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When running a marketing campaign we are told that landing pages are an extremely important part of the sales journey. This is still a true statement and something we always make clear to all our clients.
In this blog, I want to look at what happens when once you have a landing page created but it still isn’t converting in the way you desire, what mistakes are being made with the page and where could it be improved? I have identified a few reasons why the page may not be performing as you hope...
Reviews and testimonials are incredibly important. Reviews or testimonials will act as social media proof, so when a customer is looking to purchase, they will often look to others for cues concerning whether to make the purchase or not. So making the excellent reviews or testimonials prominent is certainly a good start to improving your landing page.
Is your landing page actually clear enough? Have you explained what your business offers and how it is unique? Your landing page should always contain a clear description of what your company actually offers! The copy needs to be clear and not overly full of jargon and too many words.
Too Much Text!
Remember you only have 5 seconds to convince the person clicking on the site. This means the landing page must be focused on one single objective, which is clicking on your call to action (CTA). As I said before it needs to stay clear and direct. Not too much text but enough to get the message across. Focus on the benefit: this is what you will get by clicking here.
What is your USP?
It is vitally important that you have a very clear and exciting USP. An exciting Unique Selling Proposition leads to people clicking on the CTA because they want to know more. Explaining your USP can work well either using a bullet list or a short, informative video, that gets the message across and leads to the results you desire.
Too many details.
If on your landing page you present a form in which you want your potential clients to share their details, make sure you ask only for the information that is really essential. If you want to send the prospective client a white paper about selling their dental practice, you only need a name and an email address. Focus on getting the essential details and achieving the result of someone engaging with your business.
Always be testing.
The only way to know that the content is persuasive, the video or images work and how successful the form is, you have to keep testing and tweaking the page. On a an optimised landing page, every aspect, should be tested to ensure you’re using the right option to maximize your conversion rate.
Thanks for reading and we hope you have picked up a few pointers to improve one of the most important sales funnels in a modern business.
No one can have missed the inexorable rise in the use of social media for virtually every kind of interaction we experience in the modern world. From a few users 10 years ago there would appear to be now virtually every corner of the globe unaffected by it (except for maybe some long lost Amazonian tribes – lucky them).
Dentistry has not been slow to embrace this revolution, and as a mechanism of disseminating information world wide, sharing new techniques, and even asking advice about a case, then it there is no doubt that is it hugely helpful. Accessing social media though our smartphones is perhaps the most common application of this media, and it is thought that phones are now become part of the way in which we experience life, and how we form our memories. Certainly, creating a virtual scrapbook on our social media persona that shares with other people is something that will help you look back on events perhaps differently to how you did in the past.
But I worry that some people don’t understand the dangers of social media enough. I’ve written about this before on this blog, and the majority of what I said then holds true now. But there now seem to be some people who take the whole social media thing to be a benchmark by which they should measure their own lives against. There is a relatively new Facebook group called ‘Mental Dental’ which was set up to help dentists with some of the challenging mental health issues that can occur in our profession. Personally as someone who has suffered mental health issues in the past, I think it’s a pretty crass title, but the ethos of the group is actually a pretty good one. Whilst much of the time it might be seen as a moaning forum, there are some quite worrying threads that appear from time to time, and it may be that having this type of forum is beneficial to those wanting to ask advice, or just offload anonymously.
However, one of the recent threads that drew my attention was a post about how a practitioner felt he or she was so unsuccessful when compared to all the other dentists who were posting their personal and professional successes all over social media. This concern was so great in this practitioners mind that they were considering leaving the profession because of it. There has always been a degree of ‘Keeping up with the Jones’s’ in all aspects of our lives, and until one becomes satisfied with themselves as a person, there might always be a tendency to search for success via the medium of materialistic gains. However, what struck me in this case was what appears to be the sheer despair this person was feeling, and all as a result of what some people post on social media.
Social media to this person had become the real world, and the posts of amazing composites, perfect implants, and then fast cars, and exotic holidays was seen as the absolute reality of other peoples lives. The superficiality of such posts is obvious to many, but not to others who may already be suffering from a change in their perception of the world due to the mental health issues that appear to be quite common in our profession. It might not be so easy to ignore these sorts of posts when someone is feeling depressed by the profession, and the damage that this can then do could potentially be quite serious.
There seems to be a lack of humility generally on social media that is behind these types of posts. Whilst it is everyone’s right to post what they want and when they want, certainly the ‘Look at Me aren’t I great’, or the so-called ‘Humble brag’ type of posts sometimes serve only to sometimes make other people feel negatively toward the poster, or more worryingly, negative towards themselves. There is no background to a social media post usually, so the context is completely lost. Does the poster EVER have a bad day? Do they Ever have things go wrong in Clinic? Have they ever worried about their Health/Finances etc.? Given the tone of many of the posts we see, the answer to all the above appears to be no.
