Dental Marketing: Targeting Baby Boomers


Melinda SpitekAttracting Today’s Hottest Dental Demographic:
Patients Over 60!

Special Marketing Feature
By Melinda Spitek, Hycomb Marketing

They say age 60 is the new 50 — and it’s so true. Baby Boomers refuse to give up their grip on Eternal Youth. For two good reasons: first, they’ve had better healthcare (particularly better dental care) than any generation in history. And second, they have the time (and, more importantly, the means) to buy the youthful appearances they desire.

Age sixty used to mean dentures — and sometimes it still does. But now it can also mean lucrative cosmetic enhancements, tooth whitening, and much more.

But one important caveat: no two older patients are alike! There’s a huge difference between a 51-year-old business executive and a 70-year-old widow. Hence, consider the following points in evaluating potential older patients:


  • Make a point of really knowing the patients you want to reach. Many companies advocate sending direct mail to every household in a zip code or more. We don’t — we choose a mailing list from a targeted group that fits the practice. One size does not fit all!
  • Don’t offer Senior Citizen Discounts! Believe it: your prime patient audience doesn’t want to hear those words! And they’re capable (and expect) to pay full fee!
  • Build personal relationships with this valuable demographic. They treasure personal attention. Be ready to give it to them
  • Make your communications friendly to their age-set. That means friendliness — but with respect. Your written communications should be in large, easy-to-read print. They don’t like being reminded they can’t see as well as they used to!
  • And remember: respect includes honorifics. Give each patient the courtesy to tell you what they would prefer to be called. Address patients — all of them — as Mr., Mrs., or Ms. As younger employees may not automatically address patients this way, it should be the rule of the practice, not something that is open for interpretation.



Remind these patients they now have more free time, more opportunity — and that they deserve what you have to offer!

How does your dental practice address patients: with formal honorifics,
or on a casual first-name basis?
This etiquette question is one all dental practices should consider. Do you have thoughts on the subject? Post your comments below!

Melinda Spitek is CEO of Hycomb Marketing Inc. Hycomb was founded in 1980 for the purpose of helping dentists with dental practice marketing. Melinda has had plenty of hands-on experience as well, having worked 23 years in dental offices. For help with marketing, just call Hycomb at (800) 523-6961 or visit


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