Where the Line Forms: How to Build Anticipation with Your Dental Blog Content

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As a teen I remember standing in line alongside my dad, outside our hometown’s twin screen movie theater.

Tickets in hand.

The crowd and anticipation building.

Star Wars…enough said!

Blockbusters have a certain appeal. And that sense of anticipation works for your dental blog content like it does movies.

I recently introduced our young grandson to the Star Wars franchise. I’m building anticipation in him for the approaching release of the latest chapter in the sci-fi series.

He’s hooked. And the promotional teaser for the new film had him uttering a wide-eyed, “Wow!”

Good content – visual or otherwise – elicits an emotional response in one form or another.

What’s “Wow!” and are you getting it?

Unlike my dad and I full of anticipation years ago for the local premiere of George Lucas’ story from a “galaxy far, far away…,” I get that the general public isn’t lining up to read dental content on your website.

There are reasons for this.

The obvious ones: time and perception.

One of those you can’t control. The other you absolutely can.

Perception is everything. Start controlling it.

The first level of defenses fall the moment a potential new patient, client, or current one types in a dental search term in their web browser. Your published content goes to work on your behalf.

And this is where the current online reality shifts for you and your dental practice. The availability of relevant content increases the likelihood you’ll show up somewhere at or near the top of their search results.

Merely having a website with the words “dental,” “dentist,” etc peppered throughout just to stoke the search engine’s fire. Those days are gone.

Welcome to the new digital marketing world of usefulness (the key, by the way, to controlling perception and building anticipation).

Give them something.

If it’s written content, it must be readable, understandable, and above all, useful to their search.

Perception is that dental content is technical (much of it is).

Perception is that dental content is boring (much of it is).

Perception is that dental content is baited and weighted to lure you into the office for something “free” that will lead you into a consult room where you’re introduced to the “need” for hundreds or thousands of dollars of treatment (much of it is).

The rise of “just because” content.

Informed decisions are better than decisions made under pressure. Wouldn’t you rather have the reputation of being a trusted resource that educates people into a decision?

Become an authority. And when people trust you as an authority their perception shifts.

How to shift the perception about your dental content.

1-Launch, re-launch, revise, or revisit your dental blog strategy.

Did you give up blogging too soon? Have you delayed starting? Are there loooong gaps between your most recent post and today?

Your authority as a dental professional increases when you consistently deliver quality, useful, reader-focused information.

CE courses and credits can appear irrelevant (as a credential) for the general public. They’re looking for accessible answers to their questions.

And people are accustomed to reaching for their smart phone or tablet, opening their web browser, typing a word in the search bar…and viola!…reading something relevant to their need.

They will read. And vital to your authority, they’ll return for more if what they find leads to solutions on a physical or emotional level.

2-Keep your blog topped-off with a minimum of two fresh posts per month.

We could debate blog frequency all day. Let’s not.

Instead, set a goal to blog consistently. And by consistent, start with a fresh post every other week (minimum two per month).

Once you get in-the-zone you’ll actually find it easier to up the frequency. In fact, once a week will become your new blogging pace.

Set a goal to publish once a week as you complete a month or two of every other week publishing. Block out some time. Maintain a running list of topics and content ideas.

And if your time is limited or your desire to write is low (as I suspect both to be true since you’re a busy, thriving dental professional who’d rather be doing dentistry) secure the services of a dental copywriter or dental blogger to produce your blog content on a consistent weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly schedule.

3-Listen, learn, and leverage what you discover into new posts.

Be intentional about publishing content that people will read and return for more. And your best intentional strategy is listening.

What are your patients, clients, readers asking about? Talking about?

Ask your dental hygienists what they’re hearing from patients. They’re on the front-lines of patient communication.

Train them, your dental assistants, and front-office team to ask fruitful questions. You’re seeking information you can turn into informational content.

When you do this effectively, patients will get the idea that you’re tapped into their concerns, fears, health and appearance goals, etc. When they feel listened to and heard, they’ll naturally share your content with others.

And shared content equals referrals. And referrals help build your practice.

