For many years, dental practices have relied on relational (or relationship-driven) value drivers as their marketing strategy foundation. These value drivers include face-to-face interaction, responsiveness, short wait times, human interaction, and word-of-mouth referral business.
Since March, the world has changed and businesses have had to become accustom to, and adjust to, the new normal. Human interactions are also changing and, in response, dentists must add innovative strategies to their business acumen.
Staying in touch with people from a distance can be achieved through digital technology. For example, Google Ads provide a useful, effective way to heighten and keep brand awareness and ensure lead generation is working in your favor. This technology cleverly helps you embrace the ongoing transformations – and even leverage them – during a time of limited human interaction.
Google Ads For Dentists
Google Ads are a way for businesses to advertise their products and services … but it’s an auction system. You bid to have your ad appear when a user performs a search in Google using a specific keyword (or phrase) that you want to “own.” When you “win” that keyword, your ad will appear at the top of their search engine result page. You’ve seen this happen – you get results with the top few hits prefaced by the word “Ad” in front of the listing.
Many dentists use this strategy to ensure they are staying relevant and competitive in their community by keeping brand awareness up and making sure they are visible when people are searching for a dentist. The result of a great Google Ad strategy is more traffic to your website, more online appointment requests, and more phone calls to your practice.
COVID-19 has changed the landscape of a successful Google Ad strategy. In this blog, I’ll explain the impact the coronavirus has on your healthcare-specific Google Ads campaigns.
The Impact Of COVID-19 On Google Ads For Dentists
Neil Patel, a well-known marketing leader says, “During an economic downturn, you’ll find that you will have less competition, which means it is easier and faster to get results, and in some cases, you’ll be able to get deals, such as a potential reduction in pay-per-click advertising.”
Patel also has completed an interesting study on online traffic growth or decline, and his data suggests that the healthcare industry has seen a 15% increase in traffic due to coronavirus (see Table A below). Much of this engagement is assumed to be coronavirus-specific inquiries.
Patient NEWS also holds a ton of data on dental practice websites, and from a high level, we have not seen a drastic drop in online traffic. In fact, in many situations we have seen an increase in traffic but lower conversion rates. This suggests that there may be patients wanting to learn more about how your practice is dealing with the pandemic and what new state-of-the-art protocols you’ve put in place to keep them safe, but they’re not booking an appointment right away.
Table A: Traffic Growth or Decline Due to COVID - 19
A conversion rate is the percentage of people who click on your ad and who are then engaging with your practice (i.e. phoning you). The standard conversion rate from Google searches for all business verticals is 5.63%. It’s important to note that a recent study performed by Wordstream explains that health and medical conversion rates are currently benchmarked at 7.27% – almost 2 % higher.
Cost Per Acquisition
One of the most essential data benchmarks is cost per acquisition (CPA). CPA is the amount of money you are spending to acquire a new patient. For all businesses, the Google average is $51.50 per acquisition. In healthcare, it is $48.50 – $3.00 less than the average acquisition cost (see Table B below).
Table A: Traffic Growth or Decline Due to COVID - 19
What does this mean for my dental practice?
The coronavirus has changed the way you do business, treat patients, and generate brand awareness. And as you change, so should your marketing tactics. With an opportunity for a reduced Google Ads cost during the pandemic, your practice has an opportunity to gain market share and stand out amongst your competition.
Paid Media By Patient NEWS
Great content and digital marketing include tactics and strategies that work together to expand practice awareness and brand voice. Regularly generating leads for your practice means publishing valuable content and establishing a way to continually and repeatedly get that content in front of prospects. Paid media is one efficient, cost-effective way to do it.
What is Paid Media? Also called pay-per-click (PPC), SEM, Google Ads, Display, Remarketing... Paid Media is a method by which dental practices can serve up their content through sponsored social media, paid search, display ads, video ads, and other multimedia. Paid Media is an effective way to expand your practice's brand reach, and as a result, generate more traffic to your dental practice website, resulting in more calls and more new patients!
Why should my practice spend advertising dollars on paid ads? You may already have a great strategy earning clicks to your website, possibly through social media posts, blogs, or SEO strategies. The reality is that Google now has decided to take up the entire first half of its search result pages with ads. This means that if your practice is not in the ads section of the results page, you won’t be seen first and are losing clicks to your competitors.
A Google Ads paid media strategy will target your local area and ideal client demographic to generate more calls and appointment requests. The best part about paid media is that you can track every impression, every click, and every conversion to get the cost per conversion and the ROI on your spend. If you want more new patients and you want to retain your active patients, paid media should be a key element of your marketing strategy.
What is included in my paid media service by Patient NEWS? When you get started with paid media by Patient NEWS, we will begin by understanding your goals. Your goals are then tied back to a strategy that is backed up by monitored key performance indicators (KPIs). This way, our paid media experts can react incredibly quickly to optimize your unique strategy on a weekly basis by adding keywords, removing negative keywords (words like “free,” for example, so that your practice would not appear in the search results for anyone searching “free dentistry”), and optimizing the spend/budget to create only the highest-performing ads for your campaigns. Your Account Manager will continuously update you on the optimization our team is rolling out to meet the goals your practice is looking to achieve.
Your next step is a Free Discovery Consultation for an incredible patient- and community-communication strategy that will help your practice recover from COVID-19 closures and help your practice grow and prosper into 2021.
Sign up for a FREE DISCOVERY SESSION. There’s never any obligation and we promise you’ll get value – including a complete market area demographic analysis plus identification of your top draw areas.
CLICK HERE for more information.
The team at Patient NEWS cares about dentists and dental teams across the country. As a dental marketing company with 27+ years in the industry, we offer proven strategies and multiple options for great patient and new-patient communications, direct mail, digital strategies, websites, and the rawkstar of it all … Practice ZEBRATM.
Call us today at 888-377-2404 or book your discovery session.