Dentists See Dental Practice Marketing as a "Necessary Evil"

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Dental Survey Results When we asked dentists if marketing is part of their job as a dentist, we heard a lot of grumbles about what a pain dental practice marketing can be. Nonetheless, 95% of respondents acknowledge that they won't get to practice dentistry if they can't run a successful business. Only 5% maintain that their job is to to fix people's teeth and improve oral health.

A Florida dentist summed up how many dentists seem to feel about marketing: “Hate it. Can’t live without it."

For more insight, check out these comments!!

Marketing is part of doing business

  • "A restaurant can't say, ‘We won't do marketing because we just want to cook good food for people.'” (Minnesota dentist)
  • “A successful dental practice is a business. It requires the inclusion of several elements that were never taught in dental school, and one of those elements is marketing.” (California dental implantologist)

Internal marketing is most important

  • “I love it, but first things first: If you aren't doing internal marketing, you should not be doing external marketing.” (Michigan dentist)
  • “Internal marketing is key, but over-marketing cheapens the profession by selling our services like a commodity rather than a professional expert service.” (Illinois dentist)

Dentists have a love/hate relationship with marketing

  • “I hate it, but it’s a necessary effort and expense.” (Kansas dentist)
  • “It's a ‘necessary evil.'” (Prosthodontist)

It’s worth every penny

  • “Every dentist, whether they have their own practice or work for someone else, is involved in marketing and PR. Generally, the more thought, time, effort and money one puts into it, the greater the benefits.” (Oregon dentist)
  • “Our passion in delivering the best treatment we can for our patients should be reflected in all our interactions. Therefore, marketing should be a fun and integral part of a fun and rewarding dental practice.” (Washington orthodontist)
  • “I love it. It lets me communicate effectively what we do.” (Oklahoma dentist)

Marketing lets you target the patients you want

  • "Love it. If you market you get to do the type of work you want. My website listing brings in a steady stream of sleep apnea and snoring patients and that is where I find a lot of big cosmetic and reconstruction cases.” (Illinois dentist)

Problems with marketing

  • “It can be difficult to get a good return on your investment (ROI).” (New Jersey dentist)
  • “Don't really like it. Not sure how it will be perceived. Lots of opportunity for misunderstandings with patients.” (Oregon dentist)

These days, you have to do it

  • “I have learned to do it. It was not needed years ago! I have been around since 1966.” (Indiana dentist)
  • “You can't succeed without it.” (Endodontist)
  • “If you don't promote yourself, the practice, and the things that you want to do for patients, then no one will know you exist. They won't know what great services you can provide, and you will be a dentist with time on your hands and fewer patients to treat.” (Illinois dentist)


Note: Survey sample included 57 respondents.

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