Dental Holiday Marketing: Learn to Box or Take a Hit
by Joy Gendusa

We all know the drill. The holidays are approaching and it’s almost like you can hear the opening bell being rung. Businesses of all shapes and sizes face off against each other in the ring, but only the victor gets the attention of the prospect. The holidays are not about the high upside of your marketing. Everybody’s doing it. You’re not taking advantage of a little known opportunity. This isn’t an ambush; your competitors are trained and ready to fight for their share of the business, and you need to be strategic about how you get yours.
Here are three tips to get your practice into shape for the holidays, and emerge victorious in your fight for the customer’s attention…
1. Punch with a Plan
A good way to get knocked around in the fight for people’s attention this holiday season is to get out there and start throwing random punches. That is the equivalent of just adding to the holiday noise. It won’t work and it will bruise your relationship with consumers. Instead, you need to have a crystal clear message that you are intent on delivering to prospects. This focused message should be easily understood and clearly convey why people should choose you over another practice.
For example, “Your best choice for holiday dental work” is a terrible headline. It doesn’t mean anything. It just adds to the noise. In order to get people to understand and respond to your message, it needs to be crystal clear and emphasize the benefit to the prospect. “This Weekend: Get ½ off whitening treatments before holiday pictures,” is a much better headline. The prospect knows when, where, and why they should show up.
2. Show up at the Right Venue
Another surefire way to lose your marketing bout this season is to show up at the wrong place. If you aren’t competing in front of the right audience, you can’t win because you aren’t even fighting the right fight. In order to be successful with your marketing, you need to put your crystal clear message in front of the right eyes ¾ and you do that by targeting the right people.
If you don’t know who your target market is, look back through your patient records. What type of people come into your practice the most? Is it middle-aged men? 20-something hipsters? Elderly women? Once you identify the kind of person that buys from you the most, you can figure out how to target more people just like them.
Direct mail gives you the option of purchasing a targeted mailing list. These lists can be customized based on metrics like age, gender, marital status, income, geographic area, and tons of other demographics. This is the best way to target that I have encountered in my decade-plus of marketing experience.
3. Keep punching!
Picture this: A boxer gets out in the ring and for the first round, trades punches with his opponent. It’s a draw. In the next round, he decides he’s going to stop punching. What do you think is going to happen? Of course he’s going to get clobbered. It’s the same with your marketing. Your competitors aren’t going to stop marketing. If you do, you’re just conceding defeat. You need to go the distance if you want to see results. Don’t give up before you get results!
If you approach the holidays like a smart boxer you’ll be in good shape. Don’t throw random, disjointed punches ¾ have a crystal clear message to promote. Get in front of the right audience. And go the distance! If you do that, you’ll find yourself healthy, happy and richer by the time 2013 gets here.
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Joy Gendusa is the owner and CEO of direct mail marketing firm, PostcardMania