I have a confession to make – just recently I’ve taken my foot of the gas! I’ve taken a bit of a hiatus from online dental marketing and as a result, the rankings for my business ‘Dental Writers’ have taken a bit of a hit.
As an example, yesterday – when I did a quick search for ‘dental bloggers for hire’ I found that I’d been upstaged by Upwork. Similarly, when I put in a search for ‘dental writers‘ I’m sandwiched between Upwork and another writing agency. Whereas before, I was sitting pretty by ranking above them.
Clearly for me this isn’t good news and another reason why I’m getting back on the marketing treadmill.
So I guess you probably want to know why I stopped in the first place?
In reality, life got in the way. My partner and I had recently moved house and between October and now, we’ve also been heavily involved with some big client-facing dental projects, so any kind of online dental marketing kinda took a back seat.
Unfortunately the 80:20 rule went right out the window and in reality, we spent way more time working ‘in‘ the business rather than working ‘on‘ it.
Okay so I admit that it sounds like an excuse and maybe it is – but because we were kept busy and work was flowing in, it didn’t seem like so much of a problem at the time.
But this got me thinking…
Rather than look on it as a negative and beat myself up about it, what about if I used it as an experiment to show just how it has (or hasn’t) affected my business?
They say that the best way to learn is from analysing your mistakes, so this is what this particular post is about..besides – I love a bit of self reflection, don’t you?
The aim is to hopefully show the impact (or not) of my actions and to take a look at the causes and effects.
So, if you’re into facts and figures then this could make for interesting reading. If not, well…I’ll try to skip through the numbers parts as quickly as possible 🙂
Anyway – here goes…..
Between our non marketing months (October 2017 and January 2018) we picked up7 new subscribers to either our e-Book or blog.
Whereas in the 4 months previous (June 2017 – September 2017) we had 12 new subscribers.
While that doesn’t seem like that much of a drop in terms of numbers, when you stick a percentage on it, that’s a decrease of 58.5% 🙁
Of course, there could well be other variables that influence this figure, such as seasonal aspects, popularity of a particular blog etc, but it still doesn’t make for great reading.
Verdict – Failing to blog in the short term has had a direct impact on the number of subscribers to our blogs and e-Books.
Direct client enquiries
In the four months from June 2017 through to Sept 2017 we had 9 direct client leads. These are clients who have contacted us directly without us ever having marketed directly to them. As such they have found us either through social media or via a Google search.
However, in the months from October 2017 through to January 2018, when no online dental marketing was undertaken, we actually had 11 direct client enquiries (just under 3 a month). That’s an increase of 22.2%.
It could be that more clients were looking for specific specialised services we offer. Hence the reason they approached us.
It could be the fact that the ‘non-marketing period‘ (October through to January) fell during the start of a new year. Traditionally we always see a slight spike in potential clients seeking to ramp up their dental blogging, or improve their existing dental content as we move into a new year.
It could also be that any previously written blogs can take around 6 months to kick into action in terms of SEO. So blogs that had been written in say May or June of last year, were now starting to work their magic.
So what about the actual conversion rate?
Interestingly enough, this dropped….
In the months from June 2017 to September 2017, 6 out of the 9 clients decided to proceed with our services and a 7thcame back to us at a later date after mulling it over for a few months.
Bearing in mind that the vast majority of enquiries we get are from people directly seeking our services, we would expect a relatively high conversion rate – this conversion rate came out to just under 78%.
Conversely, during the ‘non marketing’ months from October 2017 through to January 2018 out of the11 client leads, we have so far ended up working with 5 of those.
Granted that several of these clients put a lot of work our way and as a result keep us very busy, that’s still a decrease of 32.5%!
The remaining clients either hadn’t taken any action on further conversation, or failed to respond after initial contact.
Verdict – While 4 months of not carrying out online dental marketing did show an increase in the number of direct client enquiries – the number of conversions into paying clients dropped. This supports the theory that this period was over the start of a new year when people may have been simply ‘weighing up their options’.
As such, I believe that if I ceased to continue blogging/tweeting etc for another 4 – 6 months, I would see a dramatic decline in customer enquiries.
