Blogging. It’s not just a hobby.
Your dental blog is an online marketing tool that can boost the new patient performance of your website. It’s a channel to nurture patient relationships, while attracting prospective new patients by educating them about oral health.
The Internet is ripe with information about every possible topic. That’s why each day millions of people search on Google.
When someone local is searching about dental health, you want to be the dentist to answer their questions.
- More than 80 percent of consumers trust advice and information from blogs
- After a website exceeds 20 blog posts, site traffic increases by up to 30 percent
- About 60 percent of consumers feel more positive about a company after reading custom content on its site
Below, you will find ten essential reasons to start a dental blog today.
1. Boost SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) used to be pretty straightforward. Acquire some links, stuff keywords throughout your pages, do some blog commenting, and you were good to go.
Today, the demands are much higher. Google gives preference to websites that are updated regularly. Quality content published on a consistent schedule shows that a website is current and that it continually provides value to web surfers. Furthermore, the more indexed pages you have the better chance one of those pages will rank on the search engines.
2. Improve Credibility
Look at your blog as a tool for building credibility, authority, and influence. With informative posts on oral health, you emphasize your knowledge and expertise in the field. By providing advice for common patient concerns, you validate your skills.
Just remember that your blog isn’t for you. It’s for potential patients looking for oral health solutions so answer their questions without too much technical jargon.
3. Encourage Interaction
When you blog, you create a two-way conversation with current patients, potential patients, and industry peers. Inspiring readers with valuable information stimulates interaction and patient feedback. All the while, you’re able to offer a unique take on your dental philosophy.
4. Enhance Social Media
Social media is a platform where you can share new and interesting content with your followers. Facebook and Twitter, for instance, are great places to share new blog posts. Doing so helps you stay top-of-mind with patients who follow you, and they just might pass the information on to their friends and family. Be sure that your dental website has social sharing buttons, so readers can easily share the content directly from your blog.
23 percent of all Internet usage time is devoted to blogs or social networks.
5. Nurture Patient Relationships
Dental blogging is useful for attracting potential patients who have never heard of you. But that’s not the only benefit. With your insight, you deepen your connection with current patients. If a patient has a question, they’ll head to your website to find the answer. Or, if you email your website subscribers when you post a new blog, they’ll be alerted to the new information right away.
This ongoing education nurtures your patient relationships, which in turn helps to improve retention and stimulate referrals.
6. Showcase Personality
When a potential patient is looking for a new dentist, they typically start at the practitioner’s website. While you can have a flashy homepage, inspiring doctor bio, and descriptive services pages, your blog truly showcases your personality.
Have some tasty, teeth-friendly recipes? Have an opinion on a new oral health fad? Great, share them on your blog. Use plenty of “I,” “We,” and “You” statements to make your articles more conversational and prospective patients will get a feel for what it’s like to be your patient.
7. Trim Marketing Costs
Whether you hire a service or do the writing yourself, blogging is a cost effective marketing channel. And it has little risk. As former Twitter CEO Dick Costolo put it, “The Internet destroyed most of the barriers to publication. The cost of being a publisher dropped to almost zero with two interesting immediate results: anybody can publish, and more importantly, you can publish whatever you want.”
8. Make Announcements
Posting timely information to your blog shows that you like to keep patients in the loop. It also keeps them informed of the latest developments in your practice.
Just hired a new hygienist? Great, introduce them on your blog. Hosting a charity event? Fantastic, announce it in a blog post.
9. Convert Readers into Patients
For many websites, blogging is the number-one driver of web traffic. As visitors read your content, you begin to earn their trust. This trust will make prospective patients more inclined to learn about your practice. Consider this scenario:
- Local resident John searches on Google: “braces vs. Invisalign”
- One of your blog articles shows up and he clicks on it
- After reading the article, he browses your dental website to learn more about your practice
- He clicks a button that sends him to your Contact page
- He fills out a form and schedules an appointment!
10. Drive Long-Term Growth
Most traditional dental marketing channels are one-shot campaigns. You send out postcards to all the residents in your city. Following a radio spot, you get a few calls to your office. These channels can spark quick results. But the results are short-term.
Meanwhile, your website doesn’t stop. It works 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Whether you’re vacationing in the Bahamas or eating dinner with your family, your blog never sleeps. It’s always present to nurture and produce new patients.
- You write a new post and publish it on your dental blog.
- You post the link on Facebook, and over the next week, you get three interested prospects.
- Two weeks later, you send your monthly newsletter that includes a link to the article.
- Your patients start sharing the article with their friends and you get three more interested prospects.
That’s only the beginning. As your blog rises in the Google rankings, for months – and even years – to come you can gain the attention of prospective new patients from that single article.
Additional Tips for Your Dental Blog
- Write from the patient’s point of view, without using medical jargon
- Keep a consistent blogging schedule to keep patients fed with your latest insights
- Address concerns and questions commonly posed by your patients
- Improve browsability with headings, short paragraphs, bullet points, and images
- Use your blog as a resource to refer patients to in the future