Are you over of hearing about the perks of digital marketing? Don’t worry because postcards can still be a successful method for dentists to gain patients. But it’s important to proceed with postcard marketing the correct way.

When owning a practice you’ll want to implement marketing strategies that bring you a consistent return on your investment. Marketing is a must for any business that wants to grow and thrive. Without marketing, your practice’s visibility is left to drive-by traffic, referrals, and word-of-mouth. While these can bring in great results, they aren’t the most reliable when it comes to long term. Also, you’ve got to know your numbers.

We now live in the digital age, and many dentists feel like digital marketing is being shoved down their throats, and while this is not altogether bad. In fact, digital marketing is the right approach for the most part. But, you should never leave out a marketing strategy especially on that has passed the test of time. This is where postcards come to play.

Direct mail postcard marketing

I know what you’re thinking after reading “direct mail.” Isn’t his an old school approach? Most people just throw  “junk mail” away before giving it a second glance. While the majority of people do, but there is percentage who actually read it. This is the percentage that you want to focus on, as it is an opportunity for your practice to not only get one new patient but get the entire family. When it comes to the mailers that fail, it largely due to the fact that they aren’t creative, including the pictures, message, branding, and offers.

People tend to be exposed to 5,000+ advertisements per day. You will want to strive to set your practice apart with branding that displays the human side of your practice, such as pictures of you and your family, a picture of a happy patient or two (with their consent), and a picture of your office for brand recognition in your locale.

Statistics don’t lie

Here are some interesting statistics.

  • 70% of consumers prefer traditional mail for cold, unsolicited offers. (Association of National Advertisers)
  • 82% of millennials believe messages in print advertisements are more trustworthy than digital marketing materials. (United States Postal Service)
  • 48% of people retain direct mail for future reference. (Digital Mobile Radio Association)
  • US advertisers spend $167 per person on direct mail to earn $2,095 worth of goods sold. (EZ24x7 Mailing Solution)
  • 76% of consumers trust direct mail over digital channels when they want to make a purchasing decision. (Source: MarketingSherpa)

So how do postcards fail?

Direct mail postcards tend to fall flat because they use cookie-cutter, stock images that do not resonate with homeowners. They are too cluttered with too many offers and look like the Walmart of dentistry in their area. Also, there is no dominant call to action, the logo or business name is too big (people don’t care about that), or it doesn’t offer a story people can embrace and feel good about.

Another reason postcard marketing can fail is, it’s hard to track unless you implement a few key elements. Those are the tracking number, the specific landing page URL, and a unique statement on the card. Our company has implemented a strategy that makes postcard mailings more accurate to track and the ROI is obvious.

What are successful postcards?

When you are competing with all of the other advertisements out there, you want yours to stand out in every possible way. One way is to send oversized (6×9) postcards that are bigger than anything else that usually arrives in mailboxes.

Since you don’t want to look like the Walmart of dentistry, you should trim down the postcard to two prominent offers. There may be times you’ll want to sneak in a third, but not very often. With two you can focus on one offer per side. Another option is to have one side be about your brand, which is your story, and the other side can contain the two prominent offers.

Put some thought into what you are offering. This will pay off for your practice. I get the same dental postcards from many offices in the mail every single month. Nothing changes and they all look the same, many with the same stock images, so there is no reason for me to take time to read any of them. That’s when they hit the trash.

Like any marketing strategy, dental postcard marketing calls for consistency and good timing in order for people to take action. While we don’t know when someone may be looking for a new dentist, if you send mailings on a regular basis, timing will eventually be on your side. You should try postcard marketing for at least three months. Within three months, and sometimes during the first month, our clients experience a positive ROI. Once you know your numbers, this marketing strategy can be a big part of your arsenal.

Finally, when was the last time you told your marketing company to change the creative, whether on your postcard or website? In marketing, we’re always tweaking and testing creative. Changing up the offer, the call to action, pictures, and formatting. The same postcard should not be sent again after the third month. In my opinion, 90 days is long enough to get your two offers out there and track what revenue they produced. After 90 days, create two new offers.

Marketing your dental practice can be quite challenging, but it’s a must if you want to grow and thrive. If you are not marketing, your competitors are, and they’re winning. It’s as simple as that.

Our marketing team will work with you to create the best mailer for your campaign and select the best mailing list. We’ll manage the process from start to finish — all for less than you’d pay anywhere else.

If you’d like to find out even more about how effective “direct mail” is for your real estate business, or if you have any additional questions about topics like graphic design or targeted mailing that you’d like to go over in a bit more detail, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.

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