Planning to Grow Your Dental Practice: Try these Creative Ideas to Receive a Greater Valuation
Today there is competition for every type of business from consumer goods to all different services. People choose to shop for the perfect dentist just as they shop for the perfect pair of jeans and the best grocery prices. It is no wonder why many small dental practices are having an issue staying competitive when they are competing against the larger chains with deep pockets for executive marketing personnel. However, with a little creative thinking and research, small practices can develop a niche in which they can build a brand, and before they know it, they will have the right patients knocking on their doors.
Dentists can become experts in the management of dental treatments for a specific type of patient. Individuals that have a specific need as oncology patients, cardiac patients or even athletes also have specific needs when it comes to dentistry. Becoming an expert in the management of a specific community can gain the respect and trust of many.
Patients who are suffering from cancer spend much of their time in hospitals and doctors’ offices. It is very important that a dentist and his/her staff understand the patient’s treatment and how it affects the patient orally.
• Dentists should study the effects of various cancer treatments.
• Read articles and meet with oncology professionals to gain an understanding from all aspects. Once you have the respect of other professionals, they may refer you to their patients.
• Meet with the patients and discuss all options with extreme care and compassion.
A dentist that is well educated in the management and treatment of active oncology will gain the respect of the local oncology community and in return be able to touch lives and gain more patients through word of mouth as well as professional referral.
Many cardiac medications have various effects on an individual’s dental health. Cardiac physicians are often looking for educated dentists to which they feel confident and comfortable referring their patients.
• Contact well-established cardiac physicians to build a working relationship. Find out what their concerns are for their patients regarding dental health.
• Study all of the effects of the current medications. This way, when a patient lists his or her medications, you are well aware of which have an effect on their dental health.
There is no current specialized dental field for medically compromised patients. This leaves it to the dentist to become self-educated. It only takes impressing one patient with your knowledge of their ailments to gain leads and referrals.
Becoming educated about medical issues is not the only way to grow a specialized reputation. Athletes also require specific care and treatment.
• Understand the effects of current sports fads such as supplements and sports drinks.
• Know how to help protect your patients against trauma and how to assist them if an accident occurs.
• Work with local sports teams to speak about the importance of wearing proper protection.
The sports community is large and positive reviews will travel quickly. This is a great field in which to become an expert and your efforts will generate many leads.
Once you have established the area(s) that best suits your practice there are many ways that you can spread the word.
• Write a blog
• Create YouTube videos
• Get your current patients to give you a shout out on Yelp
• Speak at local community events
Be certain to place links on your website to all social media or articles that promote your expertise. You can even hire or outsource a social media assistant or have a social media expert train one or two of your staff members to help out with these social publishing activities. A little effort and consistency in the right activities can go a long way for your practice.
Small and large dental practices alike need to use creative methods to identify a market and to gain respect of the community. A plan to become an expert in areas such as oncology, cardiac medicine, or athletics can help increase a dental practice’s valuation.