Are Your Member Practices Dominating Their Local Search Results?

The U.S. dental industry is worth around 160 billion dollars.1 Given that most dentists spend about 5% of their total revenue on marketing, that means $5.3 billion is spent every year on dental marketing alone.2

This begs the question, is your DSO allocating ad money correctly? Or better yet, is the ad spend for your DSO in the right place? There’s a lot of money on the line, and when you’re advertising for a multi-location dental group, you might be tempted to allocate your marketing budget equally across all your member practices to help them consistently bring on new patients. Sounds fair, right? But that’s not the best strategy.

We get it. We know the fact that new patients are twice as valuable as existing patients3 has been well-established. This is why dental marketing is usually laser-focused on generating as many new patient leads as possible.

But is that really the right strategy for a DSO? Not necessarily.

Rather than focusing solely on attracting new patients, what if you flipped the script and started targeting high-value procedures for patients—regardless of whether they’re new to the dental practice or not?

Don’t Advertise Too Broadly

Your DSO serves multiple locations across a wide geographic area. In terms of operational efficiency, you may be inclined to choose a broad target audience for your advertising campaigns, assuming that this will reach the widest possible audience for each of your individual member practices. But a one-size-fits-all solution isn’t right for a DSO, and instead of improving efficiency you’re likely to find yourself wasting your marketing dollars.

While you should always be marketing for new patients with local SEO and alumni marketing, a wide-net outreach campaign almost universally attracts patients searching for a new dentist for their regular hygiene appointments. Although that class of appointment is a great face-to-face opportunity for an upsell, they aren’t big profit makers on their own. There’s actually a better, more efficient way to increase ROI!

Pay Attention to High-Value Procedures

Dental practices need to make several thousand dollars per chair4 per day to stay in the black. And they’re not going to get there if they fill their chair with new patients coming in for $200 consultations and cleanings. 

So how do dental offices reach those targets? You know how—by performing high-dollar procedures like crowns, root canals, and fillings. Whenever a patient needs something more than regular hygiene, the chair production profits go way up.

So what does this mean for a DSO ad spend?

Target the Highest Profit Centers

When it comes to your digital marketing, your approach should be to target these high-value procedures specifically. You’re probably already using targeting techniques to find new patients, which means the marketing structure is already there. All you have to do is tweak your current strategy.

Rather than adding funds to your marketing budget, you can probably reallocate the digital ad spend you’re already deploying to attract patients who are in immediate need of a high-profit procedure. Continue to target local SEO, but add a hyperlocal layer that includes keywords for specific dental conditions and procedures. This way, your high-profit services will dominate the local Google results for that service.

This works well because the most profitable dental procedures aren’t often planned. They’re usually the result of an emergency that the patient is desperate to fix as soon as possible. Whether they’re motivated by pain or vanity, the immediacy of their problem requires them to make a quick decision. And that’s where your hyperlocal, profit-center advertising comes in.

Most patients turn to Google to solve their problems. And because of your local and procedure-specific optimization, they’ll search “fixing tooth pain near me,” “or get a crown in my town,” or even, “local emergency dentist.” When that happens, your practices will be among the first results.

Interested in learning more about how you can maximize your marketing budget and convert more patients in search of high-cost procedures? Dreamscape Marketing can help. Connect with us at 888.307.7304 to schedule a strategy session.


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