Dental Blog

How Not to Respond to a Negative Dental Review

Posted by Don Khouri on Sat, Dec 03, 2011 @ 12:56 PM

Did you hear about the dentist in New York City who is taking her patient to court for posting a negative review online?  Also, she invoiced him $100 / day until the patient would remove the review.   As a result of the doctor's approach, there were many more negative reviews gets negative review online

It's not completely clear how this will impact her business, but it is not going to be good.  Here are my thoughts on the situation:

  1. negative reviews are not necessarily a bad thing.  You are not going to make everyone happy.
  2. A few negative reviews makes it more real for your patients.
  3. It is far more important how you respond to the negative reviews than the review itself.

There are many good ways to improve your online reputation and deal with negative information online.  Fortune Management of Boston is an expert at Dental Practice Marketing.  For a complimentary 45-minute coaching session on improving your online reputation, please click below.

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Tags: dental practice management, dental marketing, online reputation, dental coach

What Dentists Need to Know About Social Media

Posted by Don Khouri on Wed, Jun 01, 2011 @ 11:11 AM

Recently, Social Media Examiner published the 2011 Social Media Marketing Industyr Report.  There were some interesting findings which I think are helpful to dentists. 

social media

88% of all marketers indicated that the social media efforts have generated more exposure for the businesses. 

72% report increased traffic on their website

62% report that the search rankings improved as a result of social media.

And 51% found that their social media efforts are generating qualified leads. 

The top social media tools used across all businesses are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, and Youtube in that order.

This is more data for us, that we need to be using social media in our dental practices to connect with our patients, build a sense of community, and attract new patients.  "The ROI of social media is that your business will still exist in 5 years."  Take a look at this 5-minute video: 

There are a few easy ways you can get started with this.  For a complimentary marketing analysis in your practice, please send me a short email:, and let me know you're interested.

Tags: dental practice management, dental consulting, social media, dental marketing

Are You WOWing your Dental Patients?

Posted by Don Khouri on Fri, Mar 25, 2011 @ 03:41 PM

I had the not so wonderful experience of wakcustomer service, dental front desking up recently to what turned out to be a kidney stone.  After mulling around it a bit not really sure where the pain was coming from or what it was, I checked in to the emergency room at Lahey Clinic in Burlington, MA. The check in process was actually pretty good.  They asked for some basic information, took my vital signs, and I waited in the waiting room for about 15 minutes before they escorted me to the triage room.  I was there for a total of five hours and here are my key observations:

  • Not once in five hours did anyone ask me if I needed anything.
  • When I called for help, there was no response.
  • When I asked for food, they refused to give me anything.  Now part of this was because they wanted the CT Scan on my stomach to be clean.  Even after the CT Scan and even after I asked again, I was still not given anything to eat.
  • The staff did not proactively update me on my status or next steps; it wasn’t until I asked.
  • If I had a question, I had to get up and go to the nurse's station to ask. 

I share this with you not to ask for you sympathy, but to raise your awareness of the service that you provide.

Let me share another quick story with you.  I am writing this article from the Ritz Carleton in Bachelor Gulch, CO.  The check-in experience was simple, and when I was not satisfied with my room, they sent someone up to show me another.  When I asked a passing worker where the meeting room was, he didn’t tell me or point, he walked me there.  A guest can tell from the moment you enter to the moment you leave, that it is a service experience, a WOW experience.

If you are familiar with the Ritz Carlton at all, you may be familiar with their Credo:  “The Ritz-Carlton Hotel is a place where the genuine care and comfort of our guests is our highest mission. We pledge to provide the finest personal service and facilities for our guests who will always enjoy a warm, relaxed, yet refined ambience. The Ritz-Carlton experience enlivens the senses, instills well-being, and fulfills even the unexpressed wishes and needs of our guests.”

Further, they live by a set of Service Values:

  1. I build strong relationships and create Ritz-Carlton guests for life.
  2. I am always responsive to the expressed and unexpressed wishes and needs of our guests.
  3. I am empowered to create unique, memorable and personal experiences for our guests.
  4. I understand my role in achieving the Key Success Factors, embracing Community Footprints and creating The Ritz-Carlton Mystique.
  5. I continuously seek opportunities to innovate and improve The Ritz-Carlton experience.
  6. I own and immediately resolve guest problems.
  7. I create a work environment of teamwork and lateral service so that the needs of our guests and each other are met.
  8. I have the opportunity to continuously learn and grow.
  9. I am involved in the planning of the work that affects me.
  10. I am proud of my professional appearance, language and behavior.
  11. I protect the privacy and security of our guests, my fellow employees and the company's confidential information and assets.
  12. I am responsible for uncompromising levels of cleanliness and creating a safe and accident-free environment.

How is your Dental Practice?  Are you an emergency room or are you the Ritz Carlton? Everything you do is about service, from answering the phone to checking out the patient, and this is what keeps patients coming back.  Think about the following:

  • How is your telephone greeting?
  • What does the patient see when he/she walks through the door?
  • How is the hand-off to the clinical team?
  • How and where is the treatment plan presented?
  • How does the office smell?
  • Who must you BE in 2011 to realize your vision?

When you think about dental practice management, service is a great way to distinguish your dental practice.  Commit to C-A-N-I ® – Constant and Never-ending Improvement – for yourself, your co-workers, and your patients.

Tags: dental practice management, customer service, dental consulting, leadership

The Five Key Business Engines in a Dental Practice

Posted by Don Khouri on Sun, Jan 09, 2011 @ 08:09 PM

The most successful people have a laser-focused vision.  To make the five business engines work successfully, the dentist and the dental team should start at the center and get very clear about their vision.

VisionFive Business Engines for a dental practice

To create your vision, answer some of the following questions:  What type of practice do you want to run?  What is the standard of care that you offer?  What type of patients would you like?  Which insurance plans do you want to accept?  How much money would you like to make?  What would the team look like?  What would you facility look like?

All five business engines need to be in place to run a successful practice:


Ensure that you have all the right financial systems in place, you have documented financial policies, and you are using accounting software to track income and expenses.


There are six critical systems which the dental practice must master -- schedule to goal, financial policies and arrangements, recare system, reactivation system, monitoring system, and new patient experience

Clinical / Technology

Always be sharpening your saw clinically, learn the new technology.

Sales / Marketing

There are four parts to sales and marketing to have fully implemented marketing plan:  branding / identity, external marketing, internal marketing, and case presentation and enrollment skills. 


Dentists need to help their staff answer the question, "what's in it for me?"  One way to answer this is financially.  Create a win/win bonus program, make them your partners in the business, and offer the team a % of all collections that come into the office.  It is important to have agreements in place with all team members to ensure they are on the same page and holding each other accountable to these operating guidelines.

I wish you all the success in 2011 in your dental practice and in your personal life. 

Tags: dental practice management, five business engines