While increasing case acceptance and attracting new patients are essential for practice growth, there’s no better strategy to scale your practice than improving patient retention.
Patient retention is one of the most important aspects of running a dental practice. Let’s face it: People don’t enjoy going to the dentist, which is why more important than not, patients conjure up a myriad of excuses for why they can’t show up to their dental appointments. But by missing dental appointments and neglecting dental preventive and restorative care, patients are negatively impacting, not only your practice — but also their own health.
The ultimate challenge as a dental professional is to help your patient understand the value of their appointment and what it could mean for their dental health and overall health.
Listen to this podcast and adopt a few tactics to BOOST patient retention and provide a better overall patient experience. This is what we discuss in the Raving Fans Podcast!
Debbie Seidel-Bittke, RDH, BS, is a practicing dental hygienist and founder of dental practice solutions.
Click the link below to hear Dr. Len Tau and Debbie discuss how to get new patients in your door, as well as how to reactivate overdue hygiene patients. Debbie will also share her top five patient retention strategies to BOOST your practice growth.
When you listen, you will also learn how to reduce those last-minute appointment changes in your daily schedule and a few tips to improve your current patient experience so patients “want” to return to your dental office.
WHY THERE’S CURRENTLY A SHORTAGE OF DENTAL HYGIENISTS (02:41)
HOW TO PREVENT PATIENTS FROM CANCELING THEIR APPOINTMENTS (05:59)
THE IMPORTANCE OF DEVELOPING AN APPOINTMENT PROCEDURE (14:21)
COST-EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES FOR NEW PATIENT GROWTH (18:31)
HOW TO REDUCE LAST APPOINTMENT MINUTE CHANGES (22:38)
TIPS ON GETTING PATIENTS TO ATTEND THEIR REVALUATION VISITS (25:05)
Check out the information to keep patients on your schedule and our biggest growth strategy called Lifetime Whitening. All the web portal information is no cost when you use our Celebrity Smiles Teeth Whitening System. Learn more here.
The arrival of summer brings with it new hope for sustainability and greener pastures. As more people become aware of the rising threat of global warming, we can see more improvements in the way businesses — large and small — continue operations.
Sustainable practices have been around for quite some time. This movement encourages people to choose less wasteful methods and products for use in their daily lives. And while the biggest target of the sustainability movement is the bigger corporations, dental practices, too, are now using sustainability in business.
Have you implemented green policies in your dental practice? If not, here are seven ideas you can use right now in your business.
Choose to Go Paperless
Going paperless is a great way to optimize your dental practice workflow. It can make setting appointments more convenient for clients. Plus, automated forms are much more reliable than paper, since paperwork can easily be misplaced. There are over a dozen available software for clinics to buy and download.
A few examples are:
There are many other applications and software you can try besides the ones mentioned on this list. Take the time to look research them online to find the perfect app that fits your needs.
Partner With Sustainable Businesses
Partnering with other sustainable businesses can help bring your sustainability goals to fruition. Green businesses use environmentally friendly production processes in their operations, reducing their environmental impact and improving carbon emissions. By partnering with these companies, you — in turn — reduce your energy consumption and as a result decrease your carbon footprint.
Consider switching to a green bank that uses sustainable practices during transactions. You can also transfer to green utilities and energy providers, like Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, and Southern Company — among others. Lastly, consider stocking all-natural oral care products from toothpaste to dental floss.
Use Organic or Eco-Friendly Scrubs
Organic or ethical scrubs are now available in most medical practices — including dental practices. Besides reducing your carbon footprint, one of the best things about these products is that they enhance blood circulation and help increase tissue oxygenation. As a result, your body maintains consistent optimal body temperatures, even while you’re hard at work.
There are plenty of brands that now offer ethical scrubs. A few that come highly recommended are Barco One, Bella Organics Medical, Mediclo, Figs and Skechers. Ethical scrubs can cost anywhere between $30 to $70 on up — so they aren’t inexpensive. However, with the right care, they can last you a long time and are incredibly good for the environment and your health.
Say Goodbye to Single-Use Plastics
The thing that most people don’t know about single-use plastics is that they don’t biodegrade. They just break down into microscopic particles that poison our environment. These microplastics end up in our water sources and food, ultimately entering our bodies later in the process.
Human exposure to microplastics is believed to cause oxidative stress in the body, according to researchers. It can also cause DNA damage and inflammation, among many other health conditions.
For dentists, surface barriers, plastic cups, and patient giveaway bags can all be substituted with more eco-friendly and reusable options.
A few examples include:
Metal or autoclavable plastic
Autoclave cassettes in reusable cloth
Reusable fabric bags
Minimize Hazardous and Chemical Wastes
Most dental facilities are already required to use amalgam separators due to the quantity of mercury they contribute to wastewater. Another thing you may do to help is to think about greener alternatives to amalgam restorations. Another technique to make a real impact is to use digital photographs rather than traditional film X-rays.
Order in Bulk
This could be the easiest method for your practice to leave a positive impression on the environment. Bundling orders result in less packaging and lower vehicular emissions.
When you buy in bulk, less vehicles are used to deliver a larger variety of dental office supplies. If you have your supplies delivered in larger quantities, larger packaging allows the delivery truck to be packed more efficiently. By using more efficient transportation, you’re also helping to save the environment by lowering CO2 emissions.
Switch to LED Lighting
LED lamps can last up to 20 times longer than conventional lighting. This not only helps the environment but also saves you money on electricity costs. Some LED bulbs have a lifespan of two to three years — or even decades.
Consider the long-term environmental benefits if everyone made this little change, e.g., less landfill waste, less production of new lights, and reduced shipping and packaging—three major criteria used to evaluate environmental problems.
