How to use Video to Effectively Market your Dental Practice

The Dental Business Guide Podcast Episode | February 11
George Bellamy, Nikita Kanda

George Bellamy: Welcome back to the Dental Business Guide. I’m George. And once again, we’re here with Nikita, and we’re gonna change things up. Nikita now wants to ask me questions, so fire away.

Nikita Kanda: Yes, I thought I would switch it up today and I would be the one asking George questions because today we’re going to talk about video content and George has a lot more knowledge on this topic than I do, so I thought it’d be fun to switch it around.

So my first question for you George is: If I have a dental practice, what sort of video content should I be putting out on my social media?

George Bellamy: So, for social media, you want small snippets of information. The thing is, people scroll through their feed and if you don’t capture someone with a video in the first five seconds, you’ve lost them.

So really, you want to get your point across as quickly as possible. No one wants to be watching a 15 minute video of you rambling on. So I think if you want to do an advert, if you want to do a walkthrough of your practice for example, then yes, definitely do that. But I think stick it around the 30 second mark, but make sure the first five seconds are punchy and are key, so people can actually engage with it. They want to continue viewing for the rest of that 30 seconds.

Nikita Kanda: Yeah, that’s a really good point and do you think I should be posting videos of my team? What sort of content should I be putting out, the team or more teeth related information? Or is it just those people, those practice owners should find out what their unique selling point is, and then post about that?

George Bellamy: More or less with video, you want to film and edit and upload everything and anything. So the way I put it is, video is photos 24 times a second. I find video more convincing. Because my background is real estate, I would do real estate films and my selling point with the films I create was that they’re true, they’re real.

With photos, real estate photography is great, but you have the big wide angle lens that distorts the room, it makes the room feel a lot bigger than it actually is. With video, sure I use a wide angle lens, but it creates a sense of depth that has a sense of reality to it and same thing with dental practices.

So if you just keep having photos, you might seem like that stock photo surgery or that stock photo practice, if you will. But the video is you showing the real patients, the real dentists, the real place in its correct lighting. It just has that sense of reality to it and personal touch.

Nikita Kanda: I totally agree with you that it’s all about real, especially with what we’re posting on social media. You don’t want it to look like that stock image practice that you said so, definitely you’d say make it authentic content? 

George Bellamy: Without a doubt, definitely. 

Nikita Kanda:  Okay. So how would that relate when I’m trying to make an ad for my practice? How would I go about making an ad? If I’ve never made an ad before, how would you help me with that?

George Bellamy: So I’m a videographer by trade, this is my livelihood, this is my living, I know what I’m doing. But to the average Joe, you probably have no idea where to start and you’ll probably buy some camera or just use your iPhone. Believe it or not, your phone is one of the best cameras you can use because it’s quick and easy.

For example, Nikita you’re on social media, doing small snippets of video is absolutely key. To go back on to your question with having an ad, at the end of the day you can make it how you want to make it. If you’re using your iPhone, as long as your audio is good, I think you’ll be fine. You can really tell the difference between an expensive camera with terrible audio and a cheap camera with great audio, they are two very different things.

Believe it or not, people have actually preferred the expensive audio. So if I was to say anything like that, I would say, to do an advert is, first of all, what do you want to have? What do you want your advert to do? What’s its purpose? Really, that’s the main thing.

If your purpose is to drive sales and gain more patients, then I personally would look into investing the money and to hiring a company to do an advert for you. For example, hiring a videographer just for the week, I don’t know what the going rate is but you can be looking at spending £500-£600 on a decent video and a decent advert, which as we mentioned in the previous podcast marketing and running adverts with that video, that’s the way Facebook works, it’s great.

You can run these adverts and these videos and the way you need to look at it is if you can get one sale out of that video, you probably made your money back in the long term. I think this is what you need to be looking at. Yes, you can make your own advert and I encourage you to. But, I think for big things like this, I would definitely suggest potentially looking into hiring a videographer for the day, and just filming a lot and go from there.

Nikita Kanda: No, that’s a great bit of advice. Actually, that was gonna be one of my next questions that should I hire a videographer but you’ve just answered that. I definitely think that people should definitely have a videographer on hand or on speed dial.

George Bellamy: Have someone in your phone book, that’s all. Someone that you can call and just say, hey, we need this, they’ll come, film it and edit it and then give it to you. But what I stress is, film as much as you can yourself, anything and everything. Film one of your dentists talking about who they are. It’s putting a voice mainly, and a face to the people.

