Content Dam Diq Online Articles 2018 08 Sernior Marketing 1

How dentists can market to the growing senior population

Aug. 7, 2018
Dental practices may be losing out on a growing population by not marketing to senior citizens and their caregivers. Without much effort dentists can make a few changes to their existing marketing to increase their senior patient base.
Seniors make up an important portion of most dental practice’s clientele, especially if the office is in a popular retirement area. However, when it comes to marketing, many dental offices miss this population.

There are a few simple changes dentists can make to their marketing campaigns to increase their office appeal to seniors and senior caregivers, and potentially increase their client base.

Market to caregivers

Seniors are often not the sole decision makers when it comes to their health and dental care. They may have caregivers, often their children, who will choose a dental office for them. Nursing home and homecare agency staff may also help schedule care for seniors.

Market to these caregivers. You may want to explore a partnership, discount, or other type of care program with a nursing home or homecare agency. At the least, provide marketing materials to these locations and ask them to share them with their clients.

Create materials specific to seniors

When you plan your next marketing campaign, dedicate at least one piece to an issue that is specific to senior dental care. Highlight the importance of dental care later in life, and of course, include your office’s branding on the materials.

You may want to include information about a new-patient discount to encourage recipients to visit your office. Distribute these materials to area doctors, nursing homes, health-care facilities, and senior recreation facilities.

Offer senior discounts

Create a discount program specifically for seniors. This may be a one-time discount for a first appointment, or a recurring discount off of regular cleanings. A discount can help encourage seniors or caregivers to set up an initial cleaning.

Sponsor a booth at events

Get out in the community and sponsor a booth at local health fairs and senior-oriented events. Be sure to share your marketing materials about senior dental health, and have easy-to-read signage about relevant discounts or programs your office offers to seniors.

If possible, have a way for seniors to sign up for a cleaning or evaluation right there at the event. This eliminates the need for follow-up calls and additional marketing and gets them signed up for that first appointment.

Send reminder cards

Don’t forget about your existing senior clients. Send easy-to-read appointment reminder cards. These should be written with a large text and a font, and stay away from anything resembling script and any font that has thin lines.

Use dark colors for your text and place it on a light background. In particular, avoid putting text in yellow, orange, or light green, which are very difficult to read. If you include photos, make sure that the text can still be easily read.

Always include a clear call to action and make it stand out graphically. It should be immediately apparent that the person needs to contact your office if they can’t keep their upcoming appointment. A reminder call in addition to the card will also be appreciated.

Marketing to seniors is something that any dental office can easily implement. You should be able to slightly adjust most of your marketing strategies to better appeal to seniors and their caregivers. This will make for a more comprehensive marketing strategy that can help your build your client base.

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Lindsay Engle is the marketing specialist at MedicareFAQ, a learning resource center for Medicare beneficiaries. Lindsay enjoys working in the senior health-care industry. Aside from her job, she loves animals, boating, snuggling on the couch with her pets, and fishing with her boyfriend.