To be honest, I very rarely obtain work/clients via social media channels as I don’t use it as a place to ‘hard sell’ my business. That said, it’s a great place to engage with other industry professionals and spread the word about what it is we do.
So here are the facts…
In the four months from June 2017-September 2017 (the last period online dental marketing was carried out) we tweeted 179 times and from that gained 133 followers an average of 0.74 followers per tweet.
During that same period, 20 Facebook posts were produced and from this we gained134likes.
In the equivalent ‘non marketing‘ period from October 2017 – January 2018, no posts or tweets were created resulting in only 8 new Twitter followers. However and unsurprisingly, 13 people then unfollowed me 🙁 So in effect, I lost 5 followers overall).
While that isn’t a major problem in itself, perhaps the bigger picture is that I suffered a decrease in profile views of 82.4% from1199views down to just 211. That’s another988people who may have potentially clicked through to our website.
The good news however is that I did gain a further 57Facebook likes 🙂
Verdict – Inactivity on Twitter meant that we saw a 103.76% deficit in the number of people following. Facebook fared slightly better with a 76.38% reduction in post likes, over the same period. Either way and overall, social media inactivity has contributed to a decrease in website traffic by around 34%
Peaks and Troughs – The life of an online business owner and why online dental marketing is key.
This pattern or trend does explain why many online business owners (including yours truly) have businesses that tend to peak and trough. When businesses are busy with client facing work, it’s easy to forget about the marketing side of things because..well… life’s good right?
The problem comes however when projects come to an end and businesses go into nosedive because there are no more clients lined up.
What tends to happen next is a frantic round of panic marketing to try and land a client. Once that client is on board, the foot is off the accelerator again and things drift along. Hence the peaks and troughs.
What my research has shown is that during the 4 months of non-marketing our business didn’t just drop off the face of the earth. After all, we still had clients.
However, what it has shown is that less and less people are engaging with us socially, less people are visiting our website, and I beieive that eventually, less people would be making enquiries. That’s the crux of it right there!
So in a way, I’m glad that I looked into the mechanics of what happens when online dental marketing ceases. It’s kind of given me the wake up call that I needed to get right back on the marketing bandwagon.
It’s also backed up my theory that online dental marketing such as dental blogging and social media isn’t just ‘stuff‘ that should be done as and when we get time.
Instead it has to be an intergral part of an overall business strategy and one that in today’s competitive environment, can make or break a business. So most definitely for me…I’m glad I carried out this research, but…lesson learnt !
Thanks and I look forward to composing more blogs, tweets, and Facebook posts in the very near future.
A dental blog post is designed to be a free-flowing fountain of useful information.
It allows the reader to learn about treatments, seek hints and tips on dental care and to find out more about the practice and the team.
Perhaps more importantly, while any well-established blog should generate a certain amount of footfall, did you know that a good blog has the power to convert insane amounts of traffic?
Now here’s the thing…
Even when a practice owner understands the potential of a dental blog post and wants to use it as a way of bringing in large amounts of footfall, it’s often a pointless exercise.
Because usually there’s a real disconnect between the blog’s potential to convert readers and its practical ability to achieve those conversions.
The bottom line is this…
Most dental blogs simply aren’t long enough to add real value to the reader.
As an example, here at Dental Writers, we write blogs for a variety of dental related clients. While some posts are 1000 or so words in length, most fall somewhere between 400-550 words.
Now here’s my point…
The bulk of the content we’re asked to write provides solid helpful information to those who find and read them. For many dental practices this is sufficient enough and you know what? There’s nothing wrong with that.
However, if dental practices are looking to use each dental blog post as a patient-converting machine on steriods, then they should look towards a strategy rethink.
Because in 2017, solid informative content is the rule rather than the exception. This means that producing well-written, informative content is the absolute minimum you should be aiming for.
Instead, if you’re looking to make a statement of intent with every dental blog post the question you should be asking is…..
How can you better every other piece of information that is already out there?
You should be looking to produce an article or post that goes way beyond the realms of good informative content. In other words, it needs to be 10 times better than anything else that’s available.
