Dear Doctor: How To Market To Moms
I recently completed a four-article series on marketing to moms for Bentson Clark reSource, a quarterly publication dedicated entirely to orthodontic practices. Why orthodontists, you may ask? This particular healthcare category is all about moms and their children, of course. For the back story, I have Chris Bentson to thank for the opportunity to contribute to his newsletters and reach this audience. Chris asked me to keynote at a conference way back in 2011, and we have worked together many times since then. It goes to show the power of moms across every category, and that Chris is smart for recognizing and promoting the connection in what is an annual $11 billion orthodontics niche.
Here are a few tips to consider for marketing to moms that work for orthodontists, health care practitioners and any business or brand that works with moms. These tips are from my latest book, “Millennial Moms: 202 Facts Marketers Need to Know to Build Brands and Drive Sales” (Wyatt-MacKenzie, 2015):
- Upgrade Appointment Options: Moms don’t want to talk on the phone. Only 19% of GenX mothers want to speak with a customer service agent (i.e., scheduling rep or office manager). Explore options for online appointment software and appointment reminders via text or email. Make it easy for moms to calendar appointment days and times on their phones. While live phone conversations are not going away, especially in healthcare offices, moms will appreciate any time they gain back by avoiding long telephone calls.
- Social Media Presence: Today’s moms (and their tweens and teens) will look for social media presence if only as a reflection of a progressive practice. If you and your staff can manage a social media account or two, start with Facebook and Instagram and start practicing social listening. Moms appreciate relevant, informative content, and they really love to be “liked” and followed on social media. Respond to comments when appropriate. Including this kind of engagement in your social strategy is imperative. On the flip side, if regular posting, maintenance and social listening is not an option, wait until resources are available to start and maintain a healthy and social media presence.
- Social Listening and Audits: Every company and brand with a social media presence should be practicing social listening and conducting regular social media audits. Listen to what moms are saying. Search relevant keywords, hashtags, company and brand names to see what moms are talking about and respond when appropriate. Search your practice name and hashtags related to the industry on a regular basis to determine see what moms are talking about, then comment when appropriate. Perform an online audit by checking online search sites to check for accuracy of company contact information. Speaking from recent experience, nothing is more frustrating to busy moms than searching for a phone number or information that is incorrect.
- Powerful Word of Mom: Finally, regardless of the many social media tactics that I consider a must for practices, good old-fashioned word of mouth, or “word of Mom” is invaluable in gaining new patients. Moms love to socialize and share their latest finds on the playground, in the carpool line and anywhere they gather with friends and family. Consider outreach at community events, sponsoring school activities and underwriting school sports teams (apparel, equipment, etc.) as just of the few ways to show moms that you are involved in the community.
As I wrote earlier, the power of moms in the marketplace is widespread. In writing this article about a specific niche, I can’t think of one consumer category where moms are not relevant. To continue the conversation, tweet me @momtalkradio.