Re-Branding and Marketing a Dental Practice

Dentists on Madison front windowBranding and marketing a business concern from scratch is one of the most exciting and rewarding opportunities a design and marketing agency can be awarded with. The challenge of coming up with the best way of presenting the company to it’s audience involves creative flights of imagination that make a designer’s soul sing; telling the company’s story as we roll the new identity out to the promotional materials is an intensely interesting process; and finally—the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow—actually communicating with and engaging that audience. The ultimate reward? New people in the door buying the company’s products or services, and the satisfaction of creating that effect from our efforts.

ClearImages has had the opportunity to do all of the above for our client Dentists on Madison, a full-service dental practice located in Midtown, Manhattan.


The Existing Scene

The project began when a strategic partner of ours, UpwardAdvantage Management Consulting, approached us for marketing services for their client who was purchasing a dental practice in Manhattan. They were a successful dental enterprise in NJ with four prospering practices. Upon meeting with the client we discovered that an entire new Brand Identity was needed, along with a full marketing program to drive in new patients.

The new practice had a fantastic location on Madison Avenue just off 34th Street in Midtown. In Manhattan, people don’t drive to the dentist, they go to a local practice, and there were literally tens of thousands of prospective patients within a 10-block radius, with many high-rise and brownstone apartment buildings surrounding the office. But like huge herds of grazing animals at the waterhole attracting  packs of hyenas, we also learned that there were 140 dentists between 33rd and 36th street in the immediate area. In other words, the competition was stiff.

The practice had a very nice office: new, modern, and in a storefront location—another major plus point. But despite being an established practice, we discovered that their existing patient database was not as strong as originally thought; the database was too small to maintain the practice and about half of the addresses were no longer good. From an identity standpoint, the existing logo was not considered workable and the new owners decided to change the name of the practice and brand it newly, giving the whole enterprise a fresh, new start.


The Logo — Our Creative Process

In any such project, it all starts with the logo;  this is the “brand image” from which all else springs — brand colors, fonts, look and feel, etc.
Especially in a marketplace as competitive as that of Dentists on Madison, we needed to design something that was distinctive and very stylized, so as to really stand out and be memorable. We first spoke to the new doctors/owners to get their take on what they did service-wise, and how they felt they most benefited their patients. It was very apparent that these doctors were not only experts in their fields, but they also used the very latest techniques in order to offer the best dental care and newest technology to their patients. They were knowledgeable and extremely professional while creating a friendly environment in which the patients could relax but feel certain of expert care. We then took a walk around the surrounding area to get the feel of the community and the flavor of it’s architectural styles, and in general “rub elbows with” the people who lived and worked there. From this, we approached our logo designs with the Art Decco style in mind, so prevalent in Manhattan and in the architecture of the area around the office in particular.  Thus, the new logo was developed as a nod to the local community—it’s culture and history—but with a modern feel as well to indicate that we operate at the forefront of the latest dental technology and techniques.

Dentists on Madison logo studies


Corporate Website — Establishing an Online Presence

These days, if you don’t have a website you literally don’t exist for people in the marketplace. Thus a website is the most crucial marketing communication a business entity has, after the corporate identity itself. The website plays the role as a company’s “marketing hub” — we drive prospects to it for more information and interest them in products and services. But like the logo, the site needs to do more than simply impart information—it needs to put across ideas about the company’s philosophy and it’s level of professionalism in the way it is presented and and create a smooth and engaging user experience.

Website “Look and Feel” — Visually Rolling Out the Brand

The “look and feel” of Dentist on Madison’s site was inspired by the logo in terms of the color palette we chose, and was designed to have a clean, modern flavor with regards to fonts and how content was presented on the site visually. In addition to aesthetic considerations, the most key aspect of website design is the “user experience.” In this we consider such things as ease of navigation, how the information is organized, the content itself and how clear it is to understand, etc.

Content and User Experience —Creating an Effective Site

Website design is more than just slapping up a template and filling it with words and pictures. We first must consider what we want a site to do or achieve with regards to the users, and then craft content and organize it in such a way as to ensure those objectives are met. In the case of Dentists on Madison, we wrote new text for the entire site from scratch in order to cover all of the services the doctors wanted to present, along with bios of the doctors, descriptions of the office, and clear statements of the purposes and intents of the doctors in helping their patients. This is vital in creating a site which inspires people to decide to schedule an appointment, which was our primary objective. In order to further encourage appointment scheduling, we added a feed of patient reviews and to make it very easy, connected the site directly to ZocDoc, a scheduling service, with “push-button” scheduling available on every page.

Dentists on madison website

The doctors wanted to have a content-rich site with detailed descriptions and images for each service. In order to show all services at once on a page and while avoiding excessive scrolling, we used an “accordion” arrangement in which service titles are presented in bars and the user simply clicks to get a full description of each one.

Dentists on Madison Implants pg


Dentists on Madison search resultFinally, we needed to ensure the site would come up well in organic searches, so we used the latest industry best-practices for a robust SEO engine, pushing the site to page 1 of the search within just a couple of weeks after launch search on day of this post shows Dentist on Madison claiming TWO spots on page one.

Visit Dentists on Madison’s website for the full experience of all pages and features.



Brand Awareness Campaign — a “One-Two Punch”

One: Direct Mail Campaign

While the site was under development, we were working on getting the marketing campaign ready to launch. Since we were re-branding the practice, and we knew the existing database was poor, we decided to do an Every Door Direct Mail Campaign to USPS carrier routes in the immediate vicinity of the office. This was the first “punch” in our strategy to get the newly branded practice KNOWN to local residents and get them interested in coming in for a visit. Our huge postcards featured the logo with our distinct brand look and feel; we talked about the philosophy of the new doctors and promoted some Special Offers as further incentive. It took a few mailings, but in a few weeks new patients started to come in directly from the postcards.

Direct Mail Package

Two: Social Media Campaign

Having a social media presence and using social media marketing channels is essential, especially in modern-day B-to-C marketing. Thus, we rolled our brand out into consumer digital space on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, and did the usual promotion on social lines for friends, followers and likes.

Through surveys, we found that online reviews are one of the most important factors in people’s decision to try a new dental office, so we started an in-house campaign to get our happy patients to post reviews on Zocdoc, with a counter sign and handouts at the Front Desk. To cover all bases we claimed and set up Dentists on Madison on all the usual online directories and review sites, such as Yelp, Manta, etc.

All of this helped forward our strategy to give Dentists on Madison a solid and unified digital footprint.

Facebook reviews campaign


TKO: Driving in New Patients

new patients statIn order for our marketing efforts to be effective, we needed to communicate to people on the main channels they use, while staying within our budget. We created an online marketing campaign, including Groupon offers, website coupons, and digital advertising. After running these campaigns for just a few weeks we had impressive results: people redeeming the Groupon offers in a steadlily increasing stream, and over 1,000 click-throughs to our site from the ads, where more coupons were redeemed. It’s an ongoing story, but the stats so far show that we are achieving our main objective:

An increasing number of new patients, with the statistic trend going into a viable range.

The practice ended off March with 70 new patients for the month— a significant Affluence statistic from before our new site went live and our marketing programs took hold. Dentists on Madison’s project presented a unique opportunity for us to take a company from a business entity that did not exist in the public’s mind to a well-branded, steadily growing dental practice, all in a few short months. It has been a rewarding experience in many ways— in helping the doctors to achieve their goals, in helping many people to find a source of excellent dental care, and in fulfilling the purpose of our company:

“To help businesses gain greater brand awareness, more new customers, and sell more products and services through the implementation of our graphic design and marketing solutions.”