I learned an important marketing lesson once from marketing guru Seth Godin. It seems to me that it has great application to dental marketing.

Marketing is such an inexact science – especially for a small business like a dental practice that doesn’t have a team of analysts on staff to research, measure, recommend and revise. Sometimes it’s really hard to pinpoint why things aren’t working the way you’d like them to.

If you find yourself frustrated, here’s one place to start. Look at the concentric arcs below and identify which one best represents the bulk of your most recent marketing efforts.

Then, move forward one arc, toward the center.

After focusing there, if you’re still not feeling good about your marketing, move toward the center ONE MORE arc … etc.

Go One Arc Deeper

The outer arc includes things that historically have been called “advertising” – things that you typically write checks for and that require no participation on your part.

Moving in, the next arc represents honest, transparent, effective social media marketing. Stuff that needs your participation.

The next arc includes all those things associated with the experience of being one of your patients. These things are not typically included in a marketing discussion, but as you know, everything is marketing, right? For example, the way patients are treated on the telephone, your billing procedures, the personalities of your team members, the equipment you use, the continuing education you attend, etc.

And finally, the inner circle represents your “product” – dentistry. When your dentistry is remarkable, marketing springs from the very core of your business.

Can Self-Examination Help Your Marketing?

Does your current marketing primarily rely on the outermost arc? If so, think about how you can move some of your focus “one arc in” to community building and strengthening personal relationships with your existing patients.

Still feel like things aren’t working? Move in again and examine the processes that surround being one of your patients. Still having trouble? Move in again … you get the idea.

Successfully marketing a dental practice requires firing on all cylinders. Great practices are great at their core, and sound marketing strategies move out from there. Sometimes, focusing one arc in can change your perspective. Good luck!

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