12 Things DSOs Strive to Do that Private Practices Can Do to Flourish

July 29, 2022 Deborah Bush, MA

For support organizations and dental service organizations (DSOs) to scale, they focus on developing a branding patient experience and a predictably profitable business model. They seek to maximize:

  • efficiency while serving the needs of consumers,
  • provide a wonderful patient experience, and
  • increase both their top and bottom financial lines.

Dentists who have chosen the private practice way of life may want to reflect on the following 12 things DSOs strive to do in 2022, and then apply these tactics to their own business model. These tactics have been among the top topics of conversation at DSO meetings in 2021 and 2022 and will sound familiar to those who follow The Pankey Institute. Why familiar? Because they are top topics also discussed among private practitioners and many are addressed within the Pankey Institute curriculum.

1.Monitor more aspects of your clinical and business operations to determine what is working well and what problems need solving. Then solve the problems as rapidly as you can. As the practice leader, open your eyes and ears, and lead.

2. Track key performance indicators and seek growth in those KPIs.

3. Cultivate a positive practice culture and work environment in which employees want to work and patients want to visit. Team members should constantly check in with each other to communicate what is happening “now” and intentionally tune their senses to know how they can help one another. The goal is both a wonderful patient experience and a wonderful team experience.

4. Design systems and protocols with intention, follow them, and assess them for improvement. Make sure team members understand the Whys.

5. Invest in training your clinical and business teams. Especially important in the last two years are to:

    • Realize the potential of each team member and affirm they are valuable to the practice.
    • Educate clinical and front office teams in how to best engage and support patients with special attention to facilitating the treatments patients need. DSOs have targeted implant treatment and doctor-supervised, clear aligner orthodontics as two niches to focus their education efforts on with staff and patients.
    • Educate front office team members in how to appropriately maximize lead conversion, so the cost of expensive digital marketing can be contained. With increased new patient acquisition, reserve more time on the schedule for new patient appointments. In 2022, if new patients must wait, they tend to go elsewhere.

6. Maximize clinical technology to improve the patient experience and increase the efficiency and accuracy of clinical records, diagnosis, treatment planning, dental lab communication, and manufacturing.

7. Maximize practice management technology to improve the patient experience and increase the efficiency and accuracy of business operations, for example, AI enhanced software that automates billing and online collections or reviews insurance claims for accuracy prior to submission.

8. Migrate to a Cloud-based PMS system to ensure the security of your data.

9. Block schedule to do more procedures in a single visit. Patients and clinicians benefit from this efficiency. Maximize spaces in the visit—as you transition from one procedure to another, to enhance relationships with conversation.

10. Deploy a dental assistant to assist in hygiene, for example, to help clean and turnaround hygiene operatories between hygiene patients. This way, the hygienist’s relationship time with patients is not shortened or eliminated in the race to meet clinical demand.

11. Ensure adequate front desk coverage, so there is always time for those personable conversations that ideally occur when each patient arrives and leaves their appointment. Manage your human resources so almost all phone calls are answered live during business hours by a receptionist well versed in optimal conversation with dental patients.

12. Frequently ask, “What is our branding patient experience? What can we do better to meet the desires and needs of our existing patients and the prospective patients we target?”

Looking at this list, I can’t help but think that Dr. L.D. Pankey would smile. Just because you don’t have a corporate support organization helping you run your business doesn’t mean you can’t do these things on a smaller scale and possibly do them better.

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Deborah Bush, MA

Deb Bush is a freelance writer specializing in dentistry and a subject matter expert on the behavioral and technological changes occurring in dentistry. Before becoming a dental-focused freelance writer and analyst, she served as the Communications Manager for The Pankey Institute, the Communications Director and a grant writer for the national Preeclampsia Foundation, and the Content Manager for Patient Prism. She has co-authored and ghost-written books for dental authorities, and she currently writes for multiple dental brands which keeps her thumb on the pulse of trends in the industry.

