If your dental practice’s goal is to acquire new patients, it rarely, if ever, makes sense to include your current patients into your new patient acquisition direct mail campaigns.
Unfortunately, more often than not, the majority of dental practices that have done direct mail in the past have never been educated and consulted on the topic of current patient suppression from their new patient acquisition mailings.
Not only is it a waste of your marketing dollars to send your current patients a new acquisition mailer, but it also sends your current patients a confusing message. When given the choice, you would never talk to a current patient the same way you would a new patient, so why do it with your practice’s direct mail marketing.
The only caveat to this is, if you are considering using the post office’s EDDM Retail program or if your direct mail partner is utilizing the post office’s EDDM BMEU method. These methods of sending out direct mail by carrier route do to not use a physical address on each mailer. Instead, they contain the same generic address message on each piece. With the absence of a physical address, you are not able to remove any specific addresses.
If your goal is to communicate with active patients, I suggest a separate, more personalized campaign using variable messaging that allows you to address your patients by name, along with a more personalized message suited for them.
In summation, make sure to ask your direct mail partner about removing your current patients from your new patient acquisition mailing. In addition, there are quite a few other important questions you should be asking your potential direct mail marketing partner. For a comprehensive list of these questions, check out our article “Choosing the Right Direct Mail Marketing Partner for Your Dental Practice.”
Now that you have clear direction on how to track your results, learn about direct mail response rates and ROI specific to dental practices. Click here for access to our Dental Practice “Definitive Guide to Direct Mail Response Rates & New Patient ROI.”