Category Archives: Uncategorized

Dental marketing blog posts categorised as Uncategorised… I really should categorise them!

Separating Facebook into Professional Friends and Real-life Friends – How to do it and why you Should

Problem

You have lots of friends on Facebook, some of them real-life friends and some of them Facebook only friends.  You may recognise some of these issues:

  • You log into Facebook to relax during some downtime after work, all you see are work related posts from work related ‘friends’.
  • Patients are asking you to be friends  and you don’t really know what to do or how to handle it.
  • You are constantly aware that when you do a business status update that your personal friends and family see these updates and you are worried that you might be annoying them. They could stop following you and not see your posts, but then they won’t see your family related posts either!
  • You want to make more personal updates on Facebook but don’t really want some of your business associates, that you don’t really know, seeing them.
  • You want to balance work and home life and find that Facebook is a mixed blur of the two and that the balance is becoming compromised.
  • You are aware that there are three personas under which you may interact on Facebook and don’t know how to manage this-
    • 1) As a real-life person Interacting with real life friends and family e.g. Joe Blogs
    • 2) As a business person interacting with patients, the media or other local businesses e.g. Dr Joe Blogs
    • 3) As your business on Facebook interacting as a group of dental professionals with patients e.g. Joe Blogs Dental Practice Ltd
  • You want to check in to various restaurants and places of interest, but because you don’t really know who these people are that our friends you are worried that these so-called friends may find out you are not at home! A possible security breach.

I’m sure there are many solutions to this problem, but if you are a friend of mine on Facebook (either personal or business) then you may know that I have just been through the process of separating out friends I actually know and friends I only know on Facebook.

There are some massive benefits, other than solving the problems above, to separating out your Facebook account the way that I described below, follow my process and then see what other surprising benefits I’ve uncovered.

Oh, and not everyone might take kindly to being removed as a personal friend, one of mine didn’t (Which actually proved my point that they weren’t proper friends in the first place)… I’ve blanked out the name but check out the message they sent me towards the end of this post!

Separating real-life friends from business friends on Facebook

Step 1 – Decide on the Criteria

If you’re going to separate out real-life friends from business trends decide what the criteria for this separation is going to be. Is your personal Facebook account going to only be for personal friends and family? Or,  are you going to include people that you have met in person but may also be linked to business and work?

What I did

I decided that anyone that I have personally met and been introduced to is allowed to be a personal friend of my personal account on Facebook. In the past I allowed anyone that sent me a friend request on Facebook to become a friend, I therefore had many people as friends whom I had never actually met and didn’t really know as a real person..

My criteria was therefore, if I have looked the person in the eye in real life (and like them) then that person can be a personal friend on my personal account on Facebook.

If someone is a friend on Facebook  and I have not looked them in the eye then chances are they are a business acquaintance.

Step 2 – Create a Public Figure

Artist, band or public figureGo to the page creation section on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/create/ and click on ” artist, band or public figure”,  follow Facebook’s instructions and create your personal persona e.g. Dr Joe Blogs.

What I did

I actually had an older business page called “Mark Oborn Ltd”, This was a local business page on Facebook, I simply changed it to a public figure.

The public figure page I created uses the name @markobornprofessional https://www.facebook.com/markobornprofessional You could set your public figure up as @DrJoeBloggs or @JoeBloggsProfessional.

When you create your public figure page make sure you include a little bit of personal information about you as well is what you do in business life. Use this in the description of the page, by way of example my description is “The professional page of Mark Oborn, online marketing consultant, coffee fiend, hat wearer and foodie.

Step 3 – Tell your personal account friends what you are doing

You then need to let your personal account friends know that you have created a new Public Figure page, do this by creating a status update NOT by sending lots of personal messages, if you send lots of personal direct messages you may find your Facebook account gets blocked for spam abuse (this is from personal experience, I sent lots of messages initially and had a notification from Facebook that I might get banned… be warned!).

What I did

My first status update was:

It’s time to sort out my Facebook account.

Using Facebook for business has changed over the years, I’ve so many ‘friends’ on Facebook that I don’t know in person, this is historical to the way Facebook was in the early days. I’m not sure I’m happy with that!

If I ‘check in’ to a place, do I really want people I don’t know being notified of that? Not really!

Do my personal friends really want to see my professional stuff? Not really! And if they do I’d rather they had a choice!

There are a few ways around this dilemma, I could set up ‘friend lists’ and show posts to only 1 set of friends, but I’ve decided on an alternative, an alternative that I will be advising clients to adopt, and if that’s my advice to them, then I better do the same thing myself.

Over the next few months, my personal Facebook account will be slowly reduced to “real life friends” only and used as a genuine personal Facebook account, rather than the current blend of personal and professional as it is now.

For current Facebook ‘friends’ that I don’t really know as a real life friend I’ve set up a Mark Oborn Professional page.

There will be cross over, but ‘real life friends’ can then chose if they want to see my ‘professional’ stuff too. I’ll welcome anyone that wants to follow my professional page without question and all posts will be public.

And so, I will be ‘unfriending’ lots of people over the coming months, this is not “I am not your friend any more”, it is simply that we’re actually professional friends and so the best way to chat, laugh and be friends with you will be via my professional profile.

