Do Dental Marketing Giveaway Gimmicks Work?

June 24, 2015    By Becky Sheetz ()

Do Dental Marketing Giveaway Gimmicks Work?

Giveaways, incentives, gifts, discounts or promotions ... no matter what we call them, they are among the most controversial topics in dental marketing. Do they have a place among your practice-building tools? This is something to consider, in addition to Six Marketing Questions to Take Your Dental Practice to the Next Level.

Some dentists have great success with special promotions that get new patients in the door―and keep them coming. Others view them as gimmicky and unprofessional. As a result, many dentists simply do not engage in this sort of marketing. Are they missing out on new patients? Who’s right?

To offer special promotions ... or not

The answer, of course, depends on what’s right for your practice. We talk to many dentists―often those well established in their careers―who are averse to any sort of special promotions or offers. They want to attract and keep patients based on their expertise and qualifications alone.

We hear from others who have grown their practice and a loyal patient base using such tools as Groupon or mailings to promote deep introductory discounts for new patients. Some offer high-value drawings for prizes such as electronics or restaurant gift certificates.

The answer depends on what works. If the practices offering these incentives are getting and keeping new patients, as some are, then that works for them. However, if they attract patients for a deep discount teeth-whitening but these patients never come back, they aren’t really growing their practice. The key is to consider promotions that draw in people who will become loyal patients, not just one-time coupon clippers.

Similarly, if dentists refuse to offer a new-patient incentive because they see it as gimmicky or too sales oriented, yet struggle day in and day out to keep their schedules full, then they don’t have the right answer either. Again, these approaches do work for some.

Newsletters bridge the gimmick gap

Regardless of whether your practice is enthusiastic about discounted promotions or opposed to them, we recommend that you consider a dental patient newsletter―if you’re not already using one. The importance of educating current and prospective patients can’t be overstated. Newsletters reflect positively on your practice and show that you care about your patients. They are educational in nature, not sales oriented. Newsletters are the perfect marriage of marketing and education.

Learn more about whether dental newsletter marketing is right for you by contacting us at 800-323-4995 or info@wpicommunications.com. Visit WPI Communications to learn about our patient newsletter options for dentists, periodontists and pediatric dentists.

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