Google Ads and Facebook Ads are both methods of a type of online ads called Pay-Per-Click marketing (PPC), which is one of the most effective methods for driving heavy amounts of targeted traffic to your dental website.
How Do Online Ad Campaigns Work?
The reason we’re making a point to mention both Google Ads and Facebook Ads is because while they’re both PPC marketing platforms, they operate completely differently.
Google Ads uses a keyword-targeting method that allows you to show your practice’s ad to a potential new patient searching for services like yours on Google.
Facebook collects an overwhelming amount of information about each person who has an active account. This information includes their interests and demographics. Facebook Ads are able to utilize this information and target ads directly to specific groups of people. This is why we’re seeing so much success for our clients when they use Facebook Ads.
Where To Start With Google Ads
Starting a Google Ads campaign can seem overwhelming. Before you jump in, keep these best practices in mind:
- Remember that AdWords is not a magical new patient generator. However, it IS a great lead generator.
- If your dental practice is having a hard time converting leads to new patients pre-AdWords, just launching an AdWords campaign won’t solve that problem.
Make sure your front office staff is trained to convert those phone calls to new patients and that your practice’s website is ready to deliver on the promises your AdWords campaign is making.
- Google Ads is a "Pay to Play" platform. Because dental work can get expensive, AdWords ad spend is not cheap. Average costs per click can range anywhere between $6 to $15.
The more saturated your market is, the more competition there is for ad space, which equates to higher costs. All these factors can make AdWords a very competitive advertising channel. However, attribution is clear, so when it works, you will know!
- Be open to new patient promotions and other specials! You want to spend your AdWords budget on what has been proven to work, right?
- History has always shown that ads with words like "Free" and "Save $XX" outperform those that do not. An online ad campaign is best when there is a strong attention grabber and shows value to a potential patient.
Where To Start With Facebook Ads
Create a digital foundation. Facebook ads don't work without a website or a Facebook page. Your Facebook page doesn't have to be fancy, and you don't have to post constant updates, but your website needs to be EXCELLENT. Facebook ads only get people to your website, the website has to convert them to phone calls.
Posting on your Facebook page is not the same as running Facebook Ad campaigns. There’s nothing wrong with posting update on your dental practice’s Facebook page, but don’t confuse that with creating targeted Facebook Ads!
- Learn how to use the right tools. If you’re going to run a Facebook Ads campaign yourself, make sure you learn how to use Facebook Ads Manager and Facebook Power Editor. There are plenty of resources online you can use. We like to recommend Lynda.com.
- Pick 2 services. Choose just 2 specific services you offer and identify who typically needs them. For example, if you want to focus on Invisalign, then your target ad demographic will likely be women ages 25-54. Look at your current patient demographics to make sure you are targeting the right potential new patients.
- Ask why. Ask why someone would want to use the services you’re advertising, then create the Facebook Ad copy that resonates with this reason.
- Stay away from overly-technical ads that showcase specific technology or experience. You want to have your ad emotionally connect with your potential new patients.
How To Succeed Using Online Ads
Don’t be afraid to hire an expert to handle your PPC ad campaigns. They need a lot of attention to be successful and can drive dozens of qualified new patient leads to your practice.
Keep in mind that it usually takes someone 8-10 years to become an expert at Google Ads and at least 3-5 years to reach that same level with Facebook Ads.
If you do decide to handle your PPC ad campaigns on your own, give yourself the time and budget to make a few mistakes along the way.
With time and patience you’ll learn how best to use your PPC ads budget to market your practice and consistently drive high quality new patients into your office.