Social advertising smile.

Awais Ahmed is a student, blogger and digital marketer who helps small entrepreneurs to improve their online presence. He writes about a range of interests including technology, apps and small business.

Every industry is influenced by online and social advertising to some extent. The cosmetic dental industry is no exception. In fact, cosmetic dentistry has experienced a recent rise in popularity. Let’s take a look at how social and online advertising is influencing and helping to grow the cosmetic dental industry.

Inspiration through images and video

It’s no coincidence that the rise in social media and the prevalence of our “online lives” has coincided with the rise in cosmetic dentistry’s popularity. People are absolutely inundated with images of “perfect” bodies, skin, and smiles, so the reminder to improve certain aesthetic features is always there. We all know that for teeth and smiles, beauty standards apply.

A straight, white, bright smile is as coveted as a flat, toned stomach. The difference between now and 20 years ago, is that examples of “real” people, as opposed to celebrities, are readily available through social media and advertising. For example, Instagram and YouTube personalities represent the “everyday” person, and they have the power to influence viewers through their appearance, and by promoting certain products.

Accessible information

Social and online advertising keep “upping the ante” in how we expect ourselves to look, but it also makes products and treatments readily available, accessible, and that helps them become more affordable. If you want to research a product, procedure or treatment, you only need to type a few words into your search engine to find a whole world of options at your fingertips. Before the internet and social media, people turned to the phone book, magazines, or word of mouth to find information, (it’s hard to fathom these days!). A consumer is far more likely to go through with a cosmetic dental procedure if sufficient information and an easy-to-organize process is available, which is exactly what online and social platforms offer.

Breaking the “fear” barrier

Dentistry and dental procedures have had a bad reputation in the past. The fear of “the chair” comes from a time where technology had not yet improved the comfort and efficiency of dental work. However, much of that fear and dread has been eliminated, as we can now see for ourselves how advances in the dental industry have taken the pain and terror out of dental work.

Social and online advertising have the power of images and persuasive language to gently re-direct viewers’ attitudes. Practitioners and companies can post light-hearted ads and blogs on everyday sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. By placing images and information pertaining to a once-feared industry into the everyday lives of millions of online users, the scary mythology and “clinical” nature of dentistry can be gently chipped away.

Giving the consumer the power to choose … with a little creative persuasion

Online and digital platforms allow images, videos, audio and text to be amalgamated in such a way that leads the viewer to a certain conclusion, without them even realizing it. Although consumers and viewers are not oblivious to the illusory world of online marketing, they can still be persuaded within a matter of seconds. If an ad pops up on the screen, showing a relaxed, attractive, approachable looking person undergoing a cosmetic dental procedure, with an inserted photo showing the glowing results … the viewer is instantly being told, “this is easy, accessible, painless, and it could be you.”

Not only does the viewer get a positive perspective on a once-negative subject, they can be lead straight to the source with the click of a link, and voila … they have booked their own appointment, or purchased their own product. The consumer has come to this choice themselves, so they feel empowered and in control of their cosmetic dentistry choices, but online and social advertising strategies have allowed them to get to that point.

At-home solutions, customer reviews, and consumer power

Online and social advertising can reach millions of potential customers all over the world. This is great news for companies who sell cosmetic dentistry products that can be used from the comfort of the person’s own home. This an example of how online and social advertising is a positive and empowering tool. Consumers can now research all the options available to them and choose the one that suits their budget and preferences. Online reviews and product forums are also influencing the popularity of products and brands, as the quality of a product can be confirmed by fellow, unbiased consumers. A pearly, white smile is now accessible and achievable for anyone, regardless of budgets and time constraints, and it can be accessed online, effortlessly and without depleting the bank account.

Final thoughts

The power of social and online advertising is undeniable, and it can be seen clearly by taking a look at the cosmetic dental industry. Changing the perception of cosmetic dental procedures from “elite, expensive, and luxurious,” to “affordable, inclusive and attainable” is a positive change for consumers, practitioners, and companies alike.

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