As a direct result you need a dental blog post that’s long enough to carry the means and the method to really persuade readers to take action.
Whether that’s to
Book a consultation
Make an appointment or
Find out further details about a particular treatment.
it needs to (over) deliver on what it says on the tin.
The truth is that even with the most persuasive copywriting skills in the world, I would suggest that a dental blog post of this nature can’t be written in 450-550 words.
Sure it takes time to write a long-form article or blog post and if you’re paying someone else to write it, it probably won’t be cheap.
So is it really worth all the hassle?
Let’s take a look…..
This graph shows the average content length of the top ten results on Google.
As you can see the top rated content found on Google just so happens to be what we call long-form content. In this case, content over 2000 words in length.
This is no coincidence and is part of Google’s grand master plan to continually provide the very best and most relevant information for the searcher.
As a result, it isn’t good to simply bang out 5000 words of crap. Not only will it destroy your integrity as the ‘go to‘ dentist in your area, it could also have a serious impact on your SEO rankings too.
Instead the key here is to think quality rather than word length. In other words you should aim to make it the very best it can be – however many words that takes!
In order to do so, it needs to be several things…Your dental blog post should be…..
interesting, and to all intent and purpose…
Perhaps more importantly…..
It needs to be decidely different in scope and detail from any other dental blog post or article that serves the same purpose or user intent.
If you can achieve this, then congratulations – give yourself a high five because you’ve got yourself a great piece of dental content 🙂
“That’s all well and good” I hear you say… “but how exactly do I go about writing one?” Well, sit back and relax, because I’m going to tell you!
Step 1 – Gaining a deep insight
Let’s say you want to create an article based around dental implants. The first thing you need to do is to gain a deep insight into why people are interested in this particular subject. In doing so you’re already tapping into the psyche of the type of reader who is likely to take action.
It could be that people are fed up with their dentures and are looking for a hassle-free alternative.
It might be that they have missing teeth and feel embarrassed about how they look.
Alternatively, they may have experienced a facial injury and need a permanent long-term solution to their problem.
Ultimately there are many reasons people opt for dental implants, but perhaps the key here is to develop a good understanding of the ‘WHY‘. If you can do this and write with that particular reader in mind, then you’re definitely on to a winner.
Top Tip– Forums are great places to gain a deep understanding of how and why people take the actions that they do, and offer the ideal platform to get into the mindset of those seeking help. In this instance, try Googling ‘dental implants + forums’ and see what it throws up.
Step 2 – Getting unique
Now you know the reasons why someone might consider dental implants, you have to think about uniqueness. In other words ask yourself this….
“What different angle can I come from which will address the core problem in a way that hasn’t been covered before?”
What about the advantages and disadvantages of dental implants? Nope – that’s been done to death!
How about an in-depth guide detailing dental implant procedures? Not really because that’s been covered too!
What about how dental implants can benefit long term denture wearers? Hang on a minute -We could be on to something!
We know that many denture wearers suffer from a whole host of denture-related problems, so how about an article that addresses all of those issues individually, while offering a long-term solution – dental implants.
Now you have your angle!
Step 3 – Providing the cold hard facts
Okay so you’re on a roll, but guess what? It still isn’t enough. In addition you should be looking to provide sufficient evidence to back up what you’re saying. Doing so will give your dental blog post the real kudos it deserves. In other words, you’re not just stating facts. Instead what you’re actually saying is “Here are the facts and here’s the evidence to back it up”
The good news is that as a dentist, you probably have a ton of case files and success stories you could tap into, but what if you’re not a dentist and are ghost writing for a practice? Where do you find fact-based evidence?
The answer? Online trade magazines and clinical papers.
Okay so you may need to get down and dirty with the technical jargon, but if you know what you’re looking for, it shouldn’t be too hard to find the relevant info you need. Many contain published surveys or evidence-based testing to help you back up your article.
So as an example, rather than state that “evidence suggests long-term denture wearers are better suited to dental implants” it’s far better to give a link to such evidence as I’ve done here.
While having to find proof to back up your post may seem like a real pain in the butt, it also has another very important benefit.
It provides the article with an outgoing link to relevant content.
