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The Orthodontic Marketing Blog

Orthodontic Marketing 101: The Top 5 Goals of Direct Mail Postcards

Posted by Ben Ohanesian on Fri Apr 17, 2015 @ 10:00 AM

Here’s why postcard marketing campaigns are great – they're short, clean, and to the point. Direct mail postcards are one of the fastest and most cost-effective ways to make the phone ring at your orthodontic practice.

postcards wheelPostcards are not usually a good marketing strategy for the simple act of closing a deal, but if they are designed correctly, direct mail postcards can be great for pre-selling products and services, building brand awareness, and creating client loyalty. Best of all; postcards are the most efficient and excellent direct mail advertising pieces for generating phone calls. 

A postcard direct mail campaign can make your phone ring off the hook with compelling headlines, succinct copywriting, engaging graphics, a compelling offer, and a solid call-to-action. To take that a bit further; a series of direct mail postcards can receive a torrent of responses, build client loyalty, and stimulate practice brand awareness. Yet, postcards are one the easiest to manage direct mail marketing campaigns.

Even though postcards aren’t the best for closing sales because of their short and open format (no one can enclose a check to pay for an order or write a credit card number), response can still be quite high. Here are those 5 important goals of using postcards in any direct mail marketing campaign.

1. Generate phone calls.

The number one objective of most postcard marketing campaigns is to generate a phone call. Ninety percent of the postcards we create for clients are written with this single objective in mind: Make that office phone ring. 

The way to make the phone ring at your orthodontic office is very straightforward in this simple postcard format: Offer something for FREE and ask for the phone call several times on the card. “Call for a FREE evaluation!” or “Call for FREE second opinion! Call for a FREE orthodontic consultation. Call for…” well, you get the idea. Ask readers to call you enough and they will. Every time a reader calls, you have the opportunity to provide better service and increase client loyalty and longevity. And, yes, increase new patient starts and revenue? Yes, you can do that, too. Your postcard doesn’t do that, YOU do that. The postcard generates the call, but YOU make the sale.

2. Build practice brand awareness.

The other 10 percent of the postcards we create build practice brand. By mailing postcards frequently, you can stay in the top of your clients' and prospects' minds. So, when your clients need anything that relates to your practice—they immediately think of you, and call you first. 

3. Create (almost) instant success. 

Postcards can generate immediate response if your offer touches a timely trigger point. Figure out what your prospect’s immediate need is and address that in your card. Then, ask for them to call, of course.

4. Build loyal relationships. 

You can—it’s easy! But, not with a single postcard mailing. You need to create your direct mail marketing campaign over time, with a series of postcards. Mailing postcards every quarter is ideal. The key to success? Repetition, your list, relevancy, and your offer. 

5. Don’t sell your product or services. 

The final goal is to realize that you don’t need to sell your product or services from the postcard. But, you do need to generate phone calls and inquiries. Then, when the person calls, your front office staff sells your product or service. Just remember this; it’s much easier to achieve your goal (generating those phone calls) with your direct mail postcard, than it is getting a new patient start. That's why a properly-trained staff is so important to the growth of your orthodontic practice. For more info on staff training, please click the link below.

For our FREE Staff Action Plan, click here.

And, since postcards are easy to handle, they require much less work than other direct mail marketing campaigns which consist of letters, brochures, or anything that needs to be placed in an envelope, folded or stapled. Less fuss and muss. You just address and mail. Postcards are easy. These should be the 5 goals and objectives of your successful orthodontic practice postcard marketing campaign.

At GetOrthoCases, orthodontic practice marketing is what we do and ALL that we do.


Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, marketing

Consumers Like Getting Direct Mail

Posted by Ben Ohanesian on Tue Apr 14, 2015 @ 10:00 AM

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Time and time again, over the past few years, we've heard direct mail being labeled as "old school" and past it's prime. The reality couldn't be farther from that. Direct mail response is on the rise! Consumers enjoy getting direct mail that pertains to them. When direct mail is targeted correctly, it is not considered "junk mail." Why, even tech-savvy millennials like to get mail!

Here are just a few reasons people (still) like to receive mail:

• It's delivered to their home through no effort on their part

• It can be fun (so get creative and think outside of the box when designing your next marketing piece)

• A way to save money (who doesn't like a good deal?)

