May 25th, 2012
In a recent study by recent study by SEOBook, 1,000 people were shown screenshots of Google search page results and asked whether or not the page featured ads. The surprising results? Although all the pages shown had ads, nearly half (45.5%) of the people surveyed said there were no ads.
Later when showed search results that had no ads, but included a Google Plus menu bar, 56% of participants incorrectly answered that the search results did have ads.
When asked where ads might appear on search results at top search engines like Bing & Google nearly 20% of people replied that search results do not carry ads.
Results were higher when people were shown search results with a sidebar ad, with 62.9% of people correctly answering that the page had an ad.
What does this mean for my business?
Organic listings and pay per click ads are both very important in directing traffic to your website. As illustrated by this study, people are often unaware of ads if there is no right column ad in the search results. Sometimes doctors will say that they are not inclined to click on ads but they would look at the organic listings. The fact is, users are not always clear which is which. Having both on the page helps improve click through to your website. We may be thinking about more of a distinction between the two than is warranted.
If you have questions about how to improve results with your internet dental marketing, please give us a call at 877-322-4440 ext. 101
September 28th, 2011
When evaluating media alternatives, there are a number of considerations. One question that arises from time to time is the effectiveness of TV advertising for a dental practice. Doctors we have worked with have had success and disappointment with TV. Having worked in a media department of an ad agency and as a marketing manager earlier in my career, there are three things worth considering when evaluating TV or any other media for advertising.
1. What is your objective and message: Depending on what you want to accomplish, TV may or may not be the best way to deliver the message. TV can be good practice name and positioning reinforcement. It can also be a great way to showcase the benefits of your work with the live video. However, will the ad format give you enough time to deliver the message you need to send?
2, Evaluate what you are really buying with the TV schedule: When are they running the spots and what is the expected audience for the ad schedule. The three common measures for a media buy are * Reach (percentage of audience reached during the schedule), Frequency (avg. number of times someone is likely to see the ad) and CPM (cost per thousand viewers reached). This should all be measured against the type of patient demographic you are trying to reach (ex. women and men ages 25-64). It is a good idea to also look at the geography of the TV coverage and determine how much of it is your market area (where patients will realistically drive from to reach your office). There is a level of waste in TV and any marketing. Consider then how much of that coverage will be helpful to you. If you are wasting 80% of the coverage on people too far away to drive to your practice or on viewers who are not your target demographic, there may be better options that are more targeted to your practice. Much of the effectiveness will also depend on how good the ad is. Then look at the cost per thousand, and you can more easily consider the cost against the costs of other marketing options such as internet marketing or direct mail.
3. Consider the value of the TV spot production: Just the production of a quality TV spot can often carry a large price tag. If you have access to the ad video (which you should be able to do) you could use it on your website (becoming increasingly important on websites now) and also post it on YouTube for additional visibility online. So, there may be some value in the production itself to consider.
If you are still unsure, conduct a test and track the results. Make sure you run it long enough to fairly evaluate the results but contain your commitment until you have a better idea how it will perform for your practice.
August 15th, 2011
With the uncertainty in the markets, it is easy to get caught up in believing the news. Yet, some of the most successful practices take a different path from the rest of the crowd during times like this. Today, there was an excellent article posted by Roz Fulmerof ToPS on the CrownCouncil.org website outlining five things you can do to thrive in a troubled economy. It is well worth the read if you are a Crown Council member:
Here is a brief overview. She suggests five keys to success during a down economy:
1. Refuse to participate in the recession – don’t become paralyzed, continue to move forward with your business
2. Increase marketing and advertising – build your brand while others are pulling back
3. Innovate – consider new approaches and possibilities; some of the great businesses today were born during recessions
4. Become a talent magnet – it is a great time to find and attract the best talent
5. Think big, take action. – create your vision and take action
Don’t participate in a troubled economy – choose to thrive in it!
Have a great day!
August 15th, 2011
The news from Google that they will not post 3rd party reviews (only links to them) has created concern for many dental practices that rely on local internet marketing. For some time now, we have always recommended having patient reviews directly in the search engines as well as using third party review sites. Now that these third party reviews have disappeared from Google Places (other than to have a link to them), it is important to have a strategy to get reviews posted directly in Google. During the past few weeks, we have discussed a variety of approaches with dental practices. Here are some strategies to consider.
