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Learn What You Missed in Dental School

by adminjay

A dentist leaves dental school armed with a ton of knowledge about anatomy and physiology, oral healthcare, different procedures and techniques, patient care, and essential information to become a practicing dentist. One thing they don’t learn is how to market themselves once they’re up and running with their own practice. Dr. Lee Brown, a renowned dentist from Westchester, OH and one half of Brown & Gettings, DDS, talks about exactly that in an eye-opening video he created for our Clinical Advisory Board.

The Missing Link

Dental school is a requirement for anyone who dreams of becoming a dentist, so, naturally, it must cover all the clinical skills necessary to treat patients. As treatment techniques advance and research reveals new information, established dentists pursue continuing education to hone their skills. Dentists can also specialize through various post-graduate and certification programs. But what use is all of that if no one knows they exist? That’s precisely Dr. Brown’s point when he speaks about why learning about marketing and establishing a marketing budget for your practice are as important as continuing education.

The constant investment in education makes dentists better at their jobs, but rarely does continuing education cover the business aspect of dentistry. Dentists who own their practices become frustrated that they’re unable to apply all of the skills they’ve worked so hard to acquire because opportunities to work on complex cases are few and far between. Why does this happen? Because marketing is one essential skill that’s missing from dental education.

The Solution

Dr. Brown explains that marketing is a required investment for any practice. If a dentist wants the world to know how great they are at a particular procedure or that they are looking for a certain type of patient, they have to advertise — consistently and continuously — online, at their practice, and in the community.

Marketing is an investment, like education, that pays off when it is used properly, maintained, and updated as circumstances change. Marketing is an expense. There’s no doubt about that. And at the beginning, it may be a little uncomfortable. However, when you are committed to doing it the right way, the funds you invest in marketing your practice will generate a return in the form of consistently higher quality patients, more complex/specific cases, and more patients looking for your particular specialty. Translation: Your practice will bring in more revenue every month, every quarter, and every year.

A Practical Example

In the video, Dr. Brown talks about his own practice and how, when he decided to move away from dental insurance, he needed a way to start attracting patients who were not averse to an out-of-network dentist. He invested the “premium” he was paying to be listed on insurance network websites into marketing the practice, targeting the type of patient he was looking for. And it paid off. Dr. Brown was able to move completely away from dental insurance and begin attracting higher quality patients. Revenue grew and continues to grow because the cases coming in are more intricate and generate higher fees.

If the types of patients you really want to see are not finding your practice, if you’ve spent hours upon hours perfecting your skills but rarely get the chance to use your specialized knowledge, then marketing is likely the remedy. Take Dr. Brown’s advice and prioritize marketing your practice to get the business you want and deserve.

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