Everyone has on their website, the ‘about me’ page where you have got the list of the dentists with all their qualifications and their little blurb about me, but you can’t convey personality through text or through one picture. So I think video is certainly key, just have a quick 30 second video just about who the dentist is.

That’s all it is because when people are looking for a new dental practice, they’re not just going on the website. They’re not just talking to their friends, they’re also nowadays going through their social media. Would I choose a dental practice that doesn’t post anything on social media, but has good reviews on Google for example? Or will I go with the company that seems to be engaging with their patients, seems to be putting out information, making you feel more relaxed and at home while you’re at the dentist? I think that’s definitely the angle you should be going with it.

Nikita Kanda: For sure. I think as well, don’t underestimate the power of your iPhone or your phone or your camera because they’re so good nowadays. And like you said, as long as you’ve got good quality, good sound, that’s all you need and just be consistent with it. So one question I have for you; quality versus quantity, would you rather be putting out one quality video a week? Or is it quantity where you’re putting out a video a day, what do you prefer?

George Bellamy: That is a really good question because it’s two different arguments you have. So, as we’ve said before, with Instagram, you want to be posting every single day, the repetition, you want to have that presence, but then also you don’t want it to be just random things, you want it to be structured and well thought out.

So there are two arguments to it, there is; should you post multiple videos a week or should you just post one? That is the million dollar question. For me personally, I’m a perfectionist, I like things to be perfect. I like them to be the exact way I envisioned it. But Arun the managing director of Samera, has said ‘I just want to post things, I just want to get that content out there.’ We’ve had some arguments in the past about this, but we’re two different mindsets, Arun just wants to publicise his practice and his business and I just want to create content I’m proud of.

Nikita Kanda: It depends on what you’re posting. With social media like I’ve said before, I mix it up. So I will do one day pictures, one day video ads so mix it up. But when it comes to a video ad, you want to get that quality right but because that’s going to be going out and continuously played.

George Bellamy: Yes, you want it to be shareable, definitely an ad, you want that quality to be perfect. You don’t want a single thing gone wrong. Because like you’ve seen some videos where at the end of it they leave four seconds of black video, that black clip, you don’t want that. That’s giving off the wrong signals.

But then, if it’s a video about a walkthrough of the practice that’s on your Instagram feed, quantity is fine. It really depends on what you’re trying to do. I would say for me, personally I’m more of a quality over quantity. But maybe quantity is better in some sense and to be honest with you, it’s anyone’s guess really. It depends what it’s being used for. 

Nikita Kanda: Okay, you’ve already touched on how you would get people to watch your videos or your ads. You said before in the beginning that you need to capture a person’s attention straightaway, right?

George Bellamy: Yeah, that’s right straight away.

Nikita Kanda: What are the things would you say that people should put in their ads? Or what tips should they be using to capture patients’ attention?

George Bellamy: So being different and standing out, being that one shiny object in a sea of green, the key is to be different. The thing is to stand out in the 21st century especially in 2021 now, where everything is online, it’s very, very difficult.

To make a video go viral, for example, it is very, very difficult, and it’s hit or miss, sometimes you can think you’ve got the greatest idea for a viral video and it absolutely tanks. But other times you think you’re just going to post it even if it’s not that great and it gets millions and millions of views, it’s a very difficult thing to predict. So to get people to watch your videos, I mean realistically, you need to be engaging, you need it to be relatable, you need, as I’ve said before, to get them in the first five seconds.

More or less we now live in a society of bite sized information. People are too busy on their phones, they’re just scrolling, just absorbing information as quickly as they can. So if you have a video that is really informative, but you have the introduction to the video is just not adequate, you’re going to lose those viewers.

So to get people to watch your videos, I would say definitely quickly get them entertained. That’s usually either by comedy or by music or by text. That’s another thing, text – perhaps don’t use too much text because people will just look at a whole paragraph of text and go, ‘I don’t really have time to read all that’ and also, because it’s a video, you just want to be told the information. So more or less, I would say just make it as quirky and as different as possible, use bright colours etc.

Nikita Kanda: I think that’s a great point to make now that those are the things people should be looking out for. I would just like to add that when you said about people wanting to scroll quickly on their phones, definitely in terms of social media, I’d say if you’re going to make a video, or you’re going to post any videos, make it like 30 seconds to a minute, maximum a minute!

