The Informative Magic of Video Marketing for Dentists
NOTE: This article was originally published in the 2016 issue of The Dentists’ Mentor magazine, distributed by the Santa Clara County Dental Society.
Written by Caron Shahrestani, director and founder of Caron Modern Media.
Throughout the history of mass communication, modern marketing has steadily evolved.
First there were texts and newspaper ads.
Then there was photography and magazine advertorials.
With radio programming came Pay-per-Play, with television broadcasting came Pay-Per-View.
But since the launch of the world wide web and the invention of smartphone technology, video marketing has emerged as the fastest growing medium in history. A recent forecast report by Cisco asserts that digital video content will dominate 80% of Internet traffic by 2019.
Based on the production, publication and promotion of short-form Internet videos, this form of marketing is unique to its predecessors because it involves search engine optimization, or SEO. Unlike interruptive advertising – which annoys TV viewers and YouTubers – video marketing employs SEO to target Internet users who are actively looking for products and services.
Aimed at quickly informing and provoking Googlers and Bing searchers to action, video marketing tends to focus on reality-based formats like interviews, testimonials and FAQs. This transparent and humanized form of marketing is particularly powerful for dentists for one vital reason: it initiates the doctor-patient relationship.
VIDEO MARKETING: A WIN-WIN FOR DENTISTS AND PATIENTS
Last month I helped my spouse shop for a root canal specialist in our area. This seemingly simple search quickly became arduous as most local specialists didn’t have headshots, websites or reviews. I called around for insurance quotes, compared locations on Google Maps, and double booked consultations at two different offices.
The final decision depended on a singular goal: to find a dentist likeable and skilled enough to visit more than once. Like many Americans shopping for a new practitioner, my spouse hoped to forge a relationship with someone who is capable and calming in times of need.
Dentist-patient relationships – an important element to the sustainable growth of any practice – typically start during the first consultation. This was the case with my spouse, who was uneasy and distrustful of this faceless name, right up until the x-ray.
Now imagine if we had we been able to watch videos about a few of the dentists in our area. Compared to still images and text alone, recent studies show video content both prolongs time spent on web pages and increases conversion rates by up to 80%. In 60 seconds or less, one professional profile video has the potential to start the cycle of trust and expedite unnecessarily tedious Internet searches.
Through the power of moving images and audio, video content regularly outperforms photo and text because it has become the preferred method of learning in 2016. Facebook recently reported that its users watch more than 100 MILLION hours of video every day while YouTube averages ONE BILLION mobile video views a day.
For dentists, video marketing has the potential to engage prospective patients and prompt them to action. Instead of being frustrated with lack of information, 90% of Internet users say that seeing a video about a product or service is helpful in the decision making process. In a way, they feel like they’ve “been there”. That first visit feeling makes video the next best thing to meeting a new patient in person.
THREE VIDEO MARKETING CAMPAIGNS THAT WORK
Video marketing as a medium encompasses various formats and techniques. For the purposes of marketing for dentists, the following campaigns are recommended…
Beyond flat profile pics and headshots, video puts a three dimensional face to the practice. When marketing budgets are tight, a simple and transparent video profile is the first campaign dentists should consider. By answering a few questions about professional services, location, and contact information, video profiles educate Internet searchers while allowing them to emotionally connect with the dentist or specialist.
Putting a friendly face to a practice is crucial. Once that’s done, consider putting a few faces to reviewers. As a supplement to a professional video profile, a series of video testimonials can also help Internet users decide between practices. Ideally produced in a series of three to five videos, these shout-outs from your biggest fans allow browsers to identify with a diversity of faces and voices.
Video testimonials typically employ an interview format to endear and engage viewers. Bright lighting, clean audio, and relatable faces in front of the camera empower this reality based format. When produced professionally, video testimonials significantly increase user time spent on websites and boost social media referrals on mobile devices.
As mentioned earlier, video marketing and SEO target the Internet searchers who are asking questions about services and businesses in their area. Beyond the who, what and where of a video profile, frequently asked question (FAQ) videos cover Internet queries related to more specific information. For dental practices, that can include explanations of procedure timelines or proactive habits to maintain dental hygiene.
