Dentist Online Marketing, SEO and Social Media in 2019
If you want patients to find your dental clinic online, search engine optimization and digital marketing is a must. One of the defining aspects of your search engine optimization is keywords. The keywords you choose, in essence, tell Google what your website is about, and Google accordingly lists your links on search queries.
You need to find the right keywords. Good keywords are necessary if you want to appear on Google searches and target people who are actively looking for dental services.
So, how do you find the right keywords for your dental business?
Step One: Get Keyword Suggestions
The first step is to build a list of possible keywords that relate to your business.
Google has various tools that you can use to begin your keyword research.
Your first stop is Google’s Keyword Planner. To access Keyword Planner, you need to have a Google Adwords Account.
Once you have logged into Keyword Planner, by just typing a keyword phrase (for example: dental services), Google will give you a list of similar Keyword Ideas and Ad Group Ideas.
These keywords are various terms your audience may be using. Furthermore, the Keyword Tool gives you data on the volume of search (Average Monthly Searches), and this could be valuable in picking the right keywords.
Google Autocomplete is a search prompt. With this tool, Google is trying to predict user’s search query to enhance their search experience. Google Autocomplete is based on actual searches conducted by users. Hence, it’s good insight into what people are searching for on a particular subject.
Open Google and type in:
See what you get. Keep trying similar words that you think your audience would be searching for.
Google Related Searches
Quite often, at the bottom of the search result, Google will have a list of keyword phrases called Related Searches.
While Google Autocomplete presents suggestions that are closely related to the keyword, Google Related Searches takes it a step further and showcases related queries which users may have.
Other Keyword Tools
While Google is the best platform to start your keyword research, it’s not the only platform you should stick too.
There are several other keyword tools you should utilize.
This is a keyword tool that specifically highlights long-tail keyword phrases that can be used. Additionally, the tool showcases keyword suggestion from varying platforms such as Google, Bing, Yahoo and Amazon. The tool is quite lightweight and unlike Google’s Keyword Planner, it doesn’t burden you with details like search volume and bidding competition.
This handy tool brings you keyword suggestions along with the number of searches.
Step Two: Pick Relevant Keywords
Using the keyword tools, you would have amassed a bulky list of keywords you could use for your website. However, it would be a mistake to use every single keyword. You need to narrow down your keyword list to phrases that will benefit your dental website.
Long-Tail over Single Phrases
Long-tail keywords have an advantage over single phrases. The advantage of long-tail keywords is that they are better able to capture the intention of users. Look at the keywords you have amassed and pick keywords that are long-tail.
Don’t go for the Highest Search Volume
Unless you already have a good SEO rank, you won’t easily rank on keywords that have high search volume.You are not the only dental website trying to appear at the top of search results and almost all your competitors will try to rank on keywords with the highest search volume. Switch your focus to keywords with a low to medium search volume. The idea is that once you are able to rank on the first page of such keywords, you can move to high search volume keywords.
If your business operates within a specific geographic, focus on geo-locations keywords. These keywords generally include a geographic location word in the keyword phrase. For example:
Dental service in Edmonton
Dental services in Alberta
Emergency dental clinic Edmonton
One trick to assess if a keyword is relevant to your business is to look at keywords used by your competitors.
Shoes of your Audience
Talk to your audience, understand them and then, put on their shoes. Know what your audience is searching for online and pick keywords that are close to that.
Step Three: Use the Keywords in the right places
Now that you have a list of relevant keywords, you need to place them right.
Do not throw too many keywords on a single page; this is especially problematic when you throw too many unrelated keywords on a single page. For example, you put – dental services, toothache services, emergency dentist, braces treatment – on your home page. This would confuse Google and the search engine would not be able to identify what your page is about.
Instead of putting all your keywords on a single page, you create keyword optimized pages. For example, for all keywords related to toothaches, you create a service page specifically for Toothache Relief.
Caution: Avoid Keyword Stuffing
A big SEO mistake is to over-use keywords. Use too many keywords and you have indulged in keyword stuffing. More than anything, your content needs to be helpful. Avoid repeating keywords too many times and place your keywords strategically so that the content quality is not brought down.
If you add too many keywords and they standout, there is a very real possibility that Google will assume your website is spam and blacklist it.
Good keyword optimization will greatly boost your dental website’s SEO rank, but it is not the end-all for SEO. Keyword optimization is just a small part. There are many SEO tactics you can use to optimize your dental website so that it ranks at the top of search results. Link building, blogging, and domain name are just some of the tactics you can use.