Sustainability is not something that anyone can easily achieve in a year. It will take quite some time before you make any noticeable changes to your dental practice. The important thing is that you start as soon as you can. Your efforts will compound and eventually create a larger impact on the environment. Take time to read through the seven ideas we shared today. Try to apply them to your dental practice and see how far it takes you.
Thank you to our Guest Author Kartreena Sarmiento.
In many ways, this saying is true as good health allows us to function well and enjoy life’s greatest pleasures. This includes being able to perform tasks that are essential to our quality of life, which will also bring us overall happiness. It’s also something that no amount of money can bring us if our health is in disarray.
This is why we want to help our dental patients create their best health at all costs.
This is where the following health guidelines become very important to know only us but our dental patients who we care for.
Everyone is responsible for their own health. Many people have health conditions they may not even be aware exist. This is common because most of us live hectic lives.
Many people don’t realize that oral health is an essential factor that affects their total health. “How can this be”, you may ask? This is precisely what we will answer as you continue reading.
Let’s dive in.
1. Excessive Bacteria in the Mouth can Lead to Various Health Conditions
The mouth is an entry point to the body, meaning various bacteria and germs can enter through it. This includes the bacteria that currently exist in the oral cavity.
Typically, bacteria are in insignificant proportions, which means they are harmless. Oral bacteria is kept in control by flossing and brushing teeth routinely. It includes routine preventive care appointments with the hygienist and exams but the dentist. Even properly washing our hands and drying them effectively with something like a blade hand dryer are essential to our total health.
However, if optimal oral health is not present, the bacteria in our mouth can lead to gum infections, tooth decay and tooth loss, which lead to other health concerns.
Bacteria in the oral cavity enter our body through the blood stream and attach themselves to vital organs like the heart and lungs. This can lead to conditions like endocarditis and pneumonia, which become serious health conditions.
Therefore, our message to dental patients is the mouth is a gateway to our body and contributes to our total health.
Keep reading below to learn more about the research regarding oral health and its association between gum disease other other systemic diseases.
2. Periodontal (gum) Disease can lead to Pre-Diabetes and Diabetic Conditions
Research has established that there is a strong link between poor gum health and diabetes.1
Uncontrolled glucose (sugar levels) plays a key role in poor gum health.
Periodontal disease is the sixth complication of diabetes. Prevalence of severe periodontitis in diabetics as compared to non-diabetics has been found to be 59.6%:39%. The majority of well-controlled studies show a higher prevalence and severity of periodontal disease in diabetics than in non-diabetics with similar local irritation including greater loss of attachment, greater alveolar bone loss, increased bleeding on probing, and increased tooth mobility resulting in tooth loss.2
Therefore, if blood levels are higher than usual, consider this sign patient must take their oral health seriously. This is an important role for us as dental health and preventive specialists to understand our patients value points and speak to the benefits that support their total health.
This includes treating gum disease, routine preventive maintenance that support total health and gums. Optimal oral health supports improved glucose levels for patients with diabetes.
3. Periodontal (gum) Disease can lead to Alzheimer’s and Dementia
There is a strong link between periodontal disease and chronic Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer’s is a severe condition that typically affects aging adults. It results in a specific type of dementia, declining brain and other systemic functions, as well as memory loss. Alzheimers is more commonly seen in adults above the age of 65.2
The important message we must share with our dental patients is that oral health is essential to our total health. Optimal oral health helps but a halt to bacteria that travels through the blood stream which causes various systemic diseases.
Our message to patients must include optimal oral health. This means that dental professionals reinforce the mouth- body connection at each dental appointment.
Health is a blessing that allows us to live life to the fullest. It enables us to pursue our goals which require full physical and mental capacity.
Not many people realize that caring for their total well-being, also includes caring for their oral health.
As we have read in this research, there are many ways that oral health can affect our total health.
Harmful bacteria in the mouth can lead to various conditions linked to the heart, lungs, diabetes and also Alzheimers, just to name a few.
We hope this information proves helpful and inspires you to share the important message with your dental patients that oral health affects our total health. When we have optimal oral health we have a much better chance to live a happy and healthy life.
Yes, Health is our Wealth!
Optimal health is how we achieve wealth!
Optimal oral health is the most important message to patients in our dental office. This is one reason dental patients will return for their routine appointments.
This why your patients will pay for your services. Sharing this message of health with your patients makes them feel like you really care for them. It’s why they will become your raving fans and refer all their friends and family members to your office.
“Dental Professionals are in the business of helping their patients live a longer and healthier life!”
It’s not easy to run a dental practice. The dental profession has never been more demanding or stressful than it is now, and dental practice owners bear a significant portion of this strain or weight. Patients have never had more dental treatment alternatives. They can conduct a short internet search or create a quick social media post asking their friends for advice.
This means that mastering the art of running a successful dental office boils down to focusing on a few essential aspects of the entire patient’s experience. As a result, you can provide the best treatment to your patients while assisting your team and avoid unnecessary effort.
10 Helpful Tips To Improve Your Dental Practice.
Here are some simple yet effective techniques to improve the efficiency in your dental office right away:
1. Expand Your Services
Consider strategies to increase your offering to improve value, boost your competitive position, and stimulate the curiosity of potential patients when it’s time to expand your patient base. For example, perhaps the size of your current dental practice limits your production potential, and you’re considering enlarging or hiring more staff.
Just keep a few things in mind to get the proper balance. You never want to overwork your team or make adjustments that negatively impact the patient experience. Hence, you can carefully analyze the resource allocations required to make this adjustment vital.
2. Provide Flexible Financial Options
Patients like to pay using different payment options. By providing multiple choices, patients would love to get treatments and return for ongoing dental care.
Aside from insurance coverage, accessible financial options include debit, credit, personal check, and cash. As a dentist, you can provide specific financing to ensure that personal financial situations do not influence dental health care selections.