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Touchstones? Which do you choose?

March 25, 2022 Sheri Kay RDH

It seems we all have things I call “touchstones” that we keep around to help us feel grounded and to remind us of who we are. We also have items around us simply because they make us smile.

A good friend of mine used to talk about having a garage sale for her thoughts and behaviors, and I love that idea! My own experience has taught me that the people, belongings, and structures I surround myself with have an enormous impact on my thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

A few years back, I downsized to an 800 square foot mountain home in Black Mountain, North Carolina that I lovingly call the “Tiny Mansion.” When I made this move, I got rid of so much stuff! I literally touched everything I owned and made a thoughtful decision on what would stay and what would go.

I found that I kept things that connected me in a concrete way to different people, places, and experiences that had special meaning. I let go of lots and lots of things that were not essential tools as well as things that were related to people, memories, or parts of my life I was ready to release. I’ve learned that growth is not only about adding to our lives, but maybe even more importantly, it’s about letting go of that which no longer serves us.

Now what I do is intentionally surround myself with what encourages me to be the person I want to be, and to feel the way I want to feel when I’m in the world. All the books I have on my shelf are purposefully there. I scan through them on a regular basis to make sure they are still books that have special meaning. Another habit I’ve created is to get rid of something every time I make a purchase. Buy shoes…get rid of shoes. Buy a shirt…get rid of 2 shirts. It’s a deliberate choice designed to keep me from becoming overwhelmed by a whole bunch of stuff that I no longer want or need.

To live that intentionally was new to me when I decided to make my move to the Tiny Mansion. Necessity drove me to become highly selective about what I would see and touch in my day-to- day world. This idea became part of my updated philosophy…my living, thinking approach to curating positive things, people, actions, and experiences in my life. I am in a dynamic process of becoming my best self (almost) every day.

What inspired me to share this is the realization that I was smiling when I poured a smoothie in one of my Pankey cups. This particular piece of my “Pankey merch” collection was a gift from Dr. Lee Brady, and I love (on many levels) what it means to me.

I feel absolutely uplifted by being surrounded by things I love. The ability to see and touch these “stones” is a positive force in my life. I wonder what you might surround yourself with that is intentional and has meaning for you. I also wonder what you might be ready to let go of. Which things do you choose to be visible touchstones in your life?

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Sheri Kay RDH

Sheri Kay started her career in dentistry as a dental assistant for an “under one roof” practice in 1980. The years quickly flew by as Sheri worked her way from one position to the next learning everything possible about the different opportunities and roles available in an office. As much as she loved dentistry … something was always missing. In 1994, after Sheri graduated from hygiene school, her entire world changed when she was introduced to the Pankey Philosophy of Care. What came next for Sheri was an intense desire to help other dental professionals learn how they could positively influence the health and profitability of their own practices. By 2012, Sheri was working full time as a Dental Practice Coach and has since worked with over 300 practices across the country. Owning SKY Dental Practice Dental Coaching is more of a lifestyle than a job, as Sheri thrives on the strong relationships that she develops with her clients. She enjoys speaking at state meetings, facilitating with Study Clubs and of course, coaching with her practices.

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Bring on the New Year! It’s all about Growth.

January 4, 2021 Paul Henny DDS

If I were to select one word most strongly associated with a successful relationship-based, health-centered practice, it would be the word growth.

What kinds of growth? The kinds I am thinking of are growth in knowledge and growth in sophistication of attitudes toward people and dentistry. As I meditate on this, I am enlarging my hope for and commitment to fostering personal growth … interpersonal growth … care team growth … patient growth … and, of course, practice growth. I welcome you to come along with me as I breathe fresh energy into leaving 2020 behind and growing in 2021.

Notice I didn’t mention a single word about teeth or techniques. I didn’t mention a word about technology, or what you must physically own to achieve growth. And that’s because growth isn’t a material thing; it’s a spiritual thing.