• It's informative (people are, by nature, a curious lot)

• It's easily saved for future reference or use (consider using a magnet; people can put it on their fridge for future reference)

Direct mail statistics you should know (as reported in "From Letterbox to Inbox 2013"):

• 79% of consumers said that they act on direct mail right away

• 56% of consumers said that they consider print marketing to be the "most trustworthy" of all marketing media outlets

So...what do people do after they receive a direct mail piece? ("Consumer study reveals 'direct mail matters' in connected world," July 11, 2013)

• 44% visit the website listed on the mailer

• 34% search online for more information about the product

• 26% save the mailer for future reference

Keeping all of the above in mind, how can you revamp the way you send your direct mail? Are you focused on the consumer and what is in it for them? Do you have a clear call- to-action, and the benefits they get by responding?  When you think you do, ask someone outside your office to critique it for you. You might be surprised by what you can learn.

Considering the fact that nearly 50% of your mailer's recipients will go online to check out your orthodontic practice after getting your direct mail piece, do you have landing pages designed with them in mind? Are you utilizing responsive design so that they can view your website and landing pages on mobile devices? These days, using responsive design is the best way to have your online content view correctly no matter what device is displaying it. Direct mail will drive people to online engagement; so make sure you are ready for them.

The only way that direct mail will continue to work is if we as orthodontic practice marketers send direct mail to consumers that is well-designed, has a clear call-to-action, and is targeted to the right households. This keeps recipients happy and increases your response rates. And, that keeps YOU happy!

At GetOrthoCases, orthodontic practice marketing is what we do and ALL that we do.


Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, marketing

Increase Starts At Your Orthodontic Practice Without Spending A Dime!

Posted by Ben Ohanesian on Fri Jan 23, 2015 @ 10:00 AM

As a practice marketing consultant for orthodontists, we speak with many different types of practices.

1. Practices who, prior to the economic downturn, never felt the need to market themselves, but still enjoyed a profitable practice.

2. More mature orthodontists whose referral sources have retired, leaving their practice in a less than desirable position.

3. Young orthodontists in newer practices with large monthly debt obligations, who frequently are reluctant to invest in the necessary practice marketing required to grow their practice quickly.

4. Established practices who frequently are the dominant practice, or one of the dominant practices in their marketplace.

Regardless of the category that an orthodontic practice fits into, we have found that the same diligent marketing expertise that we provide for each and every one of our clients, can result in different levels of profitability for different clients. Why is this? Usually, this variation in profits from the GetOrthoCases Marketing System can be attributed to the internal systems that an orthodontic practice has in place.

And, quite possibly, no internal system impacts an orthodontist's bottom line more than the fee presentation.

I have listened to treatment coordinators who are smooth, polished sales professionals who do an outstanding job explaining treatment, finding out all of the referral sources that may have contributed to that patient seeking treatment at their practice, and detailing the numerous ways that their practice compares favorably with other competing orthodontic practices. These presentations are concluded with an explanation of payment options that appeal to all credit-worthy families with good credit ratings, regardless of their ability to make a down payment.

On the other hand, I have also listened to fee presentations made by treatment coordinators, office managers, a staff member, or occasionally by the doctor themselves, that only explain payment options, but leave out all of the other components of an effective fee presentation.

Regardless of the communication skills of your practice's treatment coordinator, most practices can significantly increase their quantity of new starts by ensuring that each fee presentation is presented in the way that is best from the perspective of the patients who are most at risk of not starting for financial reasons.

To explain further, when thinking about payment options, all families basically fall into one of four financial groups:

Group 1 - Have Full Treatment Fee. These families typically make payment in full or opt for your no-interest, office payment plan.

Group 2 - Have Initial Payment. These families typically opt for your no-interest, office payment plan.

Group 3 - Don't Have Initial Payment Plan, but are Credit-Worthy. These families will use a Flexible Payment Plan.

Group 4 - Not Credit-Worthy. These families don't start treatment.

To help ensure that as many patients as possible can accept treatment in your practice, this week we are providing Springstone Patient Financing's "Ten Best Practices of Case Acceptance."

For your own FREE copy of this insightful report, click to download.

orthodontic marketing

In conclusion, your success leads to our success. When orthodontic practices have effectively-functioning fee presentations, they enjoy an even greater return on their practice marketing investment.

At GetOrthoCases, orthodontic practice marketing is what we do and ALL that we do.

Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, marketing

How To Double The Profits From Your Orthodontic Marketing Campaign

Posted by Andy Zuch on Mon Jun 30, 2014 @ 04:48 PM

Over the years, we've handled direct mail campaigns for 1,000+ practices/ businesses. From start-ups to mature businesses - we've literally seen and heard it all. Now here's an interesting secret that we would like to share with you - the frequency of drip marketing on a prospect. 

Mailing a target group only once is wasting good money - here's why.