3. Embrace Clinic Culture
Creating a positive and healthy workplace culture positively impacts the patient experience. Some of the most successful dental clinics have figured out fostering a positive work environment. Your clinic decoration and physical environment influence your clinic culture. Your distinctive method of doing things, when fine-tuned, can increase productivity, attract top talent, and keep patients coming back for more.
Gather all of your team members and have an in-depth talk about your dental clinic’s day-to-today operations. Also, discuss its long-term goals to establish and strengthen your clinic culture. Employees will be happier and more caring if they all work towards the same goal, and your dental clinic will grow.
4. Automate Your Billing Desk
Manual billing takes time and exposes you to the risk of human error. For example, tracking down patients to collect co-pays and processing insurance claims may be time-consuming and costly for all parties involved. Automated billing can help you get paid faster, offer your team more time to focus on other aspects of the business, and give you more peace of mind.
To get the work done right the first time, you should invest in top-rated billing software. If you have the resources to invest in automation, it is easier. When your staff spends less time preparing paper claims, you might be astonished at how much money you can save.
5. Train Your Dental Team/Hold Meetings Regularly.
Continuous dental team training is significant for keeping personnel happy, productive, and effective. Investing in training demonstrates that you care about their careers and can help to foster a positive work atmosphere that fosters success.
Every morning, meet with your personnel to go over the needs of patients who have appointments that day. During subsequent sessions, bring up any patient difficulties and brainstorm ways to avoid them from happening again. These meetings don’t have to belong; simply a quick huddle will do, but they can help enhance productivity significantly.
6. Improve Patient Experience by Empowering Your Patients.
Patients are swiftly adapting to the rise of digital communication tools, and they are better at ease knowing that they have fewer options for communicating with the clinic. Allow your patients to communicate in various ways, including over the phone, through text, via email, and snail-mail.
Allowing your patient to visualize exactly what they can expect during surgery requires crisp and straightforward communication. When it comes to dental work, patients have a lot of financial and medical worries. Take the time to determine the patient’s competitive advantages or seek guidance from an expert solution provider.
7. Delegate Tasks
Delegating duties and responsibilities enhances productivity, efficiency, and time management while also allowing you to focus on higher-level tasks. For example, consider delegating administrative work to team members or hiring a scribe. A group of highly qualified employees who are good at getting the work done right also helps reduce turnover rates and supply practices.
You’ll find more freedom in your day-to-today work as you delegate. Always have backups and plan ahead of time to handle typical workplace workloads and anticipate unexpected events. Delegating duties and empowering employees are both crucial aspects of gaining employer trust. Simplify your team’s schedules, offer some buffer time in their shifts, and allow them to work in the most meaningful way possible.
8. Improve Patient Referrals
Building a successful dental office requires positive evaluations and recommendations. People are more likely to trust a personal recommendation or a review provided by a real consumer than an advertisement. In addition, patient referrals are a terrific strategy to acquire additional patients into your clinic, even if you’re starting.
You can try a variety of dental referral program concepts. For example, encourage patients to suggest friends by providing a referral bonus scheme, such as free teeth cleaning or a special discount. For the same, you have to hand out a simple referral card that describes the deal at the end of the appointment.
WIIFM. One system that has worked well to increase new patient appointments and keep patients returning is Lifetime Whitening.
When patients come to your office they enroll in this program for a small fee and receive free teeth whitening as long as they return for routine appointments without breaking appointments last minute.
9. Upgrade Your Scheduling System
An excellent dental scheduling system does more than make it possible to schedule appointments. It improves patient flow, increases productivity, reduces stress for both patients and employees, and, as a result, adds to the high-quality service that your patients expect. In addition, you can provide outstanding customer service even while your clinic is closed by allowing patients to arrange appointments at any time.
Almost every dental practice management software provides a patient’s booking feature that you can integrate into your business’s website. Patients can make an appointment with only a few clicks, which your staff can confirm as needed.
10. Make Team Management Your Top Priority
Streamlining as much as possible is the best strategy to increase efficiency. But unfortunately, many employers and managers are unaware of the numerous ways they waste time and money. It’s not because of a massive leak that may sink the Titanic, but rather because of a series of minor leaks that go unnoticed until it’s too late.
Always plan ahead of time and think about what your employees require. Allow them to prioritize various aspects of their lives. When dealing with new guidelines, assist them in their essential work. Finally, use technology to set automated reminders for your personnel and your patients.
We hope you have understood the essential tips to improve your dental practice. By applying these tips, you can stand out in front of your competitors and take your dental practice to the next level.
If you want to improve dental practice quickly, the most essential thing is to build a website. With the website, you can improve your internal operations and provide a better dental experience to the users.
To create a website, approach a company that offers dental website design services. They have experience building such kinds of websites. Hence, they can understand your requirements and provide you with a solution that takes your dental practice to new heights.
Dentistry and technology change quickly. Dental materials, computer software, dental scanners, lasers, and the way patients whiten their teeth has improved dramatically!
To be your most profitable this year, you have so many choices and how will you choose the best of the best to bring in more new patients and keep your current patients returning to your office?
Your patients don’t know how great your clinical skills are but they do know how you make them feel when they are in your office and even when they are not in your office.
Keep reading to learn the best strategy to gain more new patients calling to schedule their first appointment. This one strategy will keep new patients returning to your dental office. It will also reduce those last minute changes in your schedule.
HOTTEST TRENDS WORLDWIDE
During the pandemic in 2020, teeth whitening and self-care become a hot topic. Zoom meetings have created a fast-growing trend for aesthetics and that includes high-end treatment such as veneers, crowns and implants and teeth whitening.
The teeth whitening market is a 6.4 billion-dollar business worldwide and it’s expected to grow to 6 percent annually by 2024.1
Now is your time to tap into teeth whitening and upgrade the way you deliver services to your current patients. Teeth whitening combined with a “Lifetime Whitening” program has also been a popular way for dentists to grow their new patient numbers.
