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Holiday eCards from PatientActivator Best Practices:
New Money-Saving Ways to
Use Patient Communications

Several years ago, a Dentaltown survey declared electronic reminders one of the “Fifty Greatest Game Changers in Dentistry.” Email and text messages have revolutionized the way dental practices confirm appointments and send last-minute reminders of patients' appointments. But that’s only part of the story. Email and text campaigns sent via communications systems like PatientActivator® are also a highly effective, virtually cost-free way to market your services to your existing patients.

Email — The Ideal Marketing Tool
Email may be the greatest invention in marketing in a hundred years. First of all, it’s free … no printing or postage are required. That’s hard to beat. But even more, it carries its own urgency. 58% of consumers start their online day by reading their emails. And email knows no age limits, 85% of all Americans over age 15 use it regularly.

Email is simply a fantastic medium to communicate with your patients, to send them information about the services that you offer, or even just to tell them what kind of electric toothbrush you recommend. 72% of consumers say email marketing is their preferred way to receive promotions. The purpose of email marketing is to stay top of mind in their awareness. It’s what marketing professionals call “a touch,” where you bring yourself in contact with your customer non-intrusively, and helpfully, on a consistent basis.

Text Campaigns – A Rising Star of Low-Cost Marketing
There has been no more rapid adoption of a new communication medium than the use of text messaging on mobile phones. Virtually non-existent in 2001, there are now five times as many text messages sent as phone calls made. Everyone is doing it. More than 80 percent of cell phone owners use text messaging. And 31% prefer it to a phone call.

Like emails, text messages are an excellent medium for sending special promotions and offers to your existing patients. As a rule of thumb, all text promotions must be 160 characters or less. There is one other caveat about text marketing campaigns: Since texts are more intrusive than emails and may incur a cost to the recipient, it’s important not to aggravate your patients by overusing this valuable marketing tool.

Marketing 101
Remember, the #1 rule of marketing is repetition. You must tell patients over and over again what special services you offer and why they should want it. That’s what you can do with email and, to a lesser degree, texts. Best of all, it costs you nothing because they’re already part of your patient communication system. With just a few clicks you can send marketing campaigns and personalized promotional offers to your patient base.

5 Quick Tips for Email & Text Marketing
1. Personalize your messages with the name of the patient.
2. Send campaigns on the fly to bring in patients during slow times.
3. Track your results with redeemable coupon codes.
4. Don’t put two offers into a single email or text.
5. Always put an end date on your offers.

One Last Thing
It’s important to note the effectiveness of your email and text marketing campaigns directly corresponds to the quality of your list of email addresses and cellphone numbers. Collecting up-to-date contact information is something that your staff needs to be diligent about—asking every time a patient comes in, “Do we have your current cell phone number and email address?” No patient should leave the office without being asked for them. Make it standard operating procedure.

PatientActivator® — dentistry’s #1 communications, social and online presence service — features an exclusive library of email campaigns that make it easy to communicate with your patients about services like Zoom, Invisalign and CEREC. To learn more about PatientActivator, click here or call 1-877-783-8715.

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Disclaimer: This newsletter provides general marketing advice. Please consult your legal professional to ensure compliance with applicable laws in your jurisdiction.

© 2015 Futuredontics, Inc.