The fall season sees people’s schedules filling up fast with school, after-school, and numerous social activities. And despite its importance, it can almost feel like everyone is too busy to make their dental appointments.
Some dentists might accept this as their “slow season”, but you don’t have to, nor should you. Here are a few tactics to change the focus, get your practice noticed and increase your fall season client flow.
- Themed Discounts
The fall season is a perfect time of year for themed promotions. There are several celebrations and festivals driving conversations, and a well-timed discount offer around any of them will get you noticed.
There’s the obvious holidays of Halloween and Thanksgiving, of course. However, National Diabetic Month, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and National Orthodontic Month, are also good to consider. Special days such as National Brush Day on Nov. 1 and World Smile Day on Nov. 7 tie in perfectly to dental promotions. Any unique discount you might offer helps to get the word out, using a mix of search and social ads with proper placement.
- Community Involvement
Sometimes, the crammed calendars for patients in the Fall season mean you have to move outside the office in order to connect with people where they are. Tap into the season’s communal spirit by participating in or hosting community events like charity happenings, fundraisers, trunk or treats, feeding the poor, backpack drives, free clinics or other events integral to your community. Whatever you decide to get behind, being sure to do so with branding in mind, you’ll want to have your contact information and location available on all materials and use your social media channels to promote it.
- Engage Your Audience on Social Media
There are more opportunities to promote your practice on social media than you might think. First, start by encouraging any patient visiting your practice in person or online to follow you on social media.
Use the platforms to promote your discounts, showcase your involvement with the community, or host contests. A fun contest could be encouraging patients to post pictures of themselves in a favorite Halloween costume on your socials and awarding a prize to the person whose picture receives the most likes. This increases traffic to your website or social media page significantly while participants rally their friends and family to visit and vote. Running your own hashtags to push dental health awareness and provide tips for your patients and visitors can also prove helpful to you and your patients.
You can also use hashtags to increase awareness of office demonstration videos, specific procedures, the technology you use and/or several short guides on dental healthcare. Make certain you’ve optimized your business profile with a clear call to action and a direct phone number that can easily be called right from your social media profile.
- Use Cross-Referral Alliances
Cross-referral alliances remain an under-utilized resource among medical and dental professionals. For many, a recommendation from a medical professional has more influence than any search engine suggestion.
Establish your network of trusted medical professionals, especially general family doctors in your community, and link to each other’s websites where possible. Of course, take care to work only with reputable partners you personally know, since recommending them to your patients can also affect your credibility.
- Demonstrate You are an Expert
Patients like to go to people they deem experts, where they believe they will get the best service from the most competent person in the field. The fall season is an excellent time to build these credentials.
Whenever possible, participate in media interviews and publish articles in local community groups and papers. You can then share links to these on your website and social posts for optimization. You may have to do a little work upfront, but the payoff will be worth it.
- Target the Upcoming Festive Period
Fall ends with Thanksgiving, a precursor to the upcoming holidays in December and the New Year. It is a perfect time to target people looking to have procedures done before the holidays begin or those searching for unique gift ideas, such as cosmetic dentistry.
Target with the right messaging, including a special offer, and focus on delivering the bright smile patients want, just in time for the holiday festivities to begin. With the right consistency, yours will be the practice that springs to mind whenever the need for a dentist arises.
Video highly influences conversions, so you want to maximize its use at every tasteful opportunity. It’s the ideal tool for giving a tour of your office, explaining different procedures, and building a rapport with prospective patients before they even visit you.
Video use also ranks highly on social media and search engines. It’s the perfect format for platforms like TikTok or other popular social channels that many of today’s patients are active on.
Just because it is common for some dental practices to have fewer appointments during the Fall, doesn’t make it your reality. Instead, you can use this time of year to do something different, connect and engage with our community and set yourself ahead of your competition. If you do the work each year, it will be easier and more streamlined as you and your team get familiar with the strategies that work best for your practice. And don’t forget, enjoy the process – you’ll find you are creative and inventive in new spaces.
Align your practice with your public, using offers and discounts strategically, while making connections through the various targeted messaging suggestions above. When you’re ready to make an impression, get more patients, get noticed, and become a bigger brand, the educated and experienced team of experts at IMPACT Digital Marketing can help. Get started making an IMPACT in your community today!
Founder Impact Digital Marketing