• Some patient reminder systems for dental practices such as SmileReminder and DemandForce can automatically invite your patients to go into the search engines and write reviews after an office visit. This is a great way to keep a steady flow of reviews coming into the search engines, but there is a monthly cost.
• Send your own e-mails out to your patients with a link to your local listing. We can help you format an e-mail with links directly to your local listings where they can write a review. Give them some help with instructions. Contact us if you would like to some help formatting these e-mails.
• Use QR codes to help direct patients to your local listings using their smart phones. It will make it easy for them to find you, and they can use their smart phone to write a review and share their experience with others.
• Consider a simple reminder such as a business card with the address of your local listing on it that your patients can take home with them. Make is convenient.
Reviews are gaining more and more attention from consumers, and it is important to pay attention to this area of your marketing.
July 26th, 2011
There has been a lot of growth in blogs during the past couple of years. There is good reason for that with all the benefits this can offer your internet dental marketing. Here are a few to consider:
- More Website Traffic – A recent study found that more people visit websites with blogs than those that don’t. When you are providing compelling content on your blog, it can attract interest and readership
- Better Search Engine Optimization – Providing more content on topics relevant to the services you provide to your patients will aid in the optimizing of your website in the search engines. It encourages the search engines to revisit your website more frequently and also gives the search engines more content that may get listed in the search engines. However, best to include the blog as a subdirectory (www.yourdomain.com/blog) rather than as a subdomain (blog.yourdomain.com) to better accomplish this goal.
- Additional Patient Education – Build up a library of educational material that will be helpful to your patients. Each blog article can help them understand the opportunities they have to improve their smile and achieve greater oral health.
- Create a Community – Blogging can help you interact with your patients and prospects as you provide compelling content and invite them to interact with you. Include the blog material in social media.
Blogging is not difficult. Blog tools make it easy to post information. What to write? Write about new insights on services you provide. Share an experience with a patient when you created a new smile. Discuss research such as the oral health systemic health connection. But focus on information that will be of interest to your patients and prospects. Writing not your thing? Get someone in your office who likes to write and is good at it, or let us help you with a simple tool that will post optimized articles to your blog. At any rate, it is good to get into blogging.
April 21st, 2010
Google has announced that the speed with which the website loads has now officially become a factor in their rankings. This is not a great surprise, nor is it likely to be a major factor right now for most websites. They have been talking about it for some time. However, it is now official. Good to ensure that your website is loading quickly and allowing visitors to move around easily. It has always been a good idea to make your website a good experience by ensuring that the site loads quickly. Now it is even more important.
For more information, here is some insight from Matt Cutts at Google. If you feel you might need a site tune-up, please contact us.
February 8th, 2010
We just returned from the Crown Council Annual Event in San Antonio. What a great group of Eagles who flock together in this organization to learn from each other, improve their practices and give back. It was a great opportunity to spend a few days with those who attended.
On Saturday afternoon, I presented a workshop on “20 Ways to Win with Internet Marketing”. The internet has become a critical source of new patient traffic, but doing it right makes all the difference. If you did not have a chance to attend, here is a list that we shared with those who were there, broken into three areas:
1. Effective Targeting
2. Proper Messaging
3. Consistent Branding
4. Channel Strategies
5. Results Analysis
6. Meaningful SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
7. Targeted Paid Advertising (PPC)
8. Hard-Working Domain Name(s)
9. Informative Website Content
10. Purposeful Blogging
11. Optimized Video
12. Newsworthy Press Releases
13. Developed Social Sites
14. Enhanced Local Listings
15. Online Testimonials
16. Targeted Micro-Sites
17. Enticing Promotions
18. Innovative Phone Tool
19. Immediate Click to Call
20. Convenient Lead Form
• Continual Tracking to Learn What is Working
There was much more in our discussion. However, in considering ways to reach and convert key prospects as part of your internet dental marketing, this is a good starting list of things that will help you achieve success.