Review the progress you’ve made so far this year toward fulfilling your practice vision. If you need to make 2017 a better year for your practice than 2016, it’s time to start laying the groundwork. Most significant changes in how you do orthodontics—and how you do business—will take months of preparation and implementation before the desired results materialize.

Specific factors in your practice and local market should shape your planning, but here are some potential growth strategies that could play a major role in your 2017 success…and that you should begin developing now.

1. Consider New Technologies and Related Training

If you believe that new clinical or business technologies will drive practice growth, start evaluating competitive products now. Go beyond the sales pitches so you (and selected staff members) can get a realistic picture of the impact of technologies you’re considering. If a significant investment will be required, figure out how you’ll come up with the money and build it into your 2017 budget. And don’t forget training. Even the best new technology will fall short of expectations if your team hasn’t been properly trained to use it.

2. Debottleneck Key Business Systems

If you and your team have noticed inefficiencies cropping up in systems critical to your success, now’s the time to start designing new systems, documenting them, and training team members to use them skillfully.

3. Upgrade Your Website

Unless you’ve done this recently (with professional assistance), your online presence probably needs a makeover, beginning with your practice website. Most prospective adult patients and parents will check it out before contacting your office, so it has to make an excellent impression. Website development typically takes months, so you should start now.

4. Plan 2017 Referral Marketing Campaigns

Task your marketing coordinator to come up with at least 15 strategies for generating patient referrals and another 15 for doctor referrals. You’ll need significant lead time to get some of them up and running. Plan on launching these strategies prior to the end of 2016 so that resulting referrals will begin showing up in January.

By developing and implementing these and other initiatives now, your practice will be well prepared to get off to a fast start in 2017… and make it your best year ever.

Interested in having Dr Levin speak at your referring doctor event, study club, or association meeting? Contact the Levin Group’s Seminar Events Manager Rebecca Luwisher directly at [email protected] or 443-471-3202.