The Evolution of the NPI Practice Control Center™

In this podcast, our Founder, Howie Horrocks and CEO, Mark Dilatush, discuss the intricacies of the NPI Practice Control Center™.

The practice control center serves as a platform for dentists to monitor their dental marketing strategy and know the outcome of their marketing investments.

Basically, the Practice Control Center helps you know where your money went, how many patients it produced, and which marketing channels are working and which ones are not. It gives you immediate insight whenever you need it.

Prior to establishing the NPI Practice Control Center, our practice was to have a meeting for 15 minutes once a month with our client’s customer success manager to go through all of their marketing and the outcomes of each marketing campaign.

So, let’s discuss the evolution of the NPI Practice Control Center.

Initially, the complex task of call tracking allowed us to statistically measure performance in a crowd or group. In other words, we could measure all of our clients, which was good. This allowed us to guide clients and prospective clients on what was actually working and not what we thought was working.

However, there was a problem. We noticed a few years later that clients were not even logging into their call tracking dashboard to listen to their call and sort them out appropriately. The call sorting system was a way for us to know which marketing campaigns the calls were coming in from, which calls were a good lead, which was terrible lead, which calls ended up as an appointment, etc. our efforts to convince clients to delegate this task to their staff didn’t yield much success.

Soon, we started revamping our digital campaigns and the tech we use to track our digital strategy, mainly, google ads campaigns. With the digital campaigns, we did the analyses for our clients, and they could just look at one part of their dashboard and be aware of what is going on at all times. This method proved to be really successful.

Finally, we evolved to the best that covers both the online and offline marketing campaigns; the NPI Practice Control Center.

The Practice Control Center is not just our digital campaigns; It’s all our offline campaigns and our digital campaigns broken down into many media categories. Whatever form of marketing that you are spending your money on, you can see everything literally.

We also compare your media results against all of our clients’ media results, so now, you will know how well you are doing based on the percentage you belong to. If you are in the 50 percentile of all of our clients, you are doing great. If you are over 50% of all of our clients in any of those media categories, you’re doing tremendously.

So, the NPI Practice Control Center is a side benefit of where we are taking the company, which is to provide all media and marketing, for a practice that chooses to have one source rather than eight or nine different people to talk to about all their marketing. This is the direction of our company, and the practice control center platform pretty much brings all that stuff together.

Hello, and welcome to the Dental Marketing Mastery Series. This podcast is brought to you by New Patients Incorporated. I’m Howie Horrocks, the Founder of New Patients Incorporated. And along with me once again is my friend and partner and the Chief Executive Officer of New Patients Incorporated, Mark Dilatush.

Howie: Hello, everybody. Welcome to our podcast. We haven’t done one of these in a while. Right, Mark?

Mark: Hmm, about a month, month and a half. I hope if you’re listening to this podcast, then the one prior is where we talked about April and March of 2021.

Howie: Right, Right

Mark: And why your hygiene schedule might be a little weak, and what to do about it, and so on and so forth. So, after you get done listening to this one, listen to the one just before if you haven’t already.

Howie: Yeah, good idea. Good idea.

So just to make a formal introduction, that guy over there in New Jersey is the Chief Executive Officer of New Patients Inc, Mark Dilatush. I’m Howie Horrocks, Founder of the company.

Mark: And Chairman of the Board.

Howie: Oh, yeah. Chairman of the Board. We’re going to talk about Practice Control Center, NPI’s, Practice Control Center. Mark, why don’t you tell everybody what that’s about?

Mark: Oh, boy. So, Practice Control Center is the current state of evolution.

Howie: State of the art.

Mark: State of the art, evolution of dentist clients telling us that they wanted more, and why. And we basically figured out how and what.

So, the Practice Control Center, it’s named aptly, because it gives the dentist control over the outcome of all of their marketing spend, where it went, what it produced, the categories of what it produced. And the sources that produced, the sources that did not produce, it basically gives the owner dentist immediate control whenever they need it.

We started out connecting with an office once a month for about 15 minutes with one of our – with the client CSM, customer success manager. We connect and go through all of the KPIs for all of their marketing and the outcomes of each. So, the Practice Control Center should now make sense.

Now I can go into a little bit more of the weeds, so to speak.

