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    The role of the dental team in online marketing

    Can a practice's digital presence be managed entirely by the dental team? Two experts weigh in.

    It is with great excitement that we announce the initiation of a new monthly column featuring Dr. Lou Shuman, the President and CEO of Cellerant Consulting Group known for his expertise in Internet strategy, strategic relations, emerging technologies, digital marketing methods and operational practice management. Also contributing on a regular basis is Ian McNickle, co-owner of WEO Media dental marketing firm.

    Throughout the year, the column will focus on online marketing, social media and website tips, to help readers learn the true definition of online success and gain a clear understanding of what an online marketing company should be providing. Additionally, we hope this information will help give readers the knowledge to confidently commit a monetary investment to both grow a new patient base and maintain a strong relationship with an existing one.

    Want to see the article in its original form from the April issue of DPR? Click here.

    This month, Dr. Shuman and McNickle tackle whether the dental team should be managing their practice’s online presence. DPR asked: Can social media, website development and online marketing be run by the dental team?

    Related reading: Boosting your online reputation: 10 hacks every dentist should know

    Dr. Shuman and Ian McNickle: Though a dental team is critical to supporting these initiatives, it’s impossible for a team member—based on time alone—to evaluate the exhaustive amounts of updates and algorithm additions that occur from Facebook, Google, YouTube and LinkedIn on a constant basis.

    It would be similar to asking your manager to do your taxes without an accountant. Your manager can support your accountant, but there are many rules and regulations that an expert accountant needs to understand, not to mention all of the new rules added each year that they must absorb. It is not dissimilar to why one needs an online expert to support the practice.

    Here are a few key issues we see frequently when evaluating the online presence of an office:

    • Videos on your website and social media channels are great for improving engagement, but most videos need to be properly optimized to help Search Engine Optimization (SEO) performance. Simply having videos on your website or posting them on YouTube will not help your SEO and ranking, unless they are optimized. Additionally, creating proper title tags and meta descriptions are critical to SEO performance.

    • Facebook is frequently changing their tools and plug-ins for businesses. There are numerous strategies on Facebook to generate patient referrals and new patients, but a poor strategy can lead to a lot of wasted time and money. 

    • Google makes around 500-600 changes per year to their algorithm. It’s nearly impossible to keep up with the changes unless you enlist an SEO professional to support you.

    • While paid ads on Google and Facebook can be a great way to generate website traffic and new patients, the majority of businesses, working without expert guidance, pay far too much for clicks.

    Related reading: Utilizing social media to capture the millenial audience

    Continue to page two for more....

     

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