3 tips for marketing veterinary dental services

dvm360dvm360 February 2023
Volume 54
Issue 2
Pages: 30

Improve client compliance and boost revenue while offering patients the essential dental care

ViktoriaShu / stock.adobe.com

ViktoriaShu / stock.adobe.com

A survey of 700 veterinary clinics conducted by Live Oak Bank1 revealed that 33% of the practices reported they derived 2.5 to 4% of annual revenue from dental care services. These numbers display the challenges of successful client compliance to veterinary dentals. To help bolster revenue through dental services while providing this care to patients who need it, Paul Camilo, CVPM, founder of Veterinary Consultation Services, LLC, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida; and Caitlin DeWilde, DVM, founder and CEO of The Social DVM, LLC in St. Louis, Missouri, delivered a joint lecture at the Veterinary Meeting & Expo in Orlando, Florida, on marketing strategies for conveying the value of dental services to clients.2 Three of their methods are outlined below.

Update your nomenclature

Simply changing your wording of the “teeth cleaning” you offer can make clients more willing to comply. For example, Camilo said, there’s likely a groomer close to your practice that also offers a “teeth cleaning” for a fraction of the cost. Clients likely don’t know the difference between the 2 services since they are phrased the same, so will opt for the less expensive option at the groomer. He emphasized, “Whatever you do, do not use [the term] ‘teeth cleaning,’ because then you’re competing against the groomers.” He added, “Consider using a different term outside of ‘teeth cleaning’ or even ‘dental’…Two terms that people really like are Oral ATP (Oral Assessment Treatment and Prevention)…or COHAT (Comprehensive Oral Health Assessment and Treatment).”

Because clients are typically unfamiliar with these terms, it can segue into explaining each element of a veterinary dental cleaning to them including the assessment, treatment, and prevention plan. Clients can then understand why these services are higher quality compared to the other options available on the market.

Incorporate dental education in the social media strategy

DeWilde told attendees that she plans out content for her practice a month at a time, or even a quarter at a time if possible. “That forces me to be strategic and I can think about what things I need to hit every month, and dentistry is definitely one of them. I would say at least once a month you should be posting about dentistry on your social media channels.” Some dental content ideas she shared include:

  • Patient before and after photos
  • Patients with home dental care products
  • Explaining Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) approved products
  • How-to videos (eg, how to brush a pet’s teeth, what a dental cleaning consists of, etc)
  • Dental radiographs
  • Shared content (eg, dental toolkits, positive reviews, etc)

DeWilde further explained that many of these components you already have from daily practice, such as photos from radiographs or before and after pictures of a pet’s teeth for their medical records. Mobile apps are available to edit the pictures or combine them in various layouts. Additionally, she recommended steering clear of posting photos that are too bloody or scary as this can be unappealing to clients.

Create a dentistry-specific landing page

DeWilde suggested that your landing page URL look something like: yourvetclinic'sname.com/dentalhealth. “Many of us have [the dentistry landing page] buried…like under the services or under the surgery tab. And I think we all know this is a completely different beast, right. So having it be its own page allows you to send just this link to your clients that may need information about dental health or about your dental services.”

The following information should be included on the dentistry landing page:

  • Booking: Simplify the process for clients ready to take action.
  • Home care: At-home dental tips for proactive care in between veterinary visits.
  • Education: Explaining the importance of oral health to overall health.
  • Expectations: Many clients are unsure what a dental cleaning consists of. This helps them understand and builds transparency and trust.


  1. How does your practice measure up? Live Oak Bank. 2014. Accessed January 17, 2023. https://www.liveoakbank.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/14-LOB-Vet-White-Paper-Final.pdf
  2. Camilo P, DeWilde C. How to market & GROW dentistry services. Presented at: Veterinary Meeting & Expo; Orlando, Florida. January 14-18, 2023.
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