For the past ten years, Dental Practice Solutions has supported dental offices around the world with a Lifetime Whitening program. Dentists announce their Lifetime Whitening program on their website.
To get patients motivated to want whiter teeth we provide you with marketing materials and images to use throughout your office. We have a training, la earning center, you can log into and get access to the marketing materials as well as communication, scripts (to customize) when patients call to change their dental appointment last minute. You have Lifetime Whitening enrollment forms and a lot more at your fingertips when you partner with Dental Practice Solutions to provide teeth whitening to your patients.
To enroll patients into your Lifetime Whitening program many offices charge a small fee, some use this as one level of their in-office dental patient “smile saver program” (Similar to an in-office dental plan) and some offices include the free whitening in their new patient fee.
Once patients are enrolled in the program, when they see their hygienist every six-months, or as scheduled (No last-minute changes), they receive a whitening wand (3.0 mL pen) at no additional cost.
Dentists can feel confident this one strategy will grow their dental practice. Teeth whitening products are purchased wholesale (deep discount) from Dental Practice Solutions and you have the tools to enroll patients into not only teeth whitening but the training area (Our online web portal of information)will help you serve your patients at the highest level possible.
Asking what patients what for their smile will help you enroll patients into higher-end, aesthetic services and keep them returning to your dental office.
NEW PATIENTS IN YOUR DENTAL PRACTICE
Lifetime Teeth Whitening using the Celebrity Smiles teeth whitening technology and the marketing program not only attracts new patients to schedule their 1st appointment in your office but they will return for scheduled appointments. Patients enrolled in Lifetime Whitening understand they can’t decide last minute that something better came up and call to “cancel” their dental appointment.
When patients keep their dental appointments they receive a free-whitening wand as a “thank you for keeping your dental appointments,” at their next hygiene appointment.
One important point about enrolling patients into the Lifetime Whitening Program is motivation to keep their dental appointments. It’s that WIIFM theory.
Whitening (pens) wands cost upwards of $25 on AMAZON and as a dental office enrolled in the Celebrity Smiles Wholesale (Reseller) Program you can purchase all the best dental-grade and sensitivity-free whitening products at wholesale prices.
Nowhere else can you go to purchase teeth whitening products for less. Our products are made with fresh ingredients and you can pick what ingredients you want inside your whitening wands.
Schedule a time to chat and we can suggest the best ingredients for your dental practice. We currently find the 35% Carbamide Peroxide with 6% Potassium Nitrate works great with the DUAL LED Light Technology but we do provide options for you.
LATEST TRENDS IN DENTAL OFFICE TEETH WHITENING PRODUCTS
The latest whitening trends include an LED Dual (Blue + Red LED) Light Wireless Mouthpiece.
This eliminates impressions, pouring models and making a whitening tray. The time for your employee to take impressions, prepare whitening trays, and then have patients return to pick up their trays, costs your more money than providing a patient with the Celebrity Smiles teeth whitening kit when they are enrolled in your Lifetime Whitening Program.
Dental Practice Solutions has a line of teeth whitening products that include (your choice) Carbamide Peroxide and 6% Potassium Nitrate. Dentists have the choice to customize their whitening serum to include Hydrogen Peroxide, Carbamide Peroxide, No Potassium Nitrate Fluoride or Potassium Nitrate Fluoride or BioMin Fluoride.
The patient kit includes 3 whitening wands, COOL Light Technology wireless mouthpiece, USB charger, How to Use Guide and Shade guide, all inside a beautiful box.
BENEFITS OF TEETH WHITENING IN THE DENTAL OFFICE
Your patients are currently on AMAZON shopping daily. Why not have them purchase their whitening from you; their dentist?
The prices on AMAZON for whitening kits are a lot more money than buying at your office. You buy wholesale and offer your patients (one whitening wand for no-cost at their hygiene appointment) whitening products for less money.
The Lifetime Whitening program motivates New Patients to schedule at your office and current patients are less likely to call and “cancel” their dental appointment last mninute.
Patients respect their dentist for the opportunity to discuss enamel-safe and sensitivity-free teeth whitening options.
We believe a smile evaluation compliments your new patient and dental hygiene appointments. It takes less than 60 seconds to find out how patients want their smile to look. You must be the advocate who asks your patients the motivational and open-ended questions.
If you ask your patients how they want their teeth to look, now your patients will tell you what they want.
We show you how to more easily ask these questions so patients end up feeling more confident about their smile.
The problem is that most clinicians think they are too busy during patient appointments to ask one simple, open-ended question that will open the door to not only tooth whitening but veneers, implants, Invisalign, etc.
Innovative aesthetic services create an environment where you will do more high-end dentistry and create numerous raving fans who refer all their friends and family.
Add the latest technology in teeth whitening and you create an atmosphere where people want to be.
Dental Practice Solutions allows you to easily transform your operatory into a Celebrity Smile Space where patients look forward to visiting.
Dental Practice Solutions offers Celebrity Smiles Teeth Whitening products to dental offices which provides fast results without more time in the dental chair for patients or employee time preparing whitening trays. It is 10-minutes to a whiter, brighter smile and without causing tooth sensitivity.
When your dental office offers Lifetime Whitening you encourage patients to schedule a new patient exam and then continually, these patients want to return for preventive care (and adjunctive services) at your dental office.
By choosing the best products for whiter teeth, you will make professional teeth whitening an enjoyable experience and your patients will want to return to your dental practice.
The COOL LIGHT Technology Dual (blue & red)LED Light mouthpiece allows patients to quickly whiten 2-6 shades in as little as ten minutes. After patients initially whiten their teeth, they can do a touch-up weekly or as needed. 10- minutes later they have white teeth again! Wha-La, A whiter, brighter smile!
The Celebrity Smiles Whitening Technology Differentiates You from other dental offices in your community. Promoting Celebrity Smiles Teeth Whitening in your dental practice gives patients confidence in their dentist who creates beautiful smiles.