People don’t want to sit there and watch long videos anymore, they just want the quick information so that’s definitely a good piece of advice, make sure you’re making quick, informative videos that will keep people watching and keep them engaged because long videos are a thing of the past now, aren’t they?

George Bellamy: Even YouTube for example, five years ago, the goal was to create videos as long as possible and gain their attention throughout. Nowadays youtubers want to get to the ten minute mark, because they’re gonna have two or three adverts inside the video to basically make more money from it. I think quick bites of information are certainly becoming the norm. 

Nikita Kanda: That was gonna be one of my last questions to you about Youtube. So if I’m a dental practice owner do I need YouTube when I’m opening my practice? Is it something that I need at the beginning? Is it something that you would recommend?

George Bellamy: So I personally think YouTube is the second biggest search engine after Google and Google owns YouTube. So really, I would say yes but not for the reasons you’re thinking. I would say use YouTube to upload videos, that you can then use the embed code on your website personally, I would do that.

Nikita Kanda: And what does that mean, embed code for people that don’t understand what that is.

George Bellamy: When you have a video on your website, an embed code means instead of linking to the website, you can watch that video inside your page on your website. With social media videos, as I said before, you want it to be quick information. With YouTube, I think it’s not a game changer if you don’t have it but also it’s one of those things that is not expected of you yet, but it’s starting to become that norm. 

Nikita Kanda: Like you said and you can use that in your website, I think that looks nice. It’s really professional when people do that, when you can watch the video right in one space it looks amazing.

George Bellamy: Well, one thing I absolutely love is on the ‘About Me’ page, again it’s what I was saying about videos, making those personal touches and having that personality. On your website when you have the ‘about me’ page, you click on individual dentists or the associates or nurses, and you have a quick 30 second video hosted on YouTube, consisting of who that person is and giving them a quick brief description of where they studied, why they wanted to get into dentistry etc and I think that gives it that personal touch, it truly does.

Nikita Kanda: I totally agree with everything you said about not needing YouTube, but it’s a good tool to use when you are starting up. So it’s not something that you need to be regularly posting on but it’s something that you can definitely use. It’s great for your website but I think definitely with video content, like we’ve said, hire a videographer, if you can.

George Bellamy: If you can

Nikita Kanda: Just shoot as much content as you can in maybe one day, get simple ads made and as you said, get genuine, real content of your team. It will help patients see that you’re real on social media, not just trying to get the numbers up or just post loads of pictures. You’re actually showing the real side of your business. That’s definitely hit the nail on the head with all video content, anything you’ve got to add?

George Bellamy: One thing I just thought of is you’re doing videos of your patients especially, a release form is completely key because you don’t want to be five years down the line where your video then goes viral and the patient says I don’t actually want my face to be on the video anymore. And then you unfortunately have to take that out or take the video down because you haven’t got written permission to film them. You can get your free templates online and I highly recommend them. 

Nikita Kanda: That’s something that we do as well with Samera and The Neem Tree, we get written permission from all of our patients that have agreed to be on social media, it just makes things a lot easier and just covers your back as well.

George Bellamy: Yeah, it’s just hassle free for your future self really, because 99% of the time, the patient’s absolutely happy with it and won’t have a problem with it but it’s that 1% that can really more or less screw you over further down the line. 

Nikita Kanda: I’ve had an experience in the past that the patient is happy for you to use their face in the video but they might not want their name. So sometimes remember, if they don’t want their full name or just ask them beforehand, are you okay with us using your full name or if you’re not, they don’t even have to put a name there. Just put that ‘our patient at…’ whatever clinic you are, so just bear in mind these little tips and things to note for future videos.

George Bellamy: Well, thank you for helping me come out of my shell and answering questions about video making, I’ve always been the one interviewing…

Nikita Kanda: It was nice to be the interviewer. I know.

George Bellamy: I’m too complacent with it. Well, I hope that helps you understand everything about video, it’s one of those things that people overlook.. Many people think photos are the way forward and unfortunately I think it’s the other way around.

Nikita Kanda: Don’t be scared to put videos out. Do it. Try it. You’re not going to know unless you try it.

George Bellamy: Exactly. Also, you’re not going to gain traction overnight. It’s going to be something you’d have to have the repetition. 

George Bellamy: Yeah, well, anyway, thank you so much for listening and we’ll catch you on the next one.

Further Information on Video Marketing for Dentists

For further information on how to effectively market a dental practice, read our article on video marketing for dentists or check out our Learning Center here.

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