That is, after all what you get to see when I’m in work mode, the Professional Mark Oborn.

The Professional Profile will simply be my usual mix of hats, beer, coffee, random rambling posts and stuff related to dentistry. I’ll NOT be using it as a marketing channel!

I hope/know you will understand 🙂

All the best,

Mark Oborn (either Personal of Professional)

https://www.facebook.com/markobornprofessional

and here is a subsequent post on my personal Facebook account:

Dear Dudes of dentistry wot is not personal friends,

Please remember this is my PERSONAL Facebook account, I don’t post about marketing, dentistry or coaching on this page, so if you’d like to see stuff from me please also ‘like’ my professional page.

I know there are a few professional people ‘following’ me on my personal profile that I don’t know in person, you’ll only see ‘public’ posts if you do this… whooosh… listen for the tumble weed as I DON’T ROUTINELY MAKE PUBLIC POSTS from my personal account… coz it’s personal, see?

If you’d like to actually chat, engage and see my daily Facebook stream (that’s what FB is all about) then please join me on my professional page by clicking ‘like’ on the link below… or if you do actually know me personally then add me as a friend and you can then see my personal posts here.

Have a GREAT day:-)

https://www.facebook.com/markobornprofessional

Step 4 – Begin the migration

This basically means clicking ‘unfriend’. Yep, it’s tough and may take a long time if you have thousands of friends, but arguably why have you got thousands of friends on Facebook? It’s impossible to have that many friends!

Also know but it’s quite possible for business acquaintances to be real life friends, for me this wasn’t about removing anyone in business from my personal account, it was about removing people that I didn’t actually know from my personal account.

What I did

There were so many people that I had as friends whom I really wanted to be friends with, influential people in business, people that could help me in business and indeed people that I could help. But I wanted to stick to the criteria set out at the beginning. If I had not looked at them in the eye in real life then they will not be personal friends on Facebook.

Okay, I didn’t rigidly stick to this, there are a few people that I’ve spent many years talking to on Facebook that I have never met. Over those years of chatting they have become virtual friends  and I value that friendship, these people  I have left as personal friends on Facebook.
Now here is a funny story…

There were a couple of people  who I believed may have been friends on Facebook and that I’d never met in person, these select few people I decided to send a personal message to (Remember not to do this too often as your account may be blocked for spam), that personal message was:

Hi ,

I hope you don’t mind my unsolicited message, I’m in the process of separating out Facebook into people I know socially and people I know professionally, as I feel I know you professionally it would make sense that we continue to chat etc via my new professional profile www.facebook.com/markobornprofessional where I will continue to post nonsense, hats, coffee, Dorset and the occasional business post on dentistry plus life and business coaching also.

Please don’t take it as an insult but I have unfriended you (that’s such an awful phrase as it is so far from the truth) from my personal ‘social’ Facebook account, I look forward to seeing you and welcoming you on to my ‘professional’ account as and when. To join me on my professional account, please visit the page and click ‘like’.

Very kindest regards indeed,

Mark

To which someone replied:

No thank you Mark. You have never responded to any comment I have made on your posts, which tells me that you are either uninterested in the opinions of others, or have your head so far up your own derriere that you never even noticed. Either way, I doubt either of us adds value to the other so goodnight and thanks for the message.

Clearly, they weren’t friends in the first place and so I was happy to see the back of them. Interestingly, I sent EXACTLY the same message to someone else who replied:

Thank you for such a lovely message, Mark and what a great idea . Thank you. It just becomes overwhelming, doesn’t it ? it is a pleasure to be your professional Facebook friend.

It just goes to show, one can never tell how people will respond to the dreaded ‘unfriend’!

Step 5 – Begin using the new profiles in different ways

I now find that when I login to my personal Facebook account I can see posts from my friends, my family and what’s going on locally. It’s become a more welcoming, chatty and friendly pace to be. Sure, I see business posts from friends, but they are real friends  and I’m interested to know what they are talking about.

My Public Figure account has personal information on it (That I’m happy to share publicly) but because it is more business oriented it gets far more reaction from the business community, it is also growing far more rapidly than my personal account, which is absolutely fine by me.

What I do

  1. Facebook pages appI post personal updates about books I’m reading, things I like doing and where I’m visiting to both accounts. Sometimes I post to my personal account, sometimes I post to my business account, it is purely random.
  2. I post business updates to my new public figure account only.
  3. I use the regular Facebook app on my phone to log into my personal account. I am then very clear when I press this button that this is personal time.
  4. I use the Facebook Pages app (Downloadable from the Google Play store or similar on Apple) on my phone to log into my public figure account (these two accounts are linked and use the same Facebook login details). I am then very clear when I press this button that I am in business mode and it is during work time.

