Dental Marketing 101: How to Reduce Patient Acquisition Cost

Connect the Doc Icon
The Connect the Doc Team
June 14, 2023
min. read

Running a dental practice comes with its benefits and challenges. Amongst those challenges are the significant expenses, you incur regularly. The average overhead cost of dental practices is 75% of its income. With such a high overhead, it can be challenging to grow your practice at a sustainable rate. However, reducing your patient acquisition cost could be your best bet to managing overhead expenses. 

Several dentists spend their money and time acquiring patients without taking stock of how much it costs them. If they look closely, they’ll find that these costs are raising their overhead, and yet, they are not attracting the number of patient leads they need to balance their books. The good news is there is a way to measure how much you’re spending on each new patient acquisition and maximize your acquisition process to lower costs. 

In this article, we will define patient acquisition cost and discuss how you can measure this metric. Most importantly, we will explore ways you can reduce your patient acquisition cost and,, as a result, save money and time as a dentist and business owner. 

What is Patient Acquisition Cost? 

Patient Acquisition Cost is the measure of your investment or budget that goes into gaining a new patient. This metric tells you how much it costs you to attract a patient lead and convert them into active patients. If you know your patient acquisition cost, you can decide how much to invest in attracting new patients. 

How to Calculate Your Patient Acquisition Cost

To calculate your patient acquisition cost, simply divide the total amount spent on your dental marketing strategies throughout a period by the number of new patients acquired in that period. This cost may vary for different marketing channels. So, you should also calculate this cost per channel. It is useful to know your patient acquisition cost per channel because it helps you identify your best performing marketing channels. 

How to Reduce Your Patient Acquisition Cost

1. Understand Your Marketing Costs

Start by conducting an inventory of all marketing activities and their cost. This step is crucial because it can uncover cost-saving opportunities. You should know how many leads you’re currently generating from each dental marketing channel, your cost per lead as well as where every penny of your marketing budget is going. 

2. Automate Your Marketing

Marketing automation is the introduction of technology and computer software to manage your dental marketing activities, store data, and gather actionable insights. Chances are your dental marketing strategy consists of processes that are repetitive, time-consuming, and prone to human error. With dental marketing tools, like Connect the Doc, you can streamline your marketing efforts, improve efficiency, and most importantly, save cost and time. 

3. Boost Your Dental Practice’s Visibility

Good on you if your practice has a well-designed, mobile-responsive dental website. If it doesn’t have one, you should contact us today and stop missing out on multiple patient leads. Whether you have a website or not, you should assess how visible and accessible your dental practice is to your prospective patients. 

A dental website is the first place patients get to learn about dentists. If your website isn’t ranking on Google’s SERPs for the right keywords or doesn’t include relevant information that patients are looking for, you’re limiting your practice’s visibility. Additionally, if there are hurdles that deny people with or without disabilities from accessing your practice physically or online, you should consider reducing them. 

4. Develop a Content Marketing Strategy

We can’t understate the importance of a fully functional dental website. Your website is useful for scheduling appointments, responding to patient’s inquiries, and gathering reviews. But do you know that it is also vital to having a successful content marketing strategy? 

Your dental practice’s content marketing strategy is a marketing approach that focuses on the consistent creation and distribution of relevant resources to your audience to generate more patient leads. These resources are published on and easily accessible from your dental website. To save money on expensive marketing channels, consider developing a content marketing strategy that attracts web users and prospective patients to your website and practice. 

5. Run Strategically Targeted Paid Ads 

Saving money on your dental marketing efforts doesn’t mean you don’t spend money at all. It is about spending money wisely. For many dentists, paid ads are their number one source and channel for patient lead generation. As a proven marketing approach, paid ads can help you maximize your marketing budget and reduce your patient acquisition cost if you improve your paid ads campaign strategy. 

Optimize your dental PPC campaigns by redefining your goals, reassessing your keyword performance, writing engaging ad copy, working on remarketing techniques, and making sure that mobile users can access your ads. Better yet, talk to a dental marketing specialist who can guide you and manage your paid ads campaigns. 

6. Invest in Reputation Marketing

If you’re looking for a strategy that helps you reduce your patient acquisition cost while attracting more patient leads and improving your brand reputation now and in the future, look no further than reputation marketing. This marketing approach focuses on gathering and promoting mostly user-generated content, such as reviews and referrals, to create awareness about your dental practice and increase prospective patients’ trust in your services. 

To invest in reputation marketing, you should encourage your high-value patients to leave online reviews about your dental practice on top dental review sites and refer their family or friends to your practice. More so, you should ensure your dental practice’s listings on online directories are updated. The more positive mentions your practice receives, the more attractive it will be to prospective patients.

These six approaches are the key to reducing your patient acquisition cost and managing your overhead. For each of these techniques, it is essential to consult an expert who can work with you to ensure you’re leaving no stone unturned. Contact Connect the Doc today to learn how you can take stock of your marketing expenses, automate your marketing, boost your practice visibility, run strategic paid ads while investing in content and reputation marketing.

Interested in working with us?

See firsthand how Connect the Doc can fill your pipeline with new patients.

Book a Free Demo