If you want people to be wide-eyed with anticipation – the “Wow!” – build anticipation through your informative, useful content.

They may not line up. But they’ll know where the line forms when the time comes.

3D Dental Copywriting That Compels People to Choose Your Services

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Saying something is good, great, state-of-the-art, etc. makes a point. But if you want your dental copywriting and dental marketing content to have “punch” you must go deeper.

I occasionally watch a local news program during lunch. It’s one of those noontime programs that features entertaining, informative special segments during the hour long broadcast.

The host anchor made a comment during an episode’s cooking segment that I’ve laughed about many times since. The segment featured the use of beer in a particular recipe for a meat based pie.

The guest cook discussed the various ingredients and in particular the use of beer for added flavor. The host anchor responded off-the-cuff and enthusiastically – “I don’t drink beer…but I sure do like it in my pie!”

I don’t know why the anchor’s statement made me laugh. But after doing so, it made me think.

Products and services have multiple benefits.

Beer, for example, is a refreshing, enjoyable beverage. Even so, many don’t prefer drinking it…but they will add it to a recipe.

That said, the dominant benefit that’s used to market beer is what? It’s not people sitting around, partying, pouring beer into a kettle on a stove top.

There are dominant benefits and there are dimensional benefits.

Copywriting master, Clayton Makepeace says there are “3 deadly blunders” made in marketing copy and content.

  1. Mistaking features for benefits.
  2. Mistaking processes for benefits.
  3. Missing different types of benefits.

His solution: “Drill down to the real, bottom-line rubber-meets-the-road benefits your product (or service) provides.”

Someone “drilled down” and discovered (perhaps while sipping an ice-cold, refreshing brew) that beer adds flavor to a favorite recipe. Beer as a refreshing, relax-with-my-friends beverage is a dominant benefit. Beer as a flavor-enhancing ingredient in your main course is a dimensional benefit.

3D your products and services to add compelling power to your dental marketing copy and content.

Comprehensively inventory your product/service features.

List every objective fact your product/service has. What’s unique, special, compelling, interesting, etc. about the dental service you’re promoting right now?

List everything you can think of.

  • What’s its purpose? What does the service do for your patient/client?
  • What are its physical characteristics? How will a patient/client experience it visually, by sound, taste, etc.?
  • How long does it last? What will the experience be like? When will results be seen? How does it compare?
  • What’s been said about it? How have others experienced it? How is it guaranteed?
  • What choices are offered? Size? Color? Flavor? Is it customizable?
  • How is it priced? Is it dividable by cost per year, month, week, or day?

“Attach a ‘Why’ to each feature”

Feature: Digital x-rays are the latest, state-of-the-art technology. Why: Faster image views means less time in the operatory.

Feature: A TV in every exam room. Why: More comfortable for the patient and time passes quickly during the appointment.

The “Why” forces you to think about benefits. People are sold by benefits not features.

Transform features into benefits.

Force the all-important question before you promote your product/service. And the question is: “What’s in it for me?”

Features must connect. Your patients or clients must experience (via your copy/content) how the service directly improves their life.

What fear does it help them overcome? How does it save them time and money? What have others experienced by using it?

“Dimensionalize each benefit.”

Feature: A TV in every exam room.
Why: More comfortable for the patient and time passes quickly during the appointment.
Benefit: Your appointment is over before you realize it.
Dimensionalized benefit: Great for fidgety kids. The time zips by. In fact, just last week little Jimmy asked if he could stay longer at the office!

Get “emotional” by connecting each dimensionalized benefit with a dominant resident emotion.

Think about how your patient/client will FEEL personally after they’ve enjoyed each benefit your service/product provides.

And there’s another emotional perspective people have too.

How will your patient/client feel as others see them enjoying your services’/product’s practical benefits? That’s an even deeper question.

There’s more to your services and products than meets the eye. Go deeper and tap into the compelling reasons people will buy-in.

Question: Why is it easier to focus on features than diving deeper into benefits? How is dimensionalizing your benefits useful to you? Comment.

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