In a time of abundance of almost everything. Where everyone in the western world is being bombarded with thousands of advertising messages every day. It can be difficult to reach our patients with a simple message about the value of ideal treatment. However, it is not impossible.
As a dentist, I am on a mission. I want more patients to receive better treatment. Since 2018 I have been writing a danish blog for my colleagues in Denmark. The main topics are related to: Practice management, case acceptance and dental marketing. After several requests I have decided to add the blogposts in english as well. Feel free to reach out to me if you would like me to write about a specific challenge you have in your practice. if you want a piece of advice or if you have any recommendations for improvements.
I hope you enjoy it.
We all know the experience. When we have spent time diagnosing our patients correctly. Next, we have spent time putting together an ideal treatment plan. And finally be greeted with a: "can't you find a cheaper solution?". Or "Isn't there another way to solve it?" Or "Can't you just make it in composite instead?" It can be super frustrating to experience how the majority of patients choose a compromise, or ask for a cheaper solution.
If you have taken the time to listen to your patients, to understand where they are in their lives and really put an effort into understanding their priorities right now. Then you have a much better starting point, when you are presenting a solution, since you know the patient is actually interested in buying. I will be writing a lot more about this in some later posts.
I will refer to an event that was based on some behavioral psychological principles. These are principles that go deep into all human beings and that have a far greater influence on our choices than any rational approach.
A few years ago, Invisalign invited their 20 largest customers to a sales seminar. They examined what range of treatments these dentists and orthodontists offered their patients.
The following was a general trend (I have added som representative numbers). Virtually all dentists offered the treatments in the order mentioned:
Fixed braces "lite" (Six month smiles, etc.): 1500, - $
Comprehensive fixed braces: $ 3,000
Invisalign "lite": 5000, - $
Invisalign "full": 7000, - $
Invisalign asked the invited dentists how much an increase in the number of cases sold they would consider a success after the sales seminar. There was a general agreement among the dentists, that an increase of approx. 10% would be experienced as a success.
Next, Invisalign asked the dentists about the upper limit of the number of cases sold they could imagine after the sales seminar. The general perception was between 20-30% increase in the number of cases sold, as the absolute maximum. (Keep in mind that these were the dentists who sold the most Invisalign treatments globally).
Invisalign then asked (briefly described) the dentists to present the treatments in the reverse order.
Ie. Instead of starting with the presentation of the cheapest treatment, they should start by presenting the most expensive treatment.
After 6 months, Invisalign evaluated the results with the invited dentists. The result was, to say the least, astonishing.
On average, dentists had experienced an increased acceptance rate on the most expensive treatments of over 180%! But not only had the number of the most expensive cases increased, they had also registered an increase of at least 20% of all other types of treatment. In other words, the dentists had sold far far more ideal treatments, at the same time as they experienced fewer patients refuse treatment.
The conclusion is clear: Start by presenting the most expensive treatment first (ideal treatment). Next, your compromise.
Just to clarify any possible misunderstandings: At no point will you find that I recommend dentists to sell unnecessary treatments. The above recommendations should, in my view, be used exclusively ethically sound for the benefit of the patient.
If you want to read more about ethical sales in dentistry, I recommend you subscribe to this blog. You do this in the upper right corner under "login". If you need more help to get better at selling ideal dentistry, feel free to contact me.
Have fun presenting your next treatment plan.
Jesper Hatt DDS
T: +41 78 268 00 78