Dental marketing ideas and dental ideas are much more complicated than patients — and even top dental management officials — realize. Although targeting the most productive and profitable markets may seem fairly straightforward, it can be surprisingly difficult. What are the most common obstacles in dentist marketing?
Sometimes, Patients Want Very Different Things
With some luck, the average dentist will earn $150,000 annually. (Cosmetic dentists are likely in for a much higher paycheck.) Even so, what may seem like common sense can throw the best dental business consultants or dental management consultants for a loop. For instance, desired procedures can vary greatly by region. Americans, for example, will do just about anything for a dazzling white smile. Japanese women, on the other hand, traditionally blacken their teeth — and now they are further testing Western ideals of beauty by asking dentists to help them achieve a crooked smile with notably pointed canine teeth (a trend called “yaeba teeth”). These differences can sometimes leave dentists with the additional task of knowing the patients in the immediate area — or even informing them about what cosmetic procedures are and are not safe.
Americans Are Afraid of Dying, Public Speaking, and…the Dentist!
Odontophobia, or fear of the dentist, is up there with the fear of public speaking and the fear of dying. In other words, dentists and the people in charge of dentist marketing have their work cut out for them. A growing number of dentists are taking advantage of technology and creating fun, interactive mobile applications for kids help introduce them to the dentist and dental hygiene — and debunk common myths or misconceptions.
Dentistry is a rapidly growing industry, and — for that reason — more dentists are getting a hand with marketing and some of its unexpected challenges. Remember, your patients may have very different ideas about what’s beautiful, and half the battle may be helping patients overcome their fear of going to the dentist in the first place.