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Increasing the value of your dental business

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Increasing the value of a business is a primary focus for nearly every business owner. It doesn’t matter if you’re a retail store, manufacturing plant, or in this case, a dental clinic. Any increase in value not only affords a better lifestyle today but can mean a much higher exit value in the future.

The more profit a business can make, the more valuable the business. Profit is simply the difference between the revenue you generate and the cost associated with generating it. By tweaking either of the two levers, we can increase the profitability of a clinic, making it more valuable. Here are six ways dentists can look to pull on these levers in hopes of making their clinic more valuable.

Automation

Automation is an important area to focus on if you want to increase your clinic’s value. Are there tasks done by a human being that could be automated to ensure consistency and, at the same time, reduce the cost of paying someone to do this task? Appointment reminders, online intake forms, and treatment plan follow-ups are good examples. Tasks that are easily automated can increase revenue and reduce your costs, a double whammy in value creation.

Products/Services

Different practices will have different revenue structures. The main sources of revenue typically include restoration, preventative care, dental consultations, and diagnosis services. Make sure you keep track of your revenue breakdown and how it stacks up against industry peers. Ensuring you are offering and delivering on high-profit procedures is a helpful way to increase the value of your practice. Porcelain veneers, implants, endodontics, and crown/bridging are examples of higher profit margin procedures.  Just because some service or product generates higher revenue levels doesn’t mean that it’s highly profitable. For example, something like a root canal, which can take several hours to complete, can generate a high level of revenue with little profit.

Staff

Highly skilled staff generate value for businesses. Things like the number of dentists and hygienists working for you and their longevity with the clinic will increase the value of the practice, making it more appealing to future buyers. Low staff turnover is a sign of a healthy clinic and provides continuity in the event of a future sale. One way to help increase staff loyalty includes providing group retirement and benefits programs. Not only do these programs help meet the needs of your staff personally, they can also be structured in a way that rewards loyalty over time, incentivizing your staff to stick with you for the long haul.

Facility & Equipment

Having modern, up-to-date, and well-maintained equipment will increase your practice value. A buyer will pay more for a well-maintained practice than one old and dated. Better equipment can also mean better efficiency, which means increased profitability.

Referral Marketing Programs

Referral marketing is a word-of-mouth marketing tactic that is an effective way to increase the number of income patients, the overall revenue of the clinic. These programs aim to incentivize your existing patients to introduce their family and friends to your clinic, in hopes they become patients themselves. Common incentives include gift cards, concert/event tickets, or discounts on services like teeth whitening. You should track referrals not only to understand how well your program is running but also so you can send a thank-you note or message, ensuring the source of referral feels appreciated for the introduction they’ve made.

Social Media/Online Presence

Today, no person makes decisions without doing research online. Having a strong Google profile and trustworthy customer reviews are important because these are likely the first things a potential patient will see. Websites and social media are great tools to maintain relationships with current patients and ensure they’re aware of any referral programs they could be taking part in. Lastly, if you’re in a competitive location, spending on good search engine optimization essential. You want to ensure that Google searches are ranking you high enough to be seen as a viable option. People don’t often get past the first page of Google for these types of services.

Summary

These are just a few of the ways you can increase the value of your dental clinic. Whether you’re a new clinic owner or one looking to sell,  these recommendations will put you on a path towards a higher valued clinic.

- Brandt Butt, Portfolio Manager/Investment Advisor, CIM®

Brandt is an Investment Advisor and part of an award-winning team at Endeavour Wealth Management with iA Private Wealth. Brandt’s focus is working with incorporated physicians and dentists between the ages of 35-45 who are looking to set themselves up on the right financial path in hopes of reaching a point where they are choosing to work, instead of having to.

This information has been prepared by Brandt Butt who is a Investment Advisor/Portfolio Manager for iA Private Wealth Inc. and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of iA Private Wealth. The information contained in this newsletter comes from sources we believe reliable, but we cannot guarantee its accuracy or reliability. The opinions expressed are based on an analysis and interpretation dating from the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. Furthermore, they do not constitute an offer or solicitation to buy or sell any of the securities mentioned. The information contained herein may not apply to all types of investors. The Investment Advisor/Portfolio Manager can open accounts only in the provinces in which they are registered. iA Private Wealth Inc. is a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada. iA Private Wealth is a trademark and business name under which iA Private Wealth Inc. operates.

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