18 Aug 2023  •  Blog, Marketing  •  6min read By  • Ashley Latter

How to sell the benefits of treatment in the UK rather than Turkey

As the phenomenon of ‘Turkey teeth’ shows no sign of losing its popularity, Dental Business Coach, Ashley Latter, offers some advice on how to share the benefits with patients of staying local for their treatment.

I am often asked about how to handle the fact that many cosmetic treatments are cheaper in Turkey. It’s something that I know can make dentists feel annoyed. They take it as a professional insult. However, getting defensive about things can hinder the conversation. Tempting as it might be to think “Well if you think you can get the same standard of care and treatment in Turkey, then off you go!” it’s more productive to put aside your professional pride and try to empathise with your patient.

Look at it from their point of view – why should they pay more, sometimes thousands of pounds more, when they can get the same treatment abroad for a lot less? It’s a fair question. However, in reality, most patients probably aren’t that keen on going abroad for their treatment and what they’re looking for is reassurance from their dentist that they really should stay in the UK for their treatment.

So, what we need to do is give the patient the confidence and reassurance they’re looking for.

The following list gives you some ideas of how to respond to this if someone is looking for, say, implant treatment.

  1. What happens if something goes wrong with the treatment?

Your patient should appreciate that this is a medical procedure and, as with all medical procedures, there is a risk that something could go wrong. If that were to happen, then they may have to incur the cost of going back to Turkey to get things sorted. A large number of dentists in the UK have reported that patients who have had treatment abroad have needed to come to them for help after something has gone wrong. If you have experienced this, then it’s perfectly legitimate for you to share that during your discussion with your patients.

  1. Different regulatory structure

Dentists in the UK are tightly regulated. As providers of healthcare services, they are subject to CQC inspections and also have to abide by the regulations of the General Dental Council (GDC). However, regulations in Turkey may not be as strict. Knowing dentists in the UK work within a tight regulatory framework can be comforting to patients.

  1. Different materials

There are a large number of different materials that can be used for implants and not all materials are equal! This is a good time to emphasise the quality of the materials you choose to use at your practice. Let the patient know that one of the reasons treatments in the UK may be more expensive is because you choose top quality materials that will last. The old doctrine of ‘buy cheap, buy twice’ can also come into play here. If there is such a difference in cost between treatment abroad and at your practice, then that could possibly be down to the quality of the materials they choose to use.

  1. Superior aftercare service

Using a dentist that is local to them means that it’s easy to get to see the person who carried out the treatment should the worst happen and something goes wrong. You will just be a phone call away and you can outline your availability if there’s an emergency and you need to be seen quickly.

  1. Your qualifications

Many dentists in the UK who carry out implant procedures have studied for additional qualifications before including them as part of their treatment offering. If you are one of them, then this should reassure the patient that you have the right training and experience to be able to carry out the procedure successfully.

  1. Track record of procedures

The number of procedures you have carried out and their success rate can be a significant factor in building a patient’s confidence in your ability to offer them the treatment they want. Reputation is hugely important in dentistry so being able to point to a large number of satisfied customers is a huge bonus.

  1. Guarantees

We’re all comforted when something we pay for has a guarantee! If you offer one, let the patient know about it. It shows you have confidence in the quality of your work.

Hopefully, those suggestions will be of some use to you.

If this is a subject that patients bring up often, then it’s as well to make sure you talk to your whole team about it as it may be something that gets raised during conversations with the front of house team or as part of a new patient enquiry. It is important they know how to field these types of questions to satisfy the patient’s needs.

Some people will always buy on price and there’s not a lot you can do about that. However, most people don’t. In this case they want to be reassured that having their treatment in the UK is the right thing to do. If they didn’t believe that in their heart of hearts, they would already have booked their flight abroad!

Remember, objections when selling are positive things as they give you an opportunity to provide more information and outline the benefits. If the patient or customer wasn’t interested, they wouldn’t ask the question.

About Ashley

Ashley Latter is an industry-renowned Dental Business Consultant. He specialises in delivering the Ethical Sales and Communication Programme, Creating a World Class Patient Journey, Creating a High Performance Team and also works with a very forward thinking group of dentists and Orthodontists on the Serious Players Club, which is an entrepreneur group.

He has spoken at most of the major conferences in the UK, including those of the BDA, BACD, British Orthodontic Conferences and the ADI Conference.

He is also the author of three books: ‘You are worth it’, ‘The Dental Practice Jugglers’ and ‘Don’t wait for the Tooth Fairy’.


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