Howie: Before you do that, let’s clarify something you know, that’s been, I mean, forever. We’ve been in existence here for 30 years. And that’s always been the one of the chief complaints that dentists have is “I don’t know, if my marketing’s producing anything, I don’t know, if I’m wasting my money, I don’t know where it’s going. And I don’t know where these new patients are really coming from and where the leaks are.” So, this Practice Control Center will solve that.

Mark: It solves all of them. Because that’s a good segue into, I guess, the evolution. I mean, we’ve probably been screaming tracking numbers for…

Howie: Years

Mark: What, 15 years, right?

It was very rudimentary, although at the time, it was, I guess, kind of high tech. You would have a special number that forwards to the offices main line, and that number only existed on your advertising piece, whatever that is. And then there’s a central reporting area where you could log in and look up all your calls and listen to them, and so on and so forth. That was basically the first iteration of the solution was call tracking.

And what it did for us, is it allowed us to measure statistically the marketing performance in a crowd and a group, in other words, all of our clients, which was good. Because it would allow us to then guide clients or prospective new clients appropriately not based on how we feel or what we want to sell that month, but based on what actually is working and what’s not working, right?

So, it helped everybody, it helped our clients and it helped us and it helped everybody.

So fast forward a few years, you know, we noticed that our clients weren’t even logging in, and when we would touch base with them, check in with them, you know, they would admit it. You know, “I’m too busy, I’m a dentist, I have a dental practice, I have patients staff, and I gotta go home, I got a family and all these other obligations, I simply don’t have the time or energy or will to log into my call tracking dashboard and listen to all these calls and classify them and source them appropriately” and so on and so forth.

So, we started hearing that and then it kept coming like sort of like a sort of like a slow Drum roll, right?

You know, so over the years, and then when we try to encourage them, you know, “no, no, no doc here. That’s okay. I’ll send you a link once a month and just click it go in there and listen. And you can guide your staff, you can source your, you know what else you can do, you can delegate it, you can give it to, you know Mary Anne or Dottie at your front desk, and they can login. We’ll give them a separate login.”

And then we started giving them separate logins and hope that the dentist would, you know, would delegate and assign this task to somebody else on their team. And, and that worked for a couple extra dentists. But for the most part, it wasn’t a total failure. But it was a mostly failure, right, delegating.

So, that was part of the evolution, then we started really ramping up our digital campaigns and the technology that we use to track our digital campaigns. This was quite a few years ago. And what we began to do was connect the call tracking to the analytics to the classifications to the sourcing in one place.

And with our digital campaigns, specifically Google ad campaigns, this is part of that process. We listened to every call, and we classify every call, and we source every call. And so basically, for our digital ad campaigns, that dentists can just look at one part of their dashboard and know exactly what’s going on at all times. They’d know exactly without measuring running reports or analyzing any of the data that basically the analysis is done for them when we do digital ad campaigns.

So, then the evolution moved forward in that the dentists who were on digital campaigns, really “Oh my god, this is so nice, I can just look at this, like 15 seconds, I can look at this and know where I am.” I know there’s some, you know, unique calls, actually, let’s go through the classifications so you understand what we’re talking about.

So, classification of a phone call is total calls, total unique calls. Out of those unique calls, how many were bad leads, how many calls were missed (that’s a big one), how many calls were good leads. In other words, they were good potential new patients, but there was a swing and a miss somewhere in the conversation, and then how many of them became new patients, and it’s all categorized by source.

So, in our digital campaign standpoint, this would apply to our digital campaigns. So if you can just look at that from left to right, for a digital campaign, over a period of a month, you don’t really need to dig into the weeds, the weeds are sitting right in front of you staring you in the face, you know exactly what you spent, you know exactly what you got, you know exactly how many calls you missed, good leads, bad leads, new patients, and then you can source them to your practice management system, probably in less than five minutes a month, and then you’re done. And most of our clients’ delegate that because it’s really easy now that we classify everything.

The other thing we do is we rate the interaction with the team during the call, so one through five stars very similar to Google. And then we’ll put notes in where they might improve. So, all of this is done for all of our clients on digital campaigns.

And that’s still not even the Practice Control Center. I’m just explaining to you the evolution.

So, what it did evolve to is now called the Practice Control Center. The Practice Control Center is not just our digital campaigns, it’s also all of our offline campaigns, and our digital campaigns broken out into many media categories.

