Smartphone Marketing Power
Using the power of smartphone photography in the attention era
We live in a hyper-connected universe where instant gratification seems to be the norm. Information crosses our consciousness at ridiculously fast speeds, and setting your laboratory’s brand apart from competitors can be reduced to how long it takes a dentist to flick past your social media post and move on to the next—unless there is some compelling reason to pause and take note.
Enter the smartphone. This great marketing tool that changed the course of mankind can help you do the same for your business. Already in your pocket, these devices have practically become extensions of our hands. These tiny wonders of technology and connectivity are so ingrained in our society that it would be a shame if businesses did not find a way to harness their power to a greater extent. They are, in fact, marvelous tools for branding your laboratory.
The Power of Images
Think about this: It is estimated that more than 3 trillion photos will be taken with smartphones in 2017. This estimate includes all mobile sharing platforms, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, and billions and billions of selfies. That is more than all the film photos taken in the history of photography.
What does all this mean for your laboratory? It means that the ubiquity of the smartphone, coupled with how powerful their cameras have become, make it an essential tool in how your business communicates with and markets to clients, potential clients, and colleagues.
Expensive DSLR cameras are still the gold standard, but this setup is cumbersome, expensive, and time-consuming. Here are the advantages of employing smartphone photography:
• You already own the technology. • A very simple semi-professional light kit with a lightbox and near pro-level lighting can be purchased for under $200. • With the newest smartphone cameras and the addition of inexpensive after-market lenses (macro, wide-angle), you can get even more detailed images. • You can instantly share your work with your dentist clients.
Composition and lighting are critical to create an image that rises above the industry norm and excites those who see it. Simple training to shoot pictures of restorations is not overly difficult if you remember one simple, general rule of photography: the rule of thirds (Figure 1 and Figure 2), which explains how the human eye gravitates to certain geographical sections of a picture.
A simple light kit and a lightbox are tools not unlike what a professional photographer would use, but a mere fraction of the cost (Figure 3). Like anything in life worth doing, it takes some time to learn how to use these simple tools effectively, but the results speak for themselves, and good photography will always set your business apart from the competition.
Your smartphone can make it easy to respond rapidly—almost instantly—to your dentists with images of the latest porcelain buildup on that 3-unit bridge you just fired or quickly update your social networks and/or website. This is critical in today’s business world, where we often rely on speed to break away from our competitors and improve profit margins.
Smart Marketing with Smartphones
Smartphone photographs can provide nearly instant validation of your work to your customers or potential clients. To properly showcase your work to your dentist customers, be sure to feature the best shots on your business website. Don't let the photos stagnate on your site for too long; change them up every month or so to highlight exemplary cases. Remember, photos taken with your smartphone allow for instant self-promotion in person, too. Having an instant access library of your work on your phone when meeting new dentists is a simple, effective, and no-cost way to persuade them to choose your laboratory for their next case. It only takes one great case to turn a prospective customer into a lifelong client.