Storage Wars. Yuup – if you’ve got a teenager you might have seen this television show. According to the news, it’s the most popular series in A&E history. The craze over 50 Shades is sort of the same thing … there are zillions of books just like it, so what’s the big deal?

Do you just need to create a unique competitive differentiator and then you’ll win at the marketing game?

I wish! It’s more than just identifying your key attributes. You need to create buzz. People relate to people and if someone else is talking about “it,” you hear about “it,” you read about “it,” you’re reminded constantly … that’s when the winner goes from advertising to word-of-mouth and that’s where we can learn a lesson.

And really, that’s what relationship, or educational, marketing is all about. That’s why your consistent patient newsletters work so well. When you develop deeper relationships with patients, when you dependably keep your name in front of patients and prospects, you build your brand presence, you stay top-of-mind, and you create desire for something they don’t currently have.

All dentists face a common dilemma: patients aren’t consistent, patients have irrational fears, patients forget about appointments, patients get busy with their lives when they’re not near your office – we all know it’s true … “I’d rather go to the dentist than … that which I can’t stand to do at all.” No one should be watching storage wars. It’s ridiculous. So how can we break through these dental patient barriers consistently and effectively?

At Patient News, we’ve learned that educational marketing can do it. When you strengthen your brand visibility, reinforce your competitive differentiators, you become the expert, you’re trusted in patient homes, you increase website visits, increase recall percentages, case acceptance, and word-of-mouth. These indicators demonstrate the impact of your direct marketing efforts beyond the telephone and emphasize the importance of a comprehensive – and consistent – marketing effort.

Educational marketing helps:

1. Build awareness. You’re planting the seeds of knowledge and understanding about the benefits of your service that will lead to desire, prioritization, and action.

2. Build desire. When a patient first hears about treatment, they may be skeptical or hesitant. Remember that most treatment isn’t accepted because the patient didn’t really understand the process or benefit.

3. Increase priority. When you’re fighting against not wanting to visit a dental practice and not spending money on elective dental work, you need to repeat your message and the benefits over and over.

4. Trigger action. When you provide information and build trust in your opinion over time, you will increase patient visits, treatment acceptance, and most importantly, revenue.

5. Strengthen loyalty. When you add value to your patient relationships, when you personalize your messages, when you connect as real people, then patients will appreciate your service above the competition.

So that’s the draw of storage wars? The relationships. The anticipation. The hidden treasure. How will your next patient or neighborhood newsletter create intrigue and engage your patients?