Growth can be promoted, or it can be impaired by the way we think, and consequently the things that we do and say day-in and day-out. And what we do repeatedly is driven by what we believe … what we believe about ourselves … what we believe about others … and what we believe about the purpose of dentistry.

What is your purpose in dentistry?

Each of us have a purpose that is driven by our philosophy … our world view … our perspective of things … and therefore what it all means to us. This changes as we grow in knowledge and sophistication of attitudes.

Avrom King said that it all boils down to these three questions:

  1. Who am I?
  2. Why am I here?
  3. What is it that I am trying to achieve?

All three of them are philosophical questions, and all three lead us to answers which directly influence almost everything else. If we do not understand who we are on a values and beliefs level—what Mac McDonald likes to refer to as “the deep structures of ourselves,” we cannot predictably lead ourselves in any desired direction. And as a result, we cannot predictably lead others in a desired direction either.

Growing with Purpose

Growing with purpose requires Hope and Agency. If we do not hope for something of greater meaning to ourselves and we think we have truly little personal agency, we flounder.

In a world where we believe we have minimal personal value, everything around us starts to look scarce, and everything around us starts to look scary, so we’re tempted to take short cuts. We’re tempted to just grab what we can get for ourselves as quickly as possible. After all, who knows what tomorrow will bring? If we “stay on shore” with feelings of disempowerment and a little too much wine and whining, we ultimately achieve very little with our lives.

If we “stay on shore,” we will attract others who similarly think and behave. Like attracts like. Avrom King liked to call this “King’s Law.”

We tend to create our practice in the exact image of what we believe about ourselves, and consequently, that could be some version of heaven or hell. All of this happens because we choose to grow or to not grow.

Growth requires hope, courage, attitude, energy, and action, i.e., self-determination and self-control. Talk is cheap, so what will you do to master these? Surround yourself with a vision of your preferred self … your preferred career … your preferred dental practice. Acting on that vision leads to a next step and a next. In doing this, you will attract “likes,” and this positive reinforcement will help keep you on the road of your personally purposeful life. How much growth is happening in your practice today?

Can you see the green shoots of enthusiasm and creative change all around you, evidence of constant renewal? Or do you see an ossified structure struggling to maintain the status quo? Are you surrounded by people who are down, frustrated, and thinking that they have no other choice but to keep plodding on as they are?

Who are you?

Why are you here?

What is it that you are trying to achieve?

Philosophy Matters.

And that’s why L.D. Pankey, Bob Barkley, and other of our dental heroes constantly talked about it.

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Paul Henny DDS

Dr. Paul Henny maintains an esthetically-focused restorative practice in Roanoke, Virginia. Additionally, he has been a national speaker in dentistry, a visiting faculty member of the Pankey Institute, and visiting lecturer at the Jefferson College or Health Sciences. Dr. Henny has been a member of the Roanoke Valley Dental Society, The Academy of General Dentistry, The American College of Oral Implantology, The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, and is a Fellow of the International Congress of Oral Implantology. He is Past President and co-founder of the Robert F. Barkley Dental Study Club.

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Slip Slidin’ Away

October 30, 2020 Barry F. Polansky, DMD

If you watch one episode of Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares, you will see a repeating theme. Previously great restaurants have come close to shutting their door, because the owners’ passion for maintaining high standards has waned. Diners have dropped them from their A list, their B list, maybe even their C list. Without a dramatic makeover and grand opening, diners are not going to come through the door.

Bring this forward to 2020 and the pandemic. Patrons… clients… customers… have legitimate concerns about moving forward with their lives. Dental teams are doubling down on conversations with patients, along with adopting and adapting to many changes in how they practice. And, then, there is another problem I am seeing in all businesses, not just dental practices. The government gave money to employees to “not work.” Now when they are needed (especially in dental practices and labs), employees want to stay out not only for more “free lunch” but also out of health concerns of their own. They don’t want to take coronavirus back to their family members at risk.

