With social media continuing to grow in popularity, many people believe that email is no longer relevant. We don’t believe that’s true. In fact, email is one of the most powerful marketing tools a dental practice has at its disposal for various reasons, one of them being that not everyone is on social media, but pretty much everyone has an email that they check every day. Adding email to your practice’s marketing strategy is an effective and efficient way to reach a large number of people in a short period of time, and it is far more flexible than any other form of marketing communication.
Our dental practices all use email in their marketing strategies in some form or another to reach out to existing patients. Whether the goal of the email is to educate patients about a particular procedure or issue, inform them about an event, a change, news, etc., or share success stories, it is the fastest and best way to get that message across to your practice’s patient base.
Using email to communicate with existing patients creates more value and deepens relationships. When existing patients see emails from their dental practice, it lets them know that they are important and appreciated. The content of the email is useful and welcome information, not selling directly. It is also easy for a patient to pass the message on to friends and family members.
When we create emails for our practices, we steer clear of the newsletter format and instead choose a single topic to focus on, for a clear and succinct message. This also allows us to customize the message as much as possible to the practice itself. For example, when we get before and after photos, videos, patient reviews, or custom images from the practice, we can craft a specific message to highlight this unique material.
Our aim with emails is to be personal, writing as if the words are coming directly from the dentist. Personal content is engaging and does not feel like marketing to the patient. It also aids in deepening the patient relationship if they feel like their dentist is speaking directly to them. Most of our practices see a 40% open rate for emails every month, which means that their patients are genuinely interested in what their dentist has to say and what is happening at the practice.
Another way we use email for our practices is to reach out to patients who have not committed to their treatment plan. A gentle reminder about a pending treatment plan lets the patient know they haven’t been forgotten. It also serves to push the patient in the right direction if they have been too busy or hesitant for some reason.
As you can see, email plays a key role in marketing a dental practice. No other marketing tool is as flexible or useful for reaching out to existing patients. If your practice is not taking advantage of email for all of the reasons we just illustrated, it is missing a huge opportunity to gain additional business from existing patients.