When your patients feel you are the best of the best, they will refer their friends and family to your office. You will be a destination hot spot in your community for the hottest trend today; teeth whitening.
Dental Practice Solutions is dedicated to creating a healthy mouth and body which gives people something big to smile about. What the world needs now are more smiles.
We believe that sharing a confident smile can change our world.
Will you join us and create more beautiful, confident smiles?!
To learn more about how you can implement the Lifetime Smiles using Celebrity Smiles Teeth Whitening Products email us at:email@example.com or complete the wholesale application and we can help you get started.
Feel free to call our office with questions or to get started: 888-816-1511
Is your dental office a place your patients feel excited about?
It’s most difficult for people to love going to a dental appointment.
If we look at the most successful dental offices in the United States, we will discover they are a cross between a spa and beauty salon.
Let’s also look at one specific way that patients feel loyalty to a dental office.
Gaining patient loyalty is a sure-fire way to improve patient retention and increase patient retention in your dental office.
Here a list of the top ideas to make your practice a destination spot in your community:
Your Marketing Strategy- What is your USP? Why do people want to come to your office and why do the patients of record continue returning to your office?
Teeth Whitening System and Service
One of the ways we have helped dental offices grow their New Patient numbers is through free teeth whitening. Free teeth whitening included with the New Patient exam, full-mouth x-rays, and hygiene cleaning (Gum treatment is does not fall into this category).
All your patients of record should be enrolled in Lifetime Whitening which means they get a free whitening wand every 3 or 6 months (you can decide on the interval) when they do return for their routine preventive care appointment with the dental hygienist.
Free teeth whitening must be on your website and in various places throughout your office. Celebrity Smiles offers wholesale whitening kits and whitening wands with prices that make sense to give to patients who are loyal to your office.
When you use our LED Dual Light Mouthpiece and whitening wands for your Lifetime Whitening system, we provide you with marketing templates you can customize and use in your office and on your website. We have all the tools to support those last-minute calls to change dental appointments, scripts, and more templates to customize for your office.
You get a web portal of information that supports patients returning to your office and scripts to customize that help overcome the last minute calls to change dental appointments.
You know that saying, “It’s not how great people think you are that counts but it’s how you make them feel.”
So how do you make your patients feel?
How do people feel when they call your office?
How do patients feel when they walk in the door of your office and
Even more importantly, is your website. How does your website invite people to make a 1st appointment and what is on your website to motivate and inspire your current patients to visit your website?
Unless clinicians ask their patients what they want, the answer to more cosmetic services is a definite “No.”
How do you get this conversation started? It happens at every hygiene appointment and definitely at every New Patient exam.
As hygienists are reviewing health history and asking about chief complaints, they now ask the above question. Think of other ways to rephrase this open-ended question.
What are other ways you can ask the same question but in a different way?
Personally speaking, I may also ask, “If I could wave a magic wand and create the most beautiful smile imaginable, what would that look like?”
Try this for yourself and keep track of the answers you get.
Seldom does a patient tell you, “Nothing, I’m happy with my teeth!” Most will say, “I want whiter teeth.” Others will. Say, “I want straight teeth.”
Asking this open-ended question opens the door to not only more whitening services but it may lead to replacing old composites, placing veneers, crowns and possibly more Invisalign cases.
Always be sure to showcase oral hygiene products your offer, your best services, and the leading-edge technology you offer. Request more information and get started with the Celebrity Smiles whitening system and marketing available to grow your dental practice.
The best, most successful dental offices offer their patients more than bread and butter dentistry but they are the offices that deliver positive feelings stimulating positive emotions and senses of their patients. These are feelings of comfort, pleasure and even something different than most professional places they visit on a routine basis. Senses refers to the smell and the sounds in your office.
Celebrity Smiles is proud to deliver quality products and systems that help your dental practice grow.
It can feel like a daunting task to introduce a patient whitening system but it’s all worth it.
Teeth whitening is a billion dollar business and growing at a rapid rate so why not tap into this for your dental practice?!
Celebrity Smileshas been offering teeth whitening products to dental offices for the past 10 yrs. During the pandemic and the dental office shut-down in March 2020, we have upgraded the technology and moved away from whitening syringes to whitening pens (AKA: whitening wands).
No longer do you need to take messy impressions, pour models or make whitening trays. Patients do not need to sit in a dental chair with that “Laser” light for an hour. We’ve got you covered on this and our system will save you time as it brings in more production.
This Lifetime teeth whitening system offers dental offices marketing materials to grow their New Patient Numbers and also reduce those last minute (no good excuse to come to a dental appt) type of calls you get most days. Patients will value their dental appointments more because you offer them a no-cost whitening wand at their hygiene appointment.
It’s that WIIFMSyndrome that works to keep your patients returning for their appointments.
The Celebrity Smiles whitening products are 100% enamel-safe, have numerous patents, certifications and meet the FDA approval. We offer various percentages of Carbamide Peroxide with or without Potassium Nitrate, BioMin and Hydroxyapatite with or with out fluoride.
A question many dentists face is how to “sell” elective procedures to patients. We help you change this four-letter word into a more meaningful opportunity to “SERVE” your patients. And I tell you that “Whiter Teeth” is what over 70% of your patients want!
5 Ways to iIncrease Same-Day Services in Your Dental Practice Starting Today:
ASK. You know that saying, “Out of sight, out of mind”? It’s the same thing with aesthetic procedures. The dental hygienist and all the auxiliaries must be asking open-ended questions at each patient appointment so everyone understands what the patient wants. Ex: “What is one thing you would like to change about your smile?” Most patients respond they want whiter teeth. Easy solution to this but is your dental practice ready to respond with an easy, simple yet, cost-effective answer?
