Dentists Need to get Creative to Retain Patients in a World of Marketplaces and Little Loyalty


My friend tells me she went to the Dentist the other day in New York City. She grew up in Michigan and typically goes to her family dentist when she's home visiting her family, but she was feeling like she needed a cleaning so she went on ZocDoc.com and within a few clicks she was booked for a cleaning at a dental practice just a few blocks from her apartment.

Owning a dental practice is not easy.

As a dentist, you’re a dedicated professional committed to your patients’ oral health. But patient retention is also important for the growth of your business.

So what can you do in a world of marketplaces and little loyalty? Here are 4 creative ways you can leave lasting impressions and improve your retention rates.





1) Ditch the White Coat

The white coat is a symbol of authority -- one attained only by countless sleepless nights and grueling board exams. Many dental school students dream of walking into an exam room in their white coats to heal the sick.

But the white coat (and gloves) also creates a sense of hierarchy, making some patients feel intimidated in the presence of a doctor.

White coats can also spread bacteria. One study found that doctors’ white coats were contaminated with all kinds of bacteria, including Staphylococci resistant to Penicillin, Erythromycin, and Clindamycin.

Here’s a solution -- You can simply ditch the white coat. Make your practice more welcoming and “cool” by getting rid of the barrier between you and your patients. If you need pockets, an alternative, such as a sleeveless neoprene vest, serves all the functions of a white coat without causing your patients additional stress.




2) Engage Your Patients with Unique Giveaways

When it comes to growing your practice, you don’t need to hire expensive marketing firms. That’s because nothing beats word-of-mouth referrals, even in this digital world.

But you need to be proactive in asking for referrals.

Set your practice apart with promotional giveaways for your patients, and they’ll do all the marketing for you.

The key to giveaways is choosing promotional items that are both functional and convenient.

Here’s a unique giveaway idea: tongue scrapers. Educate your patients on the use and benefits of tongue scrapers, and be sure to include some as a part of a gift for their loyalty. These functional gifts will strike up conversations wherever your patients go, which could lead to referrals to your practice.

ScrapeYourTongue.com offers wholesale Tongue Scrapers to dental / medical offices at a rate of $25 for a 100-pack: ScrapeYourTongue.com/100Pack




3) Redesign Your Office For Instagram

Does your office lobby make patients say “Wow”?

We live in a world where a picture of a salad can get thousands of “likes.” This means that in order to survive, businesses, including medical offices, need to rethink their office design to attract customers. And with more than 500 million daily active users, Instagram is the place to show off your artistic side.

So how can your office become one of the “Most Instagrammable Places” in your city?

Instead of displaying your diplomas throughout your office, take a page out of retail stores’ playbooks and go for a more photo-friendly setup, like unique art or furniture. Unique live plants are also sure to be a hit on Instagram.

While adding unique elements to your office, don’t forget that lighting is important to take great photography. Not only does soft, natural light relieve stress for patients, it can also result in some breathtaking photos.




4) Prioritize Patient Comfort and Stress Relief

The bone-chilling whir of a dentist’s drill can make anyone squirm uncomfortably. It’s little wonder why dentists are one of the most hated professions.

Some discomfort may be unavoidable, but there are things you can do to maximize your patients’ comfort.

For example, you can provide headphones with soothing music to drown out the sound of drills. Some dentists also have TVs with Netflix in each exam room so that patients could watch their favorite shows or movies during their procedures.

If TVs in exam rooms aren’t your thing, unique plants or interesting artwork/photographs may also work to take the patient’s focus away from the procedure.




Small things like artwork and goodie bags may seem trivial, but they can go a long way in getting people to talk about your dental practice. A dental visit strikes stress and anxiety in millions of people, but by engaging your patients and staying on top of social trends, you may soon have a long list of loyal patients.