The benefits of separating personal and business life on Facebook

  1. Facebook becomes fun again. I can keep up-to-date with my personal life, friends, family and people I know without being interrupted about or having to think about work.
  2. Facebook becomes more productive for business. I’m able to advertise my Public figure, create unique status updates recommending that people send me messages or phone me.
  3. Create out of office messages using Facebook Response Assistant. A Facebook public figure allows you to set your status as ‘away’ for 12 hours, during this time It’s possible to automate responses if someone sends a message, far better than responding to a personal direct message on a personal account in the small hours of the morning!
  4. Get insights into your Public Figure. You will now be able to see the number of people that each of your posts has reached, the number of people that like your page, where they are and how engaged they are with each post. Very useful business analytics.
  5. Add labels to any messages. This enables you to tag messages from patients or clients with useful labels, consider using  treatment tags or ‘prospect’, ‘client’ etc
  6. Create events and have them all located in one place which is easily findable on your Public Figure profile page, e.g. https://www.facebook.com/pg/markobornprofessional/events/?ref=page_internal
  7. Get reviews. You may want patients to review you as an individual dentist, this is possible with a Public Figure profile. Here’s an example
  8. Balance life and work again and remove the incessant NOISE!


With a public figure page you can still engage with other local businesses, like them and chat with them,  the only thing you can’t do is engage or interact with individual people, unless they also have a public figure page or interact with your public figure in some way e.g.  commenting on a post.

It seems to me that using a public figure is far more ‘real to life’, in life we all know that we have a personal, friendly, family persona… We also have that business persona, the face we put on when we go to work… Separating Facebook out like this is far truer to real life, more congruent with real-life and keeps the work/life balance in harmony.

If you need help, please just comment here or ping me an e-mail  from the website, I’m happy to do what I can to assist.

Yours professionally and personally,

Mark

How to create an online dental marketing machine – Download your Marketing Project Planner

I recently created this Gantt chart for dental practices to utilise in order to develop their online marketing.

The chart lays out various activities to be done over a 17 week period. Each week you need to take some small action towards reaching your final goal of creating an effective and efficient online marketing machine that works for your dental practice 24/7/365.

The chart takes a steady walk through social media, creating an e-mail marketing campaign, Google optimisation and ensuring your website works effectively.
Some activities have hyperlinks which take you to additional resources, either for more information or to help with third-party sites.
Many of the activities have associated comments, hover your mouse over the red triangle in the corner of the cell and the comment will be revealed. These give further information and advice on this particular activity.

This free resource is available to members of The Implant Hub (free registration) who will need to be logged in in order to download this chart.

Untitled

Tracking Your Paid Advertising (PPC)

It’s one thing to spend lots of money on paid advertising on either Google or Facebook, it’s another thing to know if these things are working or not.

Tracking is extremely important, here’s an example.

A client wanted to run an advert campaign on Facebook and Google but didn’t know which one would be more successful, they wanted to run campaigns for dental implants and orthodontics.

We set up both Google and Facebook ad campaign and directed visitors to the relevant pages on the client’s website.

Running paid advertising (PPC) in itself is just ‘presence optimisation‘, in other words getting more people to the website. What’s also important is ‘conversion optimisation’, in other words getting more people to convert… And it is this that we monitored.

The campaign monitoring is set up in two halves:

  1. The advert itself on either Facebook or Google Adwords pushes campaign data into Google analytics by using Source, Medium and Campaign tracking.
  2. Google analytics has goals set up which are triggered via these campaigns.

On the client’s website they had 3 conversion mechanisms that we were tracking:

  1. A request an appointment form, we know that a new patient appointment is £55 so we can allocate this amount each time the form is triggered.
  2. A discounted dental health check available online only, we know that this appointment is worth £25 so we can allocate this amount each time this form is triggered.
  3. A free consultation, we know that patients that book for these tend to go ahead so we allocated an arbitrary £200 each time this form was triggered.

Each time the form is filled in it bounces the user off to a ‘thank you’ page, this thank you page is then set up in Google analytics as a goal with the necessary amount allocated against it.

Because the adverts are sending through data such as ‘Facebook’ or ‘Adwords’ and ‘Implants’ or ‘Ortho’ This can then be pulled out as a Google analytics report and we can see visitor data for each of these.

Facebook versus Google PPC

 

Because Google analytics can then multiply the number of times the goal was triggered for each campaign and source we can then extrapolate the value of each and compare this to how much we have paid.

Here’s what we found for the past 30 days:

Campaign results of Facebook and Google PPC

The question now is, what would you do with these results?

Here’s a summary of how the process work.

added tracking codes to adwords cmapigns--utm_source=Adwords&utm_medium=PPC&utm_campaign=Implants-utm_source=Adwords&utm_medium=PPC&utm_campaign=Ortho (1)

Imagine you were a patient visiting your website, is this what you would think?

Potential new dental patients visiting your website (and indeed any of your online marketing activity) need to find it usable, in fact Google uses usability as part of its search algorithm… The more user-friendly your website is, the higher it may rank.

If you want to know how to make your dental practice website (and other online marketing channels) more usable from a patient’s perspective, read on…

Imagine you are a patient visiting your website, it’s important you put yourself in the shoes of a patient… Not wearing your own shoes as a dental professional!

Think about the mindset of the patient, think about how they would have ended up on your website, think about what they might want from your website.

The stages of buying

When someone visits one of your online marketing channels they will certainly be in one of these stages of buying:

  1. Problem recognition
  2. Information search
  3. Evaluation alternatives
  4. Purchase mode

Let’s look at each of these stages of buying and what you could do to assist your potential new patient in each stage.