It’s important then to keep in mind all that happens on social media is NOT necessarily true, and that we should look more deeply into posts like this. It is vitally important that we should all keep in touch with the real world around us.
Social media is here to stay, but it needs taking with a large pinch of salt at times.
The question posed to the court was whether an employer can be vicariously liable for sexual assaults perpetrated by an independent doctor?
Between 1968 and 1984 Dr Bates was engaged by Barclays Bank to carry out medical examinations on potential and existing employees of the bank. Barclays at that time were undergoing a positive drive to recruit women into the bank and as a result a number of the individuals assessed by Dr Bates were women, some as young as 16.
Accusations against Dr Bates
The employees would go to Dr Bates’ home, where he had created a purpose-built treatment room. He would see the patients on their own with no chaperone present. They were required to undress to their underwear. The allegations against him included inappropriate breast examinations and digital vaginal or anal contact. Following the examination, Dr Bates would send a pro-forma document setting out the details of the examination to the bank. If the report was satisfactory the individual would be offered employment.
Dr Bates died in 2009, however in 2013 a police investigation was carried out which concluded that had he been alive, there would have been sufficient evidence against him to warrant a criminal prosecution.
Barclays’ vicarious liability
In 2016, 126 claimants sought damages against Barclays Bank in relation to the sexual assaults they had suffered. They claimed that the bank utilised the services of Dr Bates in the role of medical examiner in order to satisfy themselves that the person was fit to work for the bank and to confirm that they would be suitable for the life assurance policies in place.
In July 2017, the Hon Mrs Justice Davies ruled that, yes, the bank was vicariously liable for the actions of its self-employed contractor. The reasons she gave were as follows:
A two-stage test must be considered to determine whether or not a vicarious liability exists:
When is a relationship “akin to employment”?
When the following criteria are satisfied:
– The employer is more likely to have the means to compensate the victim than the employee and can be expected to have insured against that liability;
– The tort (act) will have been committed as a result of activity being taken by the employee on behalf of the employer;
– The employee’s activity is likely to be part of the business activity of the employer;
– The employer, by employing the employee to carry on the activity will have created the risk of the tort committed by the employee;
– The employee will, to a greater or lesser degree, have been under the control of the employer.
The bank argued that Dr Bates was an independent contractor, and that he bore personal liability for the acts. Had the claim been made much earlier his personal estate would have been able to settle the claims.
However, to determine whether the relationship was “akin to employment” the judge applied the five criteria set out above:
– The judge concluded that whilst Dr Bates would have had indemnity insurance, that insurance would not have covered him for cases of sexual assault; his estate was distributed many years earlier.
– Employment was conditional upon the bank being satisfied on the basis of the medical examinations that the applicant was medically suitable for service. Dr Bates was the chosen doctor of the bank and he used their stationery.
– The purpose of the examination was to enable the bank to be satisfied that a potential member of staff would, health wise, be an effective member of the workforce. This was an intrinsic part of the business activity of the bank.
– The bank directed the employee where to go and gave no freedom of choice. They directed the doctor to undergo an examination, including a chest measurement! Many of the claimants, who were as young as 15 and 16 saw the doctor alone in his room and were asked to remove their clothing. The judge concluded that the bank created the risk of the tort (sexual assault) taking place.
– The fact that Dr Bates organised his own diary and carried out other medical activities did not negate the argument that he was under the control of the bank at the relevant time. The fact that the assessment took place at his home rather than the bank made no difference to this conclusion.
When considering stage 2, she concluded that the sexual assaults occurred during the course of a medical examination which the bank required the applicants to undertake for the purposes of securing employment. Dr Bates was trusted to do the work and placed him in a position to deal with the employees. This gave him the opportunity to abuse his position. The abuse was inextricably interwoven with the carrying out of his duties.
In short, the answer is yes. Whilst many associate dentists prefer to maintain their self-employed status for tax purposes (the Tooth Counsel has blogged on worker v self employed status on a number of occasions) the relationship that they have with the practice is almost entirely “akin to employment”. It is now common practice for associate dentists to appear to members of the public to be an integral part of their dental practice, bookings are made and diaries organised by the practice, patients and referring dentists are introduced to the associate via the practice, uniforms are often worn and the practice systems and stationery utilised. If an associate dentist commits an actionable tort against a patient or other member of staff whilst engaged by the practice, then the practice itself would be liable.
Whilst the principal of the “independent contractor defence” remains intact, this judgement sees the court extending the scope of vicarious liability significantly. Whilst the facts of the above case are extremely unlikely to arise in today’s society, particularly in a dental setting where nurses are present at all times when a dentist is seeing a patient, it is a valuable lesson to reinforce the view that the employers should not be complacent about the potential for poor behaviour by their independent contractors and the liability that may follow.