When it comes to dental marketing strategies, external marketing is definitely more popular as compared to internal marketing. But how will experts weigh in on that question? What exactly is more important? And which one should come first?
These questions are appropriate for dentists who are already confident about their dental marketing strategies and are interested in stepping up their game.
Most dentists associate internal marketing with referrals. Although dentists do not always acknowledge it, internal marketing is something which they are more familiar with. They may not spend a dime in putting it to practice but they effortlessly utilize it.
Dentists often end up telling their current patients about their other services and it is these patients that they rely on for referrals. The great thing about internal marketing is that everything feels comfortable and familiar.
The only problem with internal marketing is that it can be extremely inconsistent and slow. It takes a lot of effort on the part of the staff and the dentist. But with little to no cost to implement this kind of marketing strategy, the return on investment can be great.
On the other hand, external marketing is basically talking to prospective patients or people who do not yet know you but may be interested in availing of your services.
You can do so by putting up a listing on the Yellow Pages of your phone directory, sending direct mail, running ads on your local newspaper or broadcasting them on your local television networks and radio stations.
There is more hype associated with external marketing because this where you spend most of your marketing budget. Naturally, there is some risk to running an external marketing campaign but marketing-savvy dentists know that if they run their campaigns well enough, the ROI can be great.
Before you go crazy with internal and external marketing, it’s time to think about the questions we have posted and answer them. There is no telling which among the two is important because every practice is different.
But in order for you to assess which campaign your practice needs, it’s necessary for you to think with the end in mind. What exactly do you wish to achieve? Do you want more patients, or are you more concerned about the quality of your patients and the relationships that you merge with them?
Also, it’s good to consider the competitive climate. No matter how great your internal marketing campaign might be, you might end up holding the shorter end of the stick if you’re up against practices that pulled all the stops for their external marketing campaign.