Some of this comes down to the history of the business and how they practiced before and the culture they created…that went way beyond “money.” I’m not saying this is true of all dental practices and less so in the relationship-based practices, The Pankey Institute and other thought leaders promote. But, practicing every day consistently at the quality level of the past takes tremendous commitment. The moral compass of the practice leader—the dentist, must continue to show courage, trust, respect, authenticity, integrity, communication, education and growth, excellence, resilience, purpose, and alignment. Whew! That’s a tall order when you are feeling stressed and exhausted.

It’s no wonder if some of your pre-pandemic passion for spending time with individual patients has waned. When I came out of dental school in 1973, Paul Simon had not yet written his monumental song Slip Slidin’ Away, but within my first decade of practice, I knew the song well and already sensed that life was not on the trajectory I wanted. My passion for dentistry had waned.

We work our jobs
Collect our pay
Believe we’re gliding down the highway
When in fact we’re slip slidin’ away

With inspiration at Pankey and Dawson, wide-wide reading, and encouraging colleagues, I found my way… my passion… my balance… my joie de vivre in dentistry. I discovered how to not only conserve my personal energy but also generate more energy through personal contemplation time and daily exercise. The greatest discovery I made was that my practice of dentistry actually centered around one specific system: the comprehensive patient examination and the meaningful conversations I had with patients during the exam.

The One Thing to look out for is the quality of your comprehensive patient exam. Is it at the highest level?

The comprehensive examination is the “one procedure” or process that gives the dentist the opportunity to express and display his or her leadership “virtues.” Don’t let it slip slide away.

Conversation is where the human side of health care takes place. Continue to spend extra minutes in conversation. The meaningful moments you share with your patients will energize you and help you get through current stressful days. Just remember that having a meaningful conversation, in many cases, requires us to let our guards down and become vulnerable. It means sharing our philosophy and showing our human side… maybe even how challenging dentistry is right now… and yet still so rewarding.

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Barry F. Polansky, DMD

Dr. Polansky has delivered comprehensive cosmetic dentistry, restorative dentistry, and implant dentistry for more than 35 years. He was born in the Bronx, New York in January 1948. The doctor graduated from Queens College in 1969 and received his DMD degree in 1973 from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. Following graduation, Dr. Polansky spent two years in the US Army Dental Corps, stationed at Fort. Dix, New Jersey. In 1975, Dr. Polansky entered private practice in Medford Lakes. Three years later, he built his second practice in the town in which he now lives, Cherry Hill. Dr. Polansky wrote his first article for Dental Economics in 1995 – it was the cover article. Since that time Dr. Polansky has earned a reputation as one of dentistry's best authors and dental philosophers. He has written for many industry publications, including Dental Economics, Dentistry Today, Dental Practice and Finance, and Independent Dentistry (a UK publication).

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Self-Discovery During Social Distancing

March 25, 2020 Richard Green DDS MBA

It may not be this week. It may be next before you have a practice continuation plan in place and have communicated fully with your team and patients. When you do find you have some time, I encourage you to sit back and think about everything you have experienced over the last month and what new learning you have discovered. Then reach out to colleagues and talk over your learning. Continue sharing with each other throughout this time of social distancing. 

I am mindful of a quote from Carl R. Rogers: “The true wonder of learning is discovering for yourself.”  

Starting out in my career, I felt well trained technically, yet I must have subtly believed I was a “hardware” salesperson. Or, maybe it had to do with my tendency to be introverted. Whatever the reason, I found it easier to talk “hardware and technique” than to listen well and then help patients clarify their health objectives and the benefits they were seeking in their dental health care experience.  

I went to a workshop led by Carl R. Rogers titled Client-Centered TherapyThis workshop was significantly different than any of my previous educational experiences. It was a participatory experience. It took some time for me to assimilate his educational concepts into my life and practice, and I noticed right off that I had retained more from a workshop experience and could apply my understanding of what I had learned. When I returned to my office, I attempted to create a participatory learning experience for my patients. I learned from these early attempts more about learning and witnessed behavioral changes in myself and my patients.  

