Why Patient Retention Will Grow Your Dental Practice (and Save You Thousands on Costs)


Retaining your existing patients saves you a huge amount on marketing costs!

If you’ve been putting all your money toward generating new patients, take 15 minutes and listen up.

Kelsey – our Chief Strategy and Growth Officer – joined NexHealth to dive into:

  • The importance of retaining existing patients
  • How retention can supercharge your practice
  • How it’ll save you money in the long run

So, get ready to unlock the secrets of patient retention and propel your dental practice to new heights! Listen to NexHealth’s podcast…click to open link in a new tab… above.

Patient retention is the cornerstone of a successful dental practice

Patient retention has always been necessary for dental practices.

But in 2023, it takes on even greater significance.

As a growth-minded dentist, you constantly seek ways to expand your practice and attract new patients.


Retaining your existing patients is just as essential, if not more so.

Let’s go into why:

1. Patient retention is one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies.

Acquiring a new patient can be expensive.

Think about it:

You invest in marketing campaigns and dedicate your time to convince folks to choose you as their dentist.

On average, it costs around $300 to generate a new patient. That’s NOT including marketing costs.

Let’s put it in this perspective:

You get 20 new patients a month. That’s $6000 out of your pocket.

But what if half of those patients never come back? You lost $3000.

But when you focus on retaining your current patients, you minimize these acquisition costs.

Our client increased his revenue 10x over through patient retention.

Here’s a great case to look at: We had a client who experienced the financial benefits of patient retention, minimizing his marketing costs.

He had a huge inactive patient list and invested $4500 to reactivate his hygiene patients.

At Roadside Dental Marketing, we nurtured that list through:

  • Texts
  • Emails
  • An exciting offer to bring them back into the office

The result?

They generated $50,000 in revenue and reactivated 125 patients. They didn’t have to invest in paid ads or monthly marketing, yet they retained those patient numbers.

2. Patient retention is essential for building trust and nurturing lasting relationships.

When patients feel connected to your practice, they’ll trust your expertise and follow your recommendations.

This leads to increased treatment acceptance rates and opportunities for upselling existing services.


It’s because you already have a relationship with them, and they’re familiar with your practice.

Education plays a crucial role.

In the past, practices would:

  • Meet patients in the chair
  • Recommend a treatment plan to the patient
  • Listen to the patient say, “I’ll think about it”
  • Do ZERO follow up

You can’t do that anymore. You have to nurture these patients to say yes to treatment.

People need 8-10 touchpoints before making a buying decision.

Think about it:

You don’t walk to a car lot and buy the first car you see. That would be impulsive.

Instead, it involves a thoughtful and deliberate thought process. You:

  • Research your options
  • Set a budget
  • Test drive and compare other cars
  • Consider whether it’s worth the purchase
  • Look into financing options
  • Finally, make a decision

It’s the same with patients.

Take the time to educate your patients about their treatment options.

Provide informative videos explaining the process, timelines, and outcomes. You can send these videos via emails and texts.

This nurturing will slowly get patients to:

  • Trust your expertise
  • Feel connected and valued
  • Continue seeing you long-term

3. Patient retention is about “surprise, delight, and wow.”

Patients don’t want a cookie-cutter dental experience. They want to be wowed and feel part of something special.

Wanting to feel a sense of community and belonging is just part of human nature.

And when you create an unforgettable experience at the dental office, it’ll go a long way.

Think outside the box.

Surprise them with personalized gestures or unique perks that make their visit memorable.

It could be a small gift or a special event that showcases your appreciation for their loyalty.

Whatever it is, go the extra mile to make them say, “Wow, a dentist has never done this for me before.”

And what does that lead to?


Final tips for improving patient retention

Patient retention is the backbone of a thriving dental practice in 2023. It:

  • Saves you money
  • Builds trust
  • Fosters long-term relationships
  • Opens doors to increased treatment acceptance and referrals

Your existing patients are your biggest advocates. Retaining them is the key to sustainable growth.

Some final takeaways to improve your patient retention rates:

  • Be authentic, stand out, and showcase your personality
  • Embrace online conveniences, such as text reminders and online scheduling
  • Focus on building relationships and providing memorable experiences
  • Nurture your patients (outside the office)

Want to talk more about dental marketing strategies that involve patient retention?

Talk to Shannon for a free Dental Practice Analysis…click to open link in a new tab….

She’ll give you a free report on all the revenue opportunities in your practice.


NexHealth’s platform is a game-changer when it comes to patient retention. With features like online scheduling, automated reminders, and seamless communication, it amplifies your efforts effortlessly.

You can schedule a demo here…click to open link in a new tab….

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