Most dental practices have embraced ezines, bulletins or newsletters of some kind as a great way to advertise themselves. However, not every dentist knows how to achieve the greatest results with these.
Simply sending out the same tired, repetitive newsletter each month is no use. This is a marketing method that needs doing properly, or not at all. After all, what effect can an ezine be expected to have if nobody reads it?
You need to make sure the contents of your online newsletter are compelling enough that patients will click on them, read them and share them rather than deleting the email straight away. This is easier said than done, but it is certainly something that is worth focusing on.
Remember that the point of internal marketing is to get people talking about your practice and recommending it to others. An ezine is a great way of giving your customers something to talk about.
After all, few people are going to naturally bring up their dentist in conversation if it has been four months since their last visit. However, if something in your ezine caught their eye then they might well end up recommending you to someone, or just talk about what you sent to them. In this way, it is an incredibly effective dental marketing tool.
So, what should you include in your ezine? Here are a few of the things you should be thinking about sending out:
The subject of an ezine is what entices the recipient to open it in the first place. As such, you need to make sure it is engaging and appeals to a wide variety of people. You can’t be too specific, or you run the risk of alienating a portion of your patients.
A subject heading that is treatment-specific, such as special discount on children’s orthodontic treatment, will instantly alienate people. In this example adults that don’t have children, adults whose children do not require orthodontic treatment and adults with grown-up children will already be deleting the ezine before they have opened it due to the subject heading not being relevant.
Including a few special offers in your ezine is a good tactic to grab people’s attention. However, these offers serve a few extra purposes. For example, offering patients money off a certain treatment is a great way to advertise the different services you offer. You can also include a direct link to your website for a more detailed overview of the treatment, which helps drive traffic to your page.
Giving special offers to patients also acts as a reward for their loyal custom. It can be an incentive to sign up for your newsletter as well. If someone announces they are getting a half-price treatment thanks to your ezine, more people are going to want to subscribe.
Your newsletter can also serve as a connection between you and your local community. Your customers are mainly going to be from the same area, so you can target them all with a few select pieces of news that are relevant to their common interests.
This is a great place to put announcements about members of your community, for example. If somebody wins an award, or a similar positive event happens, you can ask them if you can include the story in your ezine.
Hints and tips
Finally, a good way to make sure you are including advice your customers will want to read is to include articles that will be useful to them. Your patients will appreciate a bit of advice, especially regarding their dental health.
Giving people dental hints and tips not only makes people more likely to read your ezine (and pass the information on to their friends), it also makes you look better. It shows patients that you care about their oral health, and are invested in making sure their teeth are in the best condition possible.
Included with your ezine will be the function to ‘share’ it on social media. This encourages people to post a link to the ezine on their social media accounts. This can also be a great way to encourage people to ‘like’ and ‘follow’ you on your own social media channels.