Seminar Notes

Smile Source
Mac and Joleen
October 24, 2014


If you provide no “WOW” for your patients, you are just selling a commodity.  The team must connect on a personal level with each patient – whether it’s on the phone or during an office visit.

There are 3 times you can handle an objection: BEFORE it happens; WHEN it happens or AFTER it happens.  When do you think the easiest time is?

There are 2 realities:

TEETH                                     PATIENT THOUGHTS

Infection                                  How much $?

Cracks                                       I’m scared…

Missing                                    I don’t have time…

Broken Down                          I’m not sure I trust them – they probably just want to buy a new car.

Decayed                                   I don’t really value the solution – I’ve lived with these broken teeth for a long time.


Each team member must take an ownership role within the practice.  If you think someone (besides you) dropped the ball, what did you do about it?

Joleen’s goal (and probably other team members) is to be the absolute best assistant, or treatment coordinator, or phone person.

The team must shield the doctor.  They must feed the doctor EVERYTHING when he walks into the room.  He is thinking about a million other things he must do and team members must be responsible for the details.  If you are not sure what to do about a situation, make sure you have his attention and then ask him.  Such as, “I know you said you’d like to use XYZ dental lab, but for Mrs. Jones because she is so picky about everything, I think we should use ABC lab.  Would that be alright with you?” (No whining or blaming!)

If team members want to be the best, they must figure out how to do that.  Can you schedule some time after work or on Fridays to mentor one another?  Can you bring up a picture of a “before” mouth at the morning or afternoon huddle and quickly talk about what you see?  Can you find out about courses or bringing someone in to teach you? Can you offer to give a course to team members from other offices?  When you have to teach something, it’s amazing how much you learn! Or, each person could be responsible for teaching something to the others on your team at a team meeting.

Income Centers

There are 3 income centers in a dental practice:


Think about how much the practice spends to get the phone to ring and then think about the amount of money that the caller may be worth to the practice.

What is your Ace of Hearts, i.e., what does the practice want to happen with each patient that calls?

How can you redirect, redirect, redirect and redirect to make sure you end up with your Ace of Hearts by the end of the call?

Every single patient needs to go through Katie rather than through hygiene.

Person talking on the phone to a new patient needs to have 20-30 minutes free to talk.  (This shouldn’t be done in the front when there is a person sitting in the reception area – the patient can be put on hold for a minute while the team member moves to the desk around the corner.)

Why does a person call your dental office? 1.) They have a problem; or, 2.) They have moved and need a new dentist or they don’t like their dentist.

During the PHONE call realize: 1.) the person has a problem; 2) listen for hints; 3) use THEIR own words to ask questions knowing they have a problem; 4) make them feel comfortable and listened to; 5) document on a research sheet everything talked about.

“Is insurance the only reason you want to take care of your teeth?”

“If it were free, would you come in?”

“Are you price shopping?”  “Well, this may not be the best place since we are not the cheapest.” “Tell me more about your price shopping.”

“I’m on a fixed income.”  “What does a fixed income mean?” “Tell me how much of that fixed income you have allotted for your teeth?”

“Tell me why you decided to call Dr. Coker.”

“Dr. Coker’s goal for every patient is that wants you to be educated about your teeth and how that relates to your physical health.”

“There are two kinds of infected teeth – 1) we have to pull it or 2) we have to put you on antibiotics.”

“What made you pick up the phone to call us?” “My mom heard you on the radio.” “What part did she hear?”

“Seems like you’re smart enough to get a second opinion.”

“You’re going to have to feel good about the money you spend here.”


What skills does the dentist have.  Use them to your advantage.

The dentist shouldn’t be indecisive to the patient.

Can dentist figure out a basic cost model so that he and Katie can give the patient a basic treatment plan and cost estimate at the end of the exam rather than having them come back for a formal “consult?” Be sure to “overestimate” rather than to “underestimate.”

3. HYGIENIST (What skills does the hygienist have.)

The Exam

Doctor says to TC in front of patient at exam: “I’m going to examine each and every tooth in your mouth and I’m going to call out what I see (good or bad) to Katie and you may not understand what I’m saying.  But, Katie’s job after this is to explain everything to you so that you do understand it. Then YOUR job is to decide if you want treatment or not.”

The TC must take the regular series of pictures, but needs to also include some pictures that sell.

“Wouldn’t it make sense to see what I see?  If you look at this picture of your smile, I don’t think you will be happy with only 6 (or 8) veneers.  You would only be getting a half-smile and would still be trying to cover part of it with your hand – or just trying to give a half-smile.”

“When you are missing back teeth, it is like your jaw is always standing on it’s tippy toes.”

“We replace teeth in order for you not to lose more teeth.” (NOT so you can chew)

“Wearing dentures is like wearing flip flops.  You curl your toes to hold them on.”

“Implant retained dentures are like wearing a tennis shoe.”

The PAUSE is important – can be up to 60 seconds.

“Your teeth didn’t come in looking like that.”

“What are you thinking?”

“There are 4 ways you can lose your teeth – 1) you get them knocked; 2) from decay; 3) from gum disease; or 4) the way they fit together.”

Anatomy of a Sale

PREHEAT – What they’ve heard about you before they call.

INTRODUCTION – Get to know the patient.

DISCOVERY – Use pictures and give solutions.

SOLUTION – Use more specific solutions tailored for patient.

CLOSE – Get acceptance, $$ and then schedule. Make it easy to say YES.

There are 3 types of patients: 1) those who only want to fix it when it hurts; 2) those who only want to do a little at a time; 3) those who do it like Dr. Coker wants so that all of the teeth fit together and match.

Always be asking questions.

If you want to sell, ask, don’t tell.

“The decision is not important to us, but we want you to feel good about what you spend.”

Treatment of Large Cases

SLOW IT DOWN.  Patients may suddenly be in a hurry to change their smile even though it has taken years to get it into the mess it is.  You can get them scheduled and money collected, but don’t try to seat it in 2 or 3 days after prepping.  Be sure they know when scheduling that it is a meticulous process and to get it perfectly done, it will take being in temporaries for two weeks – or longer.