THE FOUR STAGES OF VIDEO MARKETING
For dentists who are ready to start their first video marketing campaign but are on the fence about hiring a professional to launch it, consider what it takes to DIY, or do it yourself, from start to finish. Professional video marketing campaigns follow a simple timeline: prep, production, post-production and publishing. Each stage of this process is vital to a smooth running campaign.
Long before buying a camcorder or hiring a video marketer, a dental practice must solidify their message and pinpoint goals for their content. Experienced dentists, for instance, tend to want to tell a personal story while new dentists may simply describe their services. Either way, message is the first step.
TIP: When casting testimonial candidates, strive for a diversity in age, gender and race.
Lights, camera and action are only the beginning of production. Audio recording, media training and video waivers are considerations that can elude video novices and hobbyists. If a professional videographer is not within budget, create a checklist of basic tasks (Press record, put phone on silent, etc) to stay on track during the shoot.
TIP: On camera, wear solid colors in families of blues and purples. Avoid red or patterns!
Of all the stages in the video marketing process, the most time and effort is spent downloading footage, editing content, and exporting videos in a high resolution format. Professional post-production is a highly specialized universe of editing skill sets, all of which rely on sophisticated computer hardware and editing software. From audio syncing and color correction to music royalties and custom captions, it’s more than iMovie or the default editing software on most laptops can handle.
The post-production stage can make or break the success of a new video marketing campaign. To ensure video content looks and sounds its best, consider hiring a professional video marketer or a local video editor.
TIP: Use clean, legible captions to gain mobile viewers who watch with the audio turned off. Mute is the default audio setting on all Facebook video content as of 2016.
Video publishing and promotion involve uploading content to Internet platforms, writing video descriptions with relevant SEO terms, and marketing different versions of the content on social media. For instance, longer video profiles can drive traffic to website homepages while shorter video testimonials and FAQs also perform well on Facebook and Instagram. This final stage of the video marketing process can also include launching video advertisements on social media and enabling analytics tools to monitor and report campaign statistics.
TIP: Post longer video content to YouTube or Vimeo and shorter clips to social media.
From the dawn of mass communication to the invention of the smartphone, video is the most powerful and fastest growing marketing medium to date. For dentists and their prospective patients, video marketing is a win-win because it initiates the doctor-patient relationship long before the first visit.
Video marketing is more than just point, shoot and record, so dentists should consider investing in the skills of a marketing professional. The San Francisco Bay Area is teeming with video marketing and production companies who shoot, edit and market HD content. Local company sizes and package prices vary from freelance videographers for $100 an hour to four-man production teams for $4,000 a day.
Whatever the budget, both new and experienced dentists can benefit from video marketing. After watching a simple video profile or a few testimonials, Internet users are more likely to book an appointment because they feel connected to the subject. When text and photos fall flat, video can do more than just add a third dimension to a dental practitioner: it adds a human element to their practice.
Caron Shahrestani is the director of Caron Modern Media, a San Mateo based video marketing company that specializes in health, food and fitness brands. With a journalism degree from the University of Oregon, Caron worked as a newspaper reporter, volunteered as a Peace Corps volunteer in West Africa, and interned at smaller Bay Area video marketing firms before starting Caron Modern Media. Contact Caron directly for a custom quote!
To learn more about video marketing and the Bay Area businesses who love it, visit caronmodernmed.wpengine.com, follow fb.com/caronmodernmedia or connect with Caron on Instagram and Twitter via @caronmodmedia.
SOURCES & STATISTICS:
“Hero’s Guide to Video Marketing” by Brightcove
90% of Internet users say that seeing a video about a product or service is helpful in the decision making process.
– Insivia research report (2015)
Including video in an email increases click-through rates by 200 to 300%.
– Forrester Research 2015 marketing report
59% of executives surveyed would rather watch video than read text.
– Forbes Magazine (2015)
Video increases conversion rates by 80%.
– 2015 market report by eyeviewdigital.com.
Roughly 75% of companies say video is the most effective content marketing medium.
– 2015 State of Digital Marketing report by Web Marketing 123.
52 percent of marketing professionals claim video brings a higher return compared to print or text alone, while 93 percent are currently using video for online marketing.
– Inc Magazine report, “Everything You Need to Know About Video SEO”
More than 90% of mobile video consumers shared videos with others.
– 2015 industry trends by Invisia