Without going into the inner workings of SEO (that’s a whole different dental blog post) let’s just say that this is a good thing!
So that’s the mechanics behind how to write great long-form content. I guess the next logical question is why?
The main reason is that despite all the strong evidence to suggest that long-form articles perform decidely better than short-form articles, the fact is that hardly anyone else is doing it!
It’s true and it isn’t just in the dental world either…
In a massive survey carried out by Buzzsumo in partnership with SEO Moz, they surveyed 1 million articles. Yep! that’s a 1 with 6 zero’s. They found that over85% of those articles were only 1000 words or less. What’s more, just 3% were 2000 words or more.
If that isn’t proof that in order to distance yourself from your competition, you need to make the switch to long-form articles, then I don’t know what is!
But wait… there’s more…
There’s also the social sharing aspect.
According to leading content insight specialists Buzzsumo the longer your content, the more social shares you’ll earn. Check out this graph below.
As you can see, content between 3000 and 10000 words is more likely to be shared. Logic dictates that the more social shares your dental blog post receives, the more eyes will be reading your post. By this nature, and provided it’s well-written, it should (in theory) facilitate higher conversion rates.
Speaking of conversion rates… Check out these conversion metrics…..
We already know that Google favours longer-form posts over shorter articles and will often rank posts accordingly. so….
When your dental blog post is higher in the search engines (as it would be if it’s in depth and relevent) you receive more search traffic.
When you get more search traffic, then you should (in theory) gain more conversions.
Time for some maths….
Don’t worry, I’ll make it quick 🙂
We know a standard dental blog post conversion with a well written and optimised post is normally around 2%. In fact according to PPC Software Company Word Stream that figure sits at 2.35%.
But to make this easy, let’s just say that out of every100 visits, 2readers will take action.
According to data, it’s been proven that a well-written long-form article receives more traffic than a shorter blog article. So using Buzzsumo’s share metrics as a bench-mark, we can safely assume that longer content gets100% more traffic than it’s shorter cousin.
But in addition, long form content converts up to 100% higher than short-form content. Now, you get 200 visitors (twice as many) and twice as many vistors taking action.
This begs the very important question…Is there an ideal length for long-form content, and if so, what is it?
As cheesy as it sounds the real answer is “No” and “As long as it needs to be!”
I guess you were looking for a specific figure right? 🙁
The fact is that it’s more about the quality of the content than the quantity and as previously mentioned this is highly important.
However as a general rule of thumb, I would suggest to aim for 2000-3500 words. All the analysis points to the fact that this tends to be the sweet spot.
So there you have it!
We’ve looked at the fact that most blogs on the internet (85% of them) are 1000 words or less. This means that the vast majority of blogs aren’t long enough to add any real or significant value for the reader.
We’ve also looked at the fact that Google is leaning towards (and even favours) well-written long-form content over shorter articles. I’ve also included the stats to back it up.
We’ve also seen how longer articles get the biggest chunk of social shares and finally….
I’ve given a step-by step approach on how to write them for the dental industry complete with handy hints and tips.
Sure writing a long form dental blog post that people want to read isn’t easy, but let’s look at it this way…Once it’s written, it’s out there for the world to see for many years to come. As such it’ll keep on bringing in traffic long after your PPC, Adword, or Facebook campaigns have long since dried up.
That’s the power of having a blog that converts!
I guess the rest is down to you as to whether you want to stand out from the crowd, or whether you want to keep on doing what everyone else is doing. Remember, if you can add value and give people what they really want – then you’re onto a winner as you sit and watch your patient footfall rise.
For further information on long-form content or if you feel the need to kickstart or rekindle your dental blog, contact me at email@example.com and let’s talk strategy!
I believe that successful dental blogging is a bit like moving house!
A strange statement to make I know, but before you say I’ve lost the plot, let me tell you a quick story….
So back in June, we were within 2 days of moving house…virtually everything had been packed up, removals booked…. the works.
My partner Julie and I were getting excited because since moving to Spain in 2005 we’ve been residing in rented accommodation after selling our home in the UK. Now after 12 years we’d finally taken the plunge and bought a property.
So yeah…everything was set…except it wasn’t.
