I believe it is because dentists don’t stop and plan well.
They don’t know what the BIG FIVE are, much less strive to understand and achieve mastery over them. Remember, at the turn of the 20th century, when the Big Game Hunters used to go to Africa to bag the Big Five? They were after the fiercest, the rarest, and the most difficult kills on the continent: the rhino, the elephant, the lion, the leopard and the Cape buffalo. Now we go on safari in Kenya and Tanzania with telephoto lens and digital cameras instead of rifles and bullets. In dentistry the Big Five are: (1) Mindset, (2) Team, (3) Facility, (4) Marketing, and (5) Capacity. To take down the Big Five, we need a hunter’s mentality and a lot of weapons at hand.
When you crack the code to become a big producer you realize it is not all that difficult.
The reality is, however, only a few ever reach consistency in producing the five-figure range every day, week after week, month after month, year after year.
Why is it such a struggle to be consistent?
Napoleon Hill said, “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe he can achieve.” I learned to picture my preferred reality from Dr. Ron McConnell at Quest. My next mentor, Dr. Omer K. Reed’s quote that I lived by for many years was, “If it’s been done, it’s probably possible.” But sometimes you have to go on faith because you have never seen or heard of a particular achievement. I knew I had faith that if someone had done it, I could watch them and do the same thing. Speaking of faith, in Romans 4:17 it says, “God who gives life to the dead and calls into existence things that do not exist.” It matters not that you’ve never done it before or that it hasn’t ever been done. By having faith, you can do it. If you declare that you are a $10,000-a-day dentist, it will come to pass. Speak it out and create the dynamics that will begin as a seed and in due course become reality in our life.
Ten phrases encompass all the mindset you’ll need if you believe you can achieve your goal and declare the vision, mission and culture: comprehensive dentistry, team capability, same-day dentistry, patient focus not self-focus, 100% readiness, 100% willingness, advanced planning, favorable fee and financing focus, 90-Day Goals and the Gold Key List. If you can wrap you head around these ten topics and understand them, you can become a $10,000-a-day dentist.
You team is your enabler. They enable you to reach your goals, to do what you do best, and that is to love and heal patients. To become a consistent $10,000 dentist, you need a stable full of “10’s” on your team: cross-trained partners who know how to convert patients from hygiene to restorative, new patient exam to big ticket dentistry, all the while doing all that they can because you, the dentist, delegate duties well.
The ideal number of team members per dentist is six: two business assistants, two dental assistants and two hygienists. One dental assistant is necessary per $4,000 – $5,000 of production per day in a very productive practice. Currently, I have thee dental assistants and average $15,000 a day in my three operatories. That does not count the dental hygienists on our team or the other dentists in our office. The patient treatment coordinator position on the team performs 98% of the consults for the doctors. The dental concierge answers the initial phone calls, is the check-in station and greets all patients as they enter. The concierge station is situated away from the checkout counter where scheduling and financial matters are discussed.
Setting the tone properly for success means great curb appeal, beautiful signage, elegance when walking into the reception area and warmth from the concierge greeting. Our $10,000 dentist model revolves around the New Patient Experience, their tour of the office before our tour of their mouth, and the viewing of “what’s on our walls” before being seated in the interview room to meet with the doctor.
Because the future belongs to those prepared for change, a facility expansion plan is in place to add multiple operatories as associate dentists are needed. The ideal ratio of operatories per dentist is five to one, with three for the dentist and two for hygiene. Technology is a big part of the future also with there being a stronger push for each practice to have a cone beam CT, dental lasers, CAD/CAM one-visit crowns, digital impressions, K-7 diagnostics and T-Scan occlusal analysis. marketing
Maintaining a healthy new patient influx is paramount to being consistently productive. Some new practices are averaging over 100 new patients per dentist. Our practice has averaged over 100 new patients a month for the past 15 years as we grew from one, to two, three then four dentists. There needs to be a fully integrated marketing action plan (MAP) which includes “the social six” (specific social media platforms) and local community “walkabout” by the dentist and the team to sustain new patient flow with a WebCentric focus.
A dentist must establish him or herself as the expert in their area and provide social proof that they can do what the patient wants, both visually with before and after photos, video interviews and testimonials, and with written online reviews and print ads. Social proof and evidence of authority are major reputation needs for every practice and every doctor in the practices. Reputation management has become a major factor in practice success in this socially enlightened, Googlized, Facebooked world.
In my “Seven Mountains of Marketing” articles on LinkedIn, I explain how a dental practice can become the leading influencer in a community in seven areas so that they dominate their competition. Those seven areas are education, government, economy, family, celebration, media and religion. As a dentist works to become involved in the community in each of these areas, their future influence will double or triple. As influence grows, authority increases. As a result, referrals increase. You become the “go to” dentist in town.
Marketing the $10,000-a-day dentist becomes many times easier when the high-end niche patient funnel formula is used to draw in scores of patients who want dental implants, cosmetic makeovers, Invisalign, reconstructions, sedation dentistry, neuromuscular dentistry and biologic dentistry. The funnel formula is a series of web site landing pages, Facebook or Google ads, autoresponders, email series, videos, tracking software and information delivery systems that are customized for each practice and each dental service niche of the practice. Specifically, using Predictive Behavioral Response techniques in directing our marketing message to ears that are ready to hear is what enables us to have a 95% better result than any other method of marketing. It is the wave of the future.
Being a $10,000-a-day dentist is not for everyone. It is not easy. No one said dentistry has to be hard but it does take being a good multitasker to consistently hit the higher numbers. I believe it is far more likely for you to become a high producer if you have many arrows in your quiver, hence the term Decathlon Dentist is appropriate: one who does all ten disciplines of dentistry (restorative, endo, ortho, TMJ, implants, perio, fixed and removable prosth, oral surgery, and sedation). What that means is being able to provide multiple disciplines in one appointment for a single patient, using sedation as needed, and being efficient at work to the benefit of the patient, requiring fewer visits and less down time for the patient and the practice.
Systems are what makes it all work and a plethora of well-documented patient care systems run seamlessly and effortlessly by the team will draw rave reviews and many referrals from satisfied patients. A well-conceived treatment plan executed painlessly in the time frame desired by the patient, often all in one day, will ultimately lead to your being consistently productive day after day after day. We simply choose to do more in less time and patients always appreciate that effort. As we said at the outset, it’s a mindset. If you have the team, the facility, the marketing and the capacity within yourself to put it all together, you will be a consistent $10,000 a day dentist. Following the Gold Key List, most any dentist can achieve that elusive goal.
Bill Williams, DMD, MAGD, MICCMO is the Founder of SuwaneeDental.com and SolsticeDentalAdvisors.com. He is also the Director of 5M Masters Academy and 5M Mastermind and the author of Marketing The Million Dollar Practice.