Posts Tagged ‘marketing’

Office Theming is a Win for Your Office, Big or Small

January 3rd, 2020

No matter what size space you want to theme, the benefits of a kid-friendly space in dental or medical offices are always the same. Your practice will become more welcoming for young families, and the kids will have fun and be less anxious while in your care. Happy parents will rave about your office, and through their word-of-mouth advertising, more families will come looking for a similar experience.

Read on for a few ways to take your space from mundane to magical!

 

Small Office

For offices where space is a precious commodity, start your theming with wall murals. Murals are a great way to inject some fun into a space and require zero footprint to do so. Murals aren’t limited to just your walls; our colorful graphics can be applied to check-in counters, doors, cabinetry, windows, company vehicles, and more!

Our custom murals are expertly curated to fit any space, taking any permanent fixture into consideration – light switches, outlets, doorways, etc. You’ll never have to worry about a cute character’s face being covered up by the thermostat!

If you’d like to have some 3D elements in your office, but you’re worried about them taking up too much space, we recommend products like brushing mirrors or themed benches that replace their ‘regular’ counterparts. This combination results in an exciting office with zero extra space required.

 

Medium Office

If you’ve got a little more room to play, your options open up even more. In addition to our recommendations for a smaller office, themed kid’s corners and play areas are among our most popular designs. You can add in some gaming stations for a variety of ages, while creating “share-worthy” photo ops that are a perfect addition to your social media feed. These extras can really enhance the experience kids have while visiting your office.

Depending on your location and exterior space available, you could also consider a character sitting on a bench outside of your practice. Our designs are built to last and can withstand outdoor elements, no matter your geographical location, from snowy winters to sunny summers. Exterior photo ops make for great landmarks, which not only saves space inside, but also helps make your practice easier to find from the outside. Inquisitive passers-by will likely wander into your practice, curious to know more about the services you offer.

 

Large Office

If you are lucky enough to have a large space, this is where the IDS team can really roll up their sleeves and help you create an unforgettable experience for your patients. As your patients move from the front of the office to the back, we can help you to enhance your theme and tell a story that keeps them engaged throughout their entire visit.

With more space comes more opportunities to get creative with your theming, such as a large-scale sculpture in your waiting area, or 3D cladding for your front desk. You can add theming elements like ceiling characters to your treatment rooms and open bay, or deck out your waiting area with cladded benches or characters “waiting” for their own appointments. Theater rooms are also popular to keep kids occupied for longer, especially when waiting for a sibling to finish their appointment. The trick is creating a space that isn’t just a room with a TV, but a secret world created just for your younger patients.

Big or small, theming can help you to squeeze extra value out of your physical space. Our clients often describe it as a win-win-win investment – patients and their families have more fun while in your care, staff report that appointments are easier and they enjoy working a unique environment, and the space helps to fuel positive reviews from parents which helps to accelerates the growth of the practice.

IDS is committed to helping you invest in the future success of your practice.

The only question is, what kind of theme can we create for you?

 

5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Photo Op

August 28th, 2019

With social media playing an ever more critical role in marketing, it’s no surprise that photo ops are becoming a trend in clinic waiting rooms the world over. It’s a great strategy for using your physical office space to drive social media activity (like posts and shares) and can really help a practice gain organic traction in the online parent community.
 
Here are 5 tips to ensure you are getting maximum value out your photo op:
 
1. Make Sure It’s ‘Share-Worthy’.

Parents are always on the lookout for the next moment that will produce an eye-catching, adorable photo of their little ones. Make sure that your photo op features vibrant colors and something that will really make kids smile. It’s all about curating that perfect social media moment.

 


2. It’s Also a Subtle Brag.

Beyond the adorable moment, parents are secretly looking for the opportunity for a subtle brag. For example, “Look at how much fun my kid had at the dentist… Oh, and no cavities!”

To play into this desire, add some props to the scene that allow kids to proudly advertise ‘Cavity-Free Today!’, ‘Had a Great Appointment!’, or ‘I was Brave Today!’.

If you’re an optometrist, try a sign that says ‘New Glasses Day!’ or ‘My First Pair of Glasses!’.