Do you know why dentists use more anaesthesia for lengthy procedures? So that you cannot run away when it’s time to pay the bills! Jokes apart, I completely respect the efforts you take to ensure that your patients get the best of oral care services. It is indeed essential to keep your patients happy to keep your practise running. However to keep your practice running and patients walking in, you need more than your exceptional services. Digital marketing is something that can help you. With digital marketing, you can promote your dental service with the help of online techniques. Now digital marketing is a larger concept which includes social media marketing, paid advertising, content marketing, etc.
Let us take a quick glance at all the options you have in digital marketing for dentists.
Content marketing is when you create good quality content that is informative and helpful for your target audience with the aim to win their trust and eventually their brand loyalty. Logically speaking, any content you create to use as your company’s information is content. This includes your social media posts, blogs, videos, etc. But strategically speaking, content marketing is a process in which you plan every content you put on the internet with the intent to get leads for your dental clinic. Having a blog section on your website is the most common type of content marketing almost every other business implements.
Social Media Marketing
Social media platforms are highly popular in today’s smartphone era. With quick access, people spend a good amount of time on social media platforms daily. This trend is something that was picked by businesses and used for their benefit through social media marketing. Social media marketing takes place when you create a business page for your dental clinic and regularly post on it for your audience. These posts can be funny or informative, videos or memes, etc. Some businesses also pay to get their posts pushed further by opting for sponsored posts in order to target a specific audience.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization helps to increase your website’s online presence organically. Blogs are an important part of the SEO process. The idea is simple, you use optimization strategy in your online content to make you content rank high on SERPs. These optimization strategies include keyword optimization, link building, directory listings, etc.
Online ads are paid content to reach to your target audience. These ads can be text only, image-based, videos and so on. Online ads have easy payment models and highly targeted methods to get you a good ROI.
Email marketing is a smart method of striking a more private connection with your audience. Though initially, you will need to build a list of subscribers for your emails, in the long run, email marketing allows you to constantly connect with and engage your audience. Clubbing your email marketing efforts with your content marketing can be a smart move.
Digital marketing indeed has enough options to promote your dental clinic online. However, still many do not understand the benefits of digital marketing for dentists. If you believe in factual logic and not tall claims, here are some important statistics that prove why digital marketing is important for dentists.
People are very cautious when it comes to choosing healthcare professionals such as physicians and dentists. They make sure that do a good background check of the professional before choosing one for themselves and their family. Gone are the days when people used to rely on word of mouth and recommendations from their friends. Today patients believe in checking the online reviews before approaching you with their dental problems. This is why digital marketing is important for your dental clinic. With the help of digital marketing techniques such as local SEO, you can create a GMB page that enables you to add your own dental business page on the SERP. This page will include online user reviews which help your target audience to know more about your patient’s experience with you. Apart from this, a GMB page also enables an online user to find your location, book appointments, ask questions and so on.
Paid online advertisements are a great way to rank on the search engine result pages for dental clinics. If you create a more specific service-related ad, the chances of the target audience converting through the paid ad increases. However, according to this research when you use digital marketing for dentists, opting for videos is something that will accelerate your ad efforts phenomenally. Landing pages are webpages within your website that are specially designed to support an online ad. These pages are strategically planned to include content and information to convert a prospect. So if you plan to come up with an online ad specifically for teeth whitening service, do consider adding a video of the procedure and end results to increase your conversion rate.
The technological era has taken over. A majority of the world population uses a basic smartphone if not a high-end one. These smartphones are not only capable of enhancing communication among your loved ones but also promoting businesses 24×7. That’s right! How often in a day have you come across an ad when browsing the internet on your phone or while using an app? Quite often? That’s because marketers have now understood that the frequency of mobile usage has increased compared to desktop usage. This means that marketers now need to focus more on mobile advertising.. Many marketers are opting for in-app ads and mobile responsive ads. This means that digital marketing through mobile ads will increase your visibility among potential patients considerably.
Search engine optimization is one of the most touted forms of digital marketing. When it hit the digital marketing scene, every business went into a rush to make their website and content search engine optimised. This continues to be the trend even today. However, there is a difference in how you use it for your dental clinic. As per this research, 72% marketers believe that creating content that is relevant to your target audience is the best SEO tactic. It makes sense as when you create content about plumbing, you will only attract the attention of people with plumbing problems. So finding the core problems that your target audience faces and creating content around it will actually work towards enhancing your SEO efforts. Writing simple yet informative blogs about dental problems and dental advice will help you rank well on the SERPs.
