Dental marketing comes down to one question: How much are you willing to pay for new patient acquisition?
You can figure out your return on investment(ROI) when you compare the average dental marketing cost of getting one new patient to the average profit you make from that new patient.
We wanted to know if dentists factor ROI into their dental marketing plans, so we conducted a survey asking dentists how much they would be willing to pay to acquire one new dental patient.
Jim Du Molin and Julie Frey discuss typical dental patient acquisition costs and their return on investment:
“Our actual cost through our marketing efforts works out to be $100-150 per new patient,” said a Pennsylvania dentist.
“My projected value per patient is $2,300, so paying a few hundred dollars to get them in my door is a no-brainer,” said a Texas dentist.
“I’d be willing to pay up to $300 a patient, and I would pay more for veneers or implant patients,” said a New Jersey dentist.
Half of dentists responding to this survey are willing to pay $150 or more for each new patient.
That’s not surprising. The Wealthy Dentist has calculated that the average value of a new patient at a typical dental practice is about $1,400 over the first nine months.
However, it is surprising to find that 30% of dentists aren’t willing to pay more than $50 per new patient, when there is clearly still plenty of room for profit at higher new patient acquisition costs.
It’s important to make this point clear:
You can face legal trouble if you’re paying for a van full of new Medicaid patients to be delivered to your door. However, when you do dental marketing, you’re not paying for new patients per se – you’re paying for new patient leads.
And there are no legal problems with paying for new patient lead generation. The dental marketing company isn’t enrolling a patient at your practice; they’re just putting you in touch with a potential new patient who’s expressed interest in dentistry. Not only is there nothing wrong with that – it’s actually a great idea.
Do you factor the cost of new patient acquisition and ROI into your marketing plan?