Marketing is the discipline of communicating a business and its offerings to its target customers. This communication includes the facts of the product or service, how appealing its seems, how it's priced and were to find it. In dental office terms, the same parameters apply. It is necessary to communicate with the target audience exactly what is being offered. How zealous that communication is, is another matter all together, but one thing is for certain, neglect a loud and clear voice in any marketing campaign and face the consequence of being relegated to obscurity.
Dental office marketing needs to be conducted with the most professional communication. Dentists are a subset of the health care industry and as such, second rate promotions have no place in this campaign. For a person to even consider the dental service, the first impression must be that of sincerity wrapped in professionalism.
The marketing campaigns must include, additionally, print media and souvenirs to give existing patents. There must be an extensive data base of all customers where automatic email reminders are sent out to highlight check-up dates and cleaning schedules. All these efforts to bring back and existing customer are very much part of the marketing effort.
An existing customer is more valuable than a new customer. This is so because, the cost to acquire that customer has already been spent and any change of heart of that customer who has already experienced the service, points to a deeper issue. Each customer, in monetary terms, is to be valued not just by the price of one visit. Each patient is the sum of all his visits over the course of one's life. That makes each customer very valuable. A rough estimate of the math that should be used in determining the value of a customer is the present value of every single visit between now and the last visit and includes the different services the person would need over that time.
A new customer is valued in a slightly different manner. A new customer is someone who either is migrating from a competing service or from out of town. The conversion could be for various reasons and as such the focus should remain on keeping the customer. The value of a new customer is also the sum of all future visits with the exception that new customer and old customers have a deferent disengagement profile. Old customers are more likely to stay where as new customers have higher chances of leaving.
In any case, developing a dental office marketing campaign is a simple exercise is understanding its strength and weakness then deploying the right strategy to advance the strengths and bolster the weaknesses.