Smile Source Private Dental Practice Blog

Why Use Geo-Targeted Marketing for Your Dental Practice?

Your marketing may be bringing you new patient leads but do most of those new patient opportunities represent the patients you want–the ones who will appreciate your special level of care and higher-value services? To get those leads, you need expert targeted marketing.

We love sharing marketing tactics that have helped our members’ private practices compete for the patients they want. With an increase in the most appropriate leads for your services–and optimal communication with them, you can radically bring down your cost of new patient acquisition and do more of the most profitable dentistry you want to do, whether that be implants, clear aligner treatment, comprehensive oral health rehabilitation, sleep dental medicine, or complete smile makeovers with ortho, implants and the finest ceramic restorations. 

Smile Source Analytics combines geospatial and geodemographic data from elite sources such as eSite Analytics, ESRI, and INRIX to assist Smile Source members in effectively and accurately marketing their dental practice. We have special consultation sessions for understanding your geospatial and geodemographic analytics, and we tailor recommendations to best reach the consumers who are most likely to desire your services. 

The technology we’ve implemented is typically afforded only by Fortune 500 companies but due to Smile Source’s buying power, we have been able to provide this service free with membership

When you utilize these membership benefits, you will see the consumer travel patterns around your practice, know the estimated income and spending power of specific local neighborhoods, and be able to better target your intended digital audiences and messages. Geotargeting digital campaigns leads to optimizing your dental advertising budget and even cost reduction. 

In this article, we explain how geospatial and geodemographic data are used to improve digital marketing strategies and the location-specific dental marketing tactics successfully used by private practices like yours.

Geospatial and Geodemographic Analysis for Geotargeting

Geocoding provides exact latitude and longitude coordinates so you can do digital advertising to people in specific income areas and not waste money advertising outside high-income neighborhoods. The preciseness of geocoding is required to successfully target the recipients of a marketing campaign aimed at high-income earners. Geocoding includes geospatial analysis to determine the distance and time of consumer travel between two points, and the density of cars traveling along your route and near your office. These factors influence who is likely to shop and use services in your area, and may even prompt you to do billboard advertising. 

Geocoding could show you that the office location you are considering will be next to a large construction project that will disrupt traffic in the area. And geocoding could show you that a competitor has opened an office nearby. When your marketing advisors plan campaigns, they will want to know as accurately as possible the relative location of homes, businesses, landmarks, thoroughfares, and geographical boundaries that will impact ad campaign design and success.

The bottom line is geospatial analysis will enable you to better advertise to people who are more likely to become your patients, so you spend your marketing budget wisely.

Our consumer demographics studies pull generalized consumer data from credit reporting agencies to estimate dental practice revenue potential in your area and to understand what local zip codes match your current patient mix. Using this data, your marketing agency or consultant can best target neighborhoods for your ad campaigns to attract patients who want high-value dental services like implants, clear aligners, porcelain veneers, and sleep dental appliances. By focusing marketing efforts on specific regions or neighborhoods, practices can establish a deeper connection with potential patients, increase conversion rates, and optimize their marketing budget. This is referred to as “Geotargeting.”

You can utilize location-based advertising platforms like Google Ads and Facebook Ads. You can optimize your online presence by frequently enhancing your website and social media SEO for local search results. You can send SMS text messages to a large group of recipients, for example, to a subpopulation of your current patient base, to remind them of your services or to announce a new service such as facial aesthetics or sleep dental medicine. These are all tactics employed by corporate-owned “DSO” dental practices that compete for your local patients.


The Benefits of Geotargeting

Geo-targeted campaigns offer benefits for dental practices looking to optimize their online advertising efforts, primarily the following:

  • They enable you to make your content highly relevant to local residents.
  • They enable you to make your content highly relevant to the patient mix you prefer to engage.
  • They enable you to target specific high-income locations.
  • They enable you to focus on a specific local audience and not waste money on dental consumers outside your service area.
  • Potential patients seeking a dentist perceive location-based ads to be more relevant to their needs, so these ads generate more click-through rates (CTRs).

What if I don’t do Google ads or Facebook ads?

Even if you do not pay for online digital ad campaigns, there are multiple ways you can use your Smile Source geodemographic data to stand out online in your community.

  • Make the most of your Google My Business (GMB) Profile by adding photos of your office and friendly staff within it. This Google profile can be easily set up and modified at no cost to manage your practice’s information on Google Search and Maps. This information includes your practice name, address, phone number, operating hours, services, website URL, and additional details relevant to prospective patients. Many dentists do not realize they can include photos and keep their profile fresh by adding new photos.
  • Include keyword phrases within your website that mention your location. Provide finder-friendly details within sentences describing the site of your office, for example, “We’re located at the NE corner of Country Mile Blvd. and Woodland Blvd., just one mile south of State Road 540 in Clearwater, FL” or “Located in central Clearwater, Dr. Millik provides Clearwater, Greenbrier, Dunedin, Safety Harbor, and Largo adults and teens the smile of their dreams with Affordable Clear Aligners.”
  • Leverage attributes of your location that locals take pride in. For example, if baseball teams are in your area for spring training, use your social media to play off the local enthusiasm to promote “Custom Sports Mouthguards for Leaguers of All Ages.” If you are in alpine country with lots of tourists, hikers, bikers, and skiers, your media might announce, “We’re Prepared to Take Care of Any Dental Need.” If you are in Sarasota, use beach images on your website. If you are in Telluride, use mountain images. If you are in Daytona, why not use raceway images? If your office is in an old railway station, include before and after images of the historic building. Think about your community and an image should come to mind, even if it is simply the local University or College, friendly families, active retirees, or downtown professionals.
  • Target fee-for-service private-pay patients by advertising in the highest income neighborhoods and weighting your website content and social media towards “highest standards,” “comprehensive dentistry,” “whole mouth restoration,” “solutions for complex dental problems,” “implant dentistry,” and “restorative and cosmetic dentistry.” Boldly post your advanced CE and accreditations.
  • Give back locally in your community and bring attention to your community involvement online. Perhaps, sponsor a local festival or sports program, participate in local fundraising causes, volunteer for health fairs, and publish an occasional advertorial in the local online magazine or paper. Share, in a celebratory way, images and links related to local events and activities on your website and social media.

"The Smile Source marketing team was so helpful during the past two Zoom calls I have had with them. They taught me things about our website that I never knew! I even learned how to use Chat GPT. I am so grateful to everyone at Smile Source!"


Considering Smile Source Membership?

Smile Source equips private dentists to compete with DSO-owned dental practices in their area. We know three things to be true from years of experience advising and encouraging dentists like you. (1) You have been disappointed in the past with marketing results. (2) Getting a great return on marketing is possible. (3) By implementing best marketing practices, you can bring down the cost of new patient acquisition while increasing your revenue. 

Smile Source is dedicated to helping private dentists thrive in all aspects of dental practice. Smile Source provides geospatial, local spending, and online reputation studies for our members free of charge. Consultations that are included with these studies provide recommendations for improving your audience engagement with targeted marketing. 

Member sharing of experiences and ideas throughout the year will help you pay attention to your marketing and intelligently invest in marketing that drives your practice growth in the directions you desire. Smile Source events include opportunities to learn the best dental marketing practices from expert marketing speakers, give you live exposure to the latest marketing tools, and facilitate discussing your practice needs with top-tier marketing vendors.

More successful dental marketing is just one component of membership. Contact us to learn more.