Just 2 days prior to moving, all the paperwork was at the notory ready to sign, only now – the notary spottted a problem with the deeds of the house.
You see, we’d bought a old 90 year old townhouse set over 3 floors. It also had a basement and came with several outbuildings. These buildings were originally used for animal storage.
It turned out that these outbuildings had never been registered on the original title deeds of the house. So now we need to go through some crazy retrospective planning laws to enable correct registration and this process takes 3-4 months.
Here’s the real sucker punch…. These are the exact same outbuildings we want to (hopefully) knock down in order to create some much needed outside space. Yep – crazy but true!
Oh and don’t think for one minute that the powers that be will entertain the idea of ignoring the outbuildings, because we’ve already tried that aproach. This is despite telling them that they’re soon to become a pile of rubble anyway 🙁
So, to cut a long story short, we are as we speak – playing a waiting game amidst all the bureaucracy and red tape that goes with the territory of buying a house in Spain.
That said, at the end of it, we know we’ll be back on the property ladder in the not too distant future and (IMHO) the rewards of having our own property far outway those of renting.
So, as the old saying goes…’Good things come to those who wait‘ and the same thing goes for successful dental blogging.
I’ll let you into a secret…
When I first started blogging for this site, I wasn’t sure what I was really doing. I wasn’t overly enamoured with the idea of expending all that effort into writing blog posts when nobody would be reading them.
So rather than make it an integral part of my marketing strategy, I used to make every excuse under the sun not to write one – This is despite me advertising my services as a dental writer. How dumb is that?
Anyway one day, I decided it was time that I had a word with myself in a “you’ve really gotta practice what you preach” kind of way and from that point on, I made a commitment to write one blog per week.
So for the first 3-4 months or so, nothing much happened. Then gradually as more posts were created, I noticed that they began to appear in Google when I did a particular search.
It wasn’t long after that point that I started to get a trickle of enquiries requesting information about our services and from that, it didn’t take long to built up several clients. Time to this point? About 6-7 months.
Now, I’m around 55 blog posts in and I get roughly 1-2 targeted leads per week coming through this website. That’s 1-2 leads a week that I don’t have to find, because the website – or rather my successful dental blogging exploits – had done all the hard work for me.
The exact same goes for dental practice websites….
As you build up a portfolio of informative, patient-friendly blogs, potential patients who are looking for dental services online, will come across your well-written posts and get in touch. Before you know it, your patient base has grown.
Sounds easy right? Well yes…. but only if you know how successful dental blogging really works….
Let me explain…
The purpose behind effective blogging is to drive traffic to your website by getting people to take action. Whether that’s to book a consultation, make an appointment, or to check out your website, it’s used as one part of the process to turn inquisitive parties into bona-fide patients.
But that’s not all…..
Think of a blog post as another page on your site. Everytime a post is published it’s out there in the blogosphere for the world to see.
Now when someone types in a particular key phrase, Google’s aim is always to return the most relevant and helpful content to the user’s needs. Hopefully that’s your content!
Here’s an example…
Let’s say for instance that someone is searching for information on dental implants because they’re curious about the best way to replace a missing tooth. So they type in something like “advantages of dental implants“.
When they do, Google returns your informative article/post-guide on “Everything you wanted to know about dental implants but were afraid to ask”
Google returns it for two reasons.
Firstly it’s deemed as the most informative option and secondly…it’s very relevent to the search that the person has initiated.
Now, from the reader’s perspective your post gives them all the necessary information they need to solve their dilemma and….
by placing a simple call to action at the bottom of the post, it gives them a solution on how to solve it by booking a no obligation consultation with you!
But wait there’s more…
The more pages you build over time (remember we said that each post was in effect a seperate web page) the more your website has clout.
Kinda like this – But without the scary face!
Because as your website builds, Google sees it as an authority! As such it will start to climb the organic search engine rankings. Now you have multiple posts containing helpful hints and tips for anyone looking for a dentist in your area.
What’s more, everytime someone types in a particular keyphrase, Google will return your site above that of your competitors.
That’s the power that successful dental blogging can bring! It really is a win win situation all round…..