And I’ll give you an example, like Google ad, is a pretty common example, organic search. So, if you want to see how much money you’re making, on your SEO investment, you’ll be able to see that you’ll be able to quantify that without running reports. Without having to dig in – like it’s just kind of right there in front of you.

So, but also social, how many calls you’re getting from social? How many?

How many new patients are you getting from just your Google business listing? That’s, you know, that’s the local box of a search. How much money are you making? Just from that? That’s a good question, social, Facebook, you know, what kind of traffic are you getting? What kind of calls are you getting off of your, your effort on your Facebook page trying to generate engagement?

Good question, how about mail, your trifold, your postcards, your magazines, whatever you’re doing, or a print ad or anything, okay, literally.

Howie: Radio spots.

Mark: Right. Anything that you’re doing, that’s spending almost any amount of money on. Now you can actually literally see everything, all of it.

The media, you’re using down the left hand side, and the classification across the top total calls, unique calls, missed calls, so on and so forth – good leads, bad leads, new patients.

And then all the way over to the right, what we’ve done is we’ve compared your media results against all of our clients media results. So now you’ll be able to see okay, this is great. This is where I am. That’s – these are the results I got. This is the number of new patients I got from this spend from this media. That’s awesome. But how does that stack up against my peers?

Howie: Yeah

Mark: Right. How do you, like Is that good? I don’t even know.

We get the question a lot. We get, you know, hey, you know, hey, client would say, “Hey, Rachel, this is awesome, you know, thank you. But is this good?”

Like they don’t, they don’t know what’s good, right?

So, we show them for each of those media categories. So, if they’re in digital ads or in mail or SEO or social, whatever they’re in, we can actually measure their results against all of our clients who also are in those media types.

Now, it doesn’t mean look, they’re still great dental markets, and they’re still really competitive dental markets. And we all know that you have to do more and better marketing and competitive markets than you do in non-competitive markets. This is still a business driven by supply and demand.

So, your average, you know, it’s a number, like if you’re, if you’re in the 50 percentile of all of our clients, you’re doing great. You’re doing awesome. Actually, if you’re over 50%, over the 50 percentile of all of our clients in any of those media categories, you’re doing tremendously well.

So basically, what the Practice Control Center did, or what it was, it’s an evolution of the steps we’ve taken over what 15 years to try and get the dentist what they really want, at the end of the day, what they – it’s not even at the end of the day, it’s like it’s like once a month.

If you can assemble, analyze, quantify, and present the statistical return of a marketing investment to a dentist so that they can kind of put it out of their mind. And then or there might be something on there that needs work, like something might have just started and it’s performing below 50%.

Okay, well, that makes sense. That happens almost with every marketing medium, but at least you walk away, after 15 minutes understanding exactly where everything is, and whether or not there’s any action you need to take, or if there’s actions that you know, the marketing firm is going to take on your behalf.

So, that’s the Practice Control Center. It’s kind of like those movies, those sci fi movies, where I don’t know, they are sitting in front of what looks like a piece of glass, and these computer images are coming up in front of them, and they’re grabbing them and pushing them off to the right or the left.

It’s really, the feedback we’ve gotten is I’m not sure dentists understand more about their practice than they did before. Because we always provided the data to them. I think what we’ve accomplished with the Practice Control Center now is they can consume the data in about 1/10 of the time for 1/100th of the effort. And they can assess the status of all their marketing in one place in 15 minutes a month. I think the biggest benefit is they don’t have to worry about it anymore.

Honestly, I think that’s probably it’s just a stress relief, is what I’m getting from, from the feedback from our dentists. And we’ve also heard, ‘Why didn’t we do this years ago?’ And the answer is we didn’t have the tech and the platform to do it. But we do now.

So, that’s Practice Control Center.

It is a, I guess, a side benefit of where we’re taking the company, which is to provide all media, all marketing, for a practice that chooses to have one source. Right? Rather than have eight or nine different people to talk to about all their marketing. This is the direction of our company and the practice control center platform pretty much brings all that stuff together.

Howie: So, there you have it!

Yeah, absolutely. Well, we want to close out here by thanking you all for tuning in. And we hope that you tune in next time. Until then, we’ll see you. Bye.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our podcast today. You can get all of our podcasts on iTunes, Stitcher, and, and on our website,

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