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Drop Offs for Cosmetic Dentistry Mean Thinking Outside the Box

June 1st, 2009 · No Comments

An article in Baltimore Bizjounrals recently reviewed the downturn in elective procedures. For plastic surgeons, ophthalmalogists, and cosmetic dentists, the squeeze is on. Dr. Roger Levin of the Levin Group consulting firm claims that he’s never witnessed dentists being affected by a recession like they are today – a 12% drop in 12 months. However, in March, TIME Magazine published “Smiling in the Face of Recession.” This article tells us that Sageworks reports dentists have profit margins greater than accountants, legal services, and mining support services, three of the industries in the top five for profit margins. So that’s the positive side of things.


In the Baltimore Bizjournals article, Dr. Kellner of Smile Design Center in Lutherville says that patients have money, but they’re being careful about spending it. Here’s what some dentists and doctors are doing to boost business:

Promotions – Keller is offering a $199 teeth-whitening procedure, a discount of $201. Clinical Research Associates reports that ¼ or 3300 surveyed dentists now offer discounts and referral incentives. Be sure to have your promotion placed on the front page of your website.

Service – A Smile Design Center employee answers the office cell phone 24/7, and this has resulted in booked appointments. Be sure to include this service on your website. Pateints find security knowing their dentist is there for them all the time.

Financing – Now, more than ever, third party banks play a role in case acceptance. Capital One recently closed its patient financing business, but CareCredit, Springstone, and Chase are still in the game. If you offer financing, say so on your website. A sidebar on the cosmeitc services pages can feature a direct link to a financial institution’s online applicaiton.

Personal cutbacks – At Grochmal Laser Center, Dr. Grochmal has reduced his family vacations for the year because his salary has seen a 20% drop.

Marketing & “extras” cutbacks – Parris-Castoro Eye & Laser Center discontinued patient shuttle service and has made a 45% slash in the marketing budget.

Levin Group is hosting a seminar August 7-8 in Las Vegas entitled “6 Steps to Total Practice Success” (10CEs). The promotional materials for the seminar state that dentists could have to delay financial independence 5, 6, even 7 years because of the recession. Levin’s solution? Grow the practice. Learn more here.

Women’s Dentist Journal featured “Recession Proof Your Practice,” an article worth reading by Cathy Jameson of Jameson Management.

While many dentists are cutting back on marketing budgets right now, a professional website with organic search engine optimization is a safe, solid, and economic investment. TNT Dental, the leader in custom dental websites, hosting, and SEO, offers packages that range from start-up websites to full-service plans with a blog, interactive forms, and patient surveys. Call TNT Dental at 877-868-4932 or visit the company online to review their portfolio – Read more about leveraging the Internet for increased revenue at

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