Well almost…. except there’s a fundamental flaw in the plan. the trouble is that successful dental blogging doesn’t take into account the human ability for impatience.
Dental Blogging – Time well spent
We live in a world where everything is available on tap. If you want to book a holiday, buy a gift, or order some food at 3am no problem… modern day technology allows you to do that. When you take action like order a pizza online, or visit Amazon, you can see the fruits of that action in quick time.
While many other forms of marketing pander to our attitudes for speedy results, blogging is different. It takes time to build up a quantity of well written, informative blogs and just like our current housing problem, there really is no quick fix solution.
So to the million dollar question (cue drumroll) …..
How long before your exploits can be considered as successful dental blogging?
The answer to this is that it boils down to two factors and they are
You could for example bang out a whole stream of generic 400 word blog posts daily, but if it’s simply rehashed content that’s been done to death, Google is unlikely to recognise those posts and your website as an authority. Therefore, you aren’t going to rank any time soon.
On the contrary,
You could write just 5-10 highly detailed informative posts of say 2000 words in length coupled with back links to other related authoritative sites, and you hit the ground running.
You see, Google has always been about creating the very best experiences for their readers and this means returning informative, relevent content. This is why it always pays to write content that goes into greater detail and that stands out from anything else that’s out there. That really is the key to successful dental blogging.
Successful Dental Blogging and the six month rule
As a general rule of thumb, traction from the search engine picks up around the six month point, so this is the time that a detailed post you wrote six months back will start to drive traffic.
Also, around this time you should start to see more blog comments, blog subscriptions, and most importantly an increase in dental blogging morale. Here’s a great post explaining the process in more detail.
The issue with the six month rule is that many practice owners don’t really understand the processes and to be honest…why should they? After all, they’ve got patients to care for, agreed?
Nevertheless, many lose faith long before this point and give up before it’s even a month or two down the line 🙁
At this stage it’s easy to say that dental blogging doesn’t work; however, you and I both know that it really does….but only if you’re prepared to take the long-haul approach.
Put it this way…Once you’ve built up 50, 100, 200 blog posts, it’s like having your own personal marketing army working for you 24/7. And in this respect, effective and therefore successful dental blogging, will reward your business for many years to come.
So now you know the answers to the myths surrounding dental blogging, the question I want to know is…..are you in it for the long haul?
If you’re looking to get your practice blog off the ground and are struggling with time, knowledge, enthusiasm or all of the above, then I know a team of dental writers who can help 🙂 Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s talk.
When it comes to choosing dental blogging services – Don’t let it become your ‘Merda D’artista’ moment!
On Sunday morning my partner Julie was out in the garden tackling a problematic Eucalyptus tree so it gave me a good opportunity to write this blog post as I’d been putting it off all week. Well, the truth is that I’d started it on several occasions but I was having a severe case of writer’s block.
Anyway, before I sat down this morning to write, I thought I’d surf the net for some kind of inspiration. In fact, any kind of inspiration would do!
It was entitled ‘Shit! Manzoni’s Work Really Doesn’t Do What It Says On The Tin’
Okay, so the title definitely piqued my interest, but it also epitomized the lunacy of the art world and more importantly the crazy stuff that people are actually willing to buy.
So I’d like to share it with you in brief….
In 2000, the Tate Gallery in London paid £22,350 for a tin pertaining to contain the excrement of Italian artist Piero Manzoni. Yep really!
In 1961 the artist reportedly filled 90 cans of ‘Merda D’artista‘ (Artist’s shit) as a means of exploring the relationship between art production and human production. This was just 2 years before his untimely death at the age of just 29.
While that may sound crazy in itself, in August 2016 at an art auction in Milan ‘Tin No. 83‘ as it was entitled, was sold to an anonymous bidder for a staggering €275,000. It had been valued according to it’s equivalent weight in gold.
Oh well, as the saying goes…’where there’s muck there’s brass’
While that may be bizarre enough and more than eludes to the fact that the art world has gone mad, there’s a twist to the story.
It turns out that memoirs written by Agostino Bonalumi (an associate of Manzoni) were recently discovered. In them, Bonalumi claimed that Manzoni’s cans didn’t contain excrement at all, but plaster of Paris.
