Why advertise on Facebook?
I spent several hundred dollars on a local newspaper ad. It was very pretty. How many new patients did it generate?
Not a single one.
There are some dentists who have success with radio, television, billboard, and newspaper advertisements, but it’s not for me. In my opinion, you should stay away from big media ads for the following reasons:
(1) It’s cost-prohibitive. These ads can run hundreds to thousands to tens of thousands of dollars. That can be worthwhile if you are generating significant numbers of great patients from the campaign, but short of that and you will not be seeing a return on investment.
(2) It’s not targeted. What are the chances that someone looking for a new dentist will be looking at your ad in the newspaper or listening to the radio at the right time? And how can you choose which kind of patients you want to attract?
(3) It’s hard to measure the success of the ad. Let’s say no one calls your office after you launch the campaign. Is it because no one is seeing your ad? Or are people seeing it and just not being motivated to call?
(4) It generates questionable new patients. Coupon-clippers. Tire-kickers. External marketing has a tendency to generate patients that are more interested in bargain shopping then outstanding dental care. Keep in mind, I’m not talking about all patients that respond to ads, but definitely a higher percentage than new patients who are referred by other patients.
Effective? Maybe. Waste of money? Definitely.
Facebook is able to overcome these obstacles.
(1) It’s cost-effective. You are charged either by the click or by the view (more on that in the next post). I prefer to pay-per-click. That way I don’t pay for people that see the ad but don’t show interest with a click.
(2) It’s targeted. You can target specific towns, businesses, interests, and many other parameters to custom build highly targeted advertisements. Want to develop a tooth whitening advertisement only for people who live within 10 miles of your practice and are engaged to be married? Yup, you can do that.
(3) It’s easy to measure the success of the ad. Run simple (and free) reports to give you all the data you need.
(4) It generates better new patients. Of course you may still get some bargain hunters, but the ability to target your audience can help weed out the problem patients.
The first step is to set up a Facebook Page for your practice. For more info about that, check out this post here.
In the next post I’ll walk you through how I set up my campaign in detail!