Posted by: Editor | November 30, 2010

Is Groupon Good for Dentists?

Groupon is an online coupon system that sends out one-day-only special offers to subscribers in various regions. If you want to advertise with Groupon, you come up with a promotion, pick a date, then choose your region. The company has been estimated at a value of $3 billion, but some say Google will purchase it for over $5 billion. (There was a typo here  – but it’s corrected now! Google is going to pay $5 billion, not $5 million. Thanks, Scott!)

So what does this have to do with dentistry?

Here are some examples of dentists’ Groupon offers:

Advertiser beware, though.

Dentists may devalue their services by offering deep discounts, even if for one day. In my years of interviewing dentists, I heard this a lot from both consultants and seasoned dentists. Discounts aren’t necessarily the way to go. It depends on the image you want to convey. Are you high-end or are you a clinic? Both have their place. Coupons may work well for clinics and family dentists, but not so well for high-end cosmetic dentists.

Tyson Steele Associates, a respected name in dental marketing, does NOT think that Groupon is good for dentists, though. See the blog from April, 2010, and you’ll see some pretty startling numbers that show Groupon promotions may not be the best choice for dentists.

And, straight from the dental professional’s mouth, “I would not use Groupon again.” That’s a quote from a comment by Debbie Thompson on Screenwerk.com’s post “Groupon, Sure. But Is It Sustainable?” Becky goes on to explain her office’s experience with Groupon, their ROI, and what she’s heard from five other dentists – none would use Groupon again.

Dr. Irena Vaksman seems to like Groupon, though. See her blog post, “The Golden Age of Advertising.” She says Groupon is a win-win-win. I can only surmise that she had a good experience with the coupon company. And on the Groupon website, you’ll see Wall Street Journal, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, and The Washington Post’s logos prominently displayed – so the company sure looks credible. Not many companies can get great coverage from these big media names, plus be in negotiations to sell to Google, if there’s no proof in the proverbial pudding.

Maybe Groupon just isn’t for dentists. Maybe its value is for other industries.

Modern Dental Practice Marketing is not affiliated with Groupon or any coupon service, but we do want our clients to make informed decisions when investing their marketing dollars. If you’re considering Groupon or any other new service, talk to your peers. Post a request for reviews on your Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter pages. Get the scoop before you write the check.

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Responses

  1. I posted a discussion on this topic at LinkedIn on the dental marketing group. There’s some interesting feedback. Some say Groupon works, even for dentists. Check it out.

  2. My sister-in-law recently selected a new dentist based on a Groupon she discovered. I was initially skeptical about this, but she expressed having a positive experience at this office. A few weeks later, my sister invited me and my wife to a restuarant she found through a Groupon offer. Perhaps these are here to stay.


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