I sought out many other workshops at this time in my life. One was Parent Effectiveness Training, facilitated by a local devotee of Dr. Thomas Gordon. Then, I became reacquainted with Dr. Karl Olson, the retired President of North Park University where I had done my undergraduate schooling prior to going to Northwestern University Dental School.  

Olson had joined forces with Bruce Larson and Heidi Frost of Faith-At-Work and created The Leadership Training Institute, which focused on discovering your leadership potential through three separate weeks of “experiential learning.” The first week was focused on Know Yourself, the second-week focus was Know Yourself in a Small Group, and the third-week experience was focused on Designing Small Group Experiences for Others. Each of these three weeks was separated by six months of intentional application and reflection, which created a powerful learning period of discovering myself.  

From my point of view, there is nothing more rewarding than a learning experience in which one can become aware of one’s own learning in “the moment” or upon reflection. So, now that you have been thrust into participating in Knowing Yourself, your practice, your team, and your patients on a new level where there is a concern for everyone’s safety and wellbeing on an elevated scale take time to reflect on what you learned in “special moments” of the past month.  

Are any of your discoveries blog-worthy to stay in communication with your patients? They will appreciate your personal “touch.” 

Making a comment in response to this blog is one way you can encourage a “continuing conversation” of Pankey participants new awarenesses.” 

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Richard Green DDS MBA

Rich Green, D.D.S., M.B.A. is the founder and Director Emeritus of The Pankey Institute Business Systems Development program. He retired from The Pankey Institute in 2004. He has created Evergreen Consulting Group, Inc. www.evergreenconsultinggroup.com, to continue his work encouraging and assisting dentists in making the personal choices that will shape their practices according to their personal vision of success to achieve their preferred future in dentistry. Rich Green received his dental degree from Northwestern University in 1966. He was a early colleague and student of Bob Barkley in Illinois. He had frequent contact with Bob Barkley because of his interest in the behavioral aspects of dentistry. Rich Green has been associated with The Pankey Institute since its inception, first as a student, then as a Visiting Faculty member beginning in 1974, and finally joining the Institute full time in 1994. While maintaining his practice in Hinsdale, IL, Rich Green became involved in the management aspects of dentistry and, in 1981, joined Selection Research Corporation (an affiliate of The Gallup Organization) as an associate. This relationship and his interest in management led to his graduation in 1992 with a Masters in Business Administration from the Keller Graduate School in Chicago.

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All Teams Need Continuous Development

January 24, 2019 Sheri Kay RDH

It was August of 1995 when I walked through the doors of the Pankey Institute for the very first time.

I was attending a course specifically designed for hygienists and was literally in awe of every aspect of my experience there. Not only was the clinical information fresh and new from what I had been taught in hygiene school, I was also introduced first-hand to the philosophy that has since become the corner stone of my own personal and professional life.

The Power Of Development

Looking back over my shoulder at the past 24 years I realize that none of my learning or growth could have occurred if my “boss” had not invested in me. What I didn’t realize early on was that his investment was not just so that I could be a better hygienist. What happened was that I grew to become an incredibly high performing, deeply engaged, missionary and change agent for our practice. I learned that my thoughts, ideas, feelings, and questions were not only welcomed, but invited and encouraged each and every day. I become a perpetual student and my hunger for personal and professional development was fed and nurtured by the culture that we had intentionally created in our practice.

Today I have the opportunity to work with dental teams across the country, and my mission has evolved from being able to serve individual patients to supporting entire teams as they navigate their own growth and challenges. You see, my own experience as a team member was so powerful that I find it imperative to create my own version of Quid Pro Quo.   Yes, it’s rewarding to help practices learn and practice skills that can enhance every aspect of the patient experience, and even more rewarding to know I’m supporting each Dr and team member to be become the very best version of themselves.

