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Practice Marketing 101

Practice Marketing 101

Much of marketing involves testing which is a fancy word for trial and error. My dad was considered Madison Avenue's top copywriter back in the day. One of the original Mad Men.

His client roster was a who's who of Fortune 500 companies.  When he would submit copy to a client the copy would always be tested on a very small slice of the client's database. If the test produced the desired percentage of response than it would be used for the entire database.

If not, back to the drawing board. You can increase your chance of success by getting surveys done first which you can then base your promotion on. My dad wrote his copy instinctively without surveys.

But surveys cost money and most dental practices, especially dental offices that are struggling with new patients, have a fairly limited marketing budget. So what to do?

Keeping track of each marketing action’s results is a vital management function for any dental practice . You can try different marketing actions to see what produces response with the best ROI.  What will work in one town may not work in another town. Door hangers might work great for you. In another town they may not. They may even be a turnoff. Who knows until you do some testing?

Equally as important is what the offer will be. For example a discounted new patient exam might produce a response in your area or it might not. Perhaps an offer of teeth whitening will produce the desired response. It's all about testing (trial and error) to see what works for the best ROI.

With our clients we like to approach marketing as follows:

1. Institute a good internal marketing program which success is based on assigning responsibility of it to one staff member and monitoring the program with weekly statistics. For an established practice, we generally find that's all we need to do to generate the number of new patients needed for the practice.

2. If internal marketing alone does not produce the desired results we recommend looking first at the least expensive overall marketing actions available such as newspaper ads where financially feasible (rural and suburban towns), websites  with SEO work as well as Google PPC campaigns provided you have somebody who knows what they're doing.  Websites done correctly (see Dr. Mike Barr's book) can be a bit costly but the  the costs are up front for the most part so once the website is up you're really only talking the cost of maintenance and the hosting fee on a monthly basis. Improving signage at you dental practice location can be one of the best ROIs.  In fact, good office signage would probably be the first thing to do as far as external marketing.

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Dr. Jeremy Johnson, DDS, Monroe, WA

Dental Consultant  WashingtonI'm extremely happy with my decision to utilize Cambridge Dental Consultants. My dental practice consulting has been awesome! I love that I can call or email him whenever and always get a quick response. He even calls and checks in if he hasn't heard from me for a bit. My production increased immediately after the first in-office visit and has continued to climb. The initial investment was recouped in increased production about seven weeks after our first meeting.

My average per day production for the first four months I worked with Cambridge Dental Consultants has been 20-25% higher than the prior two years. In fact, all of the four months have had higher average per day production than ANY month in the two years prior to working with Mike.

Last month I produced more than I ever have in one month since starting my practice in 2003. On top of that is the fact that my staff is driving all of this growth! They tell me which op to go to and when, then they get all excited when we exceed our goals! These four months have been the best months of my career!

That's a lot of exclamation points! This is all to suggest that you give Cambridge Dental Consultants a call.

Dr. Shane Blake, DDS, Coudersport, PA

Shane BlakI have owned my dental practice since January 2005.  The practice is a rural solo provider practice.   The practice has always been successful but something was always lacking.   I did not manage the practice by the numbers and its shortfalls were overcome by sheer determination and hard work for both myself and the staff. 

My motivating factors to sign up with Cambridge Dental Consultants in January of 2017 were that I had reached a point in my career where time with my family was worth more to me than the professional fulfillment that dentistry can provide.  The practice was so micromanaged that it required most of my time and I didn’t understand how to motivate both myself and my staff beyond the sheer nose to the grindstone path to success that had guided us the prior 12 years. 

Cambridge Dental Consultants was instrumental in educating each staff member in what expectations are and how performance for each position is measured.   Staff members became more aware of their part in the overall success of the practice and doing their part.  Ultimately this led to a less stressful and more productive average day which decreased management stress and headaches and allowed life to be enjoyed just a little bit more with a little more time. 

We have had many changes in the practice after our initial integration over the last 1 ½ years.  Cambridge Dental Consultants has been helpful in navigating those planned and unplanned changes.  My only regret is I had not use Cambridge''s systems sooner.