Content marketing is an effort which gives you better results at a low cost. It costs 62% less than traditional marketing techniques. How? Well, there are various reasons. When you opt for content marketing, you may start by adding a blog section to your website. When you do so, you get an opportunity to continuously promote your dental clinic without having to incur any additional cost for the space. Traditional marketing techniques, on the other hand, requires you to buy space for your clinic promotion along with outsourcing the design and other aspects. Also, the cost of reaching an audience is much less in content marketing as compared to traditional forms which only provides a limited reach.
60% online users feel interested in a specific service or product just by reading about it online. The idea is simple, having online content gains visibility for your dental clinic but having informative and engaging content around your services will actually intrigue the online users to know what more you can do for them. For instance, if you have blogs around your cosmetic dentistry section, you will grab the attention of people looking to enhance their aesthetic appeal. These are the people who will then move on from your content to your service page to check if you have the services that will help them to enhance their appearance such as teeth whitening procedures.
Businesses give a lot of importance to a brand name. It did work for larger firms for years, but the scenario is different today. If you wish to spend a lot on traditional marketing techniques just to build a brand, then you are in for a long haul. It will work, but it will take years. Digital marketing is a faster solution instead. In the online world, users judge your business on face value and what simply you can do for them. If you have services and content that are relevant to their specific needs without being a big brand, you will still get leads and conversions.
Social media has 3.48 billion users and the count is growing every day. That’s a huge number, and once your content is live on the internet, no barriers can stop a person from viewing it. Even a person from a completely different country can read what you have posted. Imagine how beneficial it is for you to target your audience in this huge pool by spending less than what you might on branding your dental clinic through traditional marketing. Also, social media gives you ample of freedom to be as creative and communicative as you want to be with your content.
The concept of branding has changed a lot over the years thanks to different innovations in digital marketing. Earlier businesses used to hire celebrities to endorse their brands for more popularity. The concept was called “having a brand ambassador”. But the generation today is much wise to understand that every celebrity that endorses a brand doesn’t actually use it. This is where the social media influencers stepped in. These are general public like you and me who gained popularity and following on social media platforms such as YouTube overtime by constantly posting informative and entertaining content. No wonder teenagers trust them more than celebrities. These people even go to the extent of using a product or service and reviewing them for their viewers. Now isn’t that kind of attention something that will benefit your dental clinic too? Think about how many leads you will receive if you used influencers to talk about your cosmetic dentistry services.
We already discussed how mobile marketing is going to benefit your dental clinic in the long run. But that’s not the only reason to opt for digital marketing for dentists. According to this research, just having a mobile website is not enough to get the attention of your target audience. What you need is a good website. A good website is one that loads quickly , adapts its interface as per the user’s device and has clear navigation. Just consider if 57% mobile users will not recommend your dental website simply based on these factors then how many potential patients you will be losing out on. So instead use the techniques of good digital marketing and increase your patients by having a mobile-friendly website.
Dental clinics are not something people look up for in leisure and save for later. Often a person looking for a dental clinic is suffering from an extreme dental condition and needs to find a solution. In such situations, the quickest way to find an answer today is doing an online research through a mobile device. According to this research, 88% users who did perform such a research converted in 24 hours. Imagine if you didn’t understand the importance of digital marketing for dentists, how many conversions you will be missing out on. To make this data work for you, use local SEO techniques to enhance your visibility in local searches for both desktop and mobile searches.
When we talk about digital marketing for dentists, it is not just about spending money on efforts to see substantial results. In fact, digital marketing will give you a good return on your investment. If we go by this statistic, simply doing content marketing that costs barely anything can give you three times more leads compared to the paid form of online advertising.For paid advertising you require a budget, planning, bidding and a publisher. On the other hand, for content marketing all you require is a content publishing platform and exceptional content that appeals to your target audience.
Whitepapers are highly informative content with accurate data and authoritative opinions with detailed reports to support a topic that may not only educates the readers about the topic but also provides guidance on their problem areas. Since these are trusted source of information, people give high consideration for such documents. If you create such whitepapers, imagine how much it will benefit your email marketing list as the number of people ready to share their contact details for such documents is considerably high. Creating whitepapers for your dental clinic is not a big task. You are already an expert in your field. You just need to compile your years of dental studies and create a comprehensive guide for your readers.
Segmentation of email marketing takes place when you divide your complete email list into smaller groups based on patient types and their interests. For example, you will have a separate group for your pediatric patients and parents’ email ids. Similarly, keeping a separate list for cosmetic and general dentistry patients may also be on your mind. Having such a segmentation will enable you to create segmented email campaigns for each group based purely on their interests. When these patients will receive something of their interest and not just general dental service related emails, they are bound to open the email to find out further what you want to share. A segmented email marketing campaign is, therefore, a right type of email marketing when you have a varied type of patients coming to your clinic. Once you take up segmented email marketing, your email open rates will increase and so will your chances of getting more leads and conversions.
