In this guest post, Digital Content Strategy CEO Carolyn Barth lays out the top five PR strategies doctors can use to become the "Go To" Dentist in their community.
Close your eyes and think about the other dental practice in town. Your competition. The “Go To” Dentist. Why them, you ask? Because they are out in the community presenting themselves as experts. They are the talk of the town. They have set themselves up to be a fee-for-service (FFS) magnet. And there's no reason why that shouldn't be you.
Let’s break down the 5 PR habits that “Go To” Dentist in your town is already doing.
“Go To” Dentists have audited their professional brand, personal brand, and practice across all traditional and digital channels. In doing so, they've ensured that they have one consistent brand name across every channel. Now, it’s your turn to audit your brand. Type your professional name and your practice name into an incognito Google Search.
Click through all of the Google navigation bar options — all images, news, videos, maps, etc. What comes up? Is everything consistent? Are you telling the best story to promote your practice to new patients and elevate your reputation? Here are some things to consider during your Google audit:
The “Go To” Dentist routinely requests video testimonials and Google reviews from happy patients. This helps new patients see just how great they are. These dentists also build social proof weekly. They know how to get in front of their patients, show how people feel about their practice, and inject personality into their messaging.
Evaluate how well you're showcasing happy patients:
The “Go To” Dentist knows (and promotes) their "genius zone." So, what's a genius zone? In dentistry, a genius zone is the one thing other dentists find difficult, yet is easy for you. If you don't know what your genius zone is, ask your team. If they are undecided, have them listen for patients who praise you. What is the common thread in their compliments? That's your genius zone! Once you know your genius zone, do more of it.
Beyond that, promote your mastery. Volunteer for media opportunities. Write guest blogs on the topic. Offer to speak at events. Have a team member film or livestream you speaking on this topic and sharing your genius zone. In other words, share your expertise with the world! Authentically build a business case over time that you’re simply the best dentist for that procedure. Your genius zone makes you the “Go To” Dentist.
The “Go To” Dentist practices modern dentistry, and promote the services their patients want. They use digital X-rays over uncomfortable, old-fashioned X-rays. Their practices offer Invisalign if it is a good fit. They prevent goop-in-the-mouth, yucky impressions by offering digital dentistry solutions. They have video screens to show the patient what’s happening in their mouth during the visit.
Most importantly, "Go To" Dentists don't assume patients know what they do. "Go To" Dentists ensure that patients are informed and won't go down the street to a competitor. They promote their elective services — inside and out of the practice.
The “Go To” Dentist is in the media — on podcasts, in social media groups, featured in blogs, and anywhere else patients might find them. When they earn media, the “Go To” Dentist shares it. It's on their website, in the office, and in email signatures.
However, it is always shared without bragging. When promoting an article the "Go To" Dentist is featured in, their social media post may say, "Honored to be featured in…” or the article will be framed on the wall.
Patients like to see their dentists featured in media, so do make a point of sharing when you earn media. You can position yourself to do local media, top-tier media, and international media today. Do one interview well, and it’ll pay dividends for years. One story shared across all traditional and digital channels over time is part of the secret sauce that PR professionals use.
Public perception is that only the “best” dentists get quoted in the news, are featured on podcasts, contribute to oral health segments on TV, publish books, or speak internationally. What is your genius zone, and who can help you educate the masses about important oral health issues?
As a dentist, stop viewing yourself as a commodity. Start seizing control of your professional reputation. You already have the goods; now shape the message to win new patients. If you focus on science, research, and educating patients, peers, and the public — with the focus of improving patient outcomes, public relations becomes a way to educate with your expertise.
You went into dentistry to help others, not to be a commodity. The fastest way to free yourself from being perceived as simply another dentist down the street is to take control of your reputation and elevate your advanced training — your genius zone — for good. You become the “Go To” Dentist in town because you’re authentically the expert in your field.
Learn more about how RevenueWell improves case acceptance and creates more close-knit relationships between dentists and their patients.