Category Archives: email marketing

Dental marketing blog posts categorised as E-mail marketing

E-mail Marketing – The Way to Truly P**S People Off?

@Let’s get the most obvious thing out of the way first, in all probability you will have received notification of this blog post by e-mail… But let me explain firstly why e-mail is so powerful and secondly how you can use it to lose every single one of your carefully generated leads!

When we look at online marketing there are generally 4 channels of communication:

  • The wider internet (articles you may have written or pieces of information about you and your services etc)
  • Your Website
  • Social Media
  • Email

This is rather a concise list, but almost everything can fit into it somewhere so let’s look at the dynamics of each of those.

The Internet

You may find that a potential patient goes to Google looking for information about a particular dental problem they have, perhaps replacing missing teeth. They may land on a resource page on which you have an advert, they could land on someone else’s website which has content written by you and links back to your website.

However it happens, it’s important to remember that this person is actively searching and looking, you have not pushed anything on them at all.

Your website

The same principle applies, a potential patient is looking for a solution to a dental problem, they land on your website and continue to read it.

Once again, this person is actively searching and looking, you have not pushed anything on them at all.

Social media

This is where the first push from you can happen. A person may have liked your Facebook page (they may not remember doing it as it could be a considerable amount of time ago), your information can then appear on their social media stream.

Whilst the initial contact may have come from the patient, you are now actively pushing information to them which changes the dynamic of the relationship. It’s important to remember in this case however, that this is all done in the public domain. It is a ‘one to many’ form of marketing, but done in public. .

E-mail

The dynamic with e-mail changes enormously. With e-mail marketing you are pushing information onto other people, it is a ‘one to many’ form of marketing, but done in private. Whilst this person may have given you their e-mail address at some point, the chances are they will have forgotten this and can easily view your e-mail as a useless piece of information.

The fact that e-mail is so personal and done in private, on the one hand can totally p**s people off, but get it right, and these factors make it one of the best forms of personalised marketing available.

How to get e-mail right

Before you undertake any form of marketing the question you need to ask is “What problem is this person trying to solve?”. Are they looking for straighter teeth, to replace missing teeth or to improve their dental health, or perhaps something else?

Never, and I repeat never has a patient come to you wanting to have orthodontics… What they want is straighter teeth.

Never, and I repeat never has a patient come to you wanting to have dental implants… What they want is to replace missing teeth.

You may want to give them orthodontics or dental implants, but that is not why they are coming to see you, they are coming to solve a problem and you are able to offer them that solution… Use this in your marketing. This is one of the most powerful messages that you can give, simply helping people understand more about their problems and then take simple steps to solve them.

And this is where e-mail comes in, forget using e-mail to promote your latest special offer or to sell your next fancy treatment. Use e-mail to build trust and reduce risk by showing that you genuinely care for the local people around your dental practice by handing out useful, free and relevant information.

Its an exchange

Think about the direction of the communication. If all of your marketing communication is about selling and self-promotion then you are just pushing information on anyone that cares to listen, and most won’t!

When you change your communication to be something that the other person genuinely wants to receive, they will engage with it, they will share it and they will like it… Suddenly your e-mails go from annoying people to helping people… And that’s what dentistry is about isn’t it?

When someone opens your e-mail they exchange their time for your content, that exchange should not be equitable, it should be in the favour of the person reading. They should get more out of the e-mail then it costs them for you to have their e-mail address! Think about it, an e-mail address is valuable, don’t abuse it, think carefully about what you send by e-mail and you will see an enormous change in the effectiveness of this marketing medium.

Summary

By way of a summary I thought I would give you some top tips to e-mail marketing so that you don’t p**s people off!

  1. Only send an e-mail when you have something valuable to say, if you have been on my e-mail list for a long time you will notice you’ve not had an e-mail from me for a month.
  2. Hand out useful, free and relevant information which genuinely helps your reader to understand their problem and ideally, go some way to solving that problem for them.
  3. Use e-mail to increase trust in you and your business.
  4. Use e-mail to decrease risk of a new client using your services by demonstrating that you know what you are talking about and respect them.
  5. Only use special offers and incentives at the end of an e-mail AFTER you have done the above. If your e-mail is purely trying to take from the recipient without giving then you will reduce trust an increase risk… The opposite of what you should be doing.
  6. If you have nothing to say that is useful and valuable in an e-mail, then say nothing! And by useful and valuable I mean to the recipient NOT you!

