Dentist’s Panel at Carlsbad Dentsply Sirona Marketing Summit Says: “We Need Labs” (Part 1)

Dentist’s Panel at Carlsbad Dentsply Sirona Marketing Summit Says: “We Need Labs” (Part 1)

Written by Jeff Noles, posted October 27, 2017 • Blog, News

At the final session of the Denstply Sirona Lab Marketing Summit held October 13-14th, three respected dentists talked about their thinking about dental labs.  The doctors, all of whom use Sirona and possess a deep understanding of how to use technology in the dental clinic, hailed from North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and California.  Their frank comments about what doctors want, and even need, from their labs included:

On working with labs:  “We need labs”

The first doctor to speak started his comments with “we need labs,” and continued with “we don’t want to become a lab.”  All the doctors agreed that they look to their labs to be the experts on the restorations they provide to their patients.  Furthermore, they don’t have the time or the resources to educate themselves on new technologies–they rely on the labs for this.  They were unanimous that they consider labs their partners in providing restorations to their patients.

On communicating with labs:  “A lab that gives us real feedback is a good partner”

The three doctors agreed that it can be difficult to give candid feedback to dentists, but the most valued communication is when a lab says, “do you mind having a conversation about your preps so we can make a better product for the patient?”  They were unanimous in saying that if a doctor can’t take the feedback, it’s worthwhile to seek other clients.  All of them say honest feedback is worth its weight in gold.

On what dentists need from their labs:  “Dentists need education about materials, processes, and digital tools”

One doctor noted he relies on his lab for in-depth knowledge of crowns:  “there’s too much to learn and incorporate, so we need our labs to teach us.”  Another pointed out that dentists are creatures of habit who are also perfectionists, and if they’re not pushed with new knowledge, they won’t adopt new tools that can make them even better.  The third admitted, “I like to do things that are going to make me look good,” so he relies on his labs to keep him up-to-date on the latest developments.

What attracts doctors to labs:  “Knowledge about crowns and a ‘can-do’ attitude”

All three doctors agreed that the time of dentists just using a local, neighborhood lab is past–a lab can be located anywhere and the most attractive labs demonstrate knowledge about crowns and materials.  As one said, “Labs that do lots of CE courses are preferable–it’s important that they know more than me about crowns.”  And if a lab isn’t sure about a complex case, it’s reassuring to have a lab research a solution and promptly get back to the doctor with a plan of action.  All three encouraged the dental labs in attendance to really push digital so the industry can advance:  “Labs need to push digital impressions to their dentists.”

Given that it was a Sirona conference, this last comment was well received, not only because all the labs use Sirona, but because it was clear to all attendees that understanding digital dentistry is a competitive advantage in the dental lab industry as a whole.

LabStar Software is proud to have sponsored the Carlsbad Marketing Summit.  For more information about the agenda, click here.

Part 2:  The “One Thing” Panelists Liked Most About Their Dental Labs

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