The Difference Between Internal and External Marketing

The word “marketing” tends to automatically make people think about directing messages and content towards consumers, but this is just one half of the equation. As an orthodontic practice, you will also need to market to your staff. However, the ways in which you market your practice to your team will look quite a bit different than how you market your practice to potential patients.

External Marketing

With external marketing, the primary goal is growth through acquiring new patients. This means your marketing materials, including your messaging, branding, and in-person interactions are all geared towards earning new business. Because of this, external marketing will be more polished and will present the reasons why prospects should choose your practice over your competitors. External marketing starts with cold leads that eventually become warm and lead to conversions, so any external marketing materials will need to be attention-grabbing. This is reflected in everything from social media marketing to SEO strategies, where you will earn the interest of potential patients and guide them through the sales funnel.

Internal Marketing

While also important for your orthodontic practice, internal marketing will look quite a bit different from your external marketing. For one, your target audience is made up of people you already have a relationship with, so your focus will be less on grabbing attention and more on strengthening your established relationships. Your main goals with internal marketing are also very different from external marketing. Rather than trying to sell products or services, internal marketing aims to build employee satisfaction and retention while empowering your team to improve at what they do.

The Difference Between Internal and External Marketing Strategies

You will likely find yourself using the same mediums for both internal and external marketing, but the ways you use them will be very different. For instance, social media will still be important for internal marketing, but rather than trying to gain exposure and engage with potential patients, your aim will be to build camaraderie between your workers and keep people informed. This will likely be in the form of a private group on Facebook or having an employee Instagram page.

Similarly to your external marketing strategy, you should send a newsletter to your staff at your orthodontic practice on top of typical memos. Highlight the accomplishments achieved over the quarter and goals for the future in a conversational and encouraging tone to boost staff morale.

The way you leverage incentives is another way your internal and external marketing will differ from each other. When communicating to potential patients, incentives will often come in the form of competitive pricing, highlighting excellent service, and promoting the benefits of braces. You can also run social media contests and offer fun prizes. On the other hand, internal incentives are things like promotions, getting an employee of the month award, winning extra paid time off.

Marketing your practice well to your employees will build a more positive environment in your office, which will lead to more effective work and better patient satisfaction.