So what do you think? Do you use e-mail in your practice and have you found it a valuable asset?

A neat trick with Gmail

gmail addressesDo you have a Gmail address?

Did you know that your own Gmail address has almost an infinite number of variations, this allows you to hand out a different e-mail addresses to each person which makes filtering and labelling those e-mails much simpler when they arrive in your inbox.

Giving out a separate e-mail address to companies and websites that you subscribe to lets you know if they have sold your data or not, as the e-mail address that they sell (if indeed they do) will only ever be used for them. It also makes filtering and filing e-mails much easier.

This is how it works, you take your e-mail address ‘example@gmail.com’ and change it to ‘example+randomword@gmail.com’ by adding ‘+’ and a random word, this gives your e-mail address has an infinite number of variations and will still arrive in your normal Gmail account.

So when you register on different websites with your e-mail address use a different word, for example if you sign up on Tesco’s use ‘youraddress+tesco@gmail.com’ and then if you sign up at Asda use ‘youraddress+asda@gmail.com’.

If you then get any e-mails that are not from that company using that e-mail address, then you know where the security breach has been and who has sold your e-mail.

It also makes filing of those e-mails really simple, so let’s say that Tesco keep sending you e-mails that you no longer want you just set up a filter in Gmail to automatically delete all e-mails from ‘youraddress+tesco@gmail.com’.

This is a really simple technique to have an infinite number of e-mail addresses when you sign up for accounts, newsletters, RSS feeds and other things from different websites.

Give it a go, I think you’ll like it!

The Importance of Email Marketing for Dentistry

In this blog post I wish to explain the reasoning behind email marketing for dentistry, you see the thing is I see many dentists steering more and more towards social media (Social Media is great, and you must understand this) yet they are often ignoring the VERY powerful effect of email.

So, I want to explain WHY email is so powerful and how do people make millions… yes I said millions, out of email?

One of the golden rules of all marketing is segment, segment, segment then target, target, target. This means the more detail you have about a prospect, the more you can ‘speak to them’ using language that means something to them. In email marketing terms we call these ‘lists’

Email markers around the world spend most of their time building lists, NOT trying to make money!

They build lists of people they know that are interested in a specific product or service, now if a prospect decides to buy that specific product or service, then hey, that’s fine… but if not the email marketer will do everything to add them to a segmented list for future marketing.

It works like this, the email marketers will:

  1. Use social media to drive prospects to a focused and targeted sales page 
  2. Use Pay Per Click advertising  to drive prospects to a focused and targeted sales page
  3. Use any other form of marketing, including offline to drive prospects to a focused and targeted sales page.
  4. Provide an option to ‘Buy Now’ on that page
  5. Provide a teaser ‘Find out more…’ facility on that page
  6. Add prospects from the teaser to a list
  7. Educate that list to a) Demonstrate that the marketer is THE best b)Educate the prospect about how much they need to solve their problem c) provide further opportunities for the prospect to buy
So, now let’s ‘dentalify’ this process.
  1. Use social media to drive prospects to a new focused and targeted sales page on your website  e.g.whitening, botox, implants, dentures, ortho
  2. Use Pay Per Click advertising  to drive prospects to that same page
  3. Use local leaflets, flyers, radio and magazine adverts to drive prospects to that page.
  4. Provide an option to ‘Make an Appointment Now’ on that page – possibly a free consult
  5. Provide a teaser on that page – e.g. ‘Download Your Complete Guide to Everything you Need to Know About <>’
  6. Add those prospects from the teaser to a list
  7. Educate that list over the coming months with a series of dental health emails to a) Demonstrate that you are THE best local dentist b)Educate the prospect about how much they need to solve their problem c) provide further opportunities for the prospect to request an appointment
Email marketing works because it is scalable and automated, and there are some simple low cost options such as Aweber (this is the software I use) to enable ANY dental practice to set up a great online marketing system.
There are also some great email marketing tutorials to help you set up email marketing so it won’t be a daunting process.
Once set up email can become an automated marketing machine that works in unison with social media and offline marketing and if a practice ignores it I personally feel they are missing a HUGE opportunity.
What do you think?