If you’re a doctor, ‘I Was Vaccinated Today!’, ‘I Got a Shot Today!’, or ‘I’m All Better!

 


3. Make Sure Your Brand is Along for the Ride.

You get the most marketing value from a photo being posted to social media if those who see it know where it was taken. We suggest a combination of three things: your logo subtly included in the scene somewhere – it can be incorporated in the background scene, on a signpost that’s in the shot, or perhaps on the t-shirt of the photo op character. Next, utilize hashtags and encourage parents to tag your office when they post the picture. Make this easy on them by ensuring your hashtags and social media handles are easy to find and are included on any take-home paperwork they may receive.

 


4. Run a Contest.

One of the best ways to nurture parent-driven activity online is to run a contest. Weave this together with your photo op by allowing the posting of the photo as entry into the contest. Use a unique hashtag to easily identify entries online and make your prize something family-focused such as passes to a local amusement park or a family picnic prize pack.

One thing to note here – not every parent will be open to posting photos of their kids on social media, so be sure to supplement the above with an offline entry ballot as well. This way parents have the opportunity to enter without being ‘forced’ to post pics of their kids online.
 

5. Mix it Up!

Parents don’t want to look like they are posting the same photo more than once, which is why you’ll need to put some thought into keeping your photo op current. It can be as simple as adding some seasonal props like a Santa hat on your character or adding some pumpkins and cobwebs around Halloween. The trick is to make the photo op reflect what’s current now.

 


Ready to learn more? Book a free consultation with our team today and we’ll walk you through the elements that make the perfect ‘share-worthy’ scene in your office!
 

Interview with Dr. Chuck Hughes – Bringing in Clients with Attention Grabbing Theming

November 15th, 2018

Dr. Chuck Hughes is a highly successful pediatric dentist in Jackson, Tennessee and a valued customer of IDS. We sat down with Dr. Hughes to ask him about his experience working with IDS and the impact it has had on his practice. Now an enthusiastic office ‘themer’, he was happy to oblige.

IDS: Dr. Hughes, what made you contact IDS in the first place?

Dr. Chuck Hughes: When I first saw them in PDT magazine and then at the AAPD conference, I thought, wow, this company is really creative and I bet if I put one of their giant characters on my roof, it would stop traffic. Of course it would be great advertising.

Then, taking it one step further, I thought about why I became a pediatric dentist. I love working with kids and I know how important it is for them to learn how to take care of their teeth. What if I could do more to make their office visit fun, engaging and educational? Everyone at our office already does so much to put kids at ease but what if we could make the office seem like a fun place for kids, super welcoming and just for them… how great would that be?

 

IDS: Were you doing anything to market your practice before you found IDS?

Dr. Chuck Hughes: At the time I was doing everything I could think of! I was doing newspaper ads, TV commercials and radio spots. It was expensive but what I believed needed to be done. I was spending about $6000 a month on what would help grow my practice.

 

IDS: How was your experience working with IDS?

Dr. Chuck Hughes: Fantastic, from beginning to end. When I first called and spoke to Dave (IDS President) he was so excited about the potential of my office that I couldn’t help but get excited too. I could immediately tell from our first conversation that he knew dental offices and all the challenges that we have setting up and running our practices. I knew I was talking to an expert.

I could tell from their website that everything was very high quality, so I was a little worried about costs. Once I started working with IDS, they were so professional and detailed that I realized I was in good hands. How can you not be impressed with their design ideas and the quality of their products?

And the results! They did everything that they said they would and more. The IDS installers that came down to my office did a great job and the installation of everything went very easy and on time. I was blown away by what they accomplished.

 

IDS: Did you get the results you were looking for and how did you know?

Dr. Chuck Hughes: I knew as soon as we opened that we were getting a lot of new patients, so I asked my staff to keep track by asking each new patient or their parents what brought them in. At the time, like I said, I was spending a significant amount each month on promotional ads in the newspaper, on TV and radio and a bunch of other things. And all those things took a lot of time to manage.