EDUCATION AND INFORMATION. Have you noticed that the more educated your patients are the easier it is to serve their dental needs? Discover what your patient values and then speak “with” them about benefits and take the conversation back to what they value.
MARKETING AND SOCIAL MEDIA. We provide our dental practices who use the Celebrity Smiles Whitening Program with marketing materials you can display around your office and on your website. With billions of people on social media all day it’s important you showcase your work and cosmetic dentistry on Facebook, Instagram and even Pinterest.
YOUR TEAM PLAYERS. So many dental office websites lack information about their key players……..the team! Your employees are your biggest asset. Help them to look their best. Make sure they have beautiful teeth and understand what a great clinician your are; doctor. They are the messengers that tell everyone about you and the great office they work in!
Every dental appointment is an opportunity for them to promote your elective services and some of these are super simple and highly profitable such as teeth whitening!.
5. Invest in Quality. Always make sure you work with quality dental companies that provide the most innovative, safe, and effective products available. We have so much information at our finger tips and it’s too easy to fall prey to bad products. Hint. Many teeth whitening products do not work and taut great results!
DYI teeth whitening products are available everywhere your patients go and yet, you are the expert on everything preventive care and dental. Make 100% certain that you are an industry leader offering exactly what your patients want.
Celebrity Smiles teeth whitening products have been the best, highest quality, with no-sensitivity, dental-grade teeth whitening available for the past ten years.
Dental offices have access to our wholesale prices (think deepest discount for highest quality ingredients) with a turn-key system that keeps your current patients returning for their scheduled appointments and helps you grow your New Patient numbers.
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A dental practice doesn’t simply wait until it gets patients through the door. Every successful dental clinic will do everything to reach new prospects, from digital business cards for dentists to email marketing. Email marketing is a powerful way to connect with patients and have more visits through your door.
Are you looking to build on your roster of patients? There are many ways to use email marketing to create your mailing list and get more conversions. Here are x tips to get more patients with email marketing for dentists.
Start With A Welcome Email
Some people only buy when they feel positive about a brand. This is why dentists often have a mailing list, where they connect with potential patients then welcome them warmly.
Every email you send should have a “welcome” email, preferably within 24 hours after someone signs up for your list. This email is meant for people to know you, so include your personal story, why your dental care is essential, and what you’re offering.
A welcome email can be a short and sweet email, personalized for the person. After joining the mailing list, they will receive an email with the welcome message, thanking them for their email subscription.
Include images, videos, and testimonials from patients you’ve helped. This will build trust and show that you’ve been in practice long enough to make a difference. You can also include your contact information and a “how can I help you” section to strengthen your connection further.
Brand Your Emails
A critical element for every email marketing is the branding of the email. Most people receive a few emails a day, mostly from businesses they care about or spam marketing. Uninterested people simply delete their emails or leave them unopen. However, branding your emails can make all the difference.
For starters, make a compelling subject line that makes the email fun. You want it cute, smart, or funny, encouraging customers to open the message and read its contents. Prepare a nicely designed email design with highly-valuable content.
Don’t forget about your email signature. Always include your name and contact information, together with a clear call to action on how to connect with you. A strongly branded email can make it stand out from the rest of the crowd and help add to your roster.
Share Do It Yourself (DIY) Oral Hygiene Tips and Tricks
The number one tip for getting more patients with email marketing for dentists includes DIY oral care tips and tricks. While most people appreciate professional dental care, they also understand tips to use independently.
You can share simple dental tips and can be quickly done at home. For example, you can include recommendations on brushing and flossing at home or using mouthwash. You can also share tips on teeth whitening and how to get rid of bad breath.
Dentists can also share tips and tricks on good nutrition, such as foods that are good for oral health. These can include fresh vegetables and fruits, which are great for your teeth and breath. Even if a patient does not intend to return immediately, this creates a stronger connection with your patients, turning losses into profits.
Send Email Reminders
Perhaps the most common form of email marketing is email reminders. Dental practices send reminders to patients about their appointments, billing, and other reminders. This lets patients know you’re on top of things and care about their care.
Include reminders for clients to return for follow-up appointments or reminders about billing. You can also send reminders about your bill due dates and payment schedules.
If there is an appointment, trickle the reminders to a month before, two weeks before, a week before, three days before, and the day before.
You could also include reminders about hygiene, such as regular professional dental visits and dental cleanings. Regular dental visits are important in maintaining oral health and avoiding dental emergencies.
Get People to Share Your Email with Their Friends
A great way to get more patients is to get them to share your emails with their friends. This increases your reach and expands your reach among your patients.
Include a “share” button in your email, along with text that encourages patients to share your emails with their friends. You can also include a “share” button on your website, so patients can easily share your content on social media.
Another way to get more patients with email marketing for dentists is to include referrals. Your mailing list is an ideal tool to let your patients know that you are recommending businesses or products that they have used and loved. You can include links to your recommended products or tell them more about the brands.
Send Emails About New Products and Services
Another way to get more patients with email marketing for dentists is to send information about new products and services. For instance, you can announce regular dental cleanings, teeth whitening treatments, or new products.
You can also announce new branches or locations. This lets patients know that your practice is growing and makes it easier to visit you. You can also send information about new services and treatments, such as cosmetic bonding, veneers, or braces. You can also announce new treatments and procedures.
Use Surveys and Polls
One great way to connect with your patients is by conducting surveys and polls. These effectively get feedback from your patients, which can improve your services and cater to your customers’ needs.
You can conduct surveys about dental care, and you can also ask your patients about their opinions. For instance, you can ask them if they’d like tips or advice on brushing and flossing or if they want suggestions for teeth whitening.
You can also conduct polls about your dental clinic. For instance, you can ask patients if they think dental care is essential, if they trust you, or recommend your dental clinic to a friend.
Help Your Patients Understand Their Dental Costs
Dentists can get more patients with email marketing by helping people understand dental care costs. Most patients want to receive price estimates but don’t want to haggle over costs.
