I looked at this both in the practice and in the sales of our advertising/consulting client base. Pre-great recession, we used to have a lot of live, in-person meetings and it was easier to get numbers out of people as it was their homework to bring this data to their sessions.
Additionally, we tracked and knew the stats on each critical step in the sales process. Closing rates for calls to consults, records appointments, etc.
This was a way to predict the revenue stream and also a way to look at where sales issues were arising impacting our results. The more you improve steps along the sales path, the more sales you have from all those leads generated.
In sales terminology, fixing the metrics in your sales process this is called ‘lead optimization.’ This is doubly important in the full-arch implant case game, because the average transaction size is so large and one or two cases can make or break the month.
Seeing Both Sides
Think about the last time you called or interacted with a business, and the phone experience or other sales step with that business was a disaster. Now think about being on the inside of that business and you changed how that process was handled so that the outcome was better. By seeing both sides of the sales process (customer and business), you quickly understand why you must think about lead optimization; especially when you are selling something that costs the price of a well-appointed car!
Back in 2005-06, this bottom line closing rate from ALL leads to cases sold ranged from 3.5% to 9.7%; again, only cases bigger than $10,000. Yes, 9.7% was a huge outlier where the practice was aggressively financially screening. This was in the day of ‘slow media’ where most implant cases around the country were generated from newsprint advertising. That media brought a higher level of lead qualification compared to Google and Facebook which are FREE media to the patient (meaning they don’t pay a subscription to use their services).
In today’s market, we still can qualify financially but not at the level of Dr. 9.7% back in 2005. It’s better to be less restrictive and have more structured conversations to create knowing and liking which is the path to winning more cases in the more competitive implant market that exists now versus nearly 20 years ago.
How are these total case close % now compared to 2005?
Back to the Future
Fast-forward to 2022: one team member I have who does part-time front-end sales work for us helping manage the doctors coming into my sales conversations and calendar is also a top producer in a full-arch practice in Minnesota. Before this, she spent almost 10 years in the corporate implant center environment. Before that, she was selling in her father’s implant practice. She is very well aware of sales optimization far beyond what the typical “sales” TPC knows in 99% of practices.
Even with her optimizing the heck out of their leads, she still finds that at the end of the sales cycle 3.5-4.6% have bought from the leads generated. Again, my instinct is we have trended DOWN in these numbers due to lead quality with these free medias.
She’s routinely closing 30-40 arches per month and recently had a 50 arch month. And to get those numbers there is of course a mandatory massive hella’ lead flow being supported by $45K in DTC advertising each month. Maybe with some long term follow-up, they’ll pull out a percent more from the list, but that’s another story.
Knowledge Is Power
Most docs have no idea there is even such a concept as lead optimization or even what the numbers really look like in this game of full arch implants. Why? Well, because they don’t run the implant part of the practice as a sales organization as compared to ClearChoice, AD&I, Aspen, etc. As a result, they often flail about not getting the advertising results they want.
I share this with you just so you can truly know what this game looks like purely from the averages.
Yes, full arch implants when sold correctly are the highest-profit procedure in the profession but it’s only a game for those who acknowledge the seriousness of sales and either builds a killer in-house sales team OR uses our professional sales team to support their sales endeavors.
Once you are aware of the reality of the numbers and you see a practice that is terrible at “optimizing” and where literally 85-90% of the leads are wasted it doesn’t take a genius to figure why these docs bomb out with their implant dream! A hundred leads, if optimized where the calls are answered and there are real sales conversations and follow-up, could lead to 4-5 cases and $200K-$250K in revenue. If only 15% of those calls are optimized, they might not even get a single cases!
Knowledge, of course, is power so hopefully this post will get a few more docs educated on how to avoid the mishaps with this!
If you are ready to add at least six more full-arch implant cases per month to your practice AND to move past the lead optimization issue and have an ad agency that provides a professional sales team to help sell (or close) your cases and get you the results you want from the ads, book a time so we can talk about your goals.