What Can I Put On My Website?
If you are like many dentists, you know that you should have an attractive website with interesting information, articles, and pictures to drive potential patients to your practice - but you don’t know how to go about it. Web designers can offer great advice and great organization, but what about content? It makes sense to have dental specific, compelling articles on your site, but what should you write about? Here are some ideas.
Once a month, post an article about a particular service that you provide. The service does not have to be particularly unusual - just relevant to possible readers. For example - many people wonder about tooth-colored “fillings.” While you may consider such a topic old-hat, your readers won’t.
Start off by discussing where you use resins. Potential patients might believe that they are only offered for front teeth. Describe how durable, good looking, and long lasting they can be. Talk about anything you do that is special, such as using a type of insulating material to guard against sensitivity. Tell about how new tooth colored fillings can replace older styles and possibly discolored resins some people may have. You would be surprised at how many individuals believe that they just have to live with yellowed, stained, or worn tooth-colored restorations. At the end of the article invite readers to call the office and ask for a particular person who can answer any questions they might have. “If you would like to know more, give us a call at 555-5555 and ask for Connie. She will be happy to talk to you!”
If you have been involved in any community activities, post pictures! Have you run in a local race, volunteered at a health fair, or provided mouth guards for student athletes? Potential patients are interested to know about these types of activities. They also go a long way in showing who you are as a person.
Have you received an award, presented a program, or written an article for a professional journal? Post information about these as well. Don’t worry about “tooting your own horn.” You deserve credit for giving back to your profession, and patients like being associated with a dentist who is a stand-out in the field.
Have your completed a difficult case that turned out exceptionally well? With the patient’s permission, and/or possibly obscuring the patient’s identity, consider showing photos of what the condition of the patient’s mouth was when s/he came to your office, and what s/he looks like now. People love to see a successful “make-over”- whether it is for a person losing weight, getting a new hairstyle, or making any other type of positive change. A patient’s beautiful new smile is an excellent advertisement for your professional skills.
Have you attended any continuing education programs or incorporated a new technique into the practice? Reporting on new procedures or services can generate readers and engage possible patients who are interested in the technique. For example, many potential patients may be interested in laser applications in dentistry. If you are using a laser, write a short piece on how it makes treatment easier, faster, or whatever your opinion on the technology may be. If you have recently incorporated digital x-rays, write an article describing its’ advantages and benefits for patients.
People love quizzes. Develop a short “test-your-knowledge” quiz about dentistry for children, whitening, or tooth-brushing (be sure to provide the answers). Again, make mention at the end of the quiz of where they can find out more. For example, “Would you like to learn more about whitening? Call Brenda at our office.” Just be sure that Brenda is prepared with some “scripted” answers to common questions!
Think about soliciting a testimonial from a satisfied patient. A happy patient can be approached at the end of a course of treatment to write a short note about their experience with your office. A few sentences can be enough to convey how pleased they are with you and your staff. Remember, the words of a fellow “dental consumer” can go a long way toward creating interest in your practice.
Enlist the help of staff. Offer a dinner out for two for an article written by a staff member that highlights a positive aspect of your practice. For example, your dental assistant might write about how rewarding it is to work in a practice that puts an emphasis on excellent patient care. Your business assistant might write about the efforts the practice makes to help patients make sense of their insurance. Of course, you will need to proofread these articles before posting them to make sure they are free from any unintentional grammatical errors or misstatements.
Look for articles in the popular press that you might get permission to reprint on your site. However, do not simply copy an article without permission. This can lead to problems with copyright laws and create a legal situation that you certainly don’t need.
Finally, look to a source for professionally prepared articles that can be purchased for posting. This need not be expensive. Such articles can provide the content you need, make your site interesting, and save you both time and money.
Carol Tekavec RDH is the director of Hygiene for McKenzie Management. Carol can improve your hygiene department in just one day of training “in your office”. Interested in knowing more about how to improve your hygiene department? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Carol is also a speaker on hygiene efficiency and profitability for McKenzie Management. Interested in having Carol speak to your dental society or study club? Click here
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