Our dentists consistently report back that direct mail marketing continues to be a top performer when it comes to marketing their dental practices. Whether your tactic is postcards or newsletters, both provide the opportunity for a great return with a relatively low initial investment. This month, The Dental Press has put together 6 tips that can help your direct mail marketing efforts work even more effectively for you.
- Offer is Key. One of the most important elements to your mailer is a relevant and attention grabbing offer. Here are several proven offer ideas to get your wheels turning:
- Discounts: New Patient Special: Exam, Cleaning & X-rays Only $$$ (Note that too great of a discount may bring in lower quality patients.)
- Free _______ With Purchase of Specials: For example, Free Tooth Whitening with Paid Cleaning and Exam, or Free Movie Tickets with an Exam and Xrays
- % or Dollars Off When Spend $$$ Deals: $100 Off When You Spend $1000, or Save 10% on any visit totaling $500+
- Stack Up the Savings: 15% discount for each of following (whoever you want to draw): new patient, seniors, student, military, inactive patient, local, families
- BOGO: Buy One Cleaning & Exam and Get One Free (This is also a great special to run with sealants.)
- Free Second Opinions
- Apply Exam Fee to Any Scheduled Treatment or Procedure
Choose an offer that fits well with the dynamic of your practice and the demographic your mailers are targeting. Make sure your offer is easy to find, printed in multiple places on your postcard/newsletter and includes with it a call to action: “Call today!” “Bring this card with you to redeem this offer!” etc.
2. Stand out Design. Your mailer should have a professional, well-laid out, eye-catching design. Bright colors, easy to read print and great photographs are a must. Too much copy can quickly lose your readers interest, so pair articles with pop-out statistics, infographics, bolded quotes and pictures.
3. Timing is Everything. Plan the timing of your mailings so they are consistent and relevant with your content. It takes time to produce and send a postcard or newsletter, so be organized, plan accordingly and make sure your patients and potential clients have time to take advantage of the offers you are presenting. For example, get your “summer-ready specials” out by May before your patrons go on vacation or your “back to school offers” in your readers’ hands before the end of July.
There are a few times during the year that always seem to yield high results.
- Late fall/year end: patients want their smiles to look great for the holidays, this is also the time of year to focus on getting your patients to utilize their unused dental benefits and unspent flex dollars.
- New Year: Dental plans are renewed and patients don’t have to worry about being over their maximum annual benefit. It’s also a great time to promote New Year’s resolutions and the importance and benefits of great oral health.
- Student/University employees: Many student and school employees have insurance plans that reset during the months of July-September. If your practice is located in a college town, know your market and cater to it!
4. Get Personal: Including a picture and bio of your dentist or spotlight one of your hygienists or assistants in your mailers. A personal face and information help your readers connect to your practice.
5. Don’t Forget Contact Information: Sounds like a no brainer right? Though it may seem obvious, it’s easy to overlook including all types of your contact information on your postcard. Phone number, address, email and website should be, large, bold, easy to find and appear on both sides of your postcard or throughout your newsletter. Some dentists are using QR codes to provide an easy way to link to their websites or special offers they are promoting. (QR codes also tell your audience that you are up-to-date with mobile technology and a modern, forward-thinking practice.)
6. Track the Data. Know which offers are bringing in patients and the type of work that is being scheduled because of your direct mail efforts. The more know, the more you can hone in on the successful tactics and improve your marketing strategy to yield the very best return on investment.
Implement these direct mail marketing tips into your post cards and newsletters and watch your ROI soar when it comes do this dental marketing strategy. For more tips on how content, design, target audience research or performance tracking can benefit your practice, give us a call, email or check out our blog today!