What Is Internal Marketing? A How-To for Dentists

March 14, 2022

Around 22 percent of dentists spend over 5K each month on marketing, 12 percent 2–5K, 20 percent 1-2K, and 25 percent 500-1K. This shows that to be competitive in today’s dental industry, you must be willing to invest in marketing and develop a strong brand presence within your dental office.

Internal marketing is a process that helps companies create and deliver a consistent message to their patients and employees. It relies primarily upon referrals. This process can also allow companies to better align their employees with their goals and objectives and can help improve communication and collaboration amongst staff and patients.

Internal marketing can be highly beneficial in the dental industry as it is incredibly economical. An example is word-of-mouth marketing. This is a cost-effective way to gain new patients as your existing patients share insight into your office, quality of care, and staff. By creating a clear and unified message for their team, dentists can improve the patient experience and drive additional revenue.

From establishing your goals and objectives to defining your target audience and creating a consistent message that resonates with patients, let’s discuss how to maximize internal marketing in your dental office.

1. Establish Your Goals and Objectives

Before you can begin creating a brand message about your dental practice, you need to establish goals and objectives with your staff. Consider the following questions:

  • What do you hope to achieve with your internal marketing efforts?
  • Are you aiming to improve communication amongst your internal team, increase brand loyalty, or acquire new patients and drive additional revenue?

Once you have a clear understanding of what you want to achieve, you can begin crafting a message that will align with your goals.

Remember, your staff is the primary communicator of your brand message. Consider doing regular office training and ensure you have happy and healthy employees who align with your dental office’s goals and objectives and communicate well with patients. Give your patients something positive and memorable to talk about. The referrals will flood in naturally by having an excellent, top-notch patient experience.

2. Define Your Target Audience

Each patient and employee is unique and values different components. This is to say that to create an effective internal marketing campaign, you need to define and understand your target audience. Who do you want to reach with your message? And why should they care about what you have to say and what services and products you provide? Once you develop clear answers to these questions and understand your target audience, you can begin tailoring your message specifically for them.

Be mindful of your patients and have your office staff develop strong relationships with them. Ask them about their families, work, and matters of importance, remember these facts, and record them in their digital charts. This shows you care and creates a cohesive and positive experience for your patients. They will see themselves as part of your practice.

3. Create a Message that Resonates

With a clearly defined audience and specific goals and objectives in hand, it’s time to create a message that will impact and resonate with them. Consider the following questions:

  • What do you want your patients and employees to think about your dental practice?
  • How can you develop a strong emotional connection and lasting brand loyalty?

It’s essential to be clear, concise, and motivating when crafting your message. Show appreciation for your audience and be personable and engaging. You might even consider sharing a personal story, as this connects with your audience on a more profound level.

Ensure your waiting room, decor, and furniture reflect your brand image and make the patients’ experience comfortable and inviting. Have your front office greet them, offer to take their coat, and take their time listening to the patient. Whether tangible or not, each of these elements is part of your dental brand’s message and can genuinely resonate with your patients.

4. Deliver a Consistent Message

Once you’ve crafted the perfect message, it’s essential to deliver it consistently to your patients and employees. Meet your audience where they’re already spending their time. Ensure all communication channels are aligned and the message is delivered in a way that makes sense to your target audience.

As mentioned in the previous section, your brand message goes beyond the written words. It’s also communicated in the color palette, typography, design, and tone. Remember this and develop brand guidelines on which you and your marketing team rely. By delivering your message consistently, you can ensure that it sinks in and starts to influence employee behavior.

Also, if you feel you’ve provided an excellent patient experience, don’t be shy—ask for a referral. Thank patients for their time, trusting you, leaving a review, and recommending you to their friends and family.

Internal marketing can be a highly effective tool for dentists. By following the steps outlined above, dentists can create a unified message for their staff to improve the patient experience and drive additional revenue.