Adding clear aligners to your practice can be a game-changer for your financials. On the surface, it’s a high-revenue procedure that, if done correctly, can result in healthy profits. But beyond the financial benefits, offering clear aligners is a skill worth investing in for your overall knowledge of oral health.
There are many clinical needs that clear aligners can address. For example, many procedures GPs perform require minor alignment of teeth to preserve tooth structure for prosthetic and cosmetic needs, to avoid root sensitivity, avoid perforating a pulp, or to get better retention or more crown exposure for retention of a fixed restoration. Clear aligners can also be an effective orthodontic therapy for correcting malocclusion, making teeth more cleansable, and improving overall oral health.
Many restorative dentists are already working with sleep aid devices, trays for whitening or temporizing crowns. So it isn’t a huge stretch to start considering how these devices can help us deliver better integrated dental care.
But on a business level, offering clear aligners can work wonders for your practice's financials. Patients with malocclusion or alignment issues, who are interested in orthodontic care, are likely in your patient roster right now. That means you wouldn’t need to spend ad dollars on them to have a brief consultation and potentially win an extra $5-10K for your practice this month.
If you’re asking a marketer, there are a few acronyms to learn that can help you focus the conversation: CAC and LTV.
CAC stands for Customer Acquisition Cost (of a patient)
LTV is the Lifetime Value (of a patient)
Your CAC must always be significantly lower than your LTV. If it’s more, your marketing dollars are being wasted. If it’s less, you can keep investing dollars confidently to acquire new patients.
Why This Matters
Marketing agencies love marketing high-ticket services like implants and orthodontics because it means you need to reach fewer patients to pay yourself back on your marketing investment.
So if you offer both restorative and orthodontic services in your practice, you’ve now just given the potential Lifetime Value (LTV) of your patients a huge boost. And that means you can invest more in your marketing.
If you succeed in delivering these procedures effectively, you've now given your patients and their families additional data points to trust you and thus refer more people in their network.
By offering clear aligners, you are increasing your patient base and improving your overall marketing strategy. Patients who may not have considered your practice for orthodontic care before will now have that option. And those who have been considering orthodontic treatment can benefit from your expertise and experience.
Naturally, this can all go wrong if you're taking on cases far beyond your abilities or accepting cases purely for profit-driven motives and not for what's in the best interest of the patient. But by adding clear aligners to your GP practice, and investing in your development as an oral care provider, you are not only improving the oral health of your patients, but you are also boosting the profitability and long-term success of your business.