No matter how good the offer is, a single exposure to a given group of prospective customers will have minimal effect. But, multiple repeated exposures will have a disproportionate effect on acquiring a new customer.

Let us repeat this again - multiple mailings are critical to selling a new prospect!

A single exposure equals minimal impact, but repeated exposures will have a positive and disproportionate impact on the number of responses. Why? The person you are targeting needs to see your orthodontic marketing message at least 4 - 9 times before they feel comfortable in taking the next step in what we refer to as the "educational buying spectrum". You will receive new clients from your initial mailings, but this success is due to coincidence, not fantastic marketing. 

Let's say you're mailing to a list of 5,000 target households.

For the orthodontic industry, a one-touch mailing frequently pulls anywhere from as low as 2/10 of 1% to as high as 5/10 of 1% response. Maybe 10 to 25 responses. The range between the 10 and the 25 depends on several variables, including your headline and the low-risk offer/promotion you're using.

What happens when you mail them 5 times in the next year?

But, if you'll mail to those same 5,000 prospective patients 5 times over a 12 month period, your overall response might be 2.5% to as high as 6%, 125 to 300 people. That's about 12 times the response from the single mailing, not just 5 times.

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Multiple contacts don't just increase response proportionately, they increase it disproportionately. 

Is this always true? No. Sometimes there's something else wrong, such as your marketing message, the type of mailing you sent out (letter vs. postcard), the list selection, the offer, a practice's credibility (no amount of mailing will overcome this one). However, assuming the list has been chosen with reasonable care and intelligence, the offer is good, the mail piece is the right choice for the target audience, then this kind of effect should be achieved.

What do you think would happen if you offered FREE educational information to your prospective patients that weren’t yet “Appointment-Ready”?

We often get called to help an orthodontic practice develop a marketing strategy and a 12-month tactical campaign. Whenever we create the campaign, we clearly point out to the client how critical it is for an orthodontic practice to offer relevant educational information that convinces their target audience that they are the BEST option for that family’s orthodontic needs. How much better would your direct marketing response be if you offered a FREE report on your website titled, “The 8 Things You MUST Know Before Choosing Your Family’s Orthodontist” and then captured the names and email addresses of those leads? Up to 50% higher.

How much more profit would your practice derive over time from its direct mail campaign, if you could improve your response by 50 - 100%? Mail with the proper frequency, and offer compelling, educational information on your website to your prospective future patients – “the Investigators”, and your practice can enjoy these superior results over time, too.

Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, orthodontic patients, marketing

Orthodontic Marketing to Pending Patients is EASY with GetOrthoCases

Posted by Andy Zuch on Sun Feb 23, 2014 @ 10:33 AM

Pending Patients Will Be More Likely To Start Treatment with your Orthodontic Practice...if you would just make it part of your Orthodontic Marketing Plan!

If your orthodontic practice is like many of our clients, you have a problem – your treatment coordinator doesn’t like calling your PENDING patients.  If your TC does call them, they’re not giving the patient any incentive or new information with which to make their decision. 

And consumers don’t like to receive calls that amount to nothing more than “Are You Ready Yet?” 

Here’s our solution:  Your own Content Management System that deploys 2 – 3 personalized, professionally designed, CAN-SPAM compliant email marketing touches to each of your pending patients. 

Recently, we completed a 6-month study of all GetOrthoCases clients using our Pending Patient Magnet email marketing solution.



If you are reading this post, it’s likely all of your Pending patients are receiving 0 emails presently.  Consider that:

  • Our average Pending Patient Email Marketing client is marketing to 260 pending patients/ year.
  • On average, they are enjoying 42 additional new starts/year from their investment in Pending Patient Magnet by GetOrthoCases.

Click here to view one of the customizable GetOrthoCases Pending patient emails.  

Where else can you spend $149/month and almost double your Pending Patient conversions? 

Your pending patients are your warmest leads, and they represent a goldmine of opportunity for your practice.  Give them the marketing attention they deserve, and watch your new starts grow! 




Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, orthodontic patients

Blogging is critical to EVERY GREAT Orthodontic marketing plan

Posted by Andy Zuch on Thu Dec 12, 2013 @ 11:19 AM

We know what you're thinking! Are these guys really writing a blog post about the importance of blogging? Yes, we are! That's how important blogging is to the overall online
marketing plan for your Orthodontic practice. You have probably figured out by now that there is a rough formula for calculating online marketing effectiveness. 

x # of web traffic = x # of leads = x # of new starts

Of course, the leads part of this formula assumes you are deploying a lead capture strategy. If you are not, then click here for a quick illustration of why your practice needs to begin capturing leads yesterday.