Start Your Morning Right With These 3 Simple Routines

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Developing a good morning routine seems to be all the rage these days. From entrepreneurs to stay-at-home moms to college professors, everyone seeks to increase their daily productivity, and having a great morning routine is a proven way to do so.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of possible things you can include in your personal routine. Every person’s morning routine is different, but here are three things we highly recommend including to get the best start to your day.

1) Make Your Bed

No, we’re not trying to sound like your mom (although she did have the right idea). But really, you should make your bed every morning. If you want to increase productivity in your mornings, this tiny habit is the one you should start with.

Now, you may be asking, “Why? Who cares about my bed? And what does making my bed have to do with my productivity?”

Retired Navy SEAL commander William H. McRaven, who oversaw the execution of the special ops raid that killed Osama bin Laden, has the answer to that. In his book, Make Your Bed, McRaven writes that it is important to start your day with a simple task completed. A small accomplishment within the first minutes of your day will increase your sense of pride and motivate you to complete other tasks.

“If you can’t do the little things right, you’ll never be able to do the big things right,” McRaven said to the graduates of University of Texas at Austin in 2014.

So take the 30 seconds every morning and make your bed. Your mom will be proud.

It's like a bed-sized sleeping bag. Get it here.


2) Scrape Your Tongue

Think about this: While you sleep, your body is hard at work detoxifying your body of harmful bacteria, toxins, food debris, dead cells, and fungi -- and depositing them on your tongue. And by not cleaning your tongue the first thing in the morning, you are likely reabsorbing that sludge.

They don’t call it morning breath for no reason.

If the bacteria and toxins aren’t removed, they can cause tooth decay, bad breath, digestive issues, and a poor immune system among other problems. Brushing and flossing your teeth are no-brainers when it comes to a morning routine, but they aren’t enough. if you want a super fresh start to your day and give a boost to your immune system, scrape your tongue.

Tongue scrapers have been clinically shown to be significantly more effective at removing oral bacteria from the back of your tongue, where toothbrushes are unable to reach. So do yourself (and everyone else) a favor and include tongue scraping in your morning routine.


mean girls bad breath GIF


3) Journal

Neuroscientists believe that humans can have an average of 50,000 to 70,000 per day, meaning anywhere between 35 and 48 thoughts per minute, every single day.

Even more astounding? Between 70 to 80% of those thoughts are negative. It’s no wonder most people fail to achieve their goals. If you’re one of the majority who make the same resolutions year after year, Morning Pages might be the solution for you.

The idea of Morning Pages was developed by author Julia Cameron, who described the practice as “three pages of longhand, stream of consciousness writing, done first thing in the morning.” Cameron writes that there is no right or wrong way to do Morning Pages, nor should you put too much thought into them. Just write anything and everything that crosses your mind.

Many people who do Morning Pages claim that it has been a life-changing experience. Some of the common benefits include less anxiety, more productivity, clarity of mind, more creativity, less negativity, less fear, and brighter mood. Your journal can also help you stay focused on your goals so that you can finally change your new year’s resolutions next year.


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The key to developing a successful morning routine is to take things slowly. Wake up 15-30 minutes earlier than your normal time, and focus on completing just a few tasks in the beginning so you won’t get overwhelmed. Be sure to keep track of your morning routine in a journal and don’t hesitate to change anything that doesn’t work for you.

If You Smoke Cigarettes, Vaps, Juuls, Weed or Anything... Scrape Your Tongue




Talk to any group of smokers, marijuana enthusiasts, or vapers, and they’ll tell you one thing they have in common – cotton mouth a.k.a. dry mouth.

Scientists have established that long-term smoking can disrupt the functions of your salivary glands, resulting in reduced saliva secretion and poor quality of saliva.






And your spit is more than just water in your mouth that prevents you from choking on your food. It’s hustling hard 24/7, washing away and killing harmful bacteria that can cause bad breath and other oral diseases.

So what happens when your mouth doesn’t produce enough saliva? Well, since you asked…

(We hope you didn’t eat before reading this. In case you did, we’ll give you some time to get ready. Just scroll down…)

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Gross.

