By Derek Andersen
Today’s dental patients don’t choose a practice based on a single interaction—their journey is fragmented across numerous channels. For example, a patient may discover a provider through a Google search, vet them with Yelp reviews, and visit the provider’s website before scheduling an appointment over the phone.
Regardless of the path a new patient takes during the decision-making process, the phone call is often a common element. According to a study by Accenture, only 2% of healthcare appointments are self-scheduled online. So, whether your prospects found out about your dental practice through a Google search, social media ad, insurance referral, or word of mouth recommendation, most will convert by calling.
By analyzing these phone conversations—what drove them and what occurred during them—dental marketers can better understand and optimize the patient journey. A call analytics solution like DialogTech can help collect call data at scale and leverage the insights to:
Search is an important first step for many patients—according to LSA, 71% of dental patients run a search before scheduling an appointment. And 86% of these patients call after searching.
When you use DialogTech’s SourceIQ™ to track the calls driven by your search advertising, you can collect pertinent data about each caller, such as their name, geographic location, the search ad and keyword they called from, and whether they’re a new or repeat caller. DialogAnalytics™ records and transcribes conversations and uses AI to uncover marketing insights from each call at scale, including if the caller was a good sales lead, what products/services they’re interested in, their urgency, and the outcome of the call.
Once you’re collecting these insights, you can make smarter optimizations with audiences, messaging, and keyword bid strategies to drive more new patients to your practice. For instance, if you notice that new patient calls tend to come in from certain Google Ads keywords from smartphone users on Mondays and Tuesdays, you can optimize your spend to serve more ads on these days to this audience. If you determine that new patients tend to call from within 15 miles of your practice, you can increase your bids for searchers in this area.
In addition, call analytics can better inform your audience targeting strategy. When a caller doesn’t convert over the phone, but expresses legitimate interest, you can retarget them with relevant ads across channels—including broadening your keywords and increasing your bids for that caller since they are a quality lead. When a caller converts over the phone, you can exclude them from any immediate ads to avoid wasting spend (instead letting them find you via organic listings). And, to increase your reach, you can build lookalike audiences based on callers who converted.
Driving calls from search is only half the battle—your ROI also depends on the routing and handling of those calls. DialogTech’s ExperienceHub™ gives marketers the ability to route callers more efficiently based on their profile and online interactions. For example, if someone called from the paid search keyword “dentist Chicago,” you can route them to your Chicago dental practice. If someone called from the keyword “tooth implant,” you can route them to the closest oral surgeon’s office. This will help you create a frictionless experience that drives more new patient conversions.
98% of dental practices use Facebook as part of their patient acquisition strategy. As the competition intensifies on social media, so does the cost per acquisition. To improve performance and optimize spend, dental marketers are taking a data-driven approach to the calls driven by their social media ads.
Dental marketers can leverage call analytics to optimize their social media advertising spend in many of the same ways they can use them to optimize their paid search spend. They can:
By leveraging DialogTech, dental marketers can track what pages are driving call conversions. You can then pass this data into A/B testing tools like those from Adobe, Google, and Optimizely to optimize for the page variations that are driving the most new patients.
In addition, you can use insights from what a caller says during a phone conversation to personalize their experience on your website. For instance, if the caller inquired about whitening services, you can serve them homepage content touting your whitening services when they return to your site.
You can also use call analytics to understand important questions callers have about your products or services and answer those on relevant pages. For example, if patients commonly call your practice from your Invisalign page and ask how often they should wear their Invisalign, you should answer the question on that page. This approach will clear up uncertainties for patients who may be on the fence about your services. It will also help you rank higher in SEO—if a high volume of consumers ask these questions over the phone, chances are many people type them into search engines as well.
Over 70% of patients are influenced by customer reviews when choosing a dentist. Even when dental patients receive a personal recommendation from a friend, 43% don’t take that recommendation at face value—they vet the reviews to verify it. Online reviews are often a crucial gatekeeper in the research process.
To help with their reviews strategy, marketers can use DialogTech’s ExperienceHub to provide callers with the best, most relevant call experience, based on their needs and intent. This is especially important, since 32% of consumers complain that calls are the most frustrating channel. For the vast majority of your patients, the call channel is also the first point of contact with your practice. To ensure you make a good first impression (as well as a good lasting impression for repeat patients), you should make this experience as frictionless as possible. This means answering calls with a personalized greeting and routing callers to the relevant practice and location based on the ad they called from. Callers hate repeating themselves and enduring multiple transfers—by eliminating these frustrations, you’ll lower your chances of receiving negative reviews.
In addition, DialogAnalytics can automatically flag customer experience issues that occur during calls, allowing you to understand which patients are frustrated and why. Was it a billing issue? Problem with an insurance carrier? Poor customer service? This gives practices the opportunity to call these patients back and rectify the issue before it results in customer churn and a possible negative review. By understanding customer experience issues in real time, you’ll also be able to ensure the issues aren’t systemic problems that affect multiple patients.
A leading dental support organization (DSO) has helped over a million children in underserved communities gain access to quality dental, vision, and orthodontic care. They use DialogTech to track, analyze, and route calls from their marketing to their call center.
“Before DialogTech, we had no idea how our marketing was generating calls and what our cost-per-call was for each marketing channel,” said the Director of Marketing at the DSO. Using DialogTech, the DSO now knows the marketing channel, ad or direct mail, search keyword, and website interaction that drove each call, as well as data on the caller, their location, and what happened on the call.
Marketing Routes Calls to Best Agent
The DSO organizes its call center agents by territory, with agents booking appointments for specific geographies. They use DialogTech to automatically route calls to the right agents based on each caller’s location, providing callers with the best assistance right away.
Analyzing Conversations Provides Marketing Insights
According to the Director of Marketing: “Generating new patients is how our marketing can really move the needle, and we use DialogTech to analyze conversations to see which channels drive the most calls from new patients. DialogTech shows us every call where important words are spoken by the right party, and that helps marketing see how to allocate budget to drive the most new-patient calls.”
Impressive ROI Fueled by Call Analytics
“Now that we have complete analytics on marketing performance, we are able to make smarter optimizations. With the help of call analytics from DialogTech, we’ve decreased our cost per lead by over 50%, so we can invest our marketing dollars for what is generating the most new appointments for children in need of healthcare.”
To learn more dental marketing best practices, download our eBook, The Dental Marketer’s Playbook for Patient Calls from Search.
To learn more dental marketing best practices, download our eBook, The Dental Marketer’s Playbook for Patient Calls from Search.Download My eBook →
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