Rhythm is everything…Every move you make starts with… rhythm, or you’re in trouble.
- Sugar Ray Robinson
When it comes to reaping all the profits waiting for you in your target areas, timing – or rhythm – is vital.
I have a cool marketing analogy to share with you.
One spring, a father and his son were observing the beautiful blossoms on an apple tree. The man explained to his son that in autumn, they would grow into big, juicy apples.
In the fall, the boy raced to the tree with a huge barrel to collect all the apples – but he found that only six were ripe.
He was disappointed. He asked his Dad why he was only able to harvest six apples when there were literally hundreds of blossoms on the tree earlier that year.
His Dad explained that all of the apples would be ripe for the picking at some point – just not all at the same time. Six are ripe today… maybe seven tomorrow… and so on and so forth. Each apple ripens according to its own internal schedule.
Like apples, people are “ready” for Dental work at different times – never simultaneously.
Frequency and Consistency
In other words, it’s rare for all of your patients and prospects to be “ripe” for the picking at the same time. If you think about it, it would actually be pretty weird if everyone in the community ran to your office for Dental care in the same week. Everyone has a unique set of needs, and you can’t predict the timing.
Bottom line? If you’re not front and center for your prospective patients’ needs month by month, you’re losing out.
This is where the theory of “frequency and consistency” comes into play. If you can’t predict the exact times when people need Dental work, then you need to be top of mind, at all times.
There’s an old adage out there called the Rule of Seven, because a prospect usually needs to get your marketing message seven times before they’ll take action. Chances are that your prospects don’t remember what was in their mailboxes two weeks ago… but if you’re frequent and consistent with your marketing, they’ll start to remember your practice.
With the right marketing, you’ll be the only Dentist on their mind when the time comes.
Pizza joints are great at this. Look at a franchise like Papa John’s. Every week you see their flyer in your mailbox; and you can pretty much expect to get another pizza flyer in the mail the following week. This means that when pizza night rolls around, you’ll be comfortable with their brand and familiar with their offers: making Papa John’s look like the obvious – perhaps even the only – choice.
If you do the same with your Dental practice’s marketing, this principle keeps you top of mind with patients or prospects; and, when their time comes around to consider Dental work, they are going to immediately think of you.
When You’re Busy Market More
This sounds counter intuitive, doesn’t it? Let’s roll with another analogy to help clarify this marketing principle for you:
Imagine that your car has broken down on a flat road, and you have to push it for two or three minutes; eventually you’ll probably fall down from exhaustion – but your car will keep rolling forward for a while.
The same is true with marketing. In other words, your marketing is the car and it needs momentum! If you’re busy and you’re not marketing, it will be too late to market when whatever is pushing your business falls down. The momentum your practice needs to move forward won’t be there.
I see this mistake happen all the time. Business slows down, and that’s when Dentists scurry to market their practices. But by the time the campaign turns around and appointments are booked, a TON of revenue is lost – revenue that could have been earned if there had been consistent marketing during the busy times, to carry through the slow times.
The most successful practices constantly market, especially when they’re busy.
If you market more when you’re busy, the “lull” never happens: your office will always be stuffed with patients.
So, as you can see, successful marketing isn’t a one-punch knockout.
Successful marketing is more like a well-paced boxing match that stretches as long and far as the lifespan of your career: consistency, frequency, timing and momentum are crucial elements of the strategy.