By Luc Wade, Management Consultant at Hive Business
Over the past two months we’ve planned and delivered marketing campaigns for patient open days to sell orthodontics and implants for a few clients around the country. They’ve been successful, getting 15 to 20 people to show up each time through a mix of Google Ads and Facebook activity.
These two channels are powerful and cheap, which leads many practice owners to have a go themselves, but there’s a problem: it’s a time sink if you don’t know what you’re doing. I can appreciate the appeal. If you’re genuinely interested it’s probably worthwhile. You’ll invest a lot of time but it will pay dividends in the end, as long as you stick with it.
But be careful the following doesn’t happen: a supplier offers to run your campaign for free, a week goes by until they admit they don’t understand it, then you take it on yourself and give it to your practice manager. Another week goes by, you realise it’s not working and finally you need to bring in an experienced digital marketing agency.
You’ve lost time on the campaign and invested hours in the project without getting anywhere, because your business doesn’t have the skills and insights from running campaigns in the past to guide it. So what was the big turn off about hiring a digital marketing agency in the first place? We hear it all the time: it’s too expensive.
This is a misperception. Our digital marketing agency, for example, charges £355+VAT per month to manage a dental marketing campaign on Facebook or Google Ads. That’s equivalent to three days of your practice manager’s time if they’re on £25k. What can your practice manager deliver in three days, starting from scratch with no prior knowledge? Not much. They might get the hang of it eventually, but if you decide to outsource it later, why bother making the initial time investment?
On the other hand, you get value for money with an experienced digital marketing agency like ours: our team of digital marketing experts would set up the campaign, handle targeting, campaign management and retargeting. They’d make adjustments throughout to make sure they’re optimising delivery and learning from how each campaign performs, they’ll do all the creative too. You’d benefit from our insight and years of experience running campaigns for dental practices, and you’d get all of the technology and platforms we’ve developed. The whole thing would look and feel noticeably slicker than a DIY hack.
Alternatively you and your team could hack your way through your campaign, pouring energy and time into it, and feeling stressed, for results that will most likely be worse, unless an individual in your team has genuine interest and flair in this field. If that is the case, great: you’ll realise that Google and Facebook control the most effective digital channels, but one shouldn’t be confused with the other — they take different skillsets, tactics and deliver different results. Their share of advertising revenue is soaring: together they trousered 24.5% of the $590.4bn spent on advertising globally last year, and 56.4% of global internet spend.
Not got a digital marketing plan? It’s time to get moving, one way or another. If you’d like to organise an event to sell more implants, invisible aligners or anti-wrinkle injections, get in touch.