Many people work for dental practices during their career and after a few years of observing from afar, they believe they have what it takes to go out on their own. While these people probably do have more experience and knowledge than the average person, they may not be aware of the potential pitfalls which almost every new business owner falls into.
It should go without saying that before you launch any business you should have a detailed business plan and the right level of funding in place, but what comes next? Here are the next 4 key steps in your journey towards running a successful dental practice.
1. Choose the right location
To maximise the number of patients you can attract and treat you need to choose the location of your practice very carefully. For example, choosing a location where you are surrounded by other dental surgeries and there is no demand is going to set you on an uphill struggle from the beginning. Try to find premises in an area with fewer dental practices.
2. Get the best equipment and supplies
Starting a dental practice is not a cheap task and while other types of business can begin with basic equipment and grow, dental surgeries need to be fully equipped from day one. From lighting, chairs and x-ray machines to interdentals, gloves and composites, you need to find a reliable supplier as soon as possible. A quality dental supplies company such as Kent Express Dental Supplies can enable you to provide your patients with excellent treatment which puts you ahead of the competition. If you are not able to meet the patient’s expectations, they may not return and this could lead to reputational damage in the local area.
3. Have a marketing strategy
To attract patients to your dental surgery you will need set out and deliver a marketing strategy to tell your target audience you are now accepting new patients. There are plenty of marketing techniques to consider including traditional leaflet drops in the local area, print advertising and placing business cards in the reception areas of other businesses. You could also sponsor local events to establish a positive brand image in the local area.
However, in the modern world any business worth its salt has an online presence and invests at least some time into digital marketing. You should have a website and a social media presence which is appropriate to your audience and may also want to consider paid advertising on search engines.
4. Find an accountant
You might be an expert in dentistry and possibly even in administration and/or customer service and marketing, but the chances of you also being an experienced financial manager or accountant are slim. There are going to be numerous financial obstacles on your journey and without someone to help you manage cash flow through the good and the bad times you will very quickly find your surgery in hot water. Find an accountant who is not only full qualified but also has experience of the trends which could affect a dental practice financially.