If your tongue isn’t pink, it can be a sign of a health problem. For smokers, your tongue will likely develop a white coating – or yellow, brown, green, or black.

When you don’t produce enough saliva, nasty things can build up on your tongue, like nicotine (for smokers), bacteria, yeast, dead cells, disease-causing pathogens, toxins, and decaying food particles. And when food cells decay, your breath smells.






Maybe you’ve noticed people taking a step back away from you, just so they won’t have to smell your halitosis-laden breath. Can you blame them?

So what can you do? Two major things: 1) Drink more water, 2) practice better oral health maintenance in general and scrape your tongue. For just $1, you’ll have fresher breath, get rid of all the nastiness built up on your tongue, and improve your health. 

The 5 Most Useful and Cost-Effective Gifts to Give Away at Your Next Event

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Everyone loves free stuff. People would do some insane things for them, and that’s exactly why big companies love giving away their products for free. They understand the potential ROI that giveaways can bring. After all, brand recognition is the difference between a company that thrives and one that merely survives.

Don’t think you can compete with the big guys because of your tiny budget?  No problem. Giveaways are all about choosing the right products that promote your business and provide value to consumers at the same time. If you’re stuck on ideas, here are five of the most useful and cost-effective gifts to give away at your next event.


1) Custom T-shirts

Wanna hear of a genius marketing move that’ll get your brand out there with minimal cost and effort? Custom t-shirts. Seriously, people (especially men) love free shirts. And who wouldn’t?
T-shirts let your customers do the marketing for you. It’s quite simple: The more t-shirts you give out, the more people will wear them, leading to more interest in your business and more opportunities for you.





If there’s one common theme in almost every event out there, it’s food. And too often, it’s smelly food. Sure, those onion fries and garlic bread might smell amazing, but what’s not amazing is garlic breath. 
Thank goodness for tongue scrapers. They’re small enough to fit inside your pocket and work fast so that users can run to the restroom, scrape their tongue, and return to your event in no time with fresh breath. The best part? They’re only $1. So save your event from the embarrassment of being known as “the dragon breath event,” and give away some tongue scrapers. 


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3) Portable Phone Chargers

The average American checks his/her smartphone up to 80 times a day. 80 times. We use them for everything – directions, fitness, social media, photos, job search...and even sex. 
What this means is that just about everyone needs a recharge or two throughout the day. Take advantage of this opportunity to create brand awareness by giving away promotional portable phone chargers. This gift combines form, function, and convenience – and your customers will love you for them. 


4) Custom Calendar

People might be using their smartphones more, but that doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy crossing off days until a wedding anniversary or a tropical vacation. Calendars occupy important parts in homes and offices, and much like portable phone chargers, they are great functional gifts that will keep your brand visible all 365 days of the year. 




5) Reusable Totes

Want to promote your brand long-term and feel good about going green at the same time? Branded reusable totes are just the eco-friendly swag you’ll want to give away at your next event. Not only can they be carried just about anywhere and last for years, they send a message to your consumers that you care about the environment. 





Giveaway items at your event can be great marketing tools that will generate business leads and help attendees remember your company long after the show. Picking the right items can be challenging especially when you’re on a budget, but by focusing on a combination of brand promotion, functionality, and convenience, you’ll be sure to wow your attendees and run a successful event. 




5 Things You Might Forget to Pack When You Travel (... Don't)

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Packing for a trip is always a huge ordeal – just how are you supposed to fit your entire wardrobe, 5 pairs of shoes, 10 books, an ultra-fancy first-aid kit for every potential emergency situation, a laptop, a tablet, and extra batteries for your cellphone in that tiny suitcase?

While there’s no blog post or YouTube video with a perfect list of things you’ll absolutely positively need when you travel, here’s a list of 5 things you should pack first:

1) Passport

This is a no-brainer if you’re traveling out of the country, but carrying a passport is something you should consider even when you’re traveling domestically. You would never want to be stuck without a passport in the event that you need to take an impromptu trip out of the country, and it can also serve as a second form of identification if your first form is ever lost or stolen.

