We have talked about the vital and primary nature of the need to get patients in the door many times here on OrthoPundit but now that Smiley Face is opening I wanted to give the first of what will be many concrete examples of implementation and execution.

On Sunday afternoon (April 29) Angela Weber’s team at OrthoSynetics started running our social media marketing campaign in anticipation of our soft opening that will occur next Wednesday and Thursday (May 9-10). We have set a marketing budget of 6,000 dollars a month and this includes everything we do with regards to getting patients in the door. We will have a grand opening May 16 that will significantly cut into this month’s budget but we will stay within our budget now that it is set no matter what. Anyway, all we have done so far is Facebook and Instagram marketing and as of last night (May 3) we have gathered 43 leads through our website. We are still following up with the leads and anticipate making many more appointments but we already have 23 new patients scheduled for May 9-10.

Yesterday am (May 3) we did our Rhinogram training and the system was activated. This am I received my first virtual consult request complete with photos. We are developing an entirely new system for new patient intake and are super excited about the prospect of having patients preliminary diagnosed/treatment planned, informed about their treatment, aware of the financing and even having a signed contract in hand when they show up for the first time in person at Smiley Face. It’s not teledentistry since we are not rendering treatment or difinitively diagnosing remotely, but rather a much-improved way to think about, engage and serve our customers before they become patients.

Now it’s important to remember that we just moved to Florida last June and we had zero connections in Orange County before moving here. I mention this to make it clear that we have zero dentist friends and are still in the process of integrating into the community. Despite that, the brand, market position and marketing plan that Angela has created and put into place has our appointment book blowing up in a very competitive, densely populated metro area. Certainly my price point has to do with our popularity but only once people know about it. I’ll keep you posted on how things go but the upshot of this post is that you’ll spend far less worry, time and money by having a cohesive, strategic marketing plan than chasing the latest marketing fad you read online or by doing feel good marketing. It’s your practice, your time, your money – you can do whatever you like – but until you’re able to get a consistent new patient flow you will struggle to thrive and feel secure.

If you are at the AAO Annual Session, let’s discuss – you can find me most days in booth 2137.

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