What Does It Mean To Create A Healthy Culture?

Experience tells me it’s where each person is seen, heard, valued, recognized, and appreciated. Of course, it’s important to develop and implement systems, define clinical protocols and establish business operations. I ensure you that when team members feel a part of something bigger than themselves and connected to you and each other, a sense of accountability and responsibility to these standards increase exponentially…as does the presence of positive attitudes. And just in case you’re interested, I’ve also found that every single practice will ALWAYS have challenges, conflicts, and competing values to work out. The highest performing teams will be the ones who consistently push themselves to work ON their issues and work THROUGH their differences.

It was one of the greatest honors of my coaching career to be invited to work with the in-house team at the Pankey Institute last week. I left the building after our meeting filled with more pride than ever in the Institute’s commitment to excellence, and to their team. Your Pankey leadership team is continually helping each person find their voice, serve each participant, “walk the walk and talk the talk” of what it means to be in service and an agent for positive change.

Let me leave you with this question: What is the kind of culture that you want to have in your practice, and who are you willing to invest in to get there? I’m here to tell you, it’s worth the effort!

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Sheri Kay RDH

Sheri Kay started her career in dentistry as a dental assistant for an “under one roof” practice in 1980. The years quickly flew by as Sheri worked her way from one position to the next learning everything possible about the different opportunities and roles available in an office. As much as she loved dentistry … something was always missing. In 1994, after Sheri graduated from hygiene school, her entire world changed when she was introduced to the Pankey Philosophy of Care. What came next for Sheri was an intense desire to help other dental professionals learn how they could positively influence the health and profitability of their own practices. By 2012, Sheri was working full time as a Dental Practice Coach and has since worked with over 300 practices across the country. Owning SKY Dental Practice Dental Coaching is more of a lifestyle than a job, as Sheri thrives on the strong relationships that she develops with her clients. She enjoys speaking at state meetings, facilitating with Study Clubs and of course, coaching with her practices.

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Local SEO Domination for Dentists

November 15, 2018 Daniel Balaze

In my last post on SEO and Google, we talked about the first two steps to get found online by the people who need you most – those in your community. We went over the age, authority, and quality of your website. Not to mention the importance of staking your claim in all of the directories.

At this point, you’ve got a secure, responsive website and hundreds of citations of extremely consistent NAP data. Now what?

With the first two steps completed, search engines need proof that you exist and that you’re worth recommending to their users. How does this happen?

Local SEO Domination in Dentistry

Step 3: Social Engagement and Reviews

Consistency in social media is key. If you’re never going to tweet, don’t get a twitter account. You need to be active where your patients are active. For most of us, that’s going to be Facebook, Instagram, Google, and Yelp.

Pediatric and orthodontic offices should strongly consider putting content out on Musical.ly and Snapchat.  Twitter and LinkedIn are wonderful for connecting with other professionals. Participate in conversations on social media and search engines will know you’re a real live business.

They don’t, however, have any idea how good you are until you get reviews. Again, consistency is key. Don’t get too hung up on volume.

A consistent stream of reviews, as little as one per week, will do better than a brief campaign that produces the same end volume in a month’s time and quits. Native reviews direct to sites like Google, Yelp, etc. have more weight than those acquired by aggregation software like DemandForce, SolutionReach, or RateABiz.

Also, because of geo-location enabled devices, you can look forward to reviews written away from the office being ranked higher. Ask for them consistently, especially when a patient offers a compliment, and you will see results.

Step 4: Go Forth and Create!

The last step is simple but probably the hardest. Be active!

Build your library of content, whether it’s in the form of blog posts, podcasts, or vlogs. Steady streams of updates send the signal that you are a living breathing organization that deserves to be noticed and recommended.

Always keep the subject focused on what benefits your patients experience. I like to divide my content in equal parts – personal interests, professional interests, office updates, industry updates, and local news. This simple post I wrote in 2017 on conservative dental therapies gets as many views as our “about us” page.