I was thinking that I would have been happy if my new investment in IDS had been responsible for 50% of the new patients tracked. You could have knocked me over with a feather when the results came in after six months… a full 94% of people surveyed cited the exterior theming!! I was so happy to hear this. I knew I was making the right decision but this survey proved it.


 

IDS: Were there any other benefits?

Dr. Chuck Hughes: Multiple benefits! Patient retention, no question. My dental team is the best and we have always worked very hard on patient retention. However, if children cannot wait to come back because of how cool our office is, that’s just a bonus.

We always see parents and teens taking pictures with their phones in the office. You can’t buy that kind of advertising when they send out those pictures to their friends and family and maybe even post them on their Facebook page. That’s a true benefit.

Another benefit is for my staff. They love it when a child walks in and their jaw drops at what they see, or when a mom compliments the office. It makes them proud because it’s their office too.

I am a huge advocate for proper dental education for my patients. IDS really helped me by creating elements in the theming that I use to educate all my patients. It is done in a fun and playful way so the kids are much more likely to remember what we’ve taught them.

And a final reason and this is really important, it also makes my job easier as well as our other dentists, hygienists, and assistants. If children are more relaxed, it is definitely easier to do our jobs.


 

IDS: Would you work with IDS again?

Dr. Chuck Hughes: I am thrilled with my current office and I wouldn’t hesitate to work with Dave and his team again! Not only would I work with them again but when other practitioners ask me, ‘who did those great animals on your roof’ I say, IDS, and you’re going to love them… here’s their number.

 
Check out Dr. Hughes’ office photos here.

 

Marketing Tips – How to Get Online Reviews (and Respond to Negative Ones)

October 15th, 2018

Reviews matter for small business, especially if you cater to the public. Online reviews bring the benefit of social proof, something we have talked about before. Social proof is the influence that the actions and attitudes of other people have on your own behavior and decisions. 91 percent of people regularly or occasionally read online reviews. 84 percent of people trust online reviews as much as the recommendation of a friend.

So we all know reviews are important, but how do you get them? Here are a few tips and tricks you can use to get ahead of the competition.
 

Claim Your Online Profiles

If you want to have control over your reviews, be sure to claim your online profiles. This means either setting up a profile or claiming the default listing created by review sites. Make sure you have a presence on Google, Facebook, Yelp, and any industry-specific sites where your business can get reviewed.

If you must begin small, begin with taking control of your Google Business Page. Google reviews are the most important type of review for a dentist. Unless being referred, the first place a parent is going to go to find a pediatric dentist or doctor is Google to search for dentists in their neighborhood. If there are a number of options in an area, they will begin looking at reviews. For a small business competing against similar establishments in the same area, Google reviews can often be an important tiebreaker.
 

Make it Easy for Your Customers to Review You

Add links to your review pages on your website. Include links with your email correspondence and any e-newsletters. Make it easy by making it accessible.
 

Offer Incentives

Now that you are ready to receive and respond to reviews, how do you get them? Begin by offering incentives. This is helpful especially when you are a new business and do not have a lot of reviews. Offer a $5 gift card to a local coffee shop if they leave a review. Or create a contest where every good review is an entry into a prize draw – make sure you announce the winner on a social media to create excitement.

 
Ask the Right People

When looking for reviews, ask the right people. If you have a referral program set up and are able to track referrers you have a great resource at your disposal. If someone refers someone to your office they are obviously happy with your services. Send them a thank you for the referral, a referral gift, and of course, a link to leave a review.

Once you encourage your customers to leave reviews, make sure their efforts are rewarded with a reply from your business. Reply to every good review with a thank you. And be ready to reply to every negative review as well.

 
Earn Your Reviews

If you want good reviews, then you’ll have to earn them. Have great services, a friendly staff, and an amazing themed office that makes their kids calm and happy! Our clients often have excellent reviews talking about the fun environment created by adding games and themed decor.

“The kids loved playing on the iPads on the wall and in the hot air balloon while we waited. Great experience!”
 
“We also love the play area-lots of things to do while the kids are waiting.”
 
“Super clean and decorated beautifully – it made the kids more excited to be there. Would recommend without hesitation.”
 
“Had a TON of eye candy for the kids (awesome decor and video game screens all over the place!)”