Because the cans were made of steel, they couldn’t be x-rayed or scanned to define what was really inside. What’s more if opened, it would completely devalue the work.
To this day, we still don’t really know what’s in those cans as they have now become too priceless to open. In 1989 however a French Artist named Bernarde Bazile did open a can out of curiosity, only to find the contents contained a smaller can which for some strange reason he never opened.
So why am I telling you this… good point!
Quite simply, while the contents of the ‘Merda D’artista’ might not do what it says on the tin, nor might the dental blogging services you choose.
How for instance do you know that they can deliver consistency and quality, aside from the obvious, testimonials, samples etc…
Here are some pointers….
Dental blogging services – Do they blog?
Take a look at their website. Do they practice what they preach? In other words do they run a personal blog? If so, how often is it updated?
If the answer’s are ‘yes‘ and ‘frequently‘ in that order then it’s a good indication that they can ‘walk the walk’.
Conversely, if the last post on their site was say July 2014 – then you have to consider whether they really are a good fit for your business and even better- give them a wide birth!
Do they actually understand dental concepts?
Again you’d think that it would be a prerequisite. After all they’re marketing themselves as dental blogging services right? Well, similarly to Manzoni’s cans, everything might not be as it seems…
In many cases companies offering blogging services act as a middleman since often the majority of the writing is outsourced to a third party. Either that, or the service is simply a sideline to their larger SEO agency.
Either way they are likely to use ‘writer’s for hire‘ who make their living banging out articles on a whole range of subjects. While I’m certainly not knocking generalist writers, it comes as no surprise that they’re not going to be experts on all industries/niches that they write in.
With this in mind, you then have to consider the type of articles that you might receive. People are inundated with informative content, so yours really needs to stand out from the crowd. This being the case, yet another article on‘the advantages of dental implants‘ probably isn’t going to cut it.
Instead, blogs that take a viewpoint, a stance, tell a story, or deliver up to date industry news are the only real way to go. Ultimately, and controversially, the only way to properly achieve this is if the writer has extensive experience writing in this niche, or has worked within the industry.
So there you have it… Don’t let choosing dental blogging services be your ‘Merda D’artista’ moment, because remember not everything is always as it seems. Run some checks, ask the right questions, and it is possible that you’ll end up with a quality dental blogging service who really know their S#”T!
If you need help getting your dental practice blog off the ground, then give me a shout and let’s talk about how I can help you
Ultimately, how well a dental practice website does in the search engines directly hinges on the quality of their online dental content.
Don’t believe me? Then let me tell you a story….
Once upon a time in a galaxy far far away, there was a dental practice. Not just any old dental practice, but a highly successful one. The practice owner understood that the real secret to growing his business was to produce the best online dental content he could. Content with the power to engage and persuade readers while gaining their trust. So over the coming months and years, he produced lots of it. As a result the dental practice became the busiest in all the land and patients came from far and wide to be treated.
After a few years, he had enough money to sell his practice, by a huge condo back on planet earth -The Bahamas I think 🙂 and live a happy fulfilling retirement. The end!
Okay, okay, poor attempt at a fairy tale I know, but you get what I’m trying to say right?
The point is that when it comes to content, many marketing agencies are so focused on stuff like metrics, keywords and backlinks, that they forget one fundamental thing…
Sure keywords and backlinks are still important, but if you really want to experience optimal conversion rates, then quality content is where it’s at!
You could of course get away with poor to mediocre content if it wasn’t for one thing. The search engines are learning. What’s more they’re learning fast!
Nowadays, Google has the ability to sniff out poorly written content in a heartbeat. Gone are the days when companies could throw up some garbled content, stuff it full of keywords complete with some dodgy backlinks and have it rank.
Those days were awful… Remember when unless you got an exact title match, it was virtually impossible to find what you wanted!
Thankfully now algorithms such as Google’s Penguin update are specifically designed to give users a better search experience.
At the very heart of this is quality, informative content.
What’s more, if your online dental content isn’t up to scratch, then you’re more likely to plummet down the rankings quicker than a lead weight being hurled down a mine shaft.
