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National ad campaign seeks to help prospective patients find ADA members

June 19, 2017

By Kimber Solana

In an effort to reach about 19.6 million prospective patients and connect them with ADA member dentists, the Association is set to launch a national digital advertising campaign July 10.
    
The digital strategy is estimated to garner about 218 million impressions and over 770,000 visits to Findadentist.ada.org — the ADA's online search tool that allows potential patients to easily find an ADA dentist in their area — through the end of the year.
    
 
See your dentist: The ADA is set to launch a national digital advertising campaign July 10 to reach 19.6 million prospective patients and connect them with ADA members. The online ads are a mix of display advertising, including animated banners, on websites, search engines and social media. Those who click on the ad will be sent to the Find-a-Dentist online search tool, which allows prospective patients to easily find an ADA member dentist.
The ad campaign is the latest phase of a planned $18 million, three-year initiative to drive utilization of dental services for ADA member dentists.
    
"This campaign is designed to help members fill chair time to help them succeed," said Dr. Joseph P. Crowley, ADA president-elect, who served as board liaison to the Council on Communications, which presented the House resolution that secured funding for this campaign. "Our strategic plan is named Members First 2020 and this is all about helping our practicing members build their businesses."
    
The ads will be a mix of display advertising, including animated banners, on websites, search engines and social media. Because the target audience understands the importance of taking care of their teeth, the messaging encourages consumers to schedule a checkup to preserve their oral health. One animated ad shows a tooth, like a bullet, flying through a walnut.
    
"Your teeth can bite with 200 pounds of force," the banner ad says. "But they can't stop cavities on their own. Your teeth are amazing. Your dentist can keep them that way."
    
Those who click on the ad will be sent to the Find-a-Dentist online search tool.
    
The ADA House of Delegates approved the initiative at its October 2016 meeting following a comprehensive eight-month study conducted by the Division of Integrated Marketing and Communications and the Health Policy Institute to identify the ideal consumers for the campaign.
    
Health Policy Institute data show that ADA members have the capacity to see more patients. Based on audience research and technology, they developed a digital strategy to target about 19.6 million potential patients for ADA member dentists. These prospective patients, according to the audience research, have the means and believe in the importance of dental visits but for some reason are not following through with regular dental check-ups.

"The purpose of this campaign is to motivate patients to visit ADA member dentists," said Dr. Gary Roberts, ADA president. "It's a huge benefit for members, especially those with availability in their schedules. More patients receiving oral health care, and busier dentists, is a win-win."

Since February, the ADA has encouraged its members to fill out their Find-a-Dentist profiles, complete with a photo, practice information, office hours and dental benefit acceptance.
    
The online tool allows prospective patients to easily find an ADA member dentist based on distance and dental insurance coverage, and it allows patients to contact the practice via email or phone and make appointments. ADA member dentists with completed profiles with photos are prioritized in the online tool's search results.
    
"I urge our members to take advantage of this member benefit by updating their profiles," said Dr. Crowley. "Already we've gotten great responses from potential patients who have used the tool."

To update your Find-a-Dentist profile, log in to your MyADA page, ADA.org/MyADA, using your member ID number and password. For more information or assistance, contact the ADA Member Service Center. For more information on the campaign and for resources to help market a practice, visit ADA.org/findadentist.