If your clients genuinely like your business, you’ll get the reviews you want.
 

What Happens When You Get a Bad Review?

The majority of review sites will not allow you to delete a bad review, so be prepared to deal with them and use them to your benefit. Handling a bad review in a professional manner can actually be just as helpful as a good review as it can show how you handle negative situations.

Also, consumers trust a 4.5 star review more than 5 stars as they feel an imperfect score to be more truthful and reflective of the business. 5 stars are just too good to be true.

But back to how to handle those reviews. Here’s a quick rundown of points you should remember when you get a bad review:

1. You want to respond as quickly as possible so that others people are not able to read this angry review without your side of the story. But be cautious. Don’t respond in the heat of the moment or you may say something you don’t want out in the public.

2. Do your homework. Make sure you know your employees side of the situation before you craft a response.

3. Take responsibility for your part in the problem and offer a sincere apology. Even if the review is unjustified, be empathetic to the reviewer’s complaint. Let them know you understand their frustration and will help them with their issue. This shows others that you care about your customers’ opinions and feelings and will hopefully calm the anger of this particular reviewer.

4. Thank the reviewer for taking the time to bring this issue to your attention. Let them know you pride yourself on excellent customer service and appreciate the opportunity to make things right.

5. Don’t go into too much detail in your reply. Offer to take the conversation offline. You don’t want to start a debate with an irate customer on your wall of reviews, so offer to have to call or email to further discuss the issue.

If you’re dealing with an online troll, just walk away. That’s a fight you’ll never win. Anyone reading the review of a troll will know when someone is just being a bully compared to leaving a legitimate review.

 

With these tips and tricks, you have the know-how to get you on the right path to gain more reviews.

 

Marketing Tips – 5 Easy Ways to Use an Award to Market Your Dental Office

March 31st, 2018

Awards are an honor to receive, as well as a great way to boost the reputation of your business. Let’s look at how an award can help your business.

Awards are a form of “social proof”. Social proof is the influence that the actions and attitudes of other people have on your own behavior and decisions. By showing that your business is recognized for its quality, you will help ease the minds of potential customers. Other examples of social proof are testimonials, ratings, and celebrity endorsements.

The easiest way to find awards to apply for is to search online for industry-specific awards available in your city, state, or country. Small business awards often contain multiple categories in which you can nominate yourself. Magazines, newspapers, and websites love to run “Best of…” contests and issues. You can even check out mom blogs and parent groups for more award opportunities. Be sure to use your unique IDS themed office to get more attention when you apply for awards. Once you start winning you can promote yourself as an “award-winning dental office”. Here are some simple ways you can use an award to market your business.

 

1. Get it in the news.

Send a press release to your local paper to announce your accomplishment. Local news crews are always looking for fun feel-good stories and will likely be interested in your story, especially if you have a visually interesting IDS themed office. This will get your name out there in an organic way that’s less intrusive than traditional advertising. You can also post these news stories to your own social media, so it’s a win-win.

 

2. Announce it!

Announce your award on social media or add it to the cover image. Social media is a great place to get excited about an award. Post a photo of you and your staff cheering to make it more personal.

 

3. Put it on your website.

Add the words “Award-Winning” to your company bio or list the award with your patient testimonials.

 

4. Display your awards.

A printed banner, plaque, or even a sticker on your front door allows old and new customers to see your awards.

 

5. Add it to your marketing materials.

If it’s a big win, go one step further and add it to your printed collateral that goes out to clients and colleagues: at the bottom of your letterhead, in the corner of your reminder postcards, or under your logo as a tagline.

 

These are only a few ideas to get you thinking. Getting positive press for your unique office is easy once you get started. Good luck with your awards!

 


IDS is proud to accept the Alberta Business Awards – Marketing Award of Distinction.

The Alberta Business Awards of Distinction recognize businesses and organizations that have demonstrated outstanding achievement and contribution to their community while having developed business acumen & management practices to ensure long-term sustainability. To date, over 250 companies have been named Alberta Business Award of Distinction recipients. We are proud to count ourselves among that number.

Marketing Team Heads Victoria Mitchell and Micaela Blondin