How To Use McDonalds’ Branding Genius In Your Practice

This week on Marketing Monday, Angus Pryor the Practice Growth Specialist will share with you the one thing if you do it, all other things will be easier or irrelevant. Find out that “the one thing” now by watching the video below.

Now, the topic for today is how to use McDonalds’ branding genius in your practice.

Before we get into this, I need to tell you a little story. Recently, I was at home and my daughter’s got a packet of chips. And I thought, “Oh, these look different. I’ve never seen these before,” and they were Smith’s Crisps. It’s a pretty common brand in Australia and I noticed that it said there was a new flavour that I’d not seen before, which was garlic bread.

But here’s the thing and this is the inspiration for this whole message is, it was garlic bread flavour by Pizza Hut. So you’ve got a packet of Smith’s Crisps, which has got a Pizza Hut thing there. And it just got me to thinking about using another company’s branding and brand equity to promote your practice.

I want to give you another example and then we’ll talk about how we do that in the dental industry.

Now, of course, I talked about McDonald’s branding genius, so let me ask you a question. At the moment, certainly in Australia, what is another brand that McDonald’s is closely aligned with? At the moment, McDonald’s is doing some co-branding with one other brand.

Who is McDonald’s co-branding with at the moment? Some of you have seen McDonald’s ads in Australia at the moment and let’s have a look.

When I tell you, you’re going to kick yourself because you’ll have seen it. I’ll give you a little hint if you’ve got no idea. They’ve been branding with someone who, when you see the ad an explosion happens. And then the person wins something. That might be a little hint. What is that branding that they’re doing at the moment? I can explain how this all applies to dentistry.

And the correct answer is Monopoly. 

So my question today is how to use McDonald’s branding genius in your practice. What McDonald’s has done very cleverly and they’ve done this a number of times before.

If you go and buy a Coke, you peel off the label and under there is, you know, Fleet Street or The Strand. And then, there’s a board that you stick it on and then you can win stuff. But what McDonald’s has done very cleverly, is they’ve boosted their own brand with an additional brand.

And it begs the question, how can you do that in dentistry?

Now, the first one that you can do that in dentistry, is yes, Coca-Cola. They would be someone they would be co-branding with. So branding, that would be the first thing. And the second part would be partnership.

The inference here is that they’re using somebody else’s brand to promote their practice, where you could do this in dentistry. Now, we did a few little examples here.

What if you were to partner with a local gym, for example. And you could say, we’ll just come up with an idea. What if we had the Fitness First wellness check? So that could be a product that you could run like McDonald’s, maybe you run it for a couple of months and you promote it.

And you go and see Fitness First or whoever it happens to be and you say, “I’ll tell you what. For the next few months, let’s run a Fitness First wellness check.” As dentists, you know, we know that the mouth is the window to the body and so we’ll create a check, which is basically a dental exam. And we’ll create that check. It’ll be the Fitness First wellness check.

You get the boost of having a known brand there. At the end of the appointment, you say, maybe you give them a little report that’s got a bit of co-branding on it for their wellness check. And indeed, maybe you speak to your local Fitness First people, give them this voucher and they can get a free workout.

So, making sense? So the problem for most dental practices, your brand is frankly very poorly known. Except if they say, oh yeah, I go and see Dr. Blogs or whatever. Most people in the public don’t know that. And so this is a way of piggybacking on someone else’s brand.

So, one example we gave was a gym. Another one, you could do it with like a restaurant. Maybe like a sort of healthy choice restaurant. And you could have a healthy choice check up. And again, you could have some kind of interplay but you’re using a brand that’s known.

For the other one, is if you use a not so much a brand that’s known but an idea that’s known. And we thought of the dinosaur kids club check up. And the idea is that you come to the dentist.

If you’ve got a particularly outgoing dentist, you could get them wearing maybe a dinosaur kind of hat or something. Or maybe they could have a dinosaur on their mask.

The kids come and have what is a regular dental check-up but then they get, from the local museum or whatever the case is, like a colouring in sheet. Maybe they could get a sticker. Something that sort of brings that other branding to the experience where the kids go, no I’m not just going to see the dentist, I’m going to the dinosaur kids club.

Hopefully this is making sense, the idea of branding potentially partnering with another business or finding a way to brand some of your services. Because we want to get a boost from this, someone else’s brand.

Second idea. What about something around charity? And the idea we have there was what if you could call it something like this, the RSPCA charity check up. So you’re using some branding that’s quite well known and there would be some others that you could use there. And you could do this on a certain day of the week. This could be for a month or a quarter.

And it’s the charity check up and at the end of the appointment, you could give them some literature. Maybe they could get a sticker that says, “I helped the RSPCA.” And have your logo on the bottom of it. To give you an idea, a page of stickers is like nothing. You could print it all in-house yourself.

You could have some literature. You could have something you give them which tells them about the RSPCA. And indeed, says how then coming to see you, how that benefits there. So that’s another way where you’re using someone else’s branding and in this case, it’s a charity.

Now the last idea that we came up with is licensing. Let’s imagine a Mickey Mouse soft toy. So we could have the Mickey Mouse tooth club.

Now some of you at the moment are thinking, well how can I do that? How can I use the Mickey Mouse if I don’t own the intellectual property? But the fact is, if you are giving away a Mickey Mouse item then whoever has purchased the licensing for that item, they can use that branding. No problem.

The fact is that whoever’s produced this soft toy, they’ve already purchased that licensing and there’s no reason why you can’t use it. As long as the Mickey Mouse tooth club it’s very clear that, that is … that they, as a result of being in this tooth club, that they’re going to get a Mickey Mouse toy at the end of their appointment, then there’s no issue with using that.

So I hope that makes sense. So it’s possible, whoever has purchased the licensing … because I can assure you in the case of a soft toy, it isn’t Disney manufacturing. It’s somebody else’s manufacturing. They purchased the licensing and as part of those licensing rights, if you’re giving away that soft toy, then you can mention Mickey Mouse.

Can you imagine from a kids’ point of view how much more attractive it would be to go to the Mickey Mouse tooth club than to go to the dentist? And there would be countless examples. So I hope that makes sense. How to use McDonald’s branding genius in your practice.

You can grab somebody else’s branding. Maybe do a partnership. Reciprocal thing like with a gym or whatever the case may be. Borrow a charity’s name. They’d love it. And we could have the RSPCA charity check up.

McDonald’s is very good at that McHappy Day. Maybe you do something similar to that. Otherwise straight out licensing. Whether it’s Mickey Mouse or whatever the case may be. Hope that makes sense. I know it’s a lot of ideas there but have a look and see if there’s one of those you can use in your practice.

It could make a big difference. Because in my view, from most dental practices, the problem you face is your branding is basically unknown. And if you can piggyback with some other branding. I can assure you for most clients, they don’t know your brand that well. Piggyback with another one and off you go.