Problem recognition

download (1)A person that lands on your website in this stage of the buying process will have just realised that they have a problem. They may have had someone comment on their crooked teeth, they may have just been out for a meal and got food stuck between missing teeth or may have now decided that today is the day they are going to start doing something about their dental health.

Once someone has identified that they have a problem that they will begin searching for a solution, patients in this stage of the process may be searching on Google for phrases such as:

  1. How to straighten crooked teeth
  2. Ways to replace missing teeth
  3. How to stop my gums bleeding

A person at this stage of their problem-solving/buying process may not be thinking about treatments, they may not be thinking about Invisalign, Inman aligner, dental implants or dental hygiene… they probably are not even ready to research and gather information about these alternatives, they are simply looking for a solution to their problem… So what could you do on your website?

Image by Salvatore Vuono freedigitalphotos.net

Image by Salvatore Vuono freedigitalphotos.net

This is where a dental blog comes in exceptionally handy. You can title blog posts around their search phrases “how to straighten crooked teeth”, within these blog posts we are simply helping the patient identify that they have a problem and that it can be solved. You may find that a patient in this stage of the buying process immediately moves into the information search phase.

We can help patients in this problem recognition stage by providing them with useful and relevant information and content, your blog is an excellent way to attract these people to the website and you can help them move into the information search phrase by offering them a free information pack.

The preferred technique is to allow them to download a free guide relating to their specific problem “All of Your Options to Replace Missing Teeth” in exchange for an e-mail address. Collecting e-mail addresses allows us to gently build a relationship with these people in the long-term as they move through the various buying stages. Information about creating an e-mail marketing campaign.

Information search

A patient in this stage of the buying process may have already identified specific treatments to help with their problem. They may be searching for:

  1. Invisalign braces in << geographical location>>
  2. Dental implants in << geographical location>>
  3. Dental hygienists in << geographical location>>

In the information search phase a patient is gathering detailed information about all of their options from both a treatment prospective and possibly a specific dentist perspective. When a patient lands on your website in the information search phase we need to offer them:

  • Relevant dental information, specific to their information search
  • An incentive to request an appointment which will help move them to the next buying phase

Relevant dental information can be provided by way of the free guide mentioned previously, always in exchange for an e-mail address. An incentive to request an appointment seems to work best if this is offered as a refund of the patient’s initial assessment. Again, offering this on the website as a download in exchange for an e-mail address works best, it allows the person to feel as though they have partially solved the problem whilst on the site as they now have a voucher entitling them to a refund of their initial assessment.

Evaluation of alternatives

At this stage of the buying process the patient will have decided that they want to straighten their crooked teeth or replace missing teeth, they may even have decided on the specific treatment they desire (clearly only a clinical assessment can verify this for sure). To allow a patient to evaluate alternative dental practices we need to:

  1. reduce risk
  2. increase trust

These are the two key deciding factors which allow a patient to decide which dentist to you attend. you can reduce risk and increase trust by demonstrating that you care for the patient above and beyond any monetary transaction, offering them a free download as already mentioned goes some way to doing this. Your active social media stream can also demonstrate that you are low risk and trustworthy alternative.

Patient testimonials on your website, especially video testimonials (as these are hardest to fake) will go some considerable way to reducing risk and increase in trust. Showing photographs of the team including your GDC registration numbers also demonstrates that you are trustworthy practice (As well as being compliant).

Offering a refund of initial assessment also reduces risk for the patient, you then have their e-mail address and can then continue to build relationships with them gently and slowly.

Purchase mode

Once the patient is in purchase mode you need to ensure that your website has the relevant calls to action in place. If you have followed this process from the beginning and allowed the patient to download some information when they were in the earlier information searching modes then we can begin to send e-mails talking about how you can help.

My recommendations to ensure patients that are ready to purchase take action are:

  1. Place a call to action on every page of your website
  2. Have a request an appointment facility on the website (this does not necessarily need to be booking an appointment)
  3. Having a website which is responsive with a ‘click to call’ phone number in case this person is visiting from a mobile phone
  4. Having an ability for a patient to make a general enquiry to the website if they have any further questions

Summary

Understanding the buying process and ensuring that you have the possibility for a patient to engage with you at each stage is critical if your marketing is to be effective. You can’t assume that everyone that lands on your website is ready to book an appointment, if they are not, what have you done to help them?

More help and advice on making your website more useable

Lowe cost dental marketing logoWebsite audit

How useable is your website and could it be improved? This comprehensive website audit will give each of the five key areas of performance a rank so that you can take action.

What’s included in the audit?

46 individual elements of a successful website will be assessed and ranked in the following key performance areas:

  • Findability
  • Usability
  • Shareability
  • Effectiveness
  • Longevity

Within each of these Key Performance Areas I will rank 46 Individual Elements, each element will be given a score.

traffic light warning

These 46 individual elements will then come together to give you an overall score for each of the key performance areas.

You can then see which area of your website needs the most attention to ensure you get the maximum return on anything you spend.

What do you do with the audit?

Once the audit has been completed you can either make the changes yourself, send them to your web designer for their opinion or contact me and I can make the changes for you as part of my Light Package – I’ll then refund your £35 audit fee.

