In 2016, the number of email accounts should reach 4.3 billion! 58% of American consumers prefer emails to other kinds of marketing communication. By now, your dental practice surely has a solid digital marketing strategy promoting your quality dental care. Don’t miss out on the benefits of adding more sophisticated email marketing to your dental marketing plan. It’s a low-cost, easy-to-implement way to increase patient engagement and traffic to your practice. In this article, we’ll describe some of the components and benefits of a great email marketing campaign.
Find Your Audience
Gather email addresses with web forms that allow readers to subscribe to your email broadcasts on your website, as well as your social media channels. Ask new patients for email addresses when they fill out their intake forms at first appointments. If you have a practice blog, prompt readers to receive updates about new content via email. But beware of spam complaints: always collect addresses ethically, and look out for typos and predatory scripts that can put people on your list in error. Spam reports from readers affect your relationship with your Internet service provider. Using an email confirmation step in the sign-up process can prevent this.
It’s All About the Content!
Crafting a good marketing email is about giving readers something they can use: an offer of reduced prices for treatments and services, the latest information about your practice in a periodic dental practice newsletter, new dental health guidelines or information, or updates on new posts published to your dental practice blog. You already have this content, so why not use it to increase patient engagement?
Just as important as the content is good form in putting your emails together: use catchy, clear subject lines (personalized for recipients is even better), so what they see in their inboxes is what they get when opening messages. Include pictures! And I can’t stress enough the importance of making your email campaigns mobile-friendly: over 67% of consumers use a mobile device to check their email.
Know Your Audience
One of the great things about email marketing is that it allows you to address different messages to different patient groups. If you’re wondering how to engage your patients, the best approach is a personalized one. Remember your patient personas? Send emails to prospective patients offering an introduction to your dental practice—include images and perhaps a video tour of the office and greetings from your staff. Newsletter marketing is great for regular patients, offering updates about new services, new staff, or improvements to your practice. Target those who haven’t been into the office in a while with reminders about the importance of regular cleanings. Include a link to an appointment request form on your website or a click to call button, so patients can make appointments without an extra step. Additionally, don’t forget analytics: it’s easy to gather statistics like open rates, click rates, unsubscribes, and marks as spam. Use these analytics to tailor messaging and more effectively reach your audiences.
Pro Tip: Take Action!
Emails that call readers to action can draw more patients to your dental website and social media channels, and that means more patients in your practice. Promote discounted services and ask readers to click through to your website to sign up to get more information. Generate social media shares by allowing readers to easily share content by clicking a button in your email: statistics show that emails containing social sharing buttons have a 158% higher click-through rate!