Festivals Are for Dental Practices, Too!

Editorial
by Jim Du Molin

Summer’s here, and it’s festival time for your dental marketing!

Just about every community has a summer festival of one sort or another. In the last month alone, my little town of Tiburon, California has had a wine festival (we have no vineyards), an arts festival (I’m sure we have artists), an antique auto show (yes, we have cars) and a “Friday Night on Main Street” get-together (people eating and drinking in the street while listening to music). However, I’ve yet to see a “Shark Festival,” although tiburon is Spanish for “shark.” I have yet to see a local dentist take advantage of these marketing opportunities, though I can imagine a giant Jaws-style shark float with big teeth.

On a national level, I can report on at least one great creative approach to festival marketing by a dental office. Dr. Jim Sparaga and his wife Kathy of Machias, Maine, put together a great float for their town’s Wild Blueberry Festival. That’s Dr. Jim driving the tractor with some kids from his practice riding the float. And yes, those are blueberries stuck in the giant smile.

On the other side of the float he had his team passing out balloons. Needless to say, they won first prize for this creative endeavor – not to mention a tremendous amount of local good will and recognition for the practice.

I’m still trying to figure out what the chair on the back of the float was for, but let’s not quibble about the details. If you have done some festival marketing, feel free to email your photos and ideas to Jim@TheWealthyDentist.com.

Dental Care Reform: Senate To Require Dental Veneers

Cosmetic Dentistry USA: dental veneers for all AmericansIn an unexpected bipartisan move, Democratic and Republican senators will announce on April 1st that they will supplement the health care reform bill with a comprehensive reform of dental care in the USA.

“Americans are typically considered to have perfect teeth,” said Senator McGrin (R-CA) at a press conference Tuesday. “What is at stake is nothing less than our country’s international reputation.”

“We will do whatever it takes to stay #1 in the world,” agreed Senator Smilestein (D-NY), also speaking at the press conference. “Our plan will guarantee dental veneers for every man, woman and child in the US.”

Under the proposed plan, dental veneers would become mandatory for all Americans in 2014.

Well-known for having a perfect smile himself, President Barack Obama is expected to support the bill.

Cosmetic dentistry is a right!” declared Sen. McGrin. “For too long, dental makeovers have been limited to those who can afford them. It’s simply not fair. Mandatory veneers will level the playing field, teeth-wise.”

Those who have had braces or who have naturally perfect teeth may be able to apply for a special waiver. However, these individuals would be required to undergo yearly exams from a cosmetic dentist. At the first sign of decay or yellow teeth, porcelain veneers would be immediately required.

But not everyone is thrilled with the new legislation. In fact, Tea Party conservatives and ACLU liberals have joined forces to protest the bill. “Requiring cosmetic dentistry is un-American,” declared Glenn Beck of Fox News. “I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I completely agree with Glenn Beck,” replied the president of the ACLU.

“Who is going to pay for universal cosmetic dentistry?” asked Beck. “The Congressional Budget Office has projected that mandatory veneers or lumineers for all Americans will cost the country half a trillion dollars over the next five years. High-income Americans are taxed enough already. And don’t think that higher taxes to pay for this will be limited to people in the upper income brackets. You’re going to see tax increases for middle-income Americans also, if this goes through.”

While the National Dental Organization supports the measure, opponents have loudly challenged the measure. “What’s next?!? Dental implants and dentures for children? Braces for seniors?” demanded one protester. “Why should fat-cat dentists get a special break?”

James Du Molin, president of dental website TheWealthyDentist.com, replied, “Dentists, like other small business owners, are the backbone of our economy. Why are we bailing out banks and other megacorporations? It’s small businesses, like the privately-owned dental office, that create 80% of the new jobs in America.”

Overall, Senators McGrin and Smilestein remain unfazed. “Government-sponsored veneers are the perfect blend of socialism and capitalism,” said Sen. Smilestein. “We’re confident that this solution will satisfy everyone… and cement America’s position of having the best-looking teeth in the world!”

Root Canals are the Most Profitable Procedure in Dentistry (video)

root canalsWhen a Virginia dentist was asked about the cost of root canals, he responded by saying, Root canals are the most predictable and profitable procedure in dentistry.  Dentists who do not do endo lose on the average $90,000!”

Do you believe this to be true?

The Wealthy Dentist conducted a survey that asked dentists about their root canal therapy fees.  Not all dentists agree that performing root canal treatments is worth the money.

“I have never been happier since I was told by a dental consultant: what would you rather do on a Saturday morning, play golf or do a root canal?” said a California dentist.

To hear more of what dentists had to say about root canal fees, please click play and watch the following dental survey video

Would you like to take part in our surveys?  Be sure to sign up for our email newsletters to the right.  Our survey question newsletter comes out every Friday.

