Breadcrumbing; how to use this marketing tool effectively

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Most people, when they hear a phrase like breadcrumbing, instantly assume that it is going to be something to do with Hansel and Gretel or something to do with a psychological tactic employed in relationships.

This is sometimes the case, but when it comes to marketing for dental surgeries and SEO it means something that is in the middle of these two and of course, it is linked to increasing sales.

Derived from the concept of leaving a trail of breadcrumbs to lead someone to a desired destination, breadcrumbs in marketing involve strategically guiding potential patients through a series of online interactions, building trust and engagement along the way.

In many ways, breadcrumbing is similar to having many calls to action on a website, it is a little bit less obvious than ‘click here to book an appointment’ with a dental team.

Interested? In this article, we will explore how dental surgeries can leverage breadcrumbing to enhance their marketing efforts and drive growth, so you can start using it on your dental surgery page to up the number of patients quickly and effectively.

Building awareness and interest

The initial phase of breadcrumbing in dental marketing focuses on building awareness and generating interest among potential patients. The key here is to establish a strong online presence and engage with prospective patients on various digital platforms, like Facebook and YouTube. Creating a visually appealing and user-friendly website that highlights the clinic’s expertise, state-of-the-art facilities, and patient testimonials is crucial, as this will pull potential patients in and keep them engaged.

Additionally, developing an active social media presence and regularly sharing informative content, such as oral hygiene tips, advancements in dental technology, and success stories, can help create a positive impression and showcase the clinic’s expertise. Remember, in order to be successful as a dental surgery using a social media account, you will have to be regularly engaged in posting, at least once a day, with an informative and fun blog about dental care. Unless, of course, there is a worldwide news event that you want to get behind. Managing a social media page can be a very time-consuming process for the average dental surgery to oversee, and this is why many dental surgery teams opt to hire marketing teams specialised in this area to do this for them.

Nurturing relationships

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Once a potential patient has shown interest in your dental surgery, the next step is to nurture the relationship through consistent and personalised communication. Breadcrumbing involves strategically providing valuable content and interactions at regular intervals to keep the patient engaged and interested.

Email newsletters can be an effective tool for breadcrumbing, providing updates on oral health, offering exclusive promotions, and sharing educational resources. By delivering relevant content to their inbox, dental surgeries can position themselves as trusted advisors and build a sense of loyalty and anticipation. Or, if they have signed up to your dental surgery page and have given you their phone number, you can use SMS messages to keep in touch with them. It all depends on the marketing style you want to have, and many dental surgeries will choose both to encourage patients to interact with them.

Interactive elements and personalisation

To enhance patient engagement and create a sense of personal connection, dental surgeries can incorporate interactive elements into their breadcrumbing strategy. This may include quizzes, polls, surveys, or interactive videos that allow patients to actively participate and provide feedback.

Moreover, personalisation plays a crucial role in breadcrumbing. By leveraging patient data, dental surgeries can tailor their communication to individual preferences, such as sending appointment reminders, personalised treatment recommendations, or follow-up emails after a visit. This level of personalisation strengthens the patient’s perception of being valued and understood, increasing the likelihood of them choosing your dental surgery for their oral health needs.

Leveraging retargeting

Retargeting is a powerful tool in breadcrumbing that allows dental surgeries to reach out to individuals who have previously interacted with their online channels. By utilising cookies and pixels, dental surgeries can display targeted advertisements to potential patients who have shown interest in specific services or have visited the clinic’s website in the past. This approach reinforces the connection and reminds potential patients of the value the dental surgery can provide.

Monitoring and analysing results


To ensure the effectiveness of a breadcrumbing strategy, dental surgeries must track and analyse key metrics. By monitoring engagement rates, click-through rates, conversion rates, and patient feedback, your dental surgery can evaluate the success of its online marketing efforts and make data-driven decisions to optimise your strategies.

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