A word of precaution: Never carry your passport in the same pocket as your cellphone and wallet. Keep it in an inside pocket or in a bag that you can keep in front of you at all times.

beyonce passport

2) Wet Wipes

Let’s face it -- flying is dirty business. Between the deep-cleanings that occur every month (or two), planes can become germ fests. With hundreds of people moving in and out of the confined spaces of a plane, you’ll most likely end up sitting in someone’s germs. Yuck. Take some wet wipes in your carry-on bag and make sure to wipe down your seat, your armrest, and definitely your tray table. 





3) Tongue Scraper

Traveling can expose your body to all sorts of new bacteria and toxins in the environment, drinks, and food. But before you go ahead and buy yourself a human-sized inflatable bubble on Amazon, there is an easier and cheaper way to help your body stay healthy: tongue scraping

Regular tongue scraping can help your body cleanse itself of toxins, stimulate your internal organs, and clean your taste buds to enhance your sense of taste. After all, there’s no fun in travel if you can’t enjoy all the delicious food, right?




4) Jacket

Even if you think you’re traveling to a warm location, a waterproof, windproof jacket is an item you’ll always want to include in your suitcase. Hot days can quickly become frigid nights, so you don’t want to be caught without a jacket to keep you dry and warm.






5) Condoms

Yup, you read that right. Condoms. They’re an often overlooked travel essential, but you’d be surprised at how hard it is to obtain condoms in some parts of the world. So be safe and always have a few condoms available because sometimes what happens in Vegas doesn’t stay in Vegas. 


Mean Girls Condom GIF



Packing for a trip doesn’t have to be an anxiety-inducing experience. If you find that you under-packed for this trip, keep a list of those items on your computer so you won’t forget them next time. Have fun and stay safe! 


5 Things to Do Before a First Date





Got a first date coming up? Take a deep breath and wipe those sweaty palms on your pants because here are 5 tips to help you score big points on your first date.

1) Clean Your Shoes

While it’s true that your eyes, teeth, and hair are all very important when trying to impress a potential romantic partner, a study conducted by Allen Edmonds in 2013 revealed that many people (especially women) pay attention to one thing in particular on a first date – shoes. Regardless of whether or not you can shell out hundreds of bucks for designer brand shoes, make sure your shoes are clean. And no sneakers!





2) Cut Your Nails

This tip is especially important for the ladies. Ladies, no matter what your girlfriends tell you, long-ass acrylic nails are not appropriate for a first date. Unless you’re trying to cut your date’s steak with those nails, it’s best to stick with shorter nails. Rule of thumb: if your nails prevent you from typing comfortably on your keyboard, they’re too long.





Regardless of your gender, long nails can trap a lot of dirt and harbor bacteria. If you want to woo your date, make sure to clean and clip those nails.

                          

3) Scrape Your Tongue

Nothing can be a bigger turnoff than bad breath. If your breath can knock the wig off your grandma’s head, you need to do more than just brushing, rinsing, and flossing. One way you can improve your breath (and your overall health) is to get the nasty bacteria off your tongue by using a tongue scraper. Your date will thank you. And you might even get lucky tonight.



                 

4) Go Somewhere That You’re Familiar With

Plan your first date well. Going somewhere you’re not familiar with and potentially getting lost is just not cute. You can even take the opportunity to impress your date with your knowledge of the city. Instead of going the traditional route of dinner and a movie, look up local events or fun activities both of you can enjoy.

                   



5) Go Easy on the Perfume

We get it; you want to smell good for your first date. But ODing on your perfume or cologne is just as offensive to your date’s nose as your dirty gym socks are.
Men: Use an antiperspirant well ahead of time so the ingredients have time to get to work.

Women: Just a spritz or two in strategic places like the nape of your neck is enough.