set them at ease and make them eager to move forward with treatment through the stories they see.
Ask for permission to share the stories of every full arch patient you get. Make before/after photos a routine part of the treatment process. If someone is uncomfortable with sharing their story, ask them to write a review, and reward them for it. Over time, you will have enough testimonials to regularly include them in your online content, such as Facebook posts.
Additionally, you can use testimonials during the consultation process to give patients a vivid picture of the results you bring. The benefit to these testimonials is that you can reuse them for each consultation. It simply requires gathering 2-3 of your hallmark cases and gathering photos and videos of them.
How will you build these best practices into your full arch practice?
Remember, the operative word in “best practice” is practice. You have to put these methods into practice if you want to see results, even if it means learning a new skill or treading into unfamiliar territory. If you learn to implement all of them, you’ll see a significant increase in full arch implant leads, and more people will say “yes” to your treatment.
For help kickstarting your full arch practice and sending your case acceptance through the roof, consider booking a free strategy call with us. Even if we don’t end up partnering, we’ll still give you more feedback and tips about your marketing practices.