Since starting as a mailing list in 1997, GDPUK has evolved into one of the major digital publishers of Dental content in the UK. With around 6000 members regularly using the dental forum, plus a range of dentals news and blogs constantly being published, I want to look at the advantages of digital publishing, why we enjoy it so much and how the UK Dental profession is benefitting.
As written in a previous blog, we have all become addicted to the latest news and information. As I write this blog, the football transfer deadline is looming with fans hoping their team will sign players or hold on to players. Fans follow the transfers on social media, through TV and on their phones either reading mobile sites or communicating with their friends. News is constant and moves at a quicker pace than ever before and dentistry is no different. GDPUK often publishes content in a matter of minutes, like yesterdays exclusive UK Graduate news. Publishing everything online means we have no print deadlines and can publish articles within a few minutes.
A unique advantage of digital publishing is that you can constantly produce content. We do this through the news, blogs and forum. The forum has over 500 different contributors a month, which means that a range of opinions are expressed throughout the day and some fantastic, well informed debates take place. We have a number of bloggers as well, who write dental focused content for the site and this produces insightful, humorous and thought provoking blogs for the site. We also constantly publish dental news, with a number of exclusives pieces of news a year. This means that the content on the site is consistently evolving and staying fresh.
GDPUK members’ interacting with each other is the lifeblood of the forum. Members enjoy engaging with each other on a regular basis, sometimes giving useful information, sometimes being critical, sometimes being provocative but all this interaction creates a sense of community. Members who read but do not post (lurkers) still get the feeling of being part of the community and read the posts on the forum with interest. Dentists are gaining information, insight, advice and education from the forum; we believe the ever increasing interaction between the members is great for the dentists and the profession.
As a digital platform the site can be accessed from anywhere. August a traditional holiday month in the UK was the busiest month in the history of the site, with our members accessing the forum from all corners of the world on a range of mediums. The eagerly awaited GDPUK app is nearly close to completion and this will give further accessibility to dentists who are looking for regular dental news & opinion on a tablet device. We believe that the site has become a central part of our member’s daily lives; they will check general news, social media and then GDPUK. This can be confirmed by a recent GDC report on Standards with the paragraph reading as follows on social media, “Social media covers a number of internet based tools which allow people to create and exchange content. It includes blogs, internet forums, content communities and social networking sites such as Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, Facebook, LinkedIn, GDPUK, Instagram and Pinterest.” This small sentence from the GDC is a great example of how information is being accessed, 24 hours a day an this is certainly something the dental profession is embracing. Interacting with colleagues, suppliers and customers now happens through a number of mediums.
Numbers Show Interest
At GDPUK we are known for reciting stats and we pride ourselves on offering up to date numbers on how often the site is being used. We prefer to focus on unique visitors and number of visitors because they are seen as a great indicator of traffic to a website and that the content is interesting. The last 8 months has seen a huge rise in these numbers. Each unique visitor in the month is from a single IP address, the total visits in August show that each visitor makes an average of more than 4 visits per month, at an average greater than 4,000 per day. These stats show GDPUK has further cemented its place in the UK Dentistry landscape. We offer a unique place to receive news, information and opinion on the constantly changing world of UK Dentistry. The table below shows that the site has seen some great growth and we appreciate everyone’s support from the dental community. Keep spreading the word and we will continue to grow the resource and community together.
As you can probably tell the GDPUK team is passionate about digital publishing and embracing the advantages I have listed above. Digital publishing is still evolving and that is why it is exciting to be part of. In the last few weeks we have improved the site further with a new modern template, plus introducing fresher advertising banners that give greater exposure to our advertising partners. As mentioned earlier in this blog we also hope to introduce a GDPUK App which further enhances our digital publishing pedigree.
How has digital publishing helped your dental business or dental practice? Maybe you do a regular blog or email newsletter? Do you agree that it has helped dentistry? I would love to hear your thoughts and how you see dental publishing evolving?