The audit forms the basis of the overall Light service. When you ensure these five key performance areas are performing to the maximum and you have an active, engaging and effective social media stream you will find that your marketing efforts begin to work 24/7/365.

CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED FOR £35

Mark Oborn light website audit

Featured Image source hywards at freedigitalphotos.net

cheap dental marketing

Is Your Website Working in These 5 Key Performance Areas? [PART 1]

Are you looking for the quickest most cost-effective way to attract the right type of new patients in to your practice?

Perhaps you want more people to take action from your website, rather than just read it and bounce away again?

Making your website work for you is a simple way to ensure you have a marketing machine that works 24-hours a day, even whilst you are asleep and on holiday.

The 5 Key Performance Areas of a Dental Website

There are five key performance areas of a website, each of them need to be working in order to get the best result:

FINDABILITY

How easy is it for people and search engines to find your website? Is it search engine optimised adequately?

USABILITY

How easy is it for people to navigate your site, read the content, engage with the content and find what they want?

SHAREABILITY

The easier your website is to share the more people will do so and recommend it to others, this is the power of online referral marketing, are you making it easy?

EFFECTIIVENESS

How effective is your website at informing, educating and getting people to take action and come to the practice as a patient? Is it conversion optimised adequately?

LONGEVITY

A poor website allows people to bounce away, how good is your site at capturing attention and engaging over the longer term? Absolutely vital in the arena of relationship marketing.

Overt the next few blog posts I will be going through each of these areas individually, this time it is findability  that I will focus on.

how to make a website findableHow to make your website more FINDABLE

Meta data on your website

The simplest place to start is with the meta data on your website.  At the most basic level of optimisation you need to ensure that these elements include geographical locations and specific treatments e.g. teeth whitening London.

The specific meta data that needs to include these terms are:

  •  <title> –  This is the main browser title that will be shown when each individual web page opens, each page will more than likely have the same geographical location but have a different treatment.
  • <description> –  This is what Google will probably use to describe your website in the search results.
  • <h1,2,3> headers –  These are the headings and subheadings within the main content of your page.
  • <alt> image alternate tags –  These describe each image in a couple of words, they will be used on a website if the image is unable to be shown for any reason.

Main Body Text

You will also need to ensure that the main body text of each individual page includes words and phrases that patients will use to search, you should think about different geographical locations and also different ways that patients may phrase treatment.

Some examples of how patients may phrase different treatments, using orthodontics as an example.

  1. The cost of teeth braces
  2. invisible braces near me
  3. tooth braces at home
  4. cheap braces

If you are to be found for these various search phrases then you need to ensure that they are included on your website somewhere.

You can also use bullet points, numbered lists and bold text to highlight phrases that you want the search engines to pick out.  (Scanned through this blog post to see which words I have made bold  or used in bullet points or numbered lists)

 Other factors which ensure your website ranks highly

Links

We all know the importance of referrals for a dental practice. You know that if a patient refers  a friend to you then that is a good recommendation. Google also knows this, if someone talks about you online then Google views this as a referral or vote, in search engine optimisation speak we call this an ‘inbound link’.

The more votes/inbound links you have (people talking about you) the more likely your website is to rank highly as Google will view it as a good website. After all, it must be good as people are talking about it!

But as you know, not all referrals are good. You may have a patient that sends very bad friends to you that don’t pay or don’t respect your fees… Not all referrals are created equally and in the same respect not all votes are created equally.

Google recognises that different votes have different qualities, in summary, Google will look for:

  • Total number of inbound links (votes) –  You ideally want the maximum number of links from good quality sources. Just having quantity is not good enough, they must be quality also.
  • Links follow/no follow –  In the code of a link it is possible to tell Google not to follow the link to another website, as a human you will simply see a link, but behind that link is a little bit of code. If that code has rel=”nofollow”  then Google will disregard that vote. Many low quality websites use no follow links.
  • Link authority –  If the website that links to you has high  authority, such as the BBC or a recognised university then that link/vote will be worth more than if it comes from an unknown or less respected website. One link from the BBC could be worth 1000 links from poor quality websites.
  • Varied anchor text on links –  The anchor text on a link are the words that the link is constructed from.  If all of your links say “Dentist in London”  then it is clear to Google that this is not natural and that you are trying to fool the system. If people are genuinely talking about you then these anchor texts will be varied.

Referencing

As you will know, good quality articles and academic pieces will be well referenced. This demonstrates that you have researched your subject and also makes the page more informative if you have linked to other articles.

Each page on your website should be a source of information to answer people’s problems, part of answering their problems will be referencing back to your own website (perhaps to previous articles you have written on your blog) and to other external websites which provide useful resources.

Take a look back through this blog post, you will see that I have linked to external websites to provide information which backs up what I am saying. I have also provided links to other useful articles that I have written in previous blog posts and to useful resources within my main website.

More help and advice on making your website more findable

Lowe cost dental marketing logoWebsite audit

How well does your online marketing and website work and could it be improved? This comprehensive website audit will give each of the five key areas of performance a rank so that you can take action.

What’s included in the audit?

