Have you ever bought a book because it had great reviews on Amazon? Or because it was recommended in the ‘Staff Picks’ section of a bookstore? Or because a friend suggested it?* If so, join the club of people who are influenced by the experience of others, the vast majority of us, apparently.

Us humans are more likely to adopt certain behaviours if they are demonstrated successfully by other members of our tribe, a phenomenon known as ‘social proof’. Translating this to dental marketing, you might suggest your readers, ‘Join the thousands of other delighted patients who have had their lives transformed at [your practice name]’, to increase the likelihood of uptake of your service.

Even more personally and effectively, you can create social proof with testimonials on every page of your website and on a dedicated testimonials page. Obtain your patients’ written consent for publishing images and quotes from their feedback forms, reviews, thank you notes, letters, cards and videos.

Or, use guided interviews to gain material for written or video testimonials from your satisfied patients.

1. How did you hear of us? (Their source.)
2. What prompted your enquiry? (Their motivation.)
3. What treatment did you receive? (Their story.)
4. Are you satisfied? (The outcome.)
5. How has our service changed your life? (The benefits.)
6. What advice would you give to others considering our service? (The legacy.)

Aim to promote identification by highlighting common experience e.g. ‘I needed a new dentist when I moved into the area,’ or, ‘I had toothache, but I didn’t know who to trust,’ and allow the patient’s own words to tell their story, for example, ‘I wanted my teeth straightened but didn’t like the look of braces. I looked everywhere for a dentist who could do invisible braces. Then I found Dr [your name].’

Let your most satisfied patients inspire others to see how their dental problems might be solved by your expertise. ‘After only two days of Dr [your name]’s home smile whitening treatment, I could already see my teeth lightening. After two weeks, I was ready for my wedding photos. I can’t believe how confident I feel. My mother-in-law asked if I had something done to my teeth. They look so good, she’s now having hers done too.’

Motivate your readers by quoting a rousing Call To Action (CTA) directly from your patients; ‘I only wish I’d had my teeth fixed sooner. I’d like to tell all those people frightened of the dentist to pick up the phone and call Dr [your name].’

Finally, place your own CTA alongside your contact links and details e.g. ‘To find your winning smile, call today on [your telephone number] for your consultation or email us at [your email address].’ Position your CTA strategically and conveniently throughout your website, on every page, alongside patient testimonials, beside your services and on your website Contact page. Make it easy for your patients to find you and contact you.

For all of us dentists and for our very patient patients who read what we write and need what we offer, I remain, writing for dentists, at your service.

P.S. For more exclusive writing wit and wisdom and a free copy of my e-booklet ‘WRITE YOUR OWN WEBSITE’ sent directly to your email address (which will not be shared or used for any other purpose), contact me:

*Need a good read? For a healthy dose of privilege and reality checking combined with consciousness raising, I thoroughly endorse, ‘Why I’m no longer talking to white people about race’ by Reni Eddo-Lodge,

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