What are your thoughts on root canal treatment?

For more on the cost of root canals see: Cost of a Molar Root Canal? $1,000

Take Advantage of Your Existing Patient Base

 

Melinda SpitekHow to Add Profitability — Without Adding Patients!
Special Marketing Feature
By Melinda Spitek, Hycomb Marketing

We all love to get new patients, but a lot of the dentists I consult with aren’t aware of the gold mine they’re sitting on: high value current patients!

My office is located in California’s Wine Country, where the marketing of wine is a Great Big Deal. Did you know that less than 10% of the population purchases more than 80% of all wine sold? That’s a critical core consumer group. You find it mirrored again and again in other industries and enterprises.

And dentistry is no exception! There are five basic components of a successful internal dental marketing strategy:

 

  • Information value (keeping your patients up-to-date on what you offer),
  • Educational value (teaching your patients about important health issues),
  • Repetition value (reminding your patients that you are their dentist and that they might be past due for recare),
  • Consistency, and
  • Consistency.

 

 

We are so inundated with information these days that people forget faster than ever. That’s why it’s never been more important to have an ongoing internal marketing program— and a realistic idea of what it can accomplish.

As an example, consider sending a regular newsletter to your entire patient base. Such a strategy provides:

 

  • Information and educational value,
  • Repeated name recognition,
  • A tangible link to your practice,
  • Flexibility of involvement (your office can be closely tied to development of the materials, or not involved at all), and
  • Cost-effective promotion to high-value current patients.

 

 

I’m often asked, “Do patients read newsletters?” I’ll be honest. Chances are a quarter of them will toss it without reading a word. But, even so, they will recall your name and know it came from you. Maybe half will read some of the newsletter with your name reminding them that you are their dentist. Maybe a quarter will read it cover to cover and be stimulated!

I’d compare this strategy to a political campaign. How could signs reading ROSS FOR GOVERNOR — absent any information about ROSS — motivate a vote? It’s the accumulative effect of these reminders on an individual’s memory that stimulates action.

That is the effect a sustained internal marketing effort can have on growing the productivity of your existing patient base.

Melinda Spitek is CEO of Hycomb Marketing Inc. Hycomb was founded in 1980 for the purpose of helping dentists market their practices. 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 www.hycomb.com.

Impacted Wisdom Teeth: Does Removing Them Really Matter?

pulling impacted wisdom teethWhen asked if impacted wisdom teeth automatically should be removed, over half the dentists surveyed felt they should usually be removed, but not always. Some pointed to the fact that this is a skilled procedure where the dentist needs to have experience in the removal of wisdom teeth.

“If they have the TRAINING and EXPERIENCE there is no reason why a generalist should not be extracting impacted wisdom teeth,” advised one dentist. “This applies to almost any “specialty” service . . .”

In this dental survey, 53% felt wisdom teeth should usually be removed, but not always; while 40% were evenly split between 20% warning that impacted wisdom teeth almost always need to be extracted, and 20% stating many impacted wisdom teeth do not need to be removed; and 9% insisted that impacted wisdom teeth need to be extracted.

Here are some dentist comments:

  • “I have been removing wisdom teeth for more than 26 years. The vast majority of impacted wisdom teeth
    should be removed before age 20 to simplify the procedure for both the patient and the dentist. The need to remove these teeth later in life is a much more complicated and risky procedure. There is too much potential risk to leave wisdom teeth impacted for most patients.” (Arkansas dentist)
  • “Use common sense. You need to have a reason why the procedure is done . The patient needs to be better off because of the procedure.” (New York dentist)
  • “I have seen too many 50+ year olds with impacted third molars contributing to to the loss of second molars due to attachment loss.” (California periodontist)
  • “I had a 73 year old man whose #1 erupted and had to be removed. Better to get them out early while recovery/surgery is not so complicated.” (Texas dentist)
  • “Age is the most important variable.” (General dentist)
  • “3rd molars ought to be evaluated for each patient to determine whether or if surgery is indicated. After 50 years of practice, I have seen many untreated impacted 3rd molars, but very rarely a problem from them.” (Missouri dentist)
  • “If they’re there and functional, clean, so be it! Also depends on the age. I’m not about to tell a 80 year old lady she has a perio-pocket on #32 D and if she’s not able to keep it clean, it needs to go!” (New York dentist)
  • “Of course it depends on your experience, training and comfort level, but any GP can learn how to do this. Note that if it were not for wisdom tooth extraction and dental implants, OMS specialists would have nothing to do with dentistry!” (General dentist)

Read more: Does Removing Impacted Wisdom Teeth Really Matter?

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