You can send out price estimates, or you might want to develop online pricing calculators. These are effective tools that let patients easily understand your price estimates.
You can also use email marketing to explain dental costs. For instance, you can explain how your insurance works and what your out-of-pocket expenses may be. You can also include your prices and explain how your insurance covers specific treatments.
The Bottom Line
Getting more patients with email marketing for dentists takes time. However, most email marketing practices result in a higher ROI, so it’s worth the time and effort.
Every dental practice should have a strong email marketing practice to connect with more patients. Email marketing is an effective tool to expand your reach, grow your mailing list, and attract new patients.
Thank you to our guest blogger: Kat Sarmiento for her contribution.
I want to talk about the elephant in the room. Let’s take for example Ronda who is a twenty-year patient of Dr. Curry. Susan is her hygienist of ten years, but Ronda is out sick today. On this particular day the dental hygienists’ patient is schedule for a Prophy but Ronda, the patient, is NOT a Prophy!
To set the stage for the first challenge, Sally is the temp hygienist.
Sally is an amazing clinician. She is good with patient’s; knows how to build rapport and she definitely has excellent clinical skills.
Sally completes all the necessary clinical exams and discovers that Ronda is more than a prophy patient.
The next thing Sally does is talk to Ronda about the change in her oral condition and explains she needs more than a “cleaning” at today’s dental hygiene appointment.
Sally begins treating Ronda for gingivitis and Dr. Curry enters to complete the hygiene patient exam and everything seems fine with Rona.
Everything seemed fine until Ronda got to the front desk and was asked to make a 2nd hygiene appointment in two weeks PLUS, Ronda was told that only one of these two hygiene appointment would be covered by her insurance.
WOW! Now we have a problem!
Ronda complained about all this to the lady at the front desk!
Ronda was NOT happy! She says, “No one ever told me I have gum problems until today!”
I do NOT like this hygienist I just saw!”
Ronda continues, “That hygienist does not know what she is doing!”
The lady at the front desk is rather new and she did not know what to say.
Ronda left without a next appointment.
OVERCOMING OVERWHELM AND CONFUSION
How can this situation which turned sour become like lemonade at your next party?
Well, a dental hygiene appointment (to most) doesn’t feel like a party but how can we overcome this overwhelm and confusion.
Let me outline a few steps that can make a positive change:
When possible, for the long-term patients of your hygienist, let the know you have a temp hygienist
This may take out some of the shock of a different hygienist
Always explain what your patient is there for
Ex: Routine preventive care, x-rays, “abnormality exams (oral cancer and “gum exam”., Comprehensive perio exam), doctor exam, etc.
Before you complete the Comprehensive Periodontal Exam (CPE. To the patient it is called “Gum exam), let your patient know you will check the health of their gums with a ruler. Explain what the numbers mean. Ex: 1 through 3 is healthy. If you hear a 4, that means there is inflammation and if you hear a 5 or higher, that most likely means you have infection and active gum disease.
Ask your patient to listen for the numbers because at the end of your exam you will ask them, “What was the highest and what was the lowest number you heard me call out?”
The purpose of having your patient listen is because when they do hear a number that is more than 3, they will TELL YOU. Rarely, does the hygienist need to ask the patient, “What was the highest number your heard and what was the lowest number you heard?”
I can almost guarantee you that when your patient hears a 4 or 5, they WILL be letting their hygienist know, “that did not sound good!”
If your patient hears you call out “Bleeding on Tooth #3, etc.,” your patient will also be very likely to let you know, that did not sound good!”
Whenever you see something that is abnormal, always take this opportunity to “show” your patient.
Use the intra-oral camera
Take pictures of heavy supra build-up on lower lingual of lower anterior, take pictures of BOP and holes, discolored teeth in your patients mouth. When you see areas of papillary and marginal inflammation, take a picture of the area with your intra-oral camera. Use the intra-oral camera for stains on their teeth and old composite stains and discoloration.
When showing your patient, the intra-oral pictures, ask your patients to tell you what “they see.”
Interestingly, many patients will not be able to tell you they see anything out of the ordinary so at this point in the conversation, you will want to compare health to the disease in their mouth.
Be sure to show them the heavy supra calculus especially if they don’t recognize anything abnormal on the picture you will show them.
Be sure you sit your patient up-right in the chair as you discuss what you “see.”
Explain what you see, using words your patient will understand and yet, use words that add value to the hygiene service.
For ex: Deep cleaning is not going to be value enough to return and pay more money.
Use words like Gingivitis, gum disease, inflammation, infection, bleeding, disease.
Explain the change in today’s appointment after your initial exam of abnormalities.
Explain what future appointments are necessary to treat the abnormality today and what is necessary to prevent disease in the future.
Always follow the system and process of each dental practice.
Many offices find it valuable to quote a fee to the patient when there is a change in the service.
Be aware that it is not “best-practice” to have a patient lying or sitting in a dental chair and then give financial estimates.
Patients should always be in a place that feels “Safe” and “confidential” when discussing private matters such as “finances, etc.”
What do you do when a patient is angry like Ronda became?
This is where a written office- hygiene department system is super important!
When you have a new hygienist and especially when you have a temp hygienist, you should have a guide, a blueprint written for when you treat a prophy and when it is not a prophy.
When does a prophy patient receive treatment for gingivitis?
When does a gingivitis patient return for their next hygiene appointment?
When does a prophy patient become a perio patient?
What happens after scaling and root planing is completed? When does that patient return for a hygiene appointment?
The list of processes for the hygiene appointment is long. It must be written out so everyone on your team knows what is expected……and especially when you have a new or temp hygienist.
Not every dental office has a system where the doctor will complete a hygiene-patient exam in the hygiene room.