There are constant improvements and innovations in the field of digital marketing. The whole concept of digital marketing is so adaptable that people can keep adding new ideas to it with the objective of gaining popularity. One such idea is the use of video for marketing. The video form of content has been highly appreciated by the audience off late. It has also been used explicitly to market products and services as it has shown commendable results. Now if you do video marketing for your dental clinic and promote it with your email marketing campaign, you will receive better click-through rates for your emails.
If you are here to read why digital marketing for dentists is important, then this is one statistic that needs your attention. Email marketing is an integral part of digital marketing as it connects you to your target audience directly in their personal space, which is their inbox. Now with such access, you need to be mindful of what you send across in your email content. We already discussed how segmented email marketing would work best for your dental clinic. If you use this and many other well-planned strategies to hit the right note with your target audience, email marketing can assure you a $38 return on investment for every dollar you spent.
When using email marketing for your dental clinics, never make the mistake of sending bulk emails to your subscribers and potential patients. Think from their perspective, how would you like an email coming in your private inbox but is addressed as ‘Hi All’ or ‘Hi to whomsoever it may concern’. Such a put off! On the other hand, if you receive an email with your name and maybe a small detail about your interest, wouldn’t you be compelled to read further? Of course, you will! The personalization bit does not even take much time and effort. With email automation software, you can easily feed in data about your subscribers and send personalized emails. By doing so, you will see a noticeable change in your email marketing performance and eventually your digital marketing results.
Now, this statistic strays a little away from the other digital marketing stats that I just shared, but it is important for our today’s topic of discussion. As the human race is moving ahead in time, they are changing their habits. Our ancestors had a thing for more attention. However, as of 2018, the average attention span of humans has come down to a mere 8 seconds. If in such a low attention span you assume traditional marketing techniques will grab the attention of your target audience then you are wrong. Think practically, today the masses read and go through more content on the digital platforms compared to traditional forms such as posters, newspapers, etc. And if on these digital platforms you create hard-hitting content that instantly grabs the attention of the target audience then nothing like it.
Traditional marketing techniques focused on making outright sales pitch in order to let your target audience know that you are a dentist and you provide dental service. People have outgrown that stage and today they stay away from such sales and marketing pitches as they believe it is just a gimmick used to promote a substandard service. No wonder content marketing and blogging are hence, being preferred by so many businesses to make their presence felt. However, many have also failed even after using blogs as they failed to understand that blogging is not for making a sales pitch but for providing information to the audience and eventually gaining their trust. So digital marketing for dentists without making a direct sales pitch is a good idea.
Here you go another reason why digital marketing for dentists is important. When you take up content marketing, a part of digital marketing, you will strategize on what types of content you want to share. Blogs are a popular choice for businesses when it comes to content marketing. Now if you opt for blogging, you have made a wise decision as 81% online users trust the information and advice provided by blogs. You run a dental clinic where people look up to you for solutions and advice related to dental problems. Opting for blogging will simply enhance your authority further and help you in lead generation.
Finally, to convince you on the importance of digital marketing for dentists, here is another study that has proven that browsing social media platforms for content and watching online videos is the top most popular activities that people do today. In digital marketing for dentists, you create content and become a part of the online space that is frequently visited by not just the general public but also your specific target audience. Imagine how beneficial it would be to place your content right in a place where your audience is bound to view it.
A lot of my fellow digital marketing bloggers will have different things to say when they will talk about the importance of digital marketing for dentists, and they all are right. However, today I have shared with you not just practical knowledge to support my argument but also statistical data to prove it. So do not think twice and start planning digital marketing for your dental clinic by consulting an expert.
Ali Salman is an online marketing strategist who have worked with Coca-Cola, Extreme Pita, Mucho Burrito, KIA, Honda and other Fortune 500 companies. Ali Salman now heads Rapid Boost Marketing - Canada's fastest growing search marketing agency. RBM clients include Fortune 500's and medium size businesses across North America. Ali as RBM CMO leads his team in building and managing quality, high-performing and cost-effective interactive campaigns and programs for our company's customers and partners. In his career, he has significantly improved campaign performance for large brands such as Government of Alberta, Liberal Party, Workopolis, Cathay Pacific, as well as medium to large retailers and high-tech B2B-enterprise niches.
Ali and his team develop online promotional concepts that spark viral growth through search and social media for RBM clients, devising strategies that use search engines and more to reach key demographic segments in the ways they're most likely to be receptive. Ali Salman also oversees corporate marketing initiatives for Rapid Boost Marketing, including strategic communications counsel, public and analyst relations and client education programming.