With back-to-school season in full swing, there is no need to wait until February’s Dental Health month to market to the local schools in your neighborhood, start early in the school year building relationships with school staff & the families that attend these schools.
These small marketing seeds that you plant, help to build relationships over time and you never know when and where those seeds will grow into new patients for your practice. (See Dental Marketing Seeds)
Here are just a few easy, inexpensive & effective ways for your dental office to reach out to your local schools.
Donations – Use your office as a community donation site for school supplies or new & gently used books to be donated to local children and/or schools in need. Advertise in office, on your social media sites, to local businesses and the news media via press release that your office is collecting donations for school supplies or books.
This is a GREAT way to bring in potential new patients… when folks come into the office to drop off their donations, be sure to warmly welcome them, give a brief tour of the office, hand out small thank you gifts that are imprinted with your office information or have a raffle they can enter to win a prize. Prize ideas: themed gift basket, electric toothbrush, gift card, teeth whitening, etc. Invite local businesses to contribute something toward the prize.
Gifts for School Staff – Choose one, two, or more schools (depending on the size of the teaching staff) and deliver some treats to show your appreciation for the work they do in caring for the children in the community. Some ideas are: Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks, Toothbrush goodie bags, Lip balm, Little gifts, flowers, etc. Be sure that your office information is clearly imprinted on any toothbrushes or small gifts. See my Pinterest boards for gift ideas…
Host a Favorite Teacher Contest. Invite local students to nominate their favorite teacher. Winning teacher gets FREE teeth whitening and a certificate stating they won for the favorite teacher contest. The classroom with the winning teacher gets a gift card for school supplies or pizza/ice cream lunch.
You could easily ask for donations from local businesses to add to the winning teachers prize or for the classroom.
This can be promoted via your office website, newsletters, postcards, emails, office social media sites, local newspapers and signs in your office.
Have fun with it and be sure to share lots of pictures on your social media pages.
Just a few more ideas…
Social Media Sites – Post school-related content to your social media sites, such as:
- Back to School Tips
- Healthy Lunch/Snack ideas
- What to do in a Dental Emergency?
- Ortho care while at school
- Dental Health (importance of, regular check-ups, sealants, mouthguards, fluoride & braces)
Office Blog – Share short articles/videos on your office blog/website using the above topics.
Pinterest – On your office Pinterest page, create a school related board(s). See my Pinterest boards for ideas.
Book Fairs – Many schools will be hosting book fairs this school year. And if your local school(s) are anything like mine, these book fairs draw a very large crowd.
Create fun, interesting Bookmarks for your local schools that include your office contact information. Deliver these bookmarks as a gift to the local schools to use during their book fairs. Easy! Right?
Here’s another one, tooth bags. Make up some little bags with a “lost tooth” congratulations message from your office and space to write the child’s name. Deliver these bags to local elementary schools for them to keep on hand for when a student loses a tooth during the school day. Both of my kids have come home with a tooth wrapped in a napkin or in a plain ziplock bag. Why not take advantage of this opportunity to advertise your office?
For additional ideas to use with local schools see February’s Children’s Dental Health Month and October/November’s Candy Buy Back. Also, my Marketing Ideas for August has some nice ideas for you to use with students & teachers.
I have witnessed first hand just how effective marketing to local schools can be. The opportunity to bring in many new patient families to your practice is huge. If you are interested in hiring me to help your office create a custom marketing campaign, please contact me today at firstname.lastname@example.org for a complimentary consultation.
Please feel free to share with me your ideas for marketing to local schools or if you have any dental marketing questions that I can help you answer, please comment below.
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