A Review of Aweber Email Marketing for your Dental Practice

A question I’m often asked is ‘Will you do our Facebook page for us Mark?” My reply is NO!

My approach to Facebook is that it’s part of an arsenal of tools that need to be employed together in one cohesive system to achieve an end result – more patients.

Facebook is great at building a community and generating a buzz about your practice – all good things, however if you are using a Facebook business page (which you should be!) any conversation that is started is in the public domain. So my intention is to use Facebook as level 1 of your sales funnel with the goal of always driving people to level 2 where conversations are more private and personal – and that is email marketing.

Email is a very powerful tool when done properly and a great way I find to use this tool is via a blog.

Your blog should be handing out relevant, free and useful information to your target market – this can then be sent directly to Facebook and Twitter AND to your email list – so how do I do that? Aweber.

Here’s a video that explains how Aweber converts your blog post in to an email…

Please click the image below to find our more about Aweber.
Simple RSS to Email by AWeber Communications

Email marketing can be annoying, however when done right it is very effective and I see a good  £ conversion of enquiries in to patients for my clients. My most recent stats show a client spent £3k with me and saw £37k of business through an email marketing campaign.

So if you aren’t using email yet, I suggest you give Aweber a go as it makes patient communication simple, measurable and effective.

What email system do you use, and why do you like that one?

The Power of a Question to Elicit a Response

Questions are a very powerful mechanism to encourage a response and are highly underused in online marketing in my opinion. The thing is, we can’t refuse to answer a question… we are hard wired to answer in our head even before the answer comes out of our mouths.

So think about these now…

What is your first name?
What is your mother’s maiden name?
What is the capital of England?

Do you see what I mean… you only have to look at the question and BANG, the answer POPS uncontrollably in to your head.

The practical application

Many clients of mine are getting a great response from their websites with visitors asking for more information via email, these clients are then responding with emails similar to this:

“Dear XYZ,

Thank you for your enquiry, the answer to your question is ABC.

I look forward to hearing from you soon,

Kind regards,

Dr X”

A very polite response, but one that does not elicit a reply. Ideally we should write an email to a prospect with a question at the end, this will then get answered in the prospects head automatically (as demonstrated above) which will encourage the prospect to respond, therefore entering in to a relationship. If we can encourage this response the prospect moves one step closer to becoming a paying customer.

So, if a prospect sends you an enquiry via the website, your reply would get a better response with a question at the end:

“Dear XYZ,

Thank you for your enquiry, the answer to your question is ABC.

Does that answer your question?

or

What do you think?

or

What day would you like an appointment with us?

or

Does that help?

Dr X”

If you use a question at the end of the email the recipient is FAR more likely to respond and enter in to a relationship with you.

So the next time you get an email enquiry… remember to answer it with a question.

What difference will this now make to your emails?

The Power of a Question to Elicit a Response

Questions are a very powerful mechanism to encourage a response and are highly underused in online marketing in my opinion. The thing is, we can’t refuse to answer a question… we are hard wired to answer in our head even before the answer comes out of our mouths.

So think now about these…

What is your first name?
What is your mother’s maiden name?
What is the capital of England?

Do see what I mean… you only have to look at the question and BANG, the answer POPS uncontrollably in to your head.

The practical application

Many clients of mine are getting a great response from their websites with visitiors asking for more information via email, these clients are then responding with emails similar to this:

“Dear XYZ,

Thank you for your enquiry, the answer to your question is ABC.

I look forward to hearing from you soon,

Kind regards,

Dr X”

A very polite response, but one that does not elicit as reply. Ideally we should write an email to a prospect with a question at the end, this will then get answered in the prosepcts head automatically (as demonstrated above) which will encourage the prospect to respond, therefore entering in to a relationship. If we can encourage this response the prospect moves one step closer to becoming a paying customer.

So, if a prospect send you an enquiry via the website, your reply would get a better response with a question at the end:

“Dear XYZ,
Thank you for your enquiry, the answer to your question is ABC.
Does that answer your question?
or
What do you think?
or
What day would you like an appointment with us?
or
Does that help?
Dr X”

If you use a question at the end of the email the recipient is FAR more likely to respond and enter in to a relationship with you.

So the next time you get an email enquiry… remember to answer it with a question.

What difference will this now make to your emails?