Now go and share with the world how awesome you are and crush the competition while doing it!

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Daniel Balaze

Proud to be an alumnus of both the Interlochen Arts Academy and the Cleveland Institute of Music, I was fortunate to perform in many of the great venues in the Greater Cleveland Area. Both as an orchestral bass player, as well as in jazz ensembles and musical theater productions. These days, I focus on creating occlusal and esthetic harmonies. After earning my dental degree from the Case Western Reserve School of Dental Medicine, I completed the entire curriculum at the L.D. Pankey Institue, and earned the honor of Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry. Currently a Restorative Dentist in Laguna Niguel, California, I am grateful to be practicing alongside my mentor and friend, Dr. Bill Gregg. Click here to learn more about ethical marketing in dentistry.

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Google and SEO for Dentists

November 13, 2018 Daniel Balaze

Gone are the days of feeling good that everyone in your community can find you because you paid a single fee for an ad in the yellow pages.  

Today, you need your dental practice to be visible when people in your area are looking for services like yours. More and more people are using their phones and computers to do this.

The most important change is location specific search results. Your future new patients are looking for a dentist on their mobile devices using Google as their search engine. And – based on where they are physically located at that time, Google will provide the best, most trusted results for their query. That’s right – you will get different results from the exact same search phrase depending on your location.

By understanding these facts, you as a small business owner can leverage your uniqueness in a powerful way. All it takes is four simple steps:

SEO Optimization and Google in Dentistry

Step 1: First and Foremost – Your Website

The first step in improving your local SEO [search engine optimization] has to do with the age, authority, and quality of your website. The longer your website is active, the more trustworthy you become.

Changing domains is a big deal and if you choose a new one, you are essentially starting a new business and developing a new reputation at that point. You can increase the authority of your website by publishing compelling content on a consistent basis.

Make certain your website is usable across all devices and platforms and make sure it is secure. Google’s Chrome browser often won’t display websites without a security certificate.  Do you think their search engine would rank secure sites higher than those that aren’t secure?

Step 2: Claim Your Name

The next step in building trust online is claiming your profiles. The latest recommendation is that you use your email associated with your domain when you do this. Most directories are going to ask for your NAP [Name Address Phone] and website data, your business category, a short description, a more lengthy description, business hours, amenities, accessibility, payment methods, and photos.

My advice is to compile this information first, so that the process is as simple as copy and paste. It is vital that everything is formatted identically within the NAP data across all the directories. Lastly, start with the biggest directories first – Google+, Facebook, MapQuest, Acxiom, Yelp, etc. The smaller directories are carrying less weight than they used to.

In the next post, I’ll talk about the last two steps to local SEO domination.

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Direct Composite: Predictable, Easy and Beautiful

DATE: October 25 2024 @ 8:00 am - October 26 2024 @ 4:00 pm

Location: The Pankey Institute

CE HOURS: 14

Regular Tuition: $ 2195

Single Occupancy with Ensuite Private Bath (per night): $ 290

Achieving Predictable and Stunning Anterior Results Direct composite is something we do every day in our practices. Yet, they can sometimes be frustrating when we don’t get a tight contact…

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Daniel Balaze

Proud to be an alumnus of both the Interlochen Arts Academy and the Cleveland Institute of Music, I was fortunate to perform in many of the great venues in the Greater Cleveland Area. Both as an orchestral bass player, as well as in jazz ensembles and musical theater productions. These days, I focus on creating occlusal and esthetic harmonies. After earning my dental degree from the Case Western Reserve School of Dental Medicine, I completed the entire curriculum at the L.D. Pankey Institue, and earned the honor of Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry. Currently a Restorative Dentist in Laguna Niguel, California, I am grateful to be practicing alongside my mentor and friend, Dr. Bill Gregg. Click here to learn more about ethical marketing in dentistry.

