Rusty Curtis is the founder and president of DentalCMO. He has a depth and breadth of experience in the advertising / marketing world and uses his skill set to identify what is working in the market, then “translates” it for the dental industry.

Video: The New Star in Dental Marketing


Sometimes we get so focused on what we’re doing, we don’t remember to stay focused on WHY we’re doing it. The why is so critical as it establishes parameters and direction for the WHAT.

Right now, many dental practices are hearing they need video as part of their marketing mix, so they valiantly charge into the fray with a hasty, budget-produced video they confidently post on their website and mentally check “video” off their to do list.

Let’s take a step back and quickly cover the WHY of video in dental marketing … then the execution. WHAT you do will have a much better shot at being effective.

Why Video Should be a Star in Your Dental Marketing

It’s probably safe to assume you’re interested in marketing your practice because you want more and/or higher-value patients. Marketing tools should therefore be selected and leveraged to help you best accomplish this objective. Is video a good choice?

Three stats should convince you video is a GREAT choice right now:

  1. Including a video on a landing page can increase conversion rates by 80 percent 1
  2. After watching a video, 64 percent of users are more likely to buy a product online 2
  3. Companies using video enjoy 41 percent more web traffic from search than non-users 3

How Is the Video-Marketing Wave Translating in Dentistry?

Yes, dentists are seeing bumps in general site performance with video like mentioned above, but what is more compelling is the dental specific results.

Patients who have avoided the dentists for decades feel so much more comfortable getting to know the dentist in the secure, safe place of their home. When they see dental offices don’t look, sound or feel like they did 30 years ago, they can be much more confident and optimistic about calling YOU. A welcome side benefit emerges here — some doctors may become even more efficient with their new patient intake because they don’t need to spend as much time talking to the new patient to help them feel comfortable … the video already did it!

Let’s not forget about moms. Unless you live in a strange anomaly of a town where men are making the healthcare decisions, mothers are doing the research and making the calls when a new dentist is in play. Trust is HUGE for moms. Video enables a dentist to make the perfect first impression every. single. time. Put your healthcare decision-making hat on for a second and consider who you’d feel more confident calling — the practice website with one small doc photo and a cliché bio or the practice website where you actually get to see the doctor and team engaging with patients and visibly providing great care? Not a hard decision.

Experience is a wonderful teacher, and our experience producing practice videos gave us fantastic and valuable insight into why great practice video is so effective at converting dental-phobes to lifelong patients. Depending on the statistic you believe, somewhere around half of Americans don’t visit the dentist regularly (with many not having visited the dentist in decades). So who are you competing with to get these patients in your chair? It’s not necessarily other dentists. Often, you’re really competing against the visceral fears and anxiety of people who have neglected their dental needs. These people already know they need to see the dentist, but video done right can inspire enough confidence in them to finally make that appointment.

Elements of Effective Video Strategy (in no particular order)

• Production Quality | If you believe the quality of a patient’s smile impacts the way they are perceived, then you better believe the quality of your marketing materials impacts how patients perceive your practice. Quick videos shot on an iPhone work for social media content. Don’t make them feature videos on your website homepage.

• Conversational | Avoid stiff scripts. For the most part they just turn out awkward. You want to sound conversational and friendly to potential patients, not like a robot.

• Social Proof | Reviews have significantly changed purchasing behavior. Let your favorite patients do the “selling” of your practice for you by incorporating the recorded testimonials into your practice video(s) AND use them as stand-alone videos.

• Doc / Team / Patient Interaction | Humans are visual creatures. Show your patients what it might be like for them to actually engage with you and your team. Kick up their comfort-level by removing the fear of the unknown.

• Emotional | Do you have a patient who turns into a puddle every time they think about how grateful they are for the smile makeover you did for them? Get it on camera! Use your videos to help potential patients feel inspired, safe, comfortable and impressed. People say they make buying decisions with logic. They ACTUALLY make them with emotion. Hit ‘em in the right in the feels!

• Be Relatable | Patients don’t just buy your services, they buy YOU. Use your videos to show your family. Show your hobbies and interests. Show your volunteering in the community. Show them you’re not just a suit in an office.

• Share Your Story | It might not seem like much to you, but telling your patient you went into dentistry because you saw how it changed lives when you were younger and you wanted to do the same thing is compelling. Patients will really appreciate why you do what you do and believe you actually want to take care of them. Patient trust-level … UP.

Get the Most Out of Your Video

Acquiring the tool (video) and using it are two different things. Even if you follow all of the guidelines above you won’t get much from the video unless you use it effectively. Below are five suggestions for what to do with your video once it’s done.

1) Upload to YouTube. You will want to do this for few reasons.

  •  Having your videos on YouTube will make “distribution” much easier. Embedding your video on a site, sharing it socially, sending a link via email, etc. will be substantially easier if your video is on YouTube.
  • Google owns YouTube and often displays relevant YouTube video in their search results. A quality video with great description information can benefit your SEO.
  • Browsers and mobile devices often don’t display certain video formats. Using YouTube for hosting and embedding your video will benefit your website’s mobile responsiveness and browser compatibility.

2) Embed on Your Website. Make your video easy to notice and simple to play right on the homepage of your practice website. Our next generation websites prominently feature the practice video front and center at the top of the homepage to create an engaging experience for site visitors. If you have separate videos discussing specific treatments, put them on the respective treatment page. Likewise, put testimonial videos on your smile gallery page. The basic principle is site visitors would rather watch video than read copy.

3) Share / Boost on Facebook. Share your video on your practice Facebook page and aggressively boost it to get in front of your target market.

4) Play on a Loop in Your Office. Don’t waste the attention of your patients when they’re in your reception area by playing Keeping Up with The Kardashians. Put your video on a loop so your patients feel great about you and ask about the services you highlight.

5) Display Wherever Makes $ense. Depending on your market and associated costs, you may want to run your video at a local cinema prior to the feature film. You may have a network group or referral group allowing you to post videos / links on each others’ sites. It might even be a smart move in your area to run your video as an ad spot on TV. The point is you have great, versatile video content. Make use of it.

What to Expect

Video is NOT the marketing silver bullet, but it IS a tremendously effective tool when produced and promoted the right way in conjunction with your other marketing efforts. It doesn’t take many “I haven’t been to the dentist in 15 years, but I felt like I could trust you after seeing your video” cases to pay for your investment. And as far as investment costs go … you can expect to pay anywhere from $1500 – $5000 per minute of finished video to get the quality you really should demand. Quality dentistry changes lives. Your video can convey this message and connect you with people in need of your care. We’d love to help! Best Wishes! Rusty Curtis