Mike Shoun, CEO
Affordable Image
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Working Together From the Beginning Equals Success
By Mike Shoun, CEO

You are starting a new practice. The location has been picked, the design is approved and your team is ready, but did you ever figure out where the patients will be coming from? Interesting that the question of patients and how to get them is often the last item on the list of any practice. As an expert in the field of marketing, I find this question is the first one that should be asked. No matter what is to be sold or serviced, if you don’t know your target market then you shouldn’t be in business. In reality, the marketing company should be chosen first because that is what we do – find your target market.

Some feathers get ruffled when I say this, but in all actuality marketing makes the money for the practice. When a marketing plan is designed correctly, many factors are taken into consideration. Let’s start with the location.

Location
The marketing company is a realtor’s best friend when choosing location. If the data comes back from the marketing company that the type of practice isn’t going to fair well at a certain location, even though the square footage is an amazing price, why choose that location? The struggle to get patients to go into an industrial area to get their cleanings is not worth the savings on rent. Living in the new world of quicker is better, we find that most patients like convenience of location and parking, rather than going to the doctor they had for years, if it makes their lives easier. So rent might be cheap, but with no patients in the chairs the rent won’t get paid. Working together from the beginning equals success.

Design
The next phase is the design of the practice. Again, the marketing team is the designer’s best friend. With both team members having the same vision for what the client is trying to achieve, the branding of the practice becomes a total success. It can be a disaster when the designer is creating this wonderful spa-like space only to find out that the doctor is telling the marketing team he wants families with children. Parents won’t come back because the space is not kid friendly. Knowing what the actual vision is from the beginning empowers the marketing team to develop not only the logo to match, but allows each marketing piece to make a statement that carries throughout the office. Working together from the beginning equals success.

Financing
The banker of course needs to be partnered right away. We can’t forget them, as they are the ones making sure the money is there to get started. The savvy banker is aware of how critical it is for the marketing team to be included in the loan, allowing for success of the practice once it is opened. If you don’t allow for marketing in the budget at the time of the loan, your practice will struggle and stress will set in with desperation to follow. Sitting down from the beginning with your marketing team will allow for your goals to be met, and having a plan will give you peace of mind so you may do what you do best – be a dentist! Working together from the beginning equals success.

Equipment
Your equipment team. Why did I add this in? Because knowing what unique equipment your practice is going to have will allow the marketing team to find out all the bells and whistles to promote to your patients to get them in the door. Technology is always changing and the equipment team knows their product best. They will share with the marketing team useful tips on sharing this info with patients. Working together from the beginning equals success.

Consulting
Hopefully you have chosen a practice consultant. If you haven’t thought about this, I highly recommend that you do. Marketing teams work well with consultants because they both have your best interest at heart. The consultant is an “in” to your practice to help guide your marketing team for true total success. They dig deep into the day-to-day operations to help utilize the marketing you need for the practice to be successful. Working together from the beginning equals success.

Now you can understand why it is so important to choose your marketing team in the beginning, to allow you the success your practice deserves. Having a team makes your life easier and allows you to enjoy the profession for which you trained. Just remember the old saying, “There is no I in team.” Set yourself up for success and choose your team from the beginning.

“Working together from the beginning equals success!”

Mike Shoun is the President and Owner of Affordable Image Dental Marketing Solutions - a full service marketing company dedicated to the client's overall success. 

Mike can be reached at (602) 265-2299 ext. 211, or email mike@affordableimage.com

Visit www.affordableimage.com for more information

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