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Perio Screening vs Assessment

November 7, 2018 Pankey Gram

Time is a major priority in the thriving dental practice. Balancing the need for comprehensive care with the efficiency necessary to get everything done in a day is a serious challenge. When it comes to periodontal assessments, the numbers today shockingly still show that a majority of offices are not routinely completing a perio exam.

It doesn’t have to be that way!

Implement a Quick Perio Screening

Consider making your life a lot easier while still improving patient care by offering periodontal screenings. An efficient screening that divides the mouth into scored sextants shouldn’t take more than a minute or two.

Your hygienists will appreciate the opportunity to show off their probing skills. They will be able to help patients recognize the signs of gingivitis and periodontal inflammation that may have gone unnoticed otherwise. If the patient scores high enough, then that will necessitate a full-mouth periodontal exam that includes full mouth probing furcation scoring and measuring muco-gingival attachment loss and recession.

This simple addition can lead to more dentistry in your practice and therefore higher production. That’s a boon for both patients and dentists, as the former improves their health and the latter is able to offer more complex treatment.

Periodontal disease is a sneaky, pervasive issue that can be detrimental to a patient’s entire health. Systemic diseases like atherosclerosis and diabetes have been associated with periodontitis. Gingivitis, while reversible, can still be exceedingly unpleasant and eventually lead to worsening periodontal health.

The way your hygienist educates patients about periodontal disease contributes to how patients understand the screening’s purpose. The hygienist must make it clear that you are checking for gingivitis and periodontitis because they can lead to pain and tooth loss. This would require much more invasive care in the long run.

Get our take on dental esthetics by reading this awesome Pankey blog here. Do you carry out perio screenings in your practice? We’re dying to know more, don’t be a stranger!

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DATE: March 6 2025 @ 8:00 am - March 8 2025 @ 2:00 pm

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The Dentist’s Leadership Role

July 18, 2018 Mary Osborne RDH

Leadership shouldn’t be a happy accident or something you fall into simply by virtue of becoming a dentist. It should be an acknowledged responsibility that you treat with genuine seriousness.

Of course, your instincts shouldn’t necessarily be ignored, but can they always be trusted? As the dentist, you are by default a leader. In reality, you should understand your role in shaping your practice’s vision as well as fostering growth for the entire team.

The hardest part about navigating the nebulous realm of leadership is clarifying and meeting the duties ascribed to your role. For dentists, you are actually fulfilling four different roles, all of which are important for general morale and success.

4 Roles of the Dental Leader

Follow the leader has real meaning in a professional space. One of your primary roles is that of the vision initiator. You have to be bold, verbal, and engaged in your vision to help your team attain the same values. You need to be fully present, especially when your practice is new or developing. The future depends on how you see it.

You will also become the educator in your practice, if you haven’t already. You must guide patients and team members toward your expectations for care. They can’t identify with your vision if you don’t yourself have the skills to state it clearly.

Your third role is that of the vision facilitator. At some point, your team and practice will be fully imbued with the tangible effects of your vision. You have to make the effort to prevent that vision from stalling through team building and careful hiring.

Finally, you must embrace your role as a mentor. This may be more challenging if you have a very strong personality, as it can make people embrace your vision even if they don’t appreciate the philosophy. What you want is a sort of vision immortality, so that even if you leave the practice, your vision and leadership live on.

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Transform your experience of practicing dentistry, increase predictability, profitability and fulfillment. The Essentials Series is the Key, and Aesthetic and Functional Treatment Planning is where your journey begins.  Following a system of…

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Mary Osborne RDH

Mary is known internationally as a writer and speaker on patient care and communication. Her writing has been acclaimed in respected print and online publications. She is widely known at dental meetings in the U.S., Canada, and Europe as a knowledgeable and dynamic speaker. Her passion for dentistry inspires individuals and groups to bring the best of themselves to their work, and to fully embrace the difference they make in the lives of those they serve.

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