• Stewart Read

Dental Practices! Are you short sighted?

Playing the long game.

Here's a post inspired by Bas Iqpal

It’s often said that only about 3% of your market is ready to buy at any given time.

Whether or not that figure is entirely accurate, there’s an important point around this to be made.

Today is the era of what I call the 'Empowered Consumer'. People can search endlessly for information and prices online to help them make the decision about who to buy from.

We all do this right?

So here’s the thing.

The 3% who are ready to buy have already done all of their research and been subjected to ads and marketing - so in that sense they’ve already made their minds up about who they’ll book their treatment or procedure with.

That makes sense.

It's a tough battleground because that's where most practices are focusing and it can be too late in the game.

The 3% is where the fiercest competition is. competition for Facebook & Instagram ad placements, competition for attention, competition for trust and competition for the treatment booking itself.

It’s a red ocean at that point. (Bloodied from the battles for competition).

The smart approach is to fish in the blue ocean . (Calm, clear and bountiful).

So the smart move is to play the longer game.

Work to earn trust and respect from the 97% who will buy but are earlier in the buying journey. Identify them early in the process and invest the time and effort to help them know, like and trust you.

If you’re both a good fit (not everyone will be - and that’s OK), then you’ll be the practice they turn to when it’s time to book the treatment.

So, how do you find those new leads?

You start attracting them with messages and useful information that's custom made to appeal to them at their specific stage in the process with different types of messaging and content.

There are 3 well defined stages of messaging to go with each of the three stages of the buying journey.

1. Cold

2. Warm

3. Hot


These are people that are problem aware. They know they have a new problem they want to fix. This is the place to talk about those problems in specific terms - identify and empathise with them.

Show you understand exactly what it’s like to have that problem. Give examples of how they must feel about that. Stories about people with a problem just like them are super powerful here.


People in this stage are solution aware. They know that there are ways to fix the problem they have and are learning about the different solutions and options available to them. It's time to talk about the different options they have, the pros and cons of those and why your treatment is a great option. Start focusing on the results they want to achieve.


This is the bottom of the sales and marketing funnel. This is where you can talk about the results and transformations that your practice has delivered. Social proof and testimonials are great tools to leverage here. Show people just like them who have had the same great transformations that they want. Show proof!

It’s also important to have a campaign running where you can maintain that ‘top of mind’ status - simple awareness of your practice is a good place to start.

From there you can build a strategy for your presence on social media and layer on credibility, expertise and likability.

Facebook ads are not a silver bullet. They are a tool. Using Facebook Ads (advertising) in partnership with content (marketing) that educates, informs and helps people is a combination that's often overlooked.

So try to think longer term if you want to achieve the bigger numbers - and go for the 97% not the 3%.


©2020 by Stewart Read Consulting