I see mixed economic signals. Housing prices are down and unemployment numbers are still too high, yet people seem to be spending money on things they value. Is it possible that we are beginning to turn the corner regarding consumer spending on dental care? Call me an optimist, but I believe so!! While our practice is a general dental practice, Dr. Nielson has advanced training in cosmetic dentistry and complex care cases. When the economy started to decline, we also experienced a decline in these bigger cases. This is all very predictable. We managed to not only survive the soft economy but we were able to grow by focusing on the general dental elements of our practice. I saw the very same situation with many of our clients. Things are changing.
Now, I am beginning to see signs that interest in cosmetic and complex care cases is picking up. We diagnosed and scheduled two big cases just this month and we are still in the first week of the month! I am seeing similar activity in many of our client offices. It is wonderful to see that patients are interested again in ideal dentistry!
Here are three specific recommendations to help guide your patients to want ideal care:
- Decorate your office with pictures of smiling patients
You do not need to turn your entire office into a photo gallery, but do include a handful of full-face photos showing beautiful, healthy smiles. These types of photos are very effective at creating patient interest and also serve to let patients know the full range of your clinical capabilities. The best situation is to have pictures of actual patients (be sure to obtain a signed release from the patient allowing you to use their photo for marketing purposes), though there are a number of sources for these types of photos if you do not have your own.
- Show patients how their new smile might look
Showing patients how they might look with their new smile is an awesome way to create interest. This can be done in a number of ways including digital imaging, looking at before and after cases of similar clinical situations, study models, and perhaps even an intra-oral mock up if it is an additive case.
- Never pre-judge your patients
You would have never guessed that the patients who scheduled the two big cases in our practice this month would have had the interest or finances for this type of care. Give every patient you see the benefit of the doubt and just assume that they are interested and can afford it! This is easier said than done, however it is absolutely key if you want to do more ideal dentistry.
It is so nice to see that patient interest in ideal care is increasing. Consider the three tips listed above to help guide your patients want ideal care. Here’s to helping more patients have excellent oral health and the smile of their dreams! Keep Smiling!