So now you know why you should care about quality content the question is….. how do you ensure that the content you produce is always the best?
Here are some pointers…
Write for you readers, not for SEO
There’s an old saying in my line of work and it goes something like this….
‘If you write quality dental content for your readers, the SEO will follow‘
What that means is that while keywords are important, they should never be the dominating factor.
Nowadays people are innundated with content. It’s everywhere!
It’s on their phones
It’s on their social media pages and…
It’s in their inbox.
As such it becomes easy to spot poor or badly written content a mile away. When they do and it’s yours, you can guarantee one thing…
They won’t be returning!
In order to avoid this it pays to write online dental content that helps the reader in some shape or form.
That maybe through…
Anwering a question
Settling a debate/argument or
Giving good advice
By bringing something of real value to the user, you’re providing them with content that enriches and/or improves their lives. Ultimately, this not only helps to build trust, but slowly over time, positions you as the ‘go to‘ dentist in your area.
Make your online dental content engaging
Look, everyone talks about engaging content as if it’s just a throwaway line. The truth is that according to a survey carried out by SEO Moz, who did some deep research into over 100,000 pieces of random content; around 75% weren’t engaging at all !
They weren’t engaging because they had zero external links and very few if any, social shares.
The real engaging posts (the remaining 25,000 or so) got read, retweeted, and shared. Some multiple times.
Because of this, they ranked better in the search engines and to all intent and purpose moved the audience closer down the path to taking action.
The truth is that engaging content is like a Swiss Army knife. Just like the one below…
You may have it in your back pocket, but if you aren’t entirely sure how you’re going to use it, then it’s pretty useless.
So how do you make your dental content more engaging?
Let’s take a look…
A great title – A good headline draws the reader in and spurs them on to read the rest of your content. Consider a title less of an afterthought, but rather a key driver that hooks audiences to your online dental content.
Tell a story – Everyone loves a good story and it’s the perfect way of connecting with potential readers. Whether it’s an anecdote, a narrative, or a true story, it helps the reader to really ‘buy into‘ what you’re doing.
Make it original – While not all regurgitated content is bad, ‘same old same old’ content that’s on everyone else’s dental website isn’t going to cut it. Instead how about writing using your thoughts, experiences and dropping in some knowledge along the way.
Use visual aids – No one wants to be confronted with the equivalent of the ‘Great wall of China’ in text form, especially as longer posts over 1000 words or more tend to get shared. Instead it makes sense to break up content with visual aids such as pictures, videos, or infographics.
Make it lengthy – According to a report by Buzzsumo, posts that are shared the most tend to be longer – see above. If you think about it, you have more room to cover the subject matter in greater detail. When you do it becomes more informative and ultimately stands a greater chance of being shared….. simple 🙂
Make it personal
Did you know that in 2017 more and more people in need of a dentist will look online first?
Yep, you’ve guessed it, your dental website…or rather, your online dental content!
So just imagine when a potential patient lands on your website only to find content devoid of soul, character, and dare I say it, personality.
It’s highly unlikely that they’re going to stick around, let alone make an appointment.
Instead, you want content that makes them feel comfortable, makes them feel at ease, and most importantly, makes them feel like they already know you.
So how do you do that?
Simple – You need to make it personal! Keep the tone conversational as if you’re talking to a family member or friend and most importantly…
Write like you talk! Minus the swear words of course 🙂
That means talking to people in non technical terms and….
Saving the dental speak for conversations with other dentists.
I’m sure you’ve been in social situations where you’ve given advice to a non-dental friend about a dental problem they have. Think of it just like that. You’re talking to a friend about how you can help. Do that with your online dental content and I guarantee you’ll see results.
So there you have it….
How to make your online dental content the best that it can be and why you should bother
The fact of the matter is that if you place high quality online dental content at the heart of all your marketing efforts, before long you’ll be so far ahead of your competition, you’ll be looking over your shoulder at them from a huge vantage point.
Who doesn’t want that?
At Dental Writers we pride ourselves on writing stand out content for stand out dental practices just like yours. Why not contact me today to discuss your needs.