46 individual elements of a successful website will be assessed and ranked in the following key performance areas:

  • Findability
  • Usability
  • Shareability
  • Effectiveness
  • Longevity

Within each of these Key Performance Areas I will rank 46 Individual Elements, each element will be given a score.

traffic light warning

These 46 individual elements will then come together to give you an overall score for each of the key performance areas.

You can then see which area of your website needs the most attention to ensure you get the maximum return on anything you spend.

What do you do with the audit?

Once the audit has been completed you can either make the changes yourself, send them to your web designer for their opinion or contact me and I can make the changes for you as part of my Light Package – I’ll then refund your £35 audit fee.

The audit forms the basis of the overall Light service. When you ensure these five key performance areas are performing to the maximum and you have an active, engaging and effective social media stream you will find that your marketing efforts begin to work 24/7/365.

CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED FOR £35

Mark Oborn light website audit

Is your dental practice verified_

Is Your Dental Practice A Verified Local Business on Facebook?

Is your dental practice a verified local business on Facebook?  If you have a Facebook business page you ought to be ensuring that it carries the Facebook verified checkmark, this  ensures that your local patients find the right and authentic account for your practice, rather than an out of date business page or one that has been set up by accident in the past (or even maliciously by someone else).

Kirsten Bury,  A Facebook product marketing manager for pages told Marketing Land recently that verified pages will show up higher in Facebook search results.

“At scale there will inevitably be duplicates and multiple entries for the same business,” said Bury, noting that there are 45 million business Pages on Facebook. “So this is one way businesses can make it easier for people to make sure that they are finding and communicating with the right Page.”

 Verified local business page on FacebookYou can tell if your page has been verified or not as it will have a little grey tick next to the page name… No tick? Then your page is not verified which may be perceived as a non-authentic account.

At the moment it is only possible to verify a local business, in other words if you have chosen categories of your business page such as a brand, product, cause or community then you will not immediately have access to verify your account.

When creating your account you need to choose local business or place in order to have the facility to verify. Create a page on Facebook

How to verify your Facebook page

To verify your page by phone:

  1. Click Settings at the top of your Page.
  2. From General, click Page Verification.
  3. Click Verify this Page, then click Get Started.
  4. Enter a publicly listed phone number for your business, your country and language.
  5. Click Call Me Now to allow Facebook to call you with a verification code. verified by calling

To verify with documents

Sometimes practices find that their reception desks are very busy places with multiple people answering the phone, if you think verification by phone may be a little difficult then you simply click the ‘verify this page with documents instead’ link.

You will then be prompted to upload documents.

 Verify page with documentsThe verification process is actually very simple and doesn’t take too long to complete. Verification by phone can lead to almost instant verification whereas verification by documents can take a couple of weeks.

More info here on social media marketing for dentists.

Hope that helps,
Mark Oborn
Mark

 

Dental virtual reality

Virtual Reality for Dentists

As regular readers to my blog will know my focus in dental marketing is not to go out and out selling dental treatments… Rather, it is to gently inform and educate patients about their dental health by reducing risk and increasing trust.

When you demonstrate that you are a low risk choice and are trustworthy you become an easy option for a new patient to choose. Your marketing then becomes effortless and off the back of that your business succeeds and profits flow.

Everyone is looking for new ways to increase trust and reduce risk, one of the best ways is reviews from happy patients and a hot second is allowing the patients to actually see inside the practice and meet the team beforehand – you know, those funny sliding images that many dental practices have on the homepage!

Think about it now, how about if you replaced those sliding images on the homepage with an interactive tour of the practice! The patient would be able to see how much time and effort you have put in to creating a warm and friendly environment, you would immediately increase trust and reduce risk.

I’d like to introduce you to a good friend of mine, Luke Woods. Luke is a Google Certified photographer specialising in virtual tours and virtual reality, read what he has to say about how this can now be used in your dental practice.

================= Luke writes:=================

official text

“We search with words but respond to pictures”Google virtual tour facts

Hello everyone, thanks Mark for giving me the opportunity to reach out to the world of Dentistry. I have spent a couple of days conducting some research here in the UK and consulting my colleagues in Canada for qualified opinion and facts about how a Virtual Tour window into your practise can not only answer a lot of questions but calm and reassure any patient concerns to a hugely wider audience. I assume everyone knows what we talking about here? We all know Google Street View? the thing on top of a car that captures everything ready or not – grey sky or blue. Well, for 3 years there has been a program contracting established professional photographers like me to come into businesses and capture the very best of your business space for all the world to see.

Seeing is believing – click to see on Google

https://goo.gl/gkcH1i

These Virtual Showrooms are great for welcoming in clients from website to waiting room, here’s an example of a virtual tour at a dental practice.

