Recession Dental Marketing


Dental Marketing Keeps Dentists Afloat

In a tough economy, dentists have little choice but to turn to dental marketing to keep up the flow of dental patients and income. Though many dental practices cut costs during a recession, even more increase spending on dental practice marketing programs, finds a recent survey by The Wealthy Dentist.

November 1, 2008 (San Francisco, California) Many dentists are increasing their dental marketing as a direct result of the slumping economy, reveals to a recent survey by dental practice marketing resource The Wealthy Dentist. Thirty-eight percent of dentists reported they had increased dental marketing, while 33% said
they had cut spending and were tightening their belts.

Specialists were significantly more likely to have cut spending across the board, while general dentists were more likely to have increased their dental marketing efforts. "We have reduced spending and increased marketing," said a California endodontist, splitting the difference.

Though requests for cosmetic dentistry may decrease, patients will always need dental care. One dentist found a silver lining in the recession, saying, "I am doing more crowns from people breaking their teeth due to stress! It compensates for the decrease in dental patient numbers."

Of course no one knows how bad this economic downturn will be, but some dentists are seriously worried. "I have been through a few of these downturns in 40 years, but never like this. I am afraid it’s going to be a real nasty one this time," fretted a California dentist. "The economy is scary! I have not taken a paycheck for two months, and I have a newborn and 3-year-old. Though I have kids to feed, it is all is going into
external and Internal marketing!" said an Illinois dentist.

Most dental practices see few options but to increase marketing. "We know that marketing is more important in economic downtimes, so we will be increasing marketing budget on our website, print advertising, and direct mail," said a California periodontist.

"No dental practice is recession-proof," warned a Michigan dentist. "I expect we will end the year about 12% down from last year," sighed a California dentist. A Florida doctor complained about the Catch-22, saying, "We have a pretty big expense at present on advertising. We don’t really want to spend more, but we need to keep the flow of patients. Damned if we do, and damned if we don’t!"

Some dentists warned against doing too much dental practice advertising. "Dentistry is mostly elective in nature. People will still buy, but based on their perceived need, not our need to sell them treatments," cautioned a Virginia dentist.

Internal marketing is an especially valuable dental marketing resource. "We have reviewed all of our charts to reactivate patients who haven’t been in for a while. Also, we are asking patients that have been lost in the periodontists’ periodontal maintenance programs to come back to us every 3 months," said a Minnesota dentist.

"It’s a brutal economy out there, but it warms my heart that so many dentists are embracing dental practice marketing in these tough times," said Jim Du Molin, dental practice management consultant and founder of dental continuing education website The Wealthy Dentist. "Of course no one wants to spend more money, but when the alternative leaves you going out of business, how much choice
does a financially savvy dentist really have?"

Du Molin invites readers to visit his blog at and comment on this survey.


Visit for more Wealthy Dentist survey results on topics such as dental implants, sleep dentistry, TMJ, dentistry, and braces. Plus, sign up for Jim Du Molin’s free video training program on dental website marketing.


Jim Du Molin

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