If you haven’t ever seen the YouTube clip of Whoopi Goldberg talking about her personal experience with gum disease and tooth loss, you should Google it. If you have, you’ll know it’s the kind of message everyone in your community should hear.

This kind of message is so powerful when someone who’s respected says, “take care of your teeth, use your insurance coverage or end up with severe bone loss, tooth loss, and serious health implications.” It reminds us of the importance of advocacy. People truly need to be educated about the importance of their oral health and the impact it can have on their lives. It’s really wonderful that we’re helping millions of people understand how dentistry can, literally, improve their health and even their lives via our client communications.

The depth that researchers are connecting the mouth-body link is astounding yet the average North-American remains unaware (even Whoopi Goldberg hadn’t figured it out). Aside from what people might learn at their regular dental visit, how can we help the public learn about oral health and the improvements they can make to their smile? Just last month ScienceDaily reported that postmenopausal women need more than two annual checkups to control dental plaque. How does this news get to postmenopausal women?

As a dentist, you make the difference. You are respected by your patients and community as the expert in oral care and today’s healthcare consumers expect prevention and desire improved quality of life. Further, we know that more than 85% of women are the primary decision-makers for all health-care related decisions for their families, and they like to be well-informed and research products before buying. Boomer women, by the way, are established and have the economic ability to spend time and money on themselves. Women want communication, not just a transaction. They want expert advice and companies to trust. A significant percentage of women have employment-based coverage in their own name – but our clients are often left asking, if it’s paid for, why aren’t they using it?

They need regular communication, education, motivation and understanding. Studies show that approximately 25% of North American’s fear the dentist, so no shows and cancellations are a real challenge for dentists. It has been proven that providing health education helps alleviate patient anxiety, builds awareness about modern techniques and procedures and overcomes fear – which in turn can increase response to dental marketing and advertising campaigns!

Consumers enjoy and appreciate information that explains how dentists check for more than 200 common diseases, 3% of which are life threatening. Take the advocacy role and find multiple ways to educate and communicate with your patients and prospective patients. Whoopi Goldberg took her message into people’s living rooms, and you can too, only yours can get there 100% of the time if you market through targeted direct mail. Results from our latest new patient acquisition (newsletter/postcard/email) direct mail campaigns have been fantastic! This is due to two reasons. First is the Call Tracker technology we’ve introduced to analyze response and increase results.

The second improvement is the higher level of personalization which enables us to more clearly communicate the unique personality, offerings, and benefits of your practice. As always, we invite you to call Patient News to get expert advice and no obligation information on developing content and marketing your dental practice.