With dental offices slowing down after the back-to-school rush, we review seasonal marketing strategies designed to keep your practice steady well into the upcoming holiday season.
By Susan Richards
Dental professionals everywhere can finally take a collective breath as the end-of-summer/back-to-school flurry of appointments subsides into falling leaves and temperatures. However, if that calm is short-lived because you’re now wondering how to sustain a steady schedule at your practice, we’ll review seasonal marketing strategies that are easy to integrate into your overall dental marketing plan.
Mark Your Calendar
Mining content for your fall marketing, be it social media, direct mail, or email, can be coordinated with designated special days and months. Mainstream holidays are obvious, but you can also incorporate more obscure “holidays” like National Face Your Fears Day (October 11th), which could be uniquely relevant for sedation dentistry.
- National Dental Hygiene Month
- National Orthodontic Health Month
- National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
- 10/7/22 World Smile Day
- 10/31/22 Halloween
- National Children’s Month
- American Diabetes Month
- 11/11/22 Veteran’s Day
- 11/13/22 World Kindness Day
- 11/24/22 Thanksgiving
- 11/26/22 Small Business Saturday
A Happy, Healthy Halloween
The month that culminates in a night of candy, not to mention complete disregard for oral health, doesn’t have to be scary for the creative dental practice.
Candy “buy back” activities have become very popular, with dentists offering to exchange money, prizes, and goodwill for excess Halloween treats. One of the more well-known organizations, Operation Gratitude, accepts candy from the Halloween Candy Give Back program each year for U.S. service members around the world.
Invite young patients to wear their costumes and encourage parents to set up regular cleaning and check-up appointments that may have been delayed. Post pictures on social media (with parental permission) for valuable user-generated content.
‘Tis Almost the Season
Once Halloween is over, it’s always a quick slide into Thanksgiving and the December celebrations that include Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa – all of which provide their own creative marketing opportunities.
For Thanksgiving, it’s easy to incorporate gratitude into your practice’s message by thanking your current patients and rewarding them for their referrals with gift cards or discounts. There’s no rule that says dentists can’t participate in Black Friday or Small Business Saturdays, so advertise a limited-time offer for new patients or aligners.
Everyone wants to look good for holiday gatherings and family pictures, which makes teeth whitening treatments or cosmetic services an ideal promotion in November and December.
While good philanthropy happens year-round, the holidays are often a time of heightened awareness of those in need. By setting up a toy drive or food donation drop-off in the office, you’re providing a service and engaging your patients in a good cause.
Making Fall Fun
The season just lends itself to fun by conjuring images of leaf piles, fall sports, pumpkin patches, hand-shaped turkeys, and gift-giving. Be sure to shift to colorful, autumn-inspired art for your digital ads, social media, and direct mail pieces.
Consider using timely content for blogs and other platforms, such as common dental injuries in sports or which Halloween treats to avoid at all costs for orthodontia. Dentists who prefer cameras to copy can join the TikTok wave with virtual costume contests or sharing holiday recipes. With more than 86% of businesses incorporating it into their marketing, video is here to stay.
For truly memorable giveaways, hand out pumpkin spice or caramel apple-flavored dental floss.
In Conclusion… of 2022
Of course, every businessperson understands that fall is a fiscal way to say fourth quarter. Before ushering out 2022, create an email campaign to remind patients who may have insurance savings or flex plans to schedule any treatments accordingly.
As sweater weather arrives and we warm up to the idea of a new year, give your fall marketing strategy the attention it deserves. Whether utilizing digital tools, social media, postcards, or pumpkin spice floss, marketing is a vital investment in your practice every season.
Author: Susan Richards is a staff writer at DOCS Education. With over 20 years of experience in local journalism and business marketing, Susan’s career includes award-winning feature writing, as well as creating content with context for a wide variety of industries.