If you want to thrive in a solo orthodontic practice, then get to know the people in your community.

By Tonya Johnson

If you’re thinking about opening your first practice—and doing it solo—then you’ll want to put the needs of the patient front and center. The profits will come later.

Nicholas Maddux, DDS, MS, an orthodontist based in Virginia Beach, Va, has reveled in this motto since launching his solo practice in 2017. “I may see hundreds of patients, but that patient chose me to help them, and that is something I try to remember every day. I never want to make the mistake of taking for granted how privileged I am to be part of a patient’s life,” he says. “We work hard to make patients feel welcomed and prioritize their treatment results.”

Maddux’s focus on serving the patient started before construction even began. He spent time getting to know the area and the community because he wanted his business to play a significant part. His goal from the outset was never to divide the patient population, but to fill a niche that parents and kids are looking for—while also having fun and getting great results. Today, he and his staff members serve a diverse community of military families and people who have lived all over the world, working in various fields.

Nicholas Maddux, DDS, MS

Getting to know the community early on played a key role in helping him develop his practice’s brand. While an in-house marketing coordinator might have saved the practice money in the beginning stages, Maddux chose his marketing partner, Virginia Creative Group, knowing that its specialty is building brands from the ground up. Today he owns a space and brand that is unique to how he practices and the community he serves.

Amongst the marketing strategies that have been the most successful at the practice are the ones that make patients feel like they are members of the Maddux Orthodontics “family.”  The team sponsors plenty of in-office contests throughout the year, including a Halloween costume contest. The goal is to include patients in as many fun events as possible. And the practice offers sibling and military discounts that speak to who it serves.

Learn More: 10 Tips for Opening a New Orthodontic Practice

Securing a building contractor and completing the entire renovation project took approximately 1 year, but it was worth the time and investment. At Maddux Orthodontics, the Virginia native offers braces and Invisalign treatment, as well as palate expanders to treat young children who suffer from pediatric sleep apnea and need assistance with their breathing. He surrounds himself with an expert team of professionals, who share his same vision to achieve the best possible outcomes for each patient that walks through the door.

Now with a second facility less than 10 miles away, Maddux is thankful to be able to thrive in a supportive community, and strongly believes that having this type of outlook is what sets Maddux Orthodontics apart from its competitors and will continue to make the practice the best at what it does. OP

Tonya Johnson is associate editor at Orthodontic Products.