It can be difficult to gain new clients, especially with lots of other dental laboratories out there to compete with. Lab owners often rely solely on their intuition to make business decisions. While this informal knowledge is important in the decision-making process, it may not provide you with all the facts you need to achieve marketing results. A marketing strategy will help you define business goals and develop activities to achieve them. Here’s a list of 5 easy ways to market your dental lab and get more customers.

1. Get on LinkedIn.

If social media is not a part of your current marketing strategy, it really should be. Social media is one of the most powerful ways you can build your brand. Every company should have a company Facebook and Twitter account to help reinforce and build that brand, but If you want to ramp up your new dental patient traffic, get your lab on LinkedIn. According to Hubspot, sixty-two percent of companies on LinkedIn have gained a new customer from the network, and LinkedIn leads convert at almost three times the rate of other social networks. Plus, inbound strategies like LinkedIn can save you a bundle on marketing expenses.

2. Start a blog.

One of the best things you can do for your dental lab is to start a blog and offer valuable content to your readers. This may sound like a daunting task, but start small and take a look around you. What issues does your lab face on a daily basis? Write about it. As a dental lab, you are surrounded by content that your customers and prospective customers (other dental professionals) would find relevant or interesting, could use to make clinical and practice decisions, and would consume to stay up to date on trends, productivity, etc. Your dental lab, and the content you create on your blog, can become a valuable resource and help dentists to be “in the know”. Here are some tips from Inside Dental Technology on how you can get started blogging for your dental lab.

3. Send personalized direct mail.

Email campaigns are great but sometimes people are focused on new marketing techniques and forget about something old school like direct mail. Studies successfully showed that using personalized direct mail as part of a wider digital strategy can see response rates for a campaign hit over 20%. While direct mail is also a competitive discipline, there is less direct mail going out than ever before and with nearly 80% of consumers saying they will open all their postal mail (including the so called junk mail) you can be almost certain that your message will end up with the right eyes on it and less competition with it. Instead of sending full color brochures or post cards, trying sending an old fashioned letter to your potential new customers telling them all about your lab and services. Finish out the letter with an offer they can’t refuse — offer their first case free or buy 10 crowns and get a free iPad, whatever makes sense for your lab and budget. Get creative with your promotions.

4. Use Twitter Lead Generation cards to increase landing page signups.

If your lab already advertises on Twitter, you likely know about the cards that the network offers to marketers. Essentially add-ons to your regular advertisements, they allow you to add additional, rich content to your sponsored tweet that exceeds the standard 140 character limit. Twitter offers similar cards specifically for lead generation. Using these cards, you can entice your audience to sign up for your mailing list or promotion and once a user clicks on the button, Twitter automatically shares their profile with you. As a result, you can generate leads without your users ever having to leave Twitter. Early studies of these lead generation cards have been overwhelmingly positive. One company saw their leads increase by more than 900%, along with a significantly lower cost per lead. Eliminating that extra step of the user having to leave Twitter and visit your landing page will increase the amount of signups you get, and in turn increase the amount of qualified leads.

5. Ask for referrals.

When implementing a marketing strategy for your lab, don’t forget that your current customer base is a huge resource and don’t be shy about asking for customer referrals. The majority of people say they are willing to provide a referral if asked, but very few take the initiative to do it on their own. Susan Ward suggests that you make asking for a referral part of your project routine. With most projects, there’s a final meeting with the client, and this is the perfect time to ask for a referral. Referrals make it easier to get in the door with new customers. If you aren’t asking for them, you are missing opportunities.

We hope you enjoyed these 5 tips for marketing your dental laboratory. Leave us a comment below and let us know what marketing techniques worked for your dental lab.