What Can Dental Practices Learn From A Bottle of Ketchup

Patric Moberger, May 2018.

About 20 years ago, these upside-down ketchup bottles were invented by a man named Paul Brownwho developed a special valve that released the contents of the bottle when its sides are pressed. His invention was bought by various companies, including Heinz who added it to the new upside-down bottle (whilst Brown sold his invention for $13 million!).

Paul Brown had invented a customer-centric approach. And he was rewarded.

The same thing happens to dental practices that flip their focus upside down.

When a dentist puts their focus on the customer – their needs, their fears, their choices, their experience – it totally changes the way the patient reacts and feels about the dentist.

In each city, there is ONE dentist who is doing considerably better than the rest. They are THE dentist, the go-to practice for huge cases, and new patients are lining up to get in the door.

What is it that makes these customers line up?

One word: experience.

A dentist is a dentist is a dentist is a dentist.

According to a Walker study (Customers 2020 – Customer Experience Consulting), by the year 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. 

Dental services are basically commodotised and patients often conclude that one dentist is pretty much the same as the next.

However, some dental practices give their patients royal class treatment. They do things like:

  • Call patients by their first name
  • Give personal appointment reminder calls
  • Plan post recovery phases around the patient’s lifestyle
  • Help them achieve their desired outcome for special occasions (i.e wedding days)
  • Remember their health conditions
  • Schedule in post-treatment care follow-up calls

All these little extras create a unique bond between the patient and the dental practice. And because they’ve experienced the best, they won’t accept anything less. Even better – they will tell others about it!

The Million Dollar Question

Do YOU feel that you are THE dentist in your suburb? Are you the dentist that patients are lining up to see, and accepting treatment from?

If you are, congratulations! High fives all round.

If you’re not, did the bottle of ketchup teach you anything yet?  

Patient experience is the ONE thing that you can’t ignore if you want to rise above the mass of average dental practices. It is the big difference that makes a difference.


Want to learn how to optimise your patient experience?

Your Dental Patient Experience Playbook_cover

Download your Playbook now

More articles

If you enjoyed this article, you might enjoy the following articles too:

All articles »

Upcoming Workshops

A quick overview of the next few workshops we'll be hosting.