To Brand or Not to Brand?

Sponsored Content: Lone Peak Dental Group

By Ray Caruso, CEO, Lone Peak Dental Group

To brand or not to brand your multi-site group?

This question has been around since the beginning of multi-site dental groups. Both strategies have pros and cons, and companies generally choose their path early into growth. I was torn on which direction to take when assessing Lone Peak’s future. I weighed both options and came up with a new solution that provides the positives of both branded and non-branded entities. 

Why should you brand? 

Branding your office is not just the elements such as logos and colors; it is your unique identity. It creates recognition, builds trust, improves marketing, and develops loyalty. A brand is a personality and culture that attract patients and team members. 

Do you carry the brand to a second office? It certainly would make sense to keep trust, recognition, and loyalty to help your new practice grow! It also saves money in marketing, gives ease in social media, and improves SEO.

Why wouldn’t you brand? 

In my experience, the main reason multi-unit dental groups stay unbranded is risk avoidance. When you affiliate with a new office, most of the asset purchased is goodwill, which we know as trust, loyalty, and recognition. You need to keep that brand recognition in the community, otherwise, you’re just buying chairs.

I am a frequent traveler, and in my early days, I was brand-agnostic. I flew whatever was cheapest or most convenient. Now I won’t fly certain airlines because of a poor experience. Experience is another area to consider when branding. What happens if one of your practices is known for poor customer service. Does the brand hurt you? Will customer reviews taint the overall reputation for the rest of the locations?

What’s the solution? 

We believe branding without risk is the right strategy for our business. A new approach was needed – brand the service model, not the office. We developed something we call Kidsperience to unify our pediatric dental offices. Our service model defines what we do and still allows offices to maintain their unique identities. We designed Kidsperience to provide caregivers and patients with positive encounters every visit through excellent customer service. It enables us to have a brand within a brand and deliver the benefits of group marketing without its risks. 

Kidsperience also promotes a look and feel. When we build or acquire new offices, we brand them internally with our Kidpserience collateral. We place Kidsperience logos on websites and patient-facing materials and train new teams and doctors on why we do what we do. Kidsperience promotes consistency and purpose in our daily operations and builds our desired culture. 

You must ask many questions to determine the best strategy for your business model. Will branding help drive business to other locations? Will you build offices or acquire them? Are communities and doctors ready for branded dentistry? Is there another approach? 

We spent a lot of time on that last question and the answer is yes. Branding the service model is what we found to be the future for Lone Peak Dental Group.