Client: Hellosmile

Project: Digital Strategy, Website Optimization, Keyword Research, Pay-per-click Advertising, & Local SEO

The Challenge

Hellosmile is a NYC-based social enterprise that operates a network of pediatric dental and orthodontic clinics. 

With multiple offices located in Queens, Bronx, and Brooklyn, Hellosmile's mission is to improve healthcare for children in lower-income neighborhoods, where access to quality care is difficult to find. 

They specialize in oral health because tooth decay is by far the most common chronic disease affecting children in poverty, and is also the most easily preventable compared with other common conditions like asthma, obesity, or diabetes. Through innovative uses of design and technology, Hellosmile takes a modern and human-centered approach to children's healthcare.

Founded in 2008, Hellosmile had grown to 9 clinics and over 40 employees purely through bootstrapping and word of mouth. But in 2015, Hellosmile set ambitious goals to double their patient volume and become recognized as the number one brand for pediatric oral health in the US.

Despite having grown consistently for 7 years, Hellosmile had never put a solid marketing strategy in place and did not have an experienced marketer on their team. Recognizing the importance of their online visibility in achieving their goals for rapid growth, Hellosmile brought Shane onto their team to develop and implement their first comprehensive digital marketing strategy.



The Result

My first task was to develop a high-level strategy for Hellosmile's digital marketing. I visited several of hellosmile's offices, met with their senior leaders, dentists, nurses, and office coordinators, and analyzed their current process for acquiring patients online. I analyzed their website's user flow, site performance, traffic sources, and conversion funnel to identify their most important sources for getting traffic to their site, as well as where they were losing their visitors.

I organized all of these key insights into a strategic plan, and presented it to the leadership team to make sure everyone who played a role in the patient acquisition, service delivery, and followup process understood how they could contribute towards growing their practices and serving more families.

With the team onboard, I launched and managed a series of initiatives to improve their visibility online and run measurable marketing campaigns, including...

  • Setting up an analytics infrastructure and KPI tracking system
  • Making design and functionality upgrades to their website
  • Advertising on Yelp and Google AdWords
  • Adding listings to relevant directories and maps to boost their local SEO
  • Gathering patient feedback and online reviews

These initiatives worked together as an integrated and organized digital marketing strategy that significantly improved hellosmile's visibility online. Finally, I trained and supported the team to manage the strategy on their own, giving the team a clear understanding of what marketing channels and tools they could leverage to accelerate their growth in the years to come.