We live in a community where people, especially those tied to military service, are constantly moving. For our dental office, this means patients who are thrilled with the services we’ve provided, are constantly having to pick up and leave. Maintaining even a steady flow of “customers” under these circumstances, means constantly seeking new patients. We’ve accepted this reality and we love SAB and what it's presence brings to our community. But how does a professional dental practice go about attracting new patients?
Not long ago, it was considered “beneath” dentists (and medical doctors too) to advertise. It was taboo. But for anyone that pays attention to their mailbox, or to the national ad campaigns on television, that has certainly changed. Mailers cast a wide net with minimal return. I’ve had someone suggest we spend $20,000 producing and sending mailers, with no promise that anyone would show up. Examine the quality of some of those mailers in your box. The mailers are stunning, and yet tell you nothing about them, their skill level and ethics.
I believe Spring Valley Dental Group stands apart. How do I convey that to prospective patients?
SVDG is owned by the very dentists that do business in their own home town, (O'Fallon, Belleville & Swansea, IL). If we were part of a big dental conglomerate, the business model would be vastly different. Practice management seminars, which I've attended, would have us believe a patient is a commodity to be bought and sold. Every patient is quantifiable as worth a specific dollar amount. To them, each visit is thought of as an opportunity to produce “some certain dollar amount”. SVDG does not view you as a dollar amount. We will never try and squeeze you for every dollar we can. It’s not us.
What kind of dental practice is SVDG?
My partner, Ron Ames, DMD, our associate Jon Owen, DMD, and I want profit to be a side effect of doing the right thing for our patients each and every time we are together. If you as a patient could benefit from treatment, great! Let’s communicate the cost and arrange a time to satisfy a need. If you’re in great shape, fantastic! We’ll cheer you on toward a great next visit as well. We are not pressured by anyone above us to “produce”. There is no one offering us a bonus if we talk Ms. Smith and 34 of her peers into whitening her teeth this month. At Spring Valley Dental, there is no one between my patients and me. It comes down to what a patient wants.
Our boss is you, our patient!
If you want your teeth to be whiter, or missing teeth replaced, you can count on us to recommend what’s in your best interest. There is no one else’s desire that matter to me but those of the patient sitting in front of me at any given time. I work for one boss at a time, and I believe this arrangement becomes increasingly rare with each passing day. If you want to be in charge of your own destiny, come see how we approach our patients every day. SVDG has never been a place you have to dread the sales pitch. We are something different.
Lance P. Martin, DMD