Dental virtual reality

 

In the past two years since I have been working on the Google program I have captured some truly beautiful spaces and it seems that with all industries- progress is consumer driven. People in general are becoming much more familiar with using the internet and their mobile device to not only shop but to verify and answer any doubts they may have especially before entering into a big spend. Hotels and restaurants are examples that most people have seen here in the UK but why not clinics of all kinds? A year ago it was the same in Canada and the USA and in the last 12 months a lot of practises large and small needed to show just a little more than a few flat photos or have a Hollywood Commercial – a Virtual Tour fills that gap nicely – people can view in silence at their own pace and really connect with where they will be treated – I call this the Clinical Barrier and you can be among the first to gain that valuable patient trust.
gogle-stats-number-one

For me there are several areas where I start to wonder “what it is like ?” I know if I could see the clinic I would feel a lot more at ease the first time. Knowing the layout too is a difficulty many can be helped to overcome and getting lost can be embarrassing. Right from the car park if possible to seeing the doorway on the street, knowing what the reception looks like -seeing a waiting room where we all sit waiting for that peak anxiety moment – hearing our name – all this gives us that which cannot be put into words so easily – that feeling that says – “It’s Okay”

 

Google statistics

Things are moving fast these days and I am now working with a Google team developing Virtual Reality – many Dental Surgeries have comforting features – for children, a play area or room perhaps? It’s not just the younger generations that are looking – the biggest growth group is currently 54-65 year olds and 39% of people over 55 have smart phone and can check out things for themselves quite well. For all patients there can be no better experience than to preview the very chair you will be treated in – a full 360 degree view right from the chair.

There are also Search Engine Marketing advantages that are very real not promised and rarely delivered – without going into too much detail – everyone searches on Google these days – a website is not hosted in Google – these are, helping to get you found in local and voice search fast   “As seen on TV” 🙂


I would be delighted to hear from and help all of you lovely people who have looked after my white toothey treasure all these years.

My best, Luke Woods.

=================

To find out more about having a virtual tour of your practice please contact Mark on 0845 259 1232 or email info@markoborn.comStudy on virtual tours

Should you have a mobile or responsive website?

Okay, first of let me make it clear that I’m not a website designer. I don’t design websites and I don’t create websites but I do work on websites all day that are designed and created by other people, what I do is ensure that the maximum number of people go to them and then take action once on the site.

Deciding whether to have a mobile or responsive website is a critical decision when you’re having a new one built, it also dramatically affects my ability to optimise the site to get it found on Google and also to optimise the site to increase conversions – so you need to get the decision right.

Responsive or Mobile websites?

This is the real hot one at the moment as more and more people decide that they want to have a mobile or response website, but what is the difference?

Mobile

A mobile website is a separate website to your main one. There will be a little bit of code on the website which detects the device that is being used, if that code detects a mobile device then the user will be bounced off of your main website onto a mobile friendly one.

You effectively have two separate websites, one designed for a full screen and one designed for mobile devices.

Responsive

A responsive website on the other hand is one single website. The website detects the screen width of the device being used and responds to this width. If it detects that a widescreen is being used such as a desktop then you will see the full site with all of its navigation, if it detects that a smaller screen is being used such as a tablet or phone then the site will show relevant navigation, shrink the images and show you content in a different format.

You only have one website which is responsive and modifies itself dependent upon the device it is being viewed upon.

How to test if your website is responsive

Of course, the simplest way is to look at your website on your mobile phone. But if you want to truly test if the website is responsive, you can actually test it live and see it respond as the screen resolution changes… Here’s how.

In your web browser you need to click the “Restore Down” button in the top right-hand corner of the browser.

Restore down button

Click the button in the middle

This will then enable you to change size of the screen on your desktop. You can then grab and drag the width of the screen to make it smaller. If your website is truly responsive you should see the various elements on your website resize and then move around to fit the screen.

You should also see the menu go from the traditional desktop menu to a single button click menu suitable for a mobile phone. Here’s a little video which shows this in action.

The advantages of having a response website versus a mobile one.

The advantages are quite numerous:

  1. When you add content to your website, if your website is responsive you simply need to at least once. No matter whether your visitor is on a mobile phone, tablet or desktop your new content will look good. If you have a responsive site you need to add content twice, once to the desktop version and once to the mobile version.
  2. You suddenly have two websites to optimise. You may find that one website appears better than the other in mobile search results, if you have a single response website you only have one website to worry about.
  3. Your links may not work.You may be sending people into the middle of your website from around the web. For example, you may want to run a social media campaign on Facebook and place links to your Invisalign page. If someone clicks on this link from a mobile phone they will Land on your website, it will detect that they are on a mobile device and automatically send them to the homepage of a mobile website, not the Invisalign page that you intended, suddenly your website visitor is confused. With a responsive website, you can copy the web address from the desktop and it will work exactly the same on a mobile.
  4. Your search engine optimisation and inbound marketing may not be quite as good. Google recognises if your website is important if people are talking about it around the Internet. As those people talk about your website online they may be mentioning a specific page. You may have written some excellent information about dental implants which a patient of yours shares with their friend. If they share that page from a desktop but the friend is using a mobile, that link may not work if they are redirected to a mobile website. A responsive website uses exactly the same web address for mobile or desktop.
  5. You may keep costs down with a responsive site. If you pay for someone like me to optimise a site, get more people to it and more people converting then the fee is often lower for a responsive site. That person working their magic on your website only has one website to work on if it is responsive, if you have a mobile site also then they may need to work on two websites… Potentially doubling their fee!
  6. Your ongoing web design costs could be lower. Let’s say you take on a new treatment and want to add it to your website. If your site is responsive then you add the content once, if you have a mobile site then you need to pay your designer to add it to both websites!