Dr. Kristin Rushing, DDS, Nashville, TN

Dental Consultant TennesseeI used Cambridge Dental Consultants as well, it gave me a good foundation for employees to know what was expected of them as well as very detailed job descriptions that could be used to train new employees if I needed to replace a staff member. My dental practice consulting made me more  knowledgeable about what my numbers and percentages should be but also things to look for when they are off.

Everyone is accountable for their numbers and communicate better as a team. We all want to be more productive and time was spent looking into my specific concerns as well as reviewing all facets of the business. Everything was reviewed including input from staff on ways to improve the office. I feel the morale in my office has changed and we are overall headed in a much better direction. As a side note, I've used a different consultants previously and their motto was simply to increase production. Patients felt pressured and we still had communication issues among the staff.

Dr. Andrea Mulholland, DDS, Columbus, OH

Dental Consultant FloridaI have been the owner of a general dental practice for ten years now. I work four days a week and have an associate who is with me for three days.

The practice has always done well but I knew there were many aspects of it that needed improvement but I didn't know how to proceed. I researched several practice management companies but decided to go with a Cambridge Dental Consultants because of their good reputation and because I didn't feel pressured.

Cambridge Dental Consultants worked with me for the past year and a half and he has helped my practice tremendously. He really knows the ins and outs of a practice but I appreciated that he didn't use a cookie-cutter approach. He really treated my practice like the individual practice that it is and I didn't feel pressured to follow any suggestions that I wasn't comfortable with.

I know there are a lot of dental practice consultants out there. I just really feel like Cambridge Dental Consultants is one of the best and was the best for me and my practice..

Dr. Ron McHargue, DDS, Moses Lake, WA

Dental Consultant New York Nassau CountyI was fresh out of school when I bought my practice in 2012. It came riddled with staff issues and I had no knowledge of business. I thought I could handle it and went for a year and a half before really coming to the realization that I was in over my head. I was stressed completely and needed help with staff issues and business advice.

I contacted Cambridge Dental Consultants because of what I read on Dentaltown and because of their fair price and money back guarantee. Our Cambridge Dental Consultant was very helpful in getting me over a couple of big hurdles dealing with staff. I now have a direction and a good plan for tracking numbers and keeping a pulse on my practice. I was hesitant to even hire a consultant, but I am very glad I did and wouldn't hesitate to get Cambridge back and work with them again

Dr. Ed Warr, DMD, Ashland, OR

Dental Consultant  OregonMy experience with Cambridge Dental Consultants has been great. In June of 2014 I was very concerned as my year was down by about 6% from the previous year. I had used dental practice consultants before and hadn't liked any of them. But, I knew I needed help with what I did not know - I went to school to earn a DMD, not an MBA.

After researching several and having several phone conversations regarding their methods, I committed with Dental Consultants.

Their money back guarantee was a nice touch to lower the risk factor for me. So, I finished 2014 up 8% over 2013. In six months, Dental Consultants helped me introduce practices that helped me have a 14% turn around in six months. I whole heartedly recommend Cambridge and their services.

Dr. Jeffrey D. Weaver, DDS, Port Royal, SC

Dental Consultant South CarolinaWe have been using Cambridge Dental Consultants since Dec 2013. We are really just getting started, but so far everything has been great. They really have given us the tools to quickly get our team focussed, and have created systems and measurable statistics for each area. YTD for 2014 compared to 2013, our production is up 12% (over $20,000).

Our office felt "stuck", like we simply did not know what we should be doing to get better. We knew the potential was there, but did not know the next steps to take. What we liked from the start is that Cambridge dental consultant has been in every type of office and seen every type of problem/issue there is. Their ideas are proven and, so far, we have been very happy with the results. Our team is really pleased with the direction we are going.

We built our office in 2007 and, had we known, would have started with a dental practice management consultant much sooner. Good luck with your decision. I think you will be very pleased with Cambridge Dental Consulting.

 

 

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