1. Not knowing the difference between external marketing and internal marketing.
When most people (even marketers) think of marketing, they usually think of Google ads, websites, or other digital means of getting attention and driving leads. That’s called external marketing — and it’s really important!
But for dental practices, internal marketing is equally essential. This is all about building relationships with patients or potential patients so that they want to book an appointment and keep coming back. Your internal marketing covers things like phone conversion, case acceptance, and recare.
Doing a great job on your internal marketing can often be the most cost-effective way to boost your overall new patient results. This is because internal marketing can be improved by short-term coaching or training, not by consistently spending money on ads every month.
2. Adding implants without training your whole team.
Having a doctor trained in performing dental implant procedures is just one step in making implants a successful part of your practice. You’ll also need to train your whole team in how to work with implant patients.
This includes giving your call handlers the tools to answer more complex questions that potential implant patients will want to ask over the phone. Ideally, you’ll also have a team member who can follow up with implant leads and do long-term lead nurturing, and dentists who understand how to present and close implant cases.
3. Not using the right buying cycle approach.
Relatedly, you should be familiar with the concept of buying cycles — specifically short versus long.
A short buying cycle means that a customer (or in this case, a patient) makes a purchasing decision relatively quickly. Think about going grocery shopping for dinner — you don’t do months of research first. The same holds true for finding a dentist for a cleaning or an exam.
However, dentists who focus on high-value procedures like implants are dealing with a long buying cycle. Implant patients will do months (even years) of research, deliberation, bargain hunting, and whatever else before committing to treatment.
So depending on what kind of patients you want to attract, you need to make sure that your marketing is aligned with the right kind of buying cycle.