In my experience of working with many websites the ones that are easiest to optimise (from both a search and conversion point of view) are responsive websites. There are so many advantages to responsive that, in my opinion, this is the way you should go if you’re looking at having a new website built.

So who would I recommend for your new responsive website?

There are plenty of people to choose from that are creating and designing websites for dentists, here is my recommendation based on the fact that I’ve worked with these guys on numerous projects and never had a problem. Listed in alphabetical order.

 

How to Use the New Facebook Call to Action Button

If you log into Facebook this morning and check out your Facebook page you should notice a new call to action feature. Any marketer will know that one of the most important things you can do in any marketing communication is include a call to action, telling people what you want them to do when they engage in your marketing communication is so often missed out but is so important to include.

Facebook clearly recognise this and have now included a range of options in all Facebook pages, here is how to setup the new Facebook call to action button.

Add a call to action button to your page

When you first login to your business page this is the new little message that you will see.

Adding a Facebook call to action button to your page

 

Simply click the create button.

You will now be encouraged to ” create call to action” simply click this button.

Creating a Facebook call to action

On the next screen you will be guided to choose a button, select from a range of options including:

  • Book now
  • contact us
  • use app
  • play game
  • shop now
  • signup
  • watch video

Simply select the option most suitable for you, for a dental practice probably book now would be best.

Deciding which call to action to use

When you click the book now button you will be prompted to enter your website address, remember enter the full web address of your booking page. Don’t just put in your basic web address as this will lead them to the homepage, remember, you are suggesting that they book now so use a direct link through to your booking page.

If you have a separate mobile website then also enter the booking address for this.

Enter in the destination for your new call to action

When you click next you will be presented with the destination for people using Android and Apple devices. If you have an app running on either of these systems you can direct people directly through to the booking page within your app.

If you don’t have an app then keep the destination selected as ‘website’.

If you use an app selected this as the destination

When you click next you will be prompted with the screen to say that your call to action button is ready. To edit it simply click and you will be presented with an edit option.

Your Facebook call to action but is now ready

When you click next for the last time you will see your new call to action on your Facebook page. To the right you will also notice in the insights section the number of people that have engaged with your call to action button.

Screenshot 2015-02-24 08.40.36

 

Using a call to action in all of your marketing communication is an excellent way of encouraging people to take direct action. I urge you to get onto your Facebook page this morning and setup this new feature, why not come back here and post your Facebook page into the comments so we can see what you have done…

Update Facebook’s Algorithm for Business Pages: Important Information

Many people mistakenly believe That everything they post to their dental practice Facebook business page is shown to all of the fans, they think that because they’ve got 500 fans that 500 people are going to see what they post… This simply isn’t true.

Think about the number of people that are on Facebook, it currently stands at over half the UK population, that’s more than 30 million people!

With so many people on Facebook, Facebook needs to use some form of calculation to decide which messages are important, which messages are not, which messages to show people in which messages to hide. This is where Facebook’s Edgerank Algorithm comes in, please scroll to the end of this blog post to see a very useful info graphic generated about this topic.

The algorithm has been around for some time now and people are getting used to how it works but there is a big change afoot, in fact it  happened in January of this year.

What is changing?

Facebook quite rightly say that people go on to see things they are interested in. They don’t necessarily want to see out and out promotion of products and services, the problem has been that many business pages have simply tried to sell stuff.

This has resulted in the quality of some posts from businesses being extremely low, they simply post updates telling people about their latest offers, deals and incentives and make no attempt to engage with their fans, this fundamentally goes against the engagement principle of Facebook. Facebook have been looking at ways to stop this and this has now been implemented.

As with immediate effect if you post purely promotional updates the chances of these being seen by your fans is extremely low, so what makes a promotional post? Facebook say that promotional posts are:

  1. Posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app
  2. Posts that push people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
  3. Posts that reuse the exact same content from ads

It seems that Facebook are going to be looking at adding some additional functionality to their business pages, this could be an exciting new era in Facebook marketing if we are able to do more complex and fun things from a business page.

What can you do about it?

Put simply, avoid just promoting your business. Look for ways to create engagement with each post and get your edge rank higher. If you do want to do posts which promote treatments, services, products or special offers and accept the fact that you’re going to have to promote these with paid ads.

Read more about managing Facebook adverts.

With regards to each individual post you could try varying the things you post along the following lines:

  1. Create images which encourage engagement. Not necessarily dental ones but images which make people laugh, joining and feel part of the community.
  2. Use questions at the end of the post. Questions are far more likely to generate engagement than simple statements.
  3. Tell stories using your happy patients. Create a series of posts which walk potential patients through the thought process and treatment of existing patients. Create engaging stories out of the real lives of local people.
  4. Hand out useful, free and relevant dental health advice. Use the amazing information stored in your head to genuinely help local people, when you hand out useful and free relevant dental health advice you set yourself up as the local expert that can be trusted.
  5. Educate people about the risks of not looking after their teeth and the benefits of having a healthy smile. When you create engaging content like this people are more likely to interact with comments, likes and shares.

The trick is to get people engaging and interacting with your posts. If you do this Facebook will recognise that your updates are popular and ensure that they reach more people.

What is a Edge Rank?

edgerank

Image via Justin Sullivan/Getty Images