Why is Blogging Important?

Ok, back to why blogging is a critical part of a successful marketing plan to increase new starts to your practice. Simply put, a blog is a page on your site where you should post content relevant to what your prospects and customers are searching for. Going further, did you know that (when your blog is properly set up), every individual post on your blog is a new indexed page on your website? That is HUGE for search engine optimization and getting you found online!

Those indexed pages add up to increased traffic to your site. Check out this pic for a telling stat about blogging:



Ok - so Blogging IS important, now what?

You've probably heard the phrase "Content is King." It's the truth...but not quite the whole truth! While content is a big part of blogging and online marketing, it's "Original" content that is the real king. You want to make sure what you are publishing is original and thought out, not just recycled gobbeldy-gook that someone else has already published. There are some service providers out there that offer blogging packages as part of an online marketing services, but look a little deeper and you'll find out that some of their client's blog posts are exactly (and we mean word-for-word verbatim) the same as their other client's posts. Many of them are even published on the same day! This is a bad practice, and search engines will frown upon it. 

Now that you know why blogging is so crucial to your marketing plan, and you've been given some good (and bad) practices to follow (or not follow), we hope you'll be able to either start a blog for your orthodontic practice, or make improvements to your current blog! We understand that most Orthodontists are very busy running their practice and helping improve their patient's lives. That is why we've created a comprehensive, and automated, marketing system, customized to your Orthodontic Practice.  Watch our short video above to get some more information on this cutting-edge marketing technology.




Tags: orthodontic marketing, blogging, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, orthodontist

Less Than 1% Of Orthodontists Are Doing This (Orthodontic Marketing) Correctly

Posted by Andy Zuch on Mon Dec 09, 2013 @ 05:55 PM

Would You Like 18 New Starts

From Inbound Marketing

in the Next 90 Days? 

(With No Effort By You or Your Staff)

Here's How You Do It... 

Evolving technology is changing the world of orthodontic practice marketing at lightning-fast speed. Ask yourself the following questions:

- How many website visitors does my practice website get each month?

- How many leads does my website capture and automatically market to each month?

- How many of these leads become new starts at my practice?

Presently, orthodontic practices that are effective inbound marketers, know the answer todescribe the image each of the 3 previous questions and enjoy on average:

 1. Over 1,000 website visits/month
 2. 15 - 20 website leads/month
 3. 5 - 10 new starts from these leads each month!

To thrive in 2014, THIS is where your practice needs to be.

The only question that remains is...
How Fast Do You Want To Get There?

To learn more, read the following
Inbound Marketing Effectiveness
Case Study 

This is a FREE report from GetOrthoCases. We invite you to read this publication and then schedule a time to discuss this Online Marketing technology with one of our practice marketing consultants.

Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, orthodontist, inbound marketing

Optimal Orthodontic Practice Marketing – “It Takes Two”

Posted by Andy Zuch on Mon Oct 14, 2013 @ 08:49 AM

Hip-hop artists are unlikely sources for orthodontic practice marketing advice, but the 1988 platinum hit “It Takes Two” by Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock, gives today’s orthodontist appropriate instruction on how to construct an effective orthodontic marketing plan.  (“It Takes Two To Make a Thing Go Right, It Takes Two To Make It Out of Sight……..” - but I digress)


Inbound marketing has received a ton of publicity lately, but orthodontic practice marketing plans that embrace only inbound marketing at the expense of traditional outbound marketing strategies, are not going to create the results orthodontic practices hope for.


So what is inbound marketing, and how does it differ from traditional outbound marketing?  Inbound marketing utilizes valuable content to appeal to search engines (Google), improve your organic search rankings, and establish a relationship and interact with your potential patients.


Examples of Inbound Marketing are:


  • Keyword-optimize Blogs (Remember, the objective of your blog is not to entertain your website visitors, it’s to improve your SEO)
  • Website Landing Pages with Calls-To-Action (CTAs)
  • Online Lead Capture/Lead Nurturing thru Email Marketing
  • Social Media Publishing thru channels such as Twitter
  • Social Media Monitoring (engaging with happy and disgruntled patients)
  • Whitepapers, eBooks


On the other hand, traditional outbound marketing allows the orthodontic practice to control the timing of the marketing message that it delivers to a targeted audience of potential patients.


Examples of Outbound Marketing are:


  • Targeted Direct Mail
  • Billboards
  • Tradeshows
  • Paid Search
  • Newsletters
  • Local Newspapers
  • Television, Radio


Orthodontic MarketingThe take-away message is this – while Inbound Marketing is the new kid on the block, most orthodontic practices will still need to assess their specific marketing needs, and construct a practice marketing plan that combines both OUTBOUND and INBOUND marketing components, to optimize new starts in today’s rapidly changing marketing environment. 

Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, orthodontic patients

Orthodontic Marketing & Pending Patients

Posted by Andy Zuch on Fri Sep 13, 2013 @ 10:49 AM

When you determine an orthodontic patient is “Ready to Start Treatment” and they don’t commit to treatment that day, the likelihood you ever start that patient drops substantially if their next appointment is not scheduled within 30 days.


We’ve found that most orthodontic practices either call the patient a few days after the new patient examination, or the staff member who is assigned to calling these patients “finds something else to do” instead of making these calls.


Here’s the problem:

  • Your TC doesn’t like calling your PENDING Patients.Orthodontic Marketing

  • If your TC does call them, they’re usually not giving the patient any incentive or new information with which to make their decision.

  • The patient doesn’t want to be called, in many instances - consumers usually view these “are you ready to buy yet?” calls as a nuisance.


Instead of just calling these potential new starts, consider communicating with your pendings in a format they prefer.


Numerous email marketing platforms are available for your orthodontic practice to create and deploy a personalized CAN-SPAM compliant email marketing campaign (2 – 3 professionally designed email touches).


Many of your pending patients will be seeking second opinions within the weeks following their examination at your practice. Feedback from our clients’ converted pending patients has been that informative, educational emails addressed personally to them that arrive around the time of their visit(s) to other practices were impressive and influential in their decision-making process.


Also, around the 30th day after the pending patient’s initial examination, why not make a financial incentive to the patient if they start treatment within the next 2 – 4 weeks? What have you got to lose if the percentages tell you the patient probably will never start at your practice if you don’t get them to schedule now?


If you are reluctant to deploy an email marketing campaign to your pending patients out of fear for annoying them, consider the following:


GetOrthoCases clients utilizing our Content Management System/ Pending Patient Email Marketing solution enjoy open rates for their emails of 64.9% (compared to about 20% for email marketing in general). Our clients’ average Unsubscribe Rate is just 1.5%.


In conclusion, whether your practice finds that calling your Pending Patients to schedule their next appointment is effective or ineffective, adding a personalized email marketing campaign to each of your pending patients is an inexpensive marketing tool that will likely increase your practice conversion rate and yield excellent ROI.

Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic patients

Why Your Orthodontic Practice Marketing Plan Must Include Blogging

Posted by Andy Zuch on Thu Sep 12, 2013 @ 02:54 PM

Recent changes implemented by Google in the world of websites and online marketing, have crowned content (valuable information) as king.  This means that strategically using web pages, blogging, landing pages and Twitter to your advantage will increase both website traffic and leads (new patient examinations).

So, about that blog article title, why is it imperative that your orthodontic practice blogs often and effectively?  After all, writing a keyword-optimized blog is time consuming, difficult to do correctly, and most orthodontists don’t have anyone on staff who is proficient at writing blog content (not to mention that most orthodontists who plan to have their blog written in-house, never get around to it.) 

Answer:  Because each properly constructed blog article is viewed as a unique website page by the search engines. 

Marketing Benchmarks from 7000 businesses resized 600


The more website pages you have, the greater traffic your practice is likely to enjoy.  The easiest way to increase your volume of website pages is thru blogging. 

Did You Know?   Orthodontic practices with 51 – 100 website pages generate 48% more website visits than practices with 1 – 50 pages.

How much more do I need to blog each month to increase my website traffic? 

An orthodontic practice, on average, will see a 45% growth in website traffic when increasing total blog articles from 11 – 20 to 21 – 50 articles. 

And, the average practice with 100 or more total blog articles and lead capture technology is likely to experience continual lead growth (new patient examinations).  These practice websites are viewed as robust and content-rich by the search engines, and will continue to enjoy superior search engine rankings, increased website traffic, and greater leads.

It should also be mentioned that keyword-optimized blogging isn’t the only factor that determines how favorably search engines will view your website, but it is a major contributor

The Question You Should Be Asking Yourself Is – How Fast Do I Want to Vastly Increase My Website Traffic?

Want to see how many website pages the search engines see when they crawl thru your site?  Click here for your FREE Website Marketing Effectiveness Report of your website.  


Ready to Beef Up Your Website Traffic and New Patient Exams?

Learn how GetOrthoCases can help you grow your marketing into a more powerful new patient attraction tool.

Click Here to request a Demo via GoToMeeting


Tags: orthodontic marketing, orthodontist new starts, orthodontic practice, orthodontist