It is very helpful to have doctor and hygienist together for the hygiene patient exam. This provides effective communication, and nothing should be missed.
When doctor and hygienist complete the patient exam together, the hygienist can bring doctor into the loop on what has transpired during the hygiene appointment, up-to-this point.
In the situation with Ronda being new to Sally the hygienist, Dr. Curry can also build up Ronda’s confidence about the temp hygienist and let her know how great Ronda is even though she is the temp hygienist today.
At the end of the doctor exam, instead of asking the patient, “Do you have any questions,” change this question and ask, “What questions do you have for me today?”
This is an open-ended question and gets the patient thinking.
When asked a yes or no type of question, patient will usually tell the doctor, “No, I don’t have any questions.”
But as you can see in this situation, Ronda had a lot of questions. She never felt comfortable asking.
I could provide a one-two hour course on this topic.
It’s a hot topic in today’s world of dental hygiene. It’s a big-reason, dentists have been calling our office for support.
Dentists and dental hygienists want to know, what to say to a patient who has always been a prophy but is now “more than a prophy patient.”
I recently wrote a course called, “What’s Blood Got to Do With it?” and I highly recommend you enroll because I will review in two video training modules how to handle patients who are more than a prophy patient.
In this training you will have numerous resources to support reimbursement and so much more. This is not only for the knowledge of the dental hygienist but will support the front office with patients who will pay for more than a prophy appointment.
Also remember, we are here to provide optimal oral health for our patients. It is not the standard-of-care to treat a patient with a specific service because you know a specific service is what their insurance will or will not pay for.
When you are able to help patients “own” their disease, they will be most likely to schedule and pay for treatment.
These patients will continue to return for their appointments at your office.
These are your patients who will tell their friends and family about your dental office!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Debbie Seidel-Bittke, RDH, BS is founder and CEO of Dental Practice Solutions. Debbie is also a former dental hygiene program director. Her expertise is optimizing the hygiene department by taking a total team approach; including the doctor as the leader.
Checkout our latest training about treating the gingivitis patient. Each paid registration will receive 2 CE Credits once the complete the course.
I retired from private practice four years ago. I had a successful 40+ year run doing general restorative and cosmetic dentistry. The dental practice had dentist-associates, while I worked as a solo practitioner.
In the end, a couple of young entrepreneurs, new grad dentists, bought my dental practice and I worked as an associate for four years before stepping away from the chair.
Retirment, done right.
It is not just the act of stepping away from clinical dentistry. There are many things that need to be considered before leaving your dental practice.
Can I get full value at the sale?
Can I even sell the practice?
Do I have adequate funds to be able to live well for the next 20-30 years?
What will I do in retirement?
Let’s continue this discussion of retirement done right and your retirement plan.
Can I get full value at the time of the sale?
This is also tied to the question, do you have enough saved to retire? I worked with practice management consultants about ten years before I sold to analyze my situation. I discovered I needed to increase the value of the practice by increasing the production and collections in the practice.
Most dental practice sales are based on one of several evaluations, but mostly a three- year average of your collections. What that meant for me was the need to get another practice management consultant to help me improve my systems, train my staff to be more productive, and save a large portion of my increases.
Values and production have changed in the ten years since I did this, but back then the magic number was to get production/collections above one million dollars. I am sure the ideal number is higher than that now. The proposition is that you have to create an asset that someone finds valuable.
To get top dollar, you must create something that is something of value, but also something the buyer sees as having growth potential. This sometimes means improving the physical plant or doing cosmetic things to increase value. The biggest thing you have to do is increase the total collections.
Can I even sell the dental practice?
I bought the records of a practice for $5000 when the aging doctor decided to retire. Unfortunately, he had ridden the practice down to next to nothing. His physical plant was old and the equipment was ancient.
I have seen several doctors just walk away from their dental practice. For that reason, I intentionally positioned myself to sell at the peak of production and I made my office attractive and functional.
Some small rural areas may have the same problem as this dentist I bought out because it is hard to find doctors who want to live in the area. You can discuss what you have with a broker or a consultant that helps with transitions to see if you have a problem practice you want to sell.
Do you have adequate funds to be able to live well for the next 20-30 years?
We are living longer. My financial planner told me we have to plan to survive until age 93. The good news is that we are enjoying a longer life.
The bad news is that we need more money and other assets to support us for more years. This is something I did not have the skill to project, so I found another dental expert to help me plan. Hopefully you will have a paid-for home and other cash producing assets in addition to your retirement funds to help.
You also have to figure what your standard of living is and how much it will cost you to have a lasting income. The answer to this is to start early, defer as much gratification as you possibly can, so that you can survive your extra years in comfort.
My reality was that I did not have enough and I wasn’t on the correct financial trajectory at first, but with planning and execution, I finally made it. At the rate I am going, I should spend my last dollar at age 93.
What will I do when I retire?
Some people are lucky enough to feel good just laying back, resting, playing golf every day and generally just taking it easy.
Unfortunately, I was not wired that way. I wanted to do something that fulfilled my need to create a legacy and create more income to do extra things around the house or for my family.
I work part-time in an FQHC clinic, teach, coach and consult, along with lecturing and writing. I call that being “REPURPOSED”, not retired. That is me.
What about YOU? As long as you have a plan that makes you feel good and cares for whatever your needs are, go for it.
All of us will retire or die first. The sad news is that our bodies cannot continue to do the hard work of dentistry forever.
Dr. Black is currently an associate dental coach and consultant, for Dental Practice Solutions, one of the leading consulting firms for nearly twenty years. As a seasoned dental practitioner, Dr. Black adds to the proven dental hygiene profitability coaching that Dental Practice Solutions is well-known for providing, to dental practices around the world.
Dr. Black’s expertise as an EQ and DISC trainer, makes him the best person to help more patients to say